A couple of years back I chose to buy a pair of PMC twentyfive 21 speakers after comparing them against Monitor Audio Gold 100 stand mounts. I enjoyed the speed, the tight bass and the ‘truthful’ detailed sound and imaging compared to the more warm and fluffy MA Golds.
My hearing continued to deteriorate so that earlier this year I very much looked forward to a fresh hearing test with uprated hearing instruments being prescribed. In early September the new aids were fitted and these, being more modern devices, were able suddenly to restore to me a range of perception in the treble which I had not known had been missing for a long while.
The immediate outcome was that the speakers now seemed very harsh, hard and screechy, making a lot of treasured music files no longer a pleasure to endure. This happened mostly with classical repertoire, especially if played on period instruments, and even to relatively modern recordings such as Angela Hewitt’s 1998 set of the Well Tempered Clavier on Hyperion. So, not a matter of poor recordings revealed to be such by tip top electronics and ‘monitor’ speakers.
Aware of the fact that the brain compensates for the gradual loss, and indeed the sudden gain, where hearing acuity is concerned, I spent the next 6 weeks waiting and hoping for the edge to wear off this new vinegary hearing environment, but this did not happen. So in desperation I have had to embark on a quest for speakers which are more bearable in the treble, offering that combination of spacious soaring highs without the rasping acidic violin and plinky plonky dissonance in mid range piano harmonics which are being served up to me currently. You can see how well I have absorbed the necessary techical vocabulary in my short membership here I hope?
So on the recommendation of two separate local dealerships, thus far I have heard Fyne Audio F501SP versus Sonus Faber Sonetto 3, with the latter offering the required sonic sweetness but in a very, erm, Italian physical package. Secondly I have heard Audiovector R1 Signature stand mounts, which were impressive audibly and also a very nice piece of Danish industrial design. These easily beat the Harbeth P3ESR on appearance, sound and pricing to my uncultured and artificially aided ears. I was sorry about that because I had expected to be impressed with them.
Since when I have been pondering whether to spend more on the R3 Signature Audiovector floor standers, given I could then dispense with a subwoofer due to their greater capability down to 26 Hz. Or something else? ATI? Proac? These latter two cannot be heard just now unfortunately as the only local dealer cannot offer auditions until after January due to refurbishment.
So I would very much welcome suggestions of any other candidates offering a sweet treble and costing not more than £4k or so. If, indeed such exists?