Atc scm20

Just curious as to whether anyone has listened to these recently (passive ideally). I’ve listened to SCM50s which i love but concerned they might be a bit overwhelming in my room … just remembered the SCM20 but rarely gets mentioned anywhere. I’m a sucker for the classic series look btw and not wild about the appearance of the 40s

I’ve got the 40’s,yes they aren’t the prettiest,but it’s all about the sound,and they are ,IMO,great,give them an audition.

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A vote for the 50s here, not got a huge room but sounding great

Thanks Chris … I guess it’s just a matter of trying them out in my room. I’ve recently had Kudos 505s on the end of the system but find them a bit bass heavy and just subbed in my Harbeth P3ESR Anniversaries which despite not being able to handle the same SPLs i’m finding more engaging. I have an opportunity to trade in the 505s without losing anything so thinking about my options … I’ve always had an ATC itch that i want to scratch!

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Hi Massingham,

ATC speakers have the same sound signature throughout their range. So the bigger the model, it’s will sound bigger and goes lower. SCM 20 being their tower range, will cost more than the entry range. They use “S” spec tweeter on the 20 as compare to the non “S” spec tweeter on the entry range.

Do not overlook a powerful amp for passive ATC, they are power hungry. Besides, they tend to sound boring at lower volume.


I used to run a pair of SCM20s - now have the latest generation 19s - thought they were great - great for medium room - need good stands though, and bass attenuates below around 50Hz but still there

Interested in why you are looking at the 20s rather than the 19s, not just appearance surely? (I prefer the look of the 19s.) Also intrigued by your “passive ideally” comment. ATC sells most of its speakers above the entry range in active versions (around 90% IIRC) and there is a good reason for this which they explain in detail on their website. Where I’ve been able to make serious comparisons, active versions have always outshone the passives even driven by Naim power amps. YMMV of course.

What’s the rest of the system?



I use 552/500DR hence passive interest at this stage … I haven’t heard active vs passive on the SCM50 which is probably where i’m heading although the recent Hifi Critic reviews and my dealer suggest that passive 50s with a 500DR just edge actives although at more twice the cost …was just curious about the 20s as there’s hardly any chat about them and at face value they seem to offer high vfm given new tweeter from higher up in the classic series

The tweeters are similar, they are all the in-house built devices. The version on the professional models is a tighter spec of the version on the consumer models… and so no doubt handles heavy power better (remember ATC did away with ferro fluid cooling) and will sound slightly different.

Effectively in the current ATC line up, the SCM20 is the professional version of the consumer hifi SCM19 version

The ATC tweeter sound different ? Can you elaborate on that ?

The s version is slightly sweeter that’s all I could hear but then I’m 52 so guess that end of the spectrum is rolling off!

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If you find Harbeth P3ESR engaging but want to step up then I would recommend you try Harbeth 30.1. I chose them over SCM19. I also preferred them to SCM40 throughout the frequency range except bass.

…by any chance do you compare the Harbeth HL5+ against the SMC19 and SCM40 as well?

Sorry, no.

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Hi, I had a chance to listen carefully to the Scm 20(latest versione) today at a dealer in Parma. Source was Ndx2 with Supernait 2+Hicap. Very nice speakers Indeed. In another room they had Scm40A with a Cambridge CD and Cyrus preamp. Surprisingly I liked much more the Naim/20s system despite the excellent midrange quality and bass extension of the 40a.


Here are the 40a…



Ciao Mojo.
I m from parma and i perfectly know thèse setup. Periodically i visit the shop and i have an enormous trust on the re seller.
In the first room the ndx2 has the 555 ext psu.

Hi Pietro, that’s a detail that has bene left out…may be that’s also the reason why I preferred by far the performace of the smaller 20’s… :grinning:

I don t think so, the 20’s are absolutely incredible they are totally transparent and the source give its best

Try the Naim setup on the 40 just for fun ! :grin: