Archive for category Home Theater Audio System
That Jamo’s S Series 5.1.2 can do this while still retailing for under £1,200 – and offering some scope for more advanced system building – is the really impressive part of this package. Had this been a range with the sort of appearance that forcefully suggested they might be best placed in a darkened cinema room, I’d still consider it a worthwhile offering, but instead the S Series speakers marry a largescale (but not faultless) sonic delivery with attractive, well finished cabinets, and a slick integration of the height models that isn’t present even on considerably more expensive rivals. As a result, this is a strong new arrival in the affordable full-size
There would perhaps be some wiggle room for tempering this brightness with some careful system matching, were the performance worth it elsewhere. But sadly, it isn’t. This package might have stood little chance of beating Q Acoustics’s 3050i Cinema Pack for entertainment or enthusiasm anyway, but the centre speaker shows little interest in putting up a fight.
The R-34C isn’t atrocious by any means, but it appears to have been designed and tuned for an entirely different package, by an entirely different and less capable manufacturer.”
But while Klipsch’s two pairs of stereo speakers are competent, a few moments of music playback highlights some questionable timing and a somewhat muted dynamic reach. It doesn’t stick out unduly during a film, however, our main gripes concern those units built specifically for the purpose of cinema.
The R-100SW sub and R-34C centre appear sonically detached, as if reading from different hymn sheets. With the former, it feels like those rumbling low frequencies are being puffed out rather than punched. It’s a woolly presentation that makes it seem as though there is a gap in the frequencies that the sub and floorstanders are capable of. Longer listening highlights more of a conflicting presentation that makes the R-100SW stick out.”
Also, I don’t think this is accidental. Every time I found myself wanting a bit more fury from the Q Acoustics system, I was soon revelling in just how well it gets on with everything else. As an array mainly designed for living room setups, it’s likely to see daily use. Useful, then, that broadcast TV is unfailingly a crisp, clean, and well-balanced listen. It’s particularly strong at generating a decently immersive experience from a stereo feed, with dialogue from the centre channel clear and tonally accurate.
Looking back at a previous review of a 7000i package, it’s clear that much hasn’t changed about Q Acoustics’ top-flight sub/sat range. As before, I’m struck by how effective this is used in 2.1-channel guise. Listening to the newly released Lies Are More Flexible by Icelandic electronic duo GusGus (Qobuz, CD-quality FLAC) proves immersive and genuinely musical in a way that many 2.1 systems struggle to match. It’s the kind of performance that gets your foot-tapping and embracing the content, rather than worrying if levels are set correctly.
“As much as I enjoyed music on these speakers, movies really made them come to life. With the recent release of Avengers: Infinity War, I’ve found myself revisiting many of the previous Marvel films for a refresher on the backstories of various characters. When I popped in Iron Man 2, a film that pits billionaire superhero Tony Stark against a ruthless Russian physicist, The DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack wasted no time in supplying demo-worthy material, with Iron Man leaping from the back of a military transport as AC/DC’s “Shoot to Thrill” exploded across the soundstage. When a payload door slowly dropped, explosions filled the room as Iron Man vaulted through a pyrotechnic display. With my Anthem AVM60 preamp/processor set for an 80-Hz crossover, the seamless handoff between the main speakers and subwoofers created a full-bodied presentation at multiple listening positions. For example, when Iron Man engaged a crowd, his booming speech, and the reverberation of the crowd’s raucous applause through the room, provided a convincing illusion of being a participant in an actual event. ”
“It’s also a film that makes creative use of dynamic range, because when someone (or something) does make a noise, my God you know about it. The transient response of these speakers is incredible, viscerally delivering the scares as the soundtrack suddenly goes from relative silence to very very loud. The tendency of sound designers Erik Aadahl and Ethan Van der Ryn to add plenty of low-frequency heft to these moments for greater impact finds the X12 in fine form – it handled the dynamic beats with ease, establishing a solid foundation and carefully locking in with the other speakers.
Dunkirk and A Quiet Place aren’t big on dialogue but when I moved on to Whiplash (Blu-ray) the abuse that J. K. Simmons hurls at Miles Teller is projected with spiteful precision. The main reason I chose this disc, though, was to ensure the IW150s had retained M&K’s musicality as well as its transparency. I quickly had my answer, thanks to a system that’s tighter than a syncopated jazz quartet, carrying off every high hat, cymbal and snare drum with excellent timing.”