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Considering Paradigm Monitors

 

New member
Username: Stahly

Post Number: 2
Registered: Mar-05
I am looking to buy a set of Paradigm Monitors 7, 9, or 11. I am wondering if anyone knows the advantages of the new versions. I listened to the three and I like the sound of the 7 and 11 more than the 9. I am wondering if the 11's are worth the extra money.
 

Silver Member
Username: Gman

Mt. Pleasant, SC

Post Number: 649
Registered: Dec-03
Difficult to answer this question, because the marriage of the speakers to your room acoustics is mostly responsible for the sound you hear. That is why listening to a speaker system in a store and then bringing them home invariably results in a different listening experience. It may be worse, better, or roughly the same.

The above said, all 3 speakers have very similar frequency responses. The main criteria I would use to make a choice on these 3 speakers is your room size. The main difference in the speakers will be the amount of "air" they will move.

If you have a small to medium sized room the 7's would be fine. If you have a fairly large room and like to blast the music, the 9 or especially the 11 should be the speaker of choice.

But, there is no way of knowing for sure until you hook the speakers up to your room and hear how they acoustically interact in your environment. But since they all have been acoustically matched by Paradigm, it is likely they will perform similarly at average loudness. It is at very loud volume where you will likely hear the most difference and sometimes at very low volume. Often smaller speakers sound more focussed at lower volumes.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 124
Registered: Feb-05
From a sound perspective I believe that the 7's are the better of the three. I own the 5's and believe that they are the best sounding of the Monitor series. As these are a budget speaker line there is more cabinet resonance to deal with on the larger models. I do however also like the 7's. I believe the models up from that are less competetive.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Rushwj

Post Number: 14
Registered: Feb-05
something else to consider is whether you have or will get a separate sub. If so, for the price you could upgrade to the reference studio line and get studio 20's (much cleaner and neutral sound both hi and low) and get your separate sub to supply below the 70 hz range.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 11
Registered: Mar-05
Personally I'd get the smaller midsize Monitor 5 which to my ears is more accurate than the larger Monitors, and buy speaker stands and a good sub with the savings (Hsu or SVS, $400-600).
 

jimvm
Unregistered guest
Ditto to William Rush's post.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 155
Registered: Feb-05
I agree with Edster. But really it depends on how much you want to spend. Studio 20's with matching Premier stands are a bit over $1000, Monitor 5's with matching Premier stands can be had for about $650 add a Hsu sub and you're looking at about $1150. Which of these setups makes better sense for you. I have the PW2100 Paradigm sub with my Monitor 5's and it works beautifully. I have no reson to doubt that you would get similar results with a Hsu or SVS sub. Is the Studio 20 a bit more refined in every way than the Monitor 5, Yes. It also costs more.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Gtsum

VA

Post Number: 24
Registered: Mar-04
get the 7's (I had them for 3 years and spend the other money on a mid level sub..good luck!
 

New member
Username: Bonesnipe

Post Number: 3
Registered: Apr-05
WHAT DO YOU INTEND TO USE THE SPKS. FOR. HOME THEATER (HOME T) OR MUSIC. IF YOUR ARE PRIMARILY USING THEM FOR HOME T THEN I SUGGEST GOING WITH A SMALLER PAIR LIKE THE MONITOR 5'S. THE MONITOR 5'S ARE REALLY A PAIR OF SEVENS IN A SMALLER CABINET WITH NO PORT. TAKE THE CASH YOU SAVE AND SPEND IT ON A GOOD SUB. YOU WILL WANT TO SET THE SPK. SIZE IN YOUR REC. OR PRE/PRO. TO SMALL IN THE SETUP MENU. THIS WILL HELP CLEAN UP THE HIGH AND MID FREQ'S.
IF MUSIC IS THE PRIMARY USE THEN YOU MAY WANT A LARGE MORE FULL RANGE SPK. THAT WOULD WORK WELL WITH A SUB.
 

New member
Username: Stahly

Post Number: 3
Registered: Mar-05
I plan on using them for 60% music and 40% for movies. It sounds like the 7's are well liked. Does anyone know about the recent versions and the changes that they have made? From my local dealer I can get the version 3 or the new version 4.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 163
Registered: Feb-05
Actually the 5's do have a port. And I set the mains for large. Want to clean up the sound? Hook up the sub to the pre outs of your receiver instead of the LFE. I have v4 Monitors and they sound excellent. Again, for music the 5's sound better than the 7's. More cabinet more resonance. It's your money. All yo get from the 7's that you don't from the 5's is muddy bass. If you will have a sub giving you tight bass you'll have no need for the muddy stuff. Peace out.
 

New member
Username: Bonesnipe

Post Number: 4
Registered: Apr-05
ARTHUR why set the mains to large. why not let the sub do the grunt work of reproducing the bass. By choosing small in the set up menu you effectively re-direct all the bass to the sub out. Your always talking about resonance, would you not agree that bass is going to increase the resonance within the speaker cabinet. Not to mention the physical distortion accompanied by drivers trying to reproduce bass. Try it some time you may find an improvement in your system that cost you nothing.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 165
Registered: Feb-05
The bass speakers are designed to reproduce bass. For movies it may well be better to set the mains on small to reduce their workload. But for performance dvd's I find I get better results with the mains large. Again you have to balance the sub and mains carefully. I Also think it depends on the speaker you use. When I had Paradigm Atoms all around I set the mains at small. My main point however was that in my experience the system sounds better for 2 channel music with the sub hooked up to the pre outs rather than the LFE. And ofcourse I have tried all the different settings.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 25
Registered: Mar-05
Arthur,

> Want to clean up the sound? Hook up the sub to the pre outs of your receiver instead of the LFE.

Hmmm, that's a very interesting suggestion, I'll have to try that. I'm curious, since I thought I remember reading that you have a 2-channel amp for your L/R speakers, which pre-outs are you using for the sub?

And is there a technical reason why the sub sounds worse on LFE than on pre-outs, or was that just your trial-and-error result?
 

Silver Member
Username: Kano

Post Number: 440
Registered: Oct-04
the L/R pre-outs.

Here's a good article -

http://www.polkaudio.com/home/faqad/advice.php?article=bassmanage

 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 167
Registered: Feb-05
Hi Edster,

My NAD C162 has 2 sets of pre outs I use one set for the sub and the other to go to the power amp. I have the SR5400 pre outs going to the video in on the NAD C162. That I when I listen to 2 channel music I have the SR5400 off completely. When I listen to movies the SR5400 is my processor and powers the center and rears. The SR5400 does a beautiful job of being a processor and has power to spare when not running the mains. Using the pre outs for your sub also works well if you are just using an AVR.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 29
Registered: Mar-05
Kano,

thanks for the article. For bookshelf speakers with dual woofers like my Ascend 340s, it seems to recommend using the pre-outs instead of subwoofer output only if your receiver either has no low pass filter or a preset low pass filter.

The Marantz 5400 however does have an adjustable low pass filter (I have it set to the bottom 80Hz setting), plus I have my front mains set to "small" (mine are listed as going down to 55 Hz), I have the subwoofer's low pass filter turned off (in LFE mode instead of "Normal" mode), and I have my 5400 subwoofer setting as "On."

Technically, what would be the advantage of using unfiltered pre-outs and turning on my subwoofer's internal LPF?

If I turn my front speakers' setting to "Large" then what happens when the receiver sends it frequencies under its 55Hz floor? Is there something in the speaker which will automatically block out those under-55Hz frequencies, or will they just cause distortion?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 30
Registered: Mar-05
Arthur,

So if you did not have the NAD amp at all, how would you prefer to connect your subwoofer, using the Marantz's L/R preouts or its subwoofer preout?

I'm also unsure what happens if you connect the subwoofer to the L/R preouts but still have the front mains attached to the receiver...does the receiver send the signal that normally goes to the front mains to both outputs? For some reason I thought that the receiver would be sending the mains' signal only through the L/R preouts, that's why 2-channel amps usually have speaker connections for two speakers on the back.

Sigh. I've never used a separate amp so I'm afraid you'll have to bear with my total cluelessness here. : )
 

Bronze Member
Username: Gtsum

VA

Post Number: 25
Registered: Mar-04
Sub preouts - I am by no means an expert on this, but when you set your speakers to small, ALL bass information from those speakers is diverted to the LFE channel (with NAD anyways) - even at an 80hz cutoff, there is a slope there...your speakes roll off around 80 (actually down to about 50-60 or so, depending on the slope of crossover) Freeing up the main speakers from having to contend with deep bass response SHOULD (note should!) provide better mids and high's - when I had Paradigm system, this was certainly the case (7's, cc370, mini, and servo). I now run NAD separates and Von Schwiekert speakers - my mains are +/- 1db down to 25hz - however, when running bass sweep test tones from DVE with speakers set to large and then small, I get a much flatter response (and better sound) using the small setting and blending my servo 15 with them - of course your mileage may vary - if you are a two channel guy and do not like to use the LFE, then that is another thing altogether...
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 169
Registered: Feb-05
Edster,

I would use the Marantz's L/R pre out. You then have the signal going to both the preout and the speakers. You go large with the mains and small with the center and rears. You are right Shaun, this is a setup for 2 channel first folks. But there is a difference between running the test tones and applying this setup for real. I find that the sound is cleaner this way.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Twebbz

Ann Arbor, Michigan USA

Post Number: 49
Registered: Apr-04
So, For a simple stereo music system how would you rate the bass of the new Monitor 5...lacking? And, the overall sound...? I don't want to mess with a sub-woofer. This is for a den size room. Thinking about using a NAD C352 to drive the 5's or some other speaker...
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 233
Registered: Feb-05
Depends on how much bass you need, what kind of music you listen to etc. It's solid down to 40hz and drops off shortly below that at about 35hz. The NAD C352 should be a really good match. The 5's take a little while to break in but once they have broken in they have very solid bass. Here is a link to an old review of the 5 v2, the v4 is better yet.

http://www.soundstage.com/revequip/paradigm_monitor5.htm

If you need a lot of bass and want a Monitor series speaker the Monitor 7 has it. I like the more accurate bass of the 5.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Gas_wyoming

Cody, WY

Post Number: 29
Registered: Mar-05
Excellent discourse on receiver setup! Bravo.! You've given me a whole list of things to try out with my setup.

I like the suggestion of going with the Reference 20's...the refinements are worth it IMO. I also agree with Gregory that the sound in your environment is the most important. Suggest giving a test run at home before making a final decision. Deal with a store that allows this or where you can at least return them easily when you make your purchase. Watch out for a "restocking fee".
 

Bronze Member
Username: Twebbz

Ann Arbor, Michigan USA

Post Number: 63
Registered: Apr-04
I JUST listened to the Monitor 5v.4 & 7v.3 (driven by a NAD theater amp) and I'm very disappointed especially with all the hype that I've read. Maybe the room was too large, (25' x 20') I don't know but while the sound was very sweet, clean and a tiny bit boxy, there was no authority to the music. The sound between the two was extremely close. The 7 did go lower but still no slam, no balls. Played "Black Cat" Janet Jackson, "You're Making Me High" Tony Braxton, "Stand Here With Me" Creed, "A New Day Has Come" Celine Dion. No smile here. Sorry Paradigm fans, that's what I heard. In my own home it surely would be different but if I'm not impressed in the showroom, I'm going any further...still looking here.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Twebbz

Ann Arbor, Michigan USA

Post Number: 64
Registered: Apr-04
Maybe the room was larger than what I said...It had a projection TV, racks on both sides with amps and DVD players and four huge leather recliners. The speakers were far away. I'll try listening to them again at some other store with a smaller listening room. My den is 12"x11". At least I can say that the Monitor 5 & 7 are not adequate for large rooms.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 332
Registered: Feb-05
Rich it sounds like something was set up wrong. Not that it is your responsibility to set it up right, the retailer should have done that. The 5's and 7's do a good job of filling a room up to about (not being scientific) 20x20 ft as long as you have a sub to do the low end duties. But the Monitor's sho 'nuff ain't the Reference series.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Twebbz

Ann Arbor, Michigan USA

Post Number: 65
Registered: Apr-04
Yea, in that set up it was screaming "SUB!!" but I'm going that route. I've had trouble with these guys before. Not going back. They didn't have a Marantz PM7200 to demo either even though they supposedly are a dealer.
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