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Speaker Reviews

Paradigm Mini-Monitor 5.1 Speaker System

Paradigm Mini Monitors 5.1 system

Paradigm is increasingly becoming a unique entity in the world of audio equipment manufacturers. The industry continues to conglomerate itself into ever larger multinational corporations in the hopes of leveraging economies of scale, and optimizing cost of goods by outsourcing components and sub-assemblies. Paradigm, by contrast, remains thoroughly vertically integrated. With rare exceptions, the entirety of any given product, from the voice coil to the enclosure, is manufactured on-site at Paradigm's headquarters in Ontario, Canada.

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Earthquake Titan Tigris Floor-standing Speakers

Earthquake Titan Tigris Floorstanding Loudspeaker

Earthquake Sound is a company best known for producing knock your socks off subwoofers and amplifiers for home theater. They also manufacture several lines of speakers, including the Titans. The Titan Tigris weighs 89 pounds each and stands nearly 5 feet high, with an MSRP of $9,500 per pair. They are certainly imposing speakers that look the part, and are priced to compete with the crème-de-la-crème of tower speakers. In this review we'll see how they perform.

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Paradigm SA-15R-SM In-Ceiling Speakers

Paradigm SA-15R-SM In-Ceiling Speakers

Paradigm has been in the speaker business for many years - 28 to be exact - and they have consistently produced some of the finest floor standing speakers and subwoofers on the market. What many may not be aware of is there full line of in-wall and in-ceiling speakers. I had the chance to check out their extensive line up at this years' CES. It was also my first time meeting some of the nice folks at Paradigm. They recommended I try a set if in-ceilings in my family room to finish out the surround sound system. So here they are, the Paradigm SA-15R-SM's.

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Zikmu Wireless Speakers

Zikmu Wireless Speakers

Parrot touts the Philippe Starck–designed wireless Zikmu speakers as "Next Generation Wireless Speakers". This all-inclusive powered speaker system features modern styling, efficient Class D amplification and flexible wireless connectivity. They look to be a progressive realization of current technology and style. Let us find out how they work and sound.

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Episode In-Wall and In-Ceiling Speakers

Episode In-wall and In-ceiling Speakers

A couple of years ago I designed a home theater for a client and specified the Episode Home Theater LCR because among other things, it offered an adjustable planar magnetic tweeter. It is a hulking speaker that was designed to be integrated into cabinetry and I can tell you it sounded terrific. I became an instant fan. The HT-650LCR is still considered the flagship home theater speaker. In this review, we cover their in-wall and in-ceiling speakers.

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Paradigm Reference Seismic 110 Subwoofer

Paradigm Reference Seismic 110 Subwoofer

I described the last Paradigm Reference sub I reviewed, the Reference Signature Sub 25, as the "Mother of All Subwoofers". Then Paradigm came out with the even more massive SUB 1 and SUB 2 models. So when I agreed to review the Seismic 110, a small barrel-shaped sub that measures barely 13" in any direction, my expectations were set accordingly.

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Axiom Epic 80-800 Speaker System: M80v3 Tower, VP180 Center, QS8v3 Surround, and EP800v3 Subwoofer

Axiom Epic 80-800 Speaker System Review

When shopping for loudspeakers today, we assign many different criteria to our decision. Do we choose on price, sound quality, aesthetics, science or some other aspect? Of course a discriminating listener wants the best of all these worlds and there are many manufacturers ready, willing and able to deliver on all counts. Axiom is one who has been at their game a long time. In this review, we test their M80v3 Tower, VP180 Center, QS8v3 Surround, and EP800v3 Subwoofer.

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Paradigm Reference Signature SUB 2 Subwoofer

paradigm-sub-2-subwoofer-teaser

Paradigm, renown manufacturer of most catagories of A/V products, has released their latest subwoofer line, called the SUB 1 and SUB 2. These two subwoofers are part of their Reference Signature line of speakers and subs. Both are hexagonal in shape, with six drivers (8" in the SUB 1 and 10" in the SUB 2), having two drivers arranged vertically on three of the six sides, alternating sides with drivers and sides without drivers. They are sealed enclosures, and both have amplifiers with power heretofore not seen in any subwoofers. The amplifier can be powered by 120 V AC or 240 V AC. At 120 V, the amplifier outputs 3,000 watts RMS, and at 240 V, it will output a whopping 4,500 watts RMS and 9,000 watts peak. The SUB 2, which is reviewed here, weighs 230 pounds. Its performance is truly magnificent, with a price tag worthy of its design: $8,999 for Cherry or Black Ash finishes, and $9,499 for the Piano Black Premium finish.

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Dynaudio Focus 110A Actively-Powered Bookshelf Speakers

Dynaudio Focus 110A Actively-Powered Loudspeaker

Few things other than human relationships are as important to a writer and music/audiophile critic as the sound of their system. As someone who spends the bulk of his time in front of the computer, the necessity for a great-sounding desktop sound system that can transform bits on a solid-state or hard drive into living, breathing music is essential. For many of us, an essential aspect of a computer-based desktop system is compactness. Some people may have room for a separate amplifier, preamplifier, DAC, and pair of bookshelf (or bigger) speakers in their office; I, for one, do not. Thus, when Michael Manousselis of Dynaudio USA offered me a pair of the Focus 110A "active-powered" (built-in amplifiers) speakers, I was more than happy to accept.

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Magnepan MMC-2 Speaker Blind Review

magnepan-mmc-2-teaser

Magnepan hosted a "Blind Review" event in on October 16, 2010, in Seattle, Washington. The Magnepan event was held at Definitive Audio, which is located just north of the University of Washington. Several dozen people heard a new product that is just now being released by Magnepan.

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Harman Kardon and Definitive Technology

Affordable Systems Reviews; Harman Kardon and Definitive Technology

This is a complete 5.1surround sound system. The front end is the new Harman/Kardon BDP1 Blu-Ray player. The Harman/Kardon receiver is also a new model, the AVR 3600. The speaker package is the Definitive Technology ProCinema 800. These products are not typically discounted, so the anticipated system price comes in just under $2,700. This places the system just over the threshold we've established for "Mid Priced" systems which we have defined as systems with a street price between $2,500 and $5,000.

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