A question. No chance to test them at home but have a good deal on pristine condition SF Liuto Towers. Will they fit my current setup - Accuphase E270 integrated, Mac Mini Roon core + chord mojo 2 / naim uniti atom?
Any thoughts on how would they sound? Living Room is 8m x 6m (apppx). This is going to be a replacement of KEF LS50 Metas.
As speaker preference is so personal, some people hating what other love and vice versa, you do really need to hear for yourself. Whilst auditioning at home may not be possible, can you hear elsewhere, e.g. wherever they are for sale? If so, can you take your own amp so you can hear the partnership for yourself (assuming said seller doesn’t have the same)? And given that it is not your room, can you take your current speakers, which would give a baseline for comparison? (I have done both of these to both dealers and a private seller.) If source is reasonably transportable, taking yours would also be useful.
@Innocent_Bystander thanks for your advise! That could work for me although the seller is 100 km away he had recorded a couple of test tracks that I’m familiar with and even from the crappy phone speakers, i could hear a character that i really like in old SFs (quite lush, warm, big and involving).
Definitely will test them once i reach his location.
I’ve heared them once with a Primare amplifier and Naim Nd5xs streamer. They are indeed wam, lush, full etc sounding. I cannot comment how they’ll pair with your amp since I don’t know Accuphase.
I’ve listened to symphonic and organ music (it was on a party and the house owner and I had shared interests, we kept turning the volume up and up until a conversation wasn’t possible anymore and everybody was staring at two weirdos on a sofa listening to loud organmusic) and the timbre was really great. It may well be that non classical music is not their forte.
I own a pair. Have them with a NAP300 DR, Manley Labs 300B Pre and Aqua La Scala MkII dac (+ other gear). A strange combo perhaps for some but an incredible sound they produce nonetheless. The 300Dr only arrived last week and they are a match made in heaven.
They punch way, way above their price. They are the speaker equivalent of the Sennheiser HD650 - a piece of gear whose worth is only truly unlocked when paired up with upstream electronics several orders of magnitude above their perceived value. The Liutos have a similar sound signature to the 650s too now that I think about it.
I listen to 70-80% metal (all types), jazz, blues, soundtracks, electronica, classical etc for the rest in case you’re wondering what they can handle.
Fantastic! Very valuable info. Thanks @Taake
Yes my music taste pretty much the same, perhaps a bit of classic rock on top of the list.
Just wondering if my Accuphase will be able to drive them well enough or i should be looking for another upgrade …
What about details retrieval? Are they good enough in getting micro details? Obviously not analytical but to some level of details. also, are they good at lower volume?
Buying speakers secondhand is usually quite safe. My last three pairs of speakers were bought secondhand, with no issues whatsoever. Speakers generally last a very long time without problems (decades), And they don’t wear in the way that, say, cars or CD mechanisms etc do, every use reducing the life that is left - they can sound as good after 10, 20, 30, 40 years as after as many months. Driving hard doesn’t reduce life in any appreciable way.
You asked about tests: The main test is that they sound clear across the full audio range, and no audible distortion (until you reach what would reasonably seem to be max volume). Ideally as well as listening to a range of music, run a frequancy sweep, for example with something like REW software (and you can pre-record that onto a CD), listening for any rattles or tizziness (from the speakers not room objects!)* Such distortion typically can arise from a damaged driver, with, for example, the voice coil scraping against the side of the magnet gap.
Otherwise look for visible damage to drive units, and for any significant damage to the cabinet externally - damage that could indicate a fracture of the cabinet, or suggest it has been dropped heavily, would be a distinct concern. superficial marks are simply a matter of cosmetic condition. You could ask about any history of repairs or modifications etc (which certainly need not be negative factors), and if none, after asking check the screws securing the drivers, and screws holding any plates such as the cable connection plate, to verify that there os no evidence of tinkering.
*Again ideally you’d use a microphone and analyse using software like REW, looking not for room peaks and troughs but for odd distortion, but that may be going too far for most sellers).
The Liutos are very power hungry. I ran a Densen B-150 amp (withe the pre bypassed) prior to upgrading to the NAP 300DR and while it sounded good the Densen struggled to properly drive them, often sounding under powered, especially when dialing up the volume despite the 100w at 8ohms on tap.
The 300DR however despite being 10 watts “less” on paper completely have the Liuto under control at all times and are a perfect match. This is down to current, which Naim has gobs off and can deal with the Liuto’s dipping to 4ohms at certain frequencies.
Will your Accuphase be up to scratch? Can’t say, but be prepared to shell out for a beefier amp.
Re: details - yes, they are very detailed. Now I wouldn’t call them a hyper-analytical speaker but they are better than you think at digging up details and really letting you hear things you may have missed in recordings on lesser speakers. The soft-dome tweeter is a genuine star, produce high notes with a bell-like clarity.
I will say that if you want a crystal clear sound with 3-dimentionality at ow volumes, the Liutos may disappoint in that regard. They sound great at all volumes but really open up when you feed the volume control.