Bookshelf speaker help (<$400)


New member
Username: Jim_mcbob

Post Number: 1
Registered: Nov-04
Dear all,

Forgive my possibly rehashing old threads, but I currently have a Cambridge SoundWorks Ensemble II system (driven by an old NAD 3155 amp) that I absolutely LOATHE--decent bottom; harsh and tinny mids and highs. I never realized how headache-inducing these things are till I upgraded my CD player... but I digress.

Anyhow, I'm looking at new bookshelf speakers that I can mount to the walls in place of the CSW sats. I've narrowed down my selections to:

Ascend Audio cbm-170
Axiom M-2 or M-3
B&W DM303, DM 600/01
Epos ELS3
Paradigm Mini Monitor
PSB Alpha B or Image B-15

My main criteria are: size (speakers must be wall mountable and less than 13.5" high); and, well, smoothness or sound (not harsh, not "colored"). My listening tastes run the gamut from Rock/pop to jazz. I plan (in the short term) to make up for any low-end inadequacies with my current bass unit, the SoundWorks II passive woofer. (Am I fooling myself with this belief?) My living room is approx 12'x19,' so "filling" the space shouldn't be a big problem.

I'm not a super-critical, got-me-a-listening-room-setup-with-foam-baffles-onna-wall type of listener, but I like "rich," detailed sound. Suggestions, comments, etc? Thanks and much obliged!

Bronze Member
Username: Agimat

Post Number: 59
Registered: Aug-04
I recommend the PSB Alpha B. If you can extend your budget maybe the MA Bronze B1.

New member
Username: Onimushalord

Post Number: 1
Registered: Nov-04
Within your list, I would go for the Epos ELS3( earned a Category C in Stereophile = highly accomplished for the price).
But do give the Ascend CBM-170 a spin as they are also highly acclaimed (you will be using the CSW II sub, so bass shy factor shouldn't be a problem. Both have very good midrange and fits your "rich/detailed" sound spot on. Others are IMO quite good too but nothing remarkable.


Silver Member
Username: Falp

Post Number: 112
Registered: Mar-04
Focal JMLab 706s, KEF Q1, MA Bronze B2, AE Evo 1

Bronze Member
Username: Exerciseguy

Brooklyn, NY USA

Post Number: 37
Registered: Oct-04
I would recommend the Monitor Audio Radius 90's.
You can find them for about $300. at

Gold Member
Username: Project6

Post Number: 1917
Registered: Dec-03
I like the Ascend Acoustics cbm-170. Absolutely incredible imaging, clarity and soundstage.

Bronze Member
Username: Exerciseguy

Brooklyn, NY USA

Post Number: 39
Registered: Oct-04
Are you looking for a surround system or just stereo?
« Previous Thread Next Thread »

Main Forums

Today's Posts

Forum Help

Follow Us