Naim Uniti Star Speaker recommendation please - again!

Thanks Roger. That is exactly the sort of specific advice I am after so is much appreciated.

Looking at the spec sheets for the ATC SCM11 and 19, there appears to be no difference apart from the dimensions, and driver of one of them being a ‘CLD’ and the other being a ‘SL’. How did you work out that the SCM11 would suit the STAR? I have put the specifications of the speakers and the STAR below for convenience.

As the STAR puts out only 70W, would it not be too weak to drive either model of speakers?

And would you mind elaborating on your concern of if they would work in my room - do you mean they may be too small/big? To clarify, I only every listen to music in one of the 2 identical, joining rooms, and the speakers will be please between the 2 rooms, facing into the room of interest. The rooms are the way they are because they used to be 2 rooms and the wall was then knocked out to create a larger space. There is now a set of double doors between the 2 rooms that are left permanently open. I could always close the doors to create a smaller space i.e. turning a 10m x 4m space into a 5m x 4m space.

As a matter of interests, what ATC speakers do/did you have and what setup with them?

Many thanks again.

SCM11:
(http://atcloudspeakers.co.uk/hi-fi/loudspeakers/entry-series/scm11/)
Drivers: HF ATC 25mm Neodymium soft dome, Mid/LF ATC 150mm CLD
Matched Response: ±0.5dB
Frequency Response (-6dB): 56Hz-22kHz
Dispersion: ±80° Coherent Horizontal, ±10° Coherent Vertical
Sensitivity: 85dB @ 1W @ 1metre
Max SPL: 108dB
Recommended Power Amplifier: 75 to 300 Watts
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohm
Crossover Frequency: 2.2kHz
Connectors: Binding Posts/4mm Plugs, bi-wire
Cabinet Dimensions (HxWxD): 381x232x236mm (grill adds 28mm depth)
Weight: 10.9kg

SCM19:
(http://atcloudspeakers.co.uk/hi-fi/loudspeakers/entry-series/scm19/)
Drivers: HF ATC 25mm Neodymium soft dome, Mid/LF ATC 150mm SL
Matched Response: ±0.5dB
Frequency Response (-6dB): 54Hz-22kHz
Dispersion: ±80° Coherent Horizontal, ±10° Coherent Vertical
Sensitivity: 85dB @ 1W @ 1metre
Max SPL: 108dB
Recommended Power Amplifier: 75 to 300 Watts
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohm
Crossover Frequency: 2.5kHz
Connectors: Binding Posts/4mm Plugs, bi-wire
Cabinet Dimensions (HxWxD): 438x265x300mm (grill adds 34mm to depth)
Weight: 17.8kg

Naim Star:
(https://www.naimaudio.com/product/uniti-star)
Amplifier Output: 70W per channel into 8 ohms

Hi

Apologies for the delay in replying, lockdown activities seem to keep me surprisingly busy. My suggestion of SCM11 is just a guess based on your amp and room but speaker choice is very personal, which is why I strongly suggest working with a dealer. And please bear in mind I have not heard a Star (I think). I have heard a Nova briefly at a show and own an Atom so I’m really interpolating between these two.

If you do decide to investigate ATC further, I’d advise not getting hung up on the specifications. For a start, ATC specs seem to be very conservatively rated. I have direct experience of 19s, 40s and 100s in active and passive form and have drawn the conclusion that the sound does not fundamentally change as you go up the range. What you do get with the larger models (the model number is the internal volume in litres) is more bass and, if you go up to the pro range, somewhat more highly specified drivers. Rather oddly, ATC’s recommended amplifier power seems to be the same all the way from the 7s to the top of the range, but my listening suggests that the larger passive models benefit from an amplifier capable of handling the bigger bass drivers. With the 19s and 40s I have auditioned, my feeling was that the 19s work well with a SuperNait, but even better with a 250 and the 40s with a 250 and even better with a 300. Yet the power output of the SN and 250 is the same and the 300 is only 10W more. Different ears will come to different conclusions in different rooms. So my strong recommendation is choose with your ears not with the specs.

You ask about my own speakers. Thay are active SCM40s which I run straight from a (non-Naim) streaming preamplifiier. Of course, in a domestic setting no speakers can realistically reproduce the sound of, say, a Mahler symphony or even a large scale performance of Bach’s B minor mass as I heard recently played by the Hallé in Manchester. But the setup I run gives a surprisingly convincing picture of large scale orchestral music and for smaller scale works, the musicians are there in the room. Voice and piano are particularly well handled. The owner/founder of ATC, Billy Woodman is a pianist (jazz rather than classical) who has just recorded an album of classic jazz songs. So he comes from a musical as well as an engineering background and realistic reproduction of piano has been one of the goals of ATC speaker design. In more than half a century of hifi ownership, my current system gives me more musical satisfaction than any I have had before. I hope your speaker search leads you to an equally happy place.

Roger

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Hello,
like you I was “hunting” for the right speakers for more then 2 years now and while in my opinion there are quite a number of speakers that work very well with the Uniti Star, it took me a while to find the ones that work for me. The PMC twenty5 and Neat SX1 you mentioned are certainly great options. I ran fairly inexpensive Focal Chorus 701 for a while, and while I liked the soundstage and the dynamics, somehow they did not really “click” for me. I tried the PMCs as well as the Neat and they were a enormous step forward, however what did the trick for me are the Sonus Faber Venere 2.5.
They allow for closer position to a wall as the bass reflex is toward the front, they deliver an incredible soundstage as well as detail and dynamics without sounding “over-analytical”… and the bass does not leave you wanting as well … in fact, in my opinion bass performance is so good, that I actually disconnected the B&W P1 subwoofer that I was using… long story short: if you want detail and soundstage the Sonus Faber are certainly worthwhile for comparison … for me they are the perfect match with the Uniti Star. ( …aside from having a very high "wife acceptance factor, due to their looks…) However, I believe very few things depend so much on individual taste and preference as speakers do, that I can only recommend to make the (fun !!!) effort trying different speakers in your home to be sure you make the right selection :)… Hope this helps

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Hello,

I originally used a focal Aria 926 with uniti Star. I was very pleased with Focals, and I had Atom before Star. I tried a few speakers at a distributor with similar electronics. These were the GRAHAM AUDIO CHARTWELL LS6f, the NEAT ACOUSTICS MOTIVE SX2, the SPENDOR CLASSIC 3/5 and finally the Spendor A7. Not to describe the sound of each of the above, I chose the Spendor A7. Compared to all of the above including my Focal, the bass is amazing. Deep enough, and precise, and there is no resonance in the low tones. It took me a little longer to position them in the room but it was worth it.
The sound scene is wide, very precise and does not resonate, the vocals sound amazing. Some people have said they sound too analytical, but I disagree. They are very fun to listen to and do not tire me even after 4-5 hours of listening.
I hope I helped a little.

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hello, I have the uniti star since 2 years and had my dynaudio contour 1.3 on it. I wanted to try standing speakers and heard B&W 702S2 and T + A Criterion 2000 and 2100 at home. the bass was fascinating and thus a different and better Rooming for the floorstanding speakers. I chose the T + A 2100 because I only enjoy the box and don’t think about what might not fit. the star’s performance is completely sufficient.

I’ve paired my new Uniti Star with a pair of Dynaudio EMIT M10’s I already had with my old modest middle of the road amp. I think it’s true that a amp 10x the price of a single speaker does bring out the best. :slight_smile: I could not believe the difference in control. Having said so, my listening room is half the size of yours (2.5m x 4m). Emit’s have no coloring, dynamic to the level of punchy even. Or ‘forward’ as some reviewers might call it. It’s exiting but for me not stuff to listen to for hours on end (unless at low volume) Subwoofer is good to have extra though. I listened to the Evoke’s too, but found them just a little too ‘polite’. I guess I like forwardness in speakers, which I translate myself to the highly subjective ‘fun’.
But with the budget you have, I would indeed look for these ProACs D2 (the special ribbon tweeter one even?) for auditioning. I probably will too once I saved enough money :slight_smile: and they finally will get a dealership organized in Holland (Alternative: drive to Belgium, argh)

Anyway, don’t buy something without listening - if you can.

Are you considering ‘entertaining’ people in that 4x5m room? If so, you might want to look at speakers that do well on dispersion characteristics, and not too fussy about placement for good sound all around the room. In that respect I also have shortlisted Rubicon2’s for a future audition (once my wife allows the Uniti in the living room). I have it easy, I got a high end audio dealer here within 10 mins walk in Amsterdam. (and 2 more within 10 mins cycling - still none of them selling ProAC)

@New_world, I would not stare too much at the Watts only. Most reviews out there on Naim amplifiers seem to indicate that they are defensively rated in the power department, and do especially well in delivering high CURRENT (Amperes) when the speakers demand so. Your ears will be the final judge.

I’ve got a pair of Neat Xplorers with my Star and it sounds great

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The Dynoaudio look like they are a great pair of speakers and if they fit your need and pocketbook at the moment then they are perfect. I hope you get a chance to listen to the ProAc D2’s at some point in time even if it is on a road trip.

As far as looking for another pair of speakers for myself, I have to say that I am at the end of the line. My wife retires at the end of the month and my retirement is in the not to distant future. I choose my current four box with the ProAc D30RS speakers to carry me through the retirement years. Never say never, I know but I can see myself staying quite happy with my setup for many years to come.

Our entertainment usually is more around dinners with friends and the conversations are more important then the music. Especially since a good number of them now have hearing aids. Usually some background music at a low setting works well when entertaining. Lifestyles alter a bit as we age… at least that has been my experience.

Good luck with your journey and have fun along the way!

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Me too

ATCs are definitely worth a listen. I put a pair of SCM7s on the end of a NAIT 5si which drives them nicely in a small room. With your room layout the 11s might be a better choice. Beautifully built product that sounds great on vocal material.

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