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Speaker advice please?
#1
Hi All,

I have a problem I am hoping you guys can assist me with.  I am currently borrowing some Spendor D7 speakers to partner with my Expert 120 however, the sound isn't what I think it should be. It sounds lacking in warmth/organics and leaves me feeling cold.  FYI when I first heard the Spendor D7 with the 200 at the Bristol show in 2014 it was the only system I liked and the sound was full of warmth and body and since have been thinking about building a Devialet with Spendor system,  so I simply can't understand why I am not getting a similar sound.  I have heard the Expert series at various other times and, to be honest, has never sounded like it did at the Bristol show but I though it was because I needed to hear them partnered with the Spendors, In fact I heard the Pro 220 along side my 120 with the Spendors and PMC speaker but again no luck, so I took the option to borrow them just in case it was a room acoustic thing. 

FYI I have them set up with Devialet Air on windows 10, and Kimber 8TC speaker cable.  At the shop they had Chord cable and a streamer box; so i don't think the issue relates to the delivery to the digital inputs or the speaker cable.

Any ideas guys? I want to stick with my Devialet if I can so I can be done with the HiFi chase so any help is appreciated?
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#2
Repulser, I'm a bit confused.

I don't know those speakers, but If I understand correctly, the only time you've ever heard the Spendor/Devialet combo sound good was at the Bristol show in 2014? Could it not be that the acoustics at that show (and/or the source) were responsible for the warm sound you liked?

What speakers are you currently using with your 120 and how do they sound?

Speaker positioning will make a difference, as will room treatment, but my hunch is if you've experimented with positioning and you can't get a sound you remotely like, they're quite probably just not the speakers for you in your current room. Trying to get my PMCs to sound nice in my new house has been far from easy (I'm not quite there although things are getting better) - the room's effect shouldn't be underestimated.

Roon lifetime > Mac mini (Core) > Allo DigiOne > BNC ( >AES via Neutrik) > Devialet 250 Pro > PMC fact.8
 >>> Fingers crossed for a RoonReady Core Infinity and the death of AIR...... here's waiting for October (or November, or December....  Big Grin ) <<<
- London, UK -

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#3
The idea of the sound lacking in 'warmth/ organics' sort of concerns, or confuses me. My experience in moving from Naim to the D120 I felt that the Devialet gave me more genuine, honest reproduction than the Naim; and I would suggest that the Naim sound is 'warmer' than the Devialet. This was my experience with three different sets of speakers. The Devialet is not generally regarded as a warm sounding amp, but it is regarded as very truthful to the musical source.

I would expect the Spendors to be ... warmish? However, I've never been close to a pair of any Spendor, so I have no credibility on that point. The only thing I can think of is that the D7 requires more power than the D120 can easily give. I had a pair of speakers previously that had a fairly wild impedance curve, and though reasonably efficient, were not a good match for the D120. So, is it possible that you need more oomph to get the Spendors to perform correctly? 'Body' may be a function of bass performance and that may be function of power. Just a thought.

Were you using the D120 with other speakers before? Or did you have a different amp as well? Just wondering if you have a memory of a recent sonic presentation that is tripping you up on the current set up.

I think Hifi-swlon's points about the source and the room are important; source and room acoustics certainly affect the sound you get in your own room. Especially as you are probably listening quite critically to the system as you try new speakers.
Damon
W4S Sonos Connect & VPI HW19 mkIII into a D220 Pro, thence made expansive by Lawrence Audio Violin SE speakers, capably carried by Analysis Plus Oval 9 speaker cable, and juiced by power cords and coax cables in decorator colors
Vancouver, Canada
At the office: NuPrime IDA-16 into Amphion Argon 1, QED cable, ordinary Sonos Connect
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#4
Damon and Hifi_swolen make some good points. (In particular the effect of the room and possible benefits of a more powerful amp). This may or may not be a helpful comment, but here goes..... I did actually listen to the Devialet D200 with the D7's at the Bristol show once, although in my case this was back in 2015. My recollection was that this was a great sounding combination, but I actually found the D7's to be a little bright. This was only a brief listen, maybe with a just a couple of tracks, so make of this what you will!
1000 Pro - KEF Blade - microRendu - Mutec MC3+USB - Pro-Ject Signature 12
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#5
Thanks for the replies guys,
I currently have Proac D15 speakers, and i would say they appear to be the same as the Spendors in terms of warmth, so i guess at least in this sense they are made to the same standard. This never bothered me as i always thought i would move to the Spendors. The Spendors edge it in other areas, like bass articulation, less reserved dynamics, and best of all being able to be placed anywhere in the room including close the to rear wall Smile Yes, room acoustics will play a big part but from experience my room is not that bad as to rob any organics from a system.
I don't think its power issue otherwise using the Pro 220 would have proved that; and the fact that my Proacs are probably easier to drive than the Spendors - but the Spendors are i think a relatively light load. My experience of Naim amps is that yes they are warm but the warmth is a fake monochromatic one that is imparted by the amplifier, not warmth of the programme material. (happy to be correct here if anyone feels different) - this is my only block to being able to own a Naim amp otherwise love their ability to be rhythmic and fun.
The D7 can have a touch more forwardness in the sound that can make upper frequencies seem more pronounced but this I would say I have only noticed this to be very slight.
I assumed at all of the Devialet/Spendor demos at Bristol years they used Devialet Air on a mac book, surely using a mac book over a windows laptop wouldn't cause this difference would it?
Has anyone who have trialed various speakers with Devialet had any experience of finding speakers that were able to bring out the warmth?
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#6
Just a thought: is your 120 very new? Some people have reported that it took a long time for their amps to settle in and sound good, and they were pretty rough on the way. (Experiences are very mixed, though -- mine sounded good out of the box.)
Wilson Benesch Full Circle, Sonos ZP90 (Cullen modified), Devialet 440 Pro, Kaiser Chiara
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#7
Are you running SAM and have you experimented with different SAM % settings?
1000 Pro - KEF Blade - microRendu - Mutec MC3+USB - Pro-Ject Signature 12
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#8
Do you know who did the Bristol demo? Maybe they can setup another demo for you to see if it's the sound you remember, and work from there.

Roon lifetime > Mac mini (Core) > Allo DigiOne > BNC ( >AES via Neutrik) > Devialet 250 Pro > PMC fact.8
 >>> Fingers crossed for a RoonReady Core Infinity and the death of AIR...... here's waiting for October (or November, or December....  Big Grin ) <<<
- London, UK -

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#9
My best advice; If it doesn't sound right in your room with your system and you can't make it work, don't buy it.
Lifetime Roon, Mac mini, int. SSD, ext. HDD, tv as monitor, key board and track pad on bean bag as remote,Devialet 200, O d'A #097, Blue jeans speaker cable, Dynaudio C1 MkII.
Jim Smith's GBS.
Northern NSW Australia.
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#10
Hi All,
The 120 is not new at all. I have tried with SAM on and off, other firmwares and Air versions.
Not sure exactly who did the dem at Bristol 2014 but fairly sure Antoine (from Devialet) and Rob (from Spendor) were there.
If I don't go with the Spendors then am happy to consider other speakers but i don't know where to go form here so was hoping someone would have a similar experience to me
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