ProAcD40R Upgrade to K6 or K8

@timmo1341

I have had a ProAcD40R since 2013. I was offered an upgrade to a K6 demo and a good trade on my D40R. I know the dealer. This K6 unit is a year old. Is this a good move or a lateral move? Should I stretch to the K8 now or later? No home demo available.
Decent trade differential to the K6. 2x the trade differential to the K8. Kudos are in the K8 range and beyond.

NAP500DR can dance with everybody.

Wife is down with either.

Please advise. Home demo is not an option.

Not necessarily – the 300DR couldn’t dance in Timmi’s room (bass boom). Instead he took a “humble” 250DR…

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If you love the sound of what you already have then I personally wouldn’t change them without a home dem, so I would keep the D40’s as you can’t get a home dem. Imagine buying the K6 then after a few days wishing you had kept the D40’s. This could well happen so think long and hard before jumping.

Hi Skip

This is a toughie! If I had a) a much bigger room and b) lots more disposable income I’d go for the K8. I’ve only heard it once, but it truly is a worthy ‘top of the range’, in as much as, for me, it was like sitting in a concert hall. The bass was staggering, but perfectly matched and balanced with the rest of the speaker. Mr Tyler knows what he’s doing when it comes to crossovers.

Back to reality. If you’re happy with the D40s I predict you will love the K6. For me it represented a good climb up the tree, and I was hearing them both through a 272/555/300DR system, not a 500. (that was at the dealer, I ended up choosing the 250DR as the 300 just wasn’t right for my listening room). From what I remember, you have a much bigger listening area, so bass issues shouldn’t arise in the way they did for me. I will mention that I also tried Herbie’s Gliders - ok, but you will love what Stillpoints Ultra do to the ProAcs if you get the chance to try (they are postable for a sale or return deal).

If you’re being offered a good deal I don’t see how you can lose. If you do fall in love with them you know that, when the time is right, you’ll be able to make the transition to K8 with very little risk. On the other hand they may prove to be, as they are for me, your forever speaker! Should you for some reason not take to them I wouldn’t imagine you’ll struggle to move them on!

For what it’s worth I have heard Kudos Titan 808s. Impressive, but didn’t do it for me in the same way that ProAc does.

Good luck, look forward to hearing how you get on.

I have had the K6 since 2014. Now they are at the end of a ND555/252/300 system. They are thoroughly enjoyable. Dont’ forget that the K8 are twice the price of the K6. Moreover, you will probably get a good deal with the demo K6. I recently auditioned the D40R. If you like them, you won’t be in foreign territory with the K6. I am pretty sure you will like the K6 if you like the D40R. Moreover, the size of the K6 is not that different of that of the D40R.

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Thanks for all the replies. I have the green light from my lovely wife. The K6 is within easy reach and looks just like the D40R for good WAF. The K8 is another wood, a bigger size, and a major upgrade, but a big step financially. I could excite my bass problem again. I don’t even want to push the envelope on it. Surely the K6 midrange driver will improve the female vocalists and folkies she loves. I understand that the drivers and crossovers are upgraded from the D40R, too.

I have a suspended hardwood floor and use the Herbie’s to damp the feedback from the D40R into the turntable at high volume. Herbie’s is more compliant than spikes but that is what I needed. My ProAc dealer has the Nordost SortFut. Is that comparable to the Stillpoints?

I am open to any other comments. I live from 600-2000 miles from all the Naim dealers I have ever shopped or done business with. One lives near my wife’s family, two live near my son, one lives near my brother. I know a former dealer who recently re-set up my turntable that he sold me initially 20 years ago, with a Kleos SL. I have never had a home demo on anything; you UK guys just don’t get it. The USA is a big place and we live in the deepest Red part of it. All the dealers are all in Blue states pretty much; that is where the money and population are. I bought my Porsches without a demo, too, from car forum people 1000+ miles away. I do value the Naim world and the forum and appreciate your recommendations. If any of you get over this way, holler at us.

Go for it (K6) - you won’t regret it. The midrange is fantastic and the bass can be visceral when required but your 500 will, I’m sure, control it with an iron fist! I don’t know how the Stillpoints compare with Nordost, never having had any experience of the latter. All I know is they transformed my K6 from fantastic to sublime! It must be to do with the fact we don’t appreciate the effect of vibration until it’s gone. I too have a suspended wooden floor, but any ill effects are banished completely (as are the effects of an almost dead square room).

Once again, good luck. I look forward to your reports of audio nirvana!

I forgot to add a comment about the visual appeal. It’s a small difference, but the metal tubular support to the plinth, and the ‘ProAc’ metal edging really do look very classy in the flesh. Added to which, if you’re a ‘Grilles off’ guy, those drivers really do look quite impressive! My wife is not a fan of most speakers, but even she has complimented the K6, and loves their sound.

@timmo1341

K6’s will be here this week. About the feet, the Herbie’s sound great and are a good value. The Stillpoints are pushing $400 per corner, about in the range with the Nordost Sortfut. I have been very pleased with all the Nordost products at my house. But these prices are nosebleeeeeeeeed. Particularly compares to my Herbies. Did you see that much difference at your house with the Stillpoints?

My other audio guru, Vinyl Valet, who is a former Naim dealer in Phoenix, and had the maximum Naim rig in the late '90’s when we met, got me onto the Herbies. Tom rebuilt my Verdier with it, and set up the Kleos SL. He recommends the following for an upgrade: AV Room Service HD 4" Rubber. These are $105 per corner. I might try them first.

Great news! Without question try the K6s on spikes and Herbie’s before spending anymore cash. The Stillpoints Ultra SS cost me £200 pet corner just over a year ago. Expensive, but quite a lot less than $400! As they’re a US (Mineappolis) based company I would have expected them to be considerably cheaper for you?

They made a fantastic difference in my room, which is why I would say try them if you find even a suspicion of any bass boom or overhang on playback. They have eliminated any trace from my system, no matter what the music or volume. In addition they added a lustre and body across the range that I hadn’t previously noticed. As I’ve said previously, they transformed fantastc into sublime!

Don’t any US hifi suppliers work on a ‘sale or return’ basis? I tried Gaia Isoaccoustic feet on that basis - paid up front, then had a 30 day window in which to return for a full refund. All it cost me was the return postage.

Anyway, whether you need any footers or not, I’m convinced you’ll be a happy bunny next week. I look forward to readiing your first impressions.

Timmo, interesting you tried the Isoacoustics. How come they didn’t work out for you may I ask ?

Well done to Skip too, K6 is my dream speaker. Well that and the K6 Signature that has just come out as well…

Simply didn’t do what was claimed! I know they’ve worked for some, but not with my speakers in my room. Just goes to show, there is no such thing as one size fits all when it comes to hifi. It has to be just about the most individual, room, equipment and ear critical set of variables imaginable!

That’s why I always smile when reading posts from those claiming to know the solution to other’s problems. The best we can do is describe (honestly) what has worked for us, and hope it may be replicated in the other person’s environment.

K6’s in the house. They are the same size but a nice uptick in resolution and looks from the D40R’s. Thanks for the encouragement. Wife is smiling, too. Will keep an eye out for the K6 Signature. Evidently they are keeping the K6 and bringing the K6 Signature into the line with the premium finishes only. It will be interesting to hear the difference between two very similar speakers.

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Skip, a new 3" midrange driver (vs the 2") , changed speaker driver alignment, new premium veneer options & revised crossover are the changes in the Signature version.

But you are not exactly “roughing it” with the standard K6 !! Enjoy them !!

It will be interesting to hear the difference, given the only changes are a new midrange driver and changes to drive unit configuration. Even if ProAc have changed/improved crossovers, I’m struggling to understand how this can be a justifiable £5k upgrade! My dealer is due to take delivery soon of the first U.K. production model, so I will report back on what I hear.

Photos?

!

I am very impressed with the resolution. The highs are more pristine and spacious and the bass is much faster and cleaner than the D40R. I think that little midrange takes a lot of the burden off both the ribbon tweeter and the woofers.

Never could upload a picture on the old forum. Just did this quick shot on my phone.

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Hello,
I am a current listener to a Naim and Proac D28 combination ; due to the size of my room I project to change for ProAc K3 about those I am very enthusiastic. I am interested in your discussion about Herbie’s / Stillpoints Ultra SS. I have ran the D28s with great satisfaction with the original spikes on stone tiles laying on the floor for 10 years. Without the stone tiles, it is certainly difficult with the bass pouring down on the floor.
What I do not understand with either Herbies or Stillpoints is: are they a support to the original spikes or do you unspike the loudspeakers and respike them with the above alternatives?
Congrats for the K6 and thankyou for your attention!

Our floor is a hardwood floor over an insulated crawl space. The D40R fires downward with the bass. You can see the NacA5 cable coming up from the floor on the left speaker. I actually crawl under there to complete the wiring myself. That run would take a lot of SuperLumina.

My wife hates spikes because they do not look stable when people are around; we had an adverse event during a holiday party years ago. A guest had too much eggnog and my custom-painted Merlins wound up among the flowerpots. Never again.

The spikes couple the speaker to the floor in any event, creating a feedback loop in our room which is perceptible at high volumes. The Herbie’s Fat Glider is the inexpensive way to decouple the speaker from the floor and to make the sound float in the room. They eliminate floor-borne feedback. I can turn the 552-500 volume up to 12:00 or higher with the needle on the record and the turntable stopped and get no feedback using the Herbie’s Fat Gliders, even if I thump the table. I also have a different formulation of Herbie’s feet under the turntable. If you have a slab construction, the Herbie’s may not be beneficial to you. They do work at our house; they were a tip from a former Naim dealer and audio buddy and they sound credible to me. Not incredible but they do work at a price point. The Stillpoints and Nordost SortFut may do a similar job, but they cost a multiple of the Herbie’s. The factory spikes on the K6 are a very nice upgrade over the D40R spikes. But they would keep my wife from smiling so why bother?

ps. I do not see the Herbie’s Audio Lab Fat Glider on their current website. I am not sure what it maps to in the new line. I am sure they would let you know via email.

Hi Jean-Michel. As Skip says, the Herbie’s and Stillpoints are alternatives to the spikes (which are beautifully made, but now completely redundant). I have used both on the K6 (wooden suspended floor) and the difference between the Herbie’s and the Stillpoints is significant. The best way I can describe it is that in my setup the Herbie’s suppressed, to a degree, the small amount of bass boom present on a small number of albums and tracks, but failed to eliminate it completely. The Stillpoints Ultra SS completely removed it! My understanding (and I am no physicist!) is that Stillpoints somehow transform the bass energy, which resonates and causes the boom and overhang, into heat which harmlessly, and soundlessly, is dissipated into the room. In addition the Stillpoints seem to remove another layer of ‘noise’, similar to the upgrade experienced when adding a Power Supply. I found they enhanced all aspects of the music, mids and highs, as well as dealing with the bass issue

As Skip says, there is a significant difference in price between Herbie’s and Stillpoint Ultras SS (even more between Herbie’s and Stillpoint Ultra 5, and yet these did not work for me anywhere near as well!). Are they worth it? To me, undoubtedly. The best thing you can do is to find a supplier or dealer who will let you have the Stillpoints on a sale or return basis. That way if you are not impressed all you stand to lose is the return postage.

I appreciate I must sound like a Stillpoints salesman! I’m not, simply a music fan who is trying to describe just how good, in my particular circumstances, these products are.