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Speaker Reviews

Paradigm Reference Studio Speaker System

Paradigm Reference Studio Speaker System

The speaker business has got to be a challenging one.On the one hand, unlike most other CE devices, speakers don't have any inherent rapid obsolescence to them. In fact, good speakers by definition should be viable, literally, for a lifetime. Paradigm's Reference Studio Speakers fit such a definition.

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Focal Dome 5.1 Speaker System

Focal Dome 5.1 System Many loudspeakers today are marketed more for their ability to blend into a space or make an aesthetic statement than to provide high performance.  Since they are the most visible AV component after the television, sizes and styles vary as much as colors of the rainbow.  With many lifestyle products come compromises in audio quality; not so with the Focal Dome system.

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PSB SubSeries 6i Subwoofer

PSB SubSeries 6i

The PSB Subseries 6i subwoofer is a very unassuming-looking product, albeit a little on the large size by today's standards. It has a single 12" driver in a ported enclosure. There are two ports that exit at the bottom front of the cabinet. The volume and crossover controls are mounted along the bottom of the front part of the cabinet as well. This arrangement allows the 6i to be mounted inside a cabinet.

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Paradigm Millenia 20 Hybrid In-Wall speakers

Paradigm Millenia 20 Hybrid In Wall speakersAhh summer time. Time for pools, get togethers with friends and tearing apart walls in search of audio and aesthetic excellence for your flat screen TV. While this may not be the average summer activity for most I'll wager more than a few Secrets readers are in the midst of their own audio-video inspired renovations. Here's my story of an in wall audio adventure courtesy of the new Paradigm Millenia 20 Hybrids.

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"Imagine" (NAD Blu-ray Player and Receiver, PSB Speakers)

Imagine System ReviewWelcome to the inaugural Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity system review! We are planning to publish a series of similar reviews to highlight system packages in the Low (up to $2,500 MSRP), Medium ($2,501 - $5,000 MSRP) and High (over $5,000 MSRP) price categories. The systems will all include a source component, receiver (or prepro and amp), speakers and sub (optional). We will also evaluate products in the burgeoning soundbar category. We will strive to select balanced systems that will offer the best value in their respective price ranges. These reviews will be focused on helping readers select turnkey systems for new installations or upgrades.

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JL Audio Fathom F110 Subwoofer

JL Audio Fathom F110 powered subwoofer

It would truly surprise me if anyone reading this review had not heard of JL Audio. Notwithstanding JL Audio's stellar reputation in the car audio world, its Fathom and Gotham series of subwoofers have set the home audio/video world on fire like few products in recent memory.

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Earthquake Titan Telesto Floor-standing Speakers and Supernova MKVI 10" Subwoofer

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Earthquake Sound has just introduced the Titan Telesto floor-standing speakers. They are 50" high and have a unique horn-loaded tweeter as well as a conventional dome tweeter. Two 4" drivers handle the midrange, with a side-mounted 8" woofer dealing out the low frequencies. They are beautifully finished in black piano lacquer and are priced at $4,999 for the pair. Earthquake also sent their Supernova MKVI 10" subwoofer, because I had been so impressed with the 15" version, and I wanted to see how the smaller one performed. Well, it performed! And so did the Telestos . . . .

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Revel Concerta 5.1 Speaker System

Revel Concerta Speaker SystemRevel is the upscale speaker division of Harman International, which includes Infinity, Harmon Kardon, JBL and Lexicon. Revel has been making speakers since 1996 and makes the Ultima2 (~ $26K/pair) and Performa series from which the Concerta gets its lineage. The chief designer of these speakers is Kevin Voecks who also has had a hand in developing speakers for Snell and Mirage. With an audio testing facility built by Harman International in California, all Revel speakers go through a rigorous testing process for voicing and timbral accuracy.

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SVS STS-01 Floor-standing Speakers, PB10-NSD Subwoofer, and AS-EQ1 Subwoofer Equalizer

svs-tnWith SVS' release of the STS speaker series, they have made a concise statement that they are definitely in the speaker trade as well as subwoofers. The STS follows on the MTS series, and according to their website, a high-end speaker series is slated for late 2009. In the current article, we review a pair of STS-01 floor-standing speakers along with a pair of PB10-NSD 10" subwoofers and their new AS-EQ1 equalizer that is made specifically for subwoofers. The listening tests as well as bench tests show that SVS is a company to be reckoned with. Their products continue to perform at a very high standard, and yet, they are priced so that anyone can afford them.

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PSB Imagine B Bookshelf Speakers

Imagine B Bookshelf Speakers

The Imagine speakers are PSB's newest speaker line. There are four models in this line – The Imagine T towers, the Imagine B bookshelf speakers, the Imagine C center speaker and the Imagine S surround speakers. I opted to review the Imagine B's for the mains versus the much more common towers for two reasons – first, this is the inaugural Secrets system review and the point is to review affordable system and the bookshelf speakers are somewhat less expensive than the towers and secondly, my system works better with bookshelf speakers.

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Tyler Acoustics D4M Bookshelf Speakers

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Tyler Acoustics is a family owned and operated business located in Owensboro, Kentucky. All of their engineering, construction and testing goes on in house, where they build some of the finest crafted speakers in the business which can be obtained in custom finishes off their website. Their newest model, the D4M, is a bookshelf (monitor) design, with a single tweeter and woofer. It's beautiful, sounds terrific, and is priced competitively. Although we classify them here as "Two-Channel Speakers", as we tested them here that way, they could certainly be used in a home theater as the mains (you would need a subwoofer), or as the surrounds.

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