Speakers

Hi all,
It’s been quite a while since I was last on the forum, so I hope that everyone is doing well. My system was, up until recently an LP12 (Klimax level bar having a Kandid rather than the new fancy Linn cartridge), 552DR, SNAXO, Supercap, 2x 250.2s (non DR) into SL2s. I recently moved house and can no longer use the SL2s, so I moved them on and am now looking for new speakers. The original plan was to buy Titans (505s probably) and run them active using the existing amps, but after several slightly confusing conversations, its transpired that:

  1. The SNAXO for Kudos speakers is totally different to the one for Naim, so my existing SNAXO can’t be adjusted to work with the Titans
  2. Naim stopped shipping SNAXOs overseas a while ago - I live in the NE USA (this is from the horses mouth - i.e. the Naim factory) so I can’t get a SNAXO for Kudos, even if I wanted one.
  3. Furthermore, the SNAXO is effectively a discontinued product at Naim. They’re no longer making them - again, sourced from the factory
    So, armed with all that info, I am selling my 250.2s and my Supercap, have bought a 300DR and will return to passive (a great shame, but I think I have no choice). All this seems a little unfortunate from a company that prides itself on the longevity of its product line btw, but it is what it is.
    And so, to my question. I can’t audition the 505s, even at a dealer here (Kudos US distribution is in really poor shape), but I’m tempted to order/buy without audition, which I appreciate is breaking the cardinal rule of speaker purchase. Do you guys have a take on how they would work in my setup? I’ve been out of touch for a while now, so could you maybe suggest one or two other speaker brands/products that you would consider in the same price bracket? My room is around 16ft (w) x 20ft (L) x 11ft (H) with an open archway at the 20ft end. The speakers will be firing down the length.
    Thank you kindly.
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First you can most definitely run the Titans and S20 active. He may not be able to supply to the USA but email @Cymbiosis

However, all said as a 505 owner they are very room friendly and will be sublime with the 300 and your system.

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I’m running Titan 707’s with the same amplification as you in a very similar size room albeit with a streaming from end and they sound fantastic. They take an age to fully run in and did sound pretty ropey straight out of the box so if you’re buying blind having not heard a fully run in pair it’s worth being a little patient and not judging them on first impressions.

It may also be worth considering buying some of the Kudos KS-1 speaker cable if you go down this route. It’s not expensive and sounds great. Perhaps not surprisingly there seems to be a real synergy between this cable, Naim amps and the Kudos speakers.

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When I was at the factory last week I’m sure I saw a SNAXO (IIRC it was for a Kudos) being built. When I remarked on it I was informed that the SNAXO is officially discontinued. If no longer being imported to the US then as there are no voltage issues maybe you could source one from a suitable UK dealer if they have one in stock? I think there are a few who come to mind who sell Naim as well as Kudos.

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Why buy Kudos when you can’t hear them at home. I know they are forum favourites and that in some eyes every other speaker is junk in comparison, but there are plenty of excellent speakers out there. Your system, with the 552/300 is fantastic and will work with lots of speakers. Try before you buy!

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My understanding is sadly they have discontinued the SNAXO in all its variants! Certainly when I tried to buy more I was told it was not possible this is a considerable oversight in my opinion.

Best regards, Peter

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Kudos 505 and 606 didn’t work in my room when I moved, sounded absolutely dreadful…… (Tricky room construction wise)

I went on a merry go round of trying “forum favourites” and none of them worked until I tried ATC 40 actives. Point here is buying speakers without a home demo is a risky strategy.

Gary

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@Richard.Dane @Cymbiosis gentlemen thank you.

@anon4489532 yes but if demos aren’t possible Kudos with a 300 is largely risk free.

I have to second Farthings cat here - buying loudspeakers on reputation alone would be madness! ATC, PMC and many other speaker brands have solid USA distribution so I would certainly look there first. For the record I too am a big ATC fan and use passive 40’s with NAP250.

Jonathan

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That is a shame to hear about the SNAXO. Do we know why they have discontinued it?

Cymbiosis and Peter set up my active system, which comprises of;

  • NAC 282
  • SNAXO 242 (Kudos)
  • NAP 250 DR
  • NAP 250 Mk2
  • Titan 606
  • NAC A5

Based on my experience, this made a significant improvement in sound quality, detail and controlled bass.

I know buying blind is not recommended and I haven’t done so either, in the past.

The pairing of Kudos Titans does work well with Naim, either active or passive, for me in my system.

May be a long shot, but it may be worth scouring the second hand markets to see if you can obtain a SNAXO Kudos version.

Out of interest, could Class A build a SNAXO Kudos version from a standard version. (If not an allowed comment, Moderators, please delete)

DG…

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If you want to stay with active Naim amplification you might consider Exposure VXN active crossovers, which are comparable to the Snaxo and are in production, although I don’t know if they are available outside the UK.

Having said that, the 300DR is an excellent amp, and apart from simplifying your system you may find that it is enough to tempt you away from active, especially if your 250.2s are getting on a bit.

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It would have been a massive waste of c£10k if I had of ordered kudos 606 with my nap300 so not sure it’s risk free.

Regards
Gary

It cannot be risk free, as Gary’s preceding post shows perfectly. Just because the owners of speaker X are happy with them in their own homes can in no way mean it’s risk free for anyone else. Kudos are just like any other speaker, they don’t come with a satisfaction guarantee, and anyone buying without audition is taking a heck of a risk. Even if they work, how do they know that something else wouldn’t work even better? We all know that speakers need to be tried at home, and Kudos are no exception.

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Kudos may well be a good match with Naim but critically is your room a good match for Kudos?

I guess if your room is standard construction (brick/ solid walls) and a standard shape size then you may well be ok.

Gary

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Yes, fairly standard UK construction from the 70s.

Rectangular size, with brick, breeze block and plaster.

Plus, I like the fact that you can have the speakers positioned nearer the rear wall than with some speakers.

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Nigel I said if a demo is not possible, we all know a (home) demo is the first option. If not the number of satisfied Naim/Kudos users might just say something. In the next life I’m sure Proac will be mandated :wink:

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ProAc owners aren’t so evangelical. Perhaps interestingly, @ChrisBell moved on from Kudos to ProAc. He may be able to bring something useful to the table, especially given that he lives in the US. I’ve not heard a ProAc other than my little Tablettes so cannot make any suggestions based on experience. The K1 might fit the bill, being a stand mounter, though it does look a bit weird.

Praise be😁

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I run active using a digital AXO, which allows any crossover frequencies you want, a choice of crossover rates (6,12,18 or 24 dB/Oct IIRC), which need not all be the same, similarly a choice of crossover ‘curves’ (Butterworth, Linkwitz-Riley and others), and of course phase angles and levels.

Maybe worth a thought?

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That sounds encouraging, my old house was made like that and most speakers just worked. When I moved to a house that was 100 years old and made from rammed earth method the walls had been plastered over but with large gaps and it sucked the life (bass) out of the room. Took loads of effort, money and time to resolve but that’s a story for another day.

I listened to Kudos at my dealers as well as at home and wasn’t wowed but plenty are and if close to the wall placement is important may be the way to go.

Best of luck.
Gary