Speakers and hifi discussion (split)

RevToTheRedline

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 27, 2007
581
153
Mmmm Bang & Olufsen... When you thought Bose was overpriced....

Sometimes money is the only measure of performance for some people, but the smart ones know better.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
Mmmm Bang & Olufsen... When you thought Bose was overpriced....

Sometimes money is the only measure of performance for some people, but the smart ones know better.
Bose and B&O are COMPLETELY different.

B&O make the best TVs by far on the market, no denying that. Their top-of-the-range loudspeakers are incredible, makes the competition look incredibly overpriced and, well, not all that impressive.

I'll admit, the BeoLab 4s I own aren't exactly all that great value. For £900, you can get much more impressive speaker/amp combos from other brands. However, as computer speakers they are almost flawless, and I won them, so I'm not going to complain. I wouldn't use them as main hifi speakers, but for what I use them for, they're great.

If you want to be seriously impressed, I suggest you have a listen to some BeoLab 5s, 9s or 3s. Their earphones are also pretty darn impressive, and their TVs produce the best picture of any TV on the market, with sound to match.
 

M3G4

macrumors regular
May 4, 2007
100
0
Kent, UK
Bose and B&O are COMPLETELY different.

B&O make the best TVs by far on the market, no denying that. Their top-of-the-range loudspeakers are incredible, makes the competition look incredibly overpriced and, well, not all that impressive.

I'll admit, the BeoLab 4s I own aren't exactly all that great value. For £900, you can get much more impressive speaker/amp combos from other brands. However, as computer speakers they are almost flawless, and I won them, so I'm not going to complain. I wouldn't use them as main hifi speakers, but for what I use them for, they're great.

If you want to be seriously impressed, I suggest you have a listen to some BeoLab 5s, 9s or 3s. Their earphones are also pretty darn impressive, and their TVs produce the best picture of any TV on the market, with sound to match.
B&O? Quality?

LOL. ;)
 

Tucom

macrumors 65816
Jul 29, 2006
1,192
261
They're kinda purty in real life. I might get some different colours, each side of the pyramid is a separate cover, so you can mix and match. Black, dark grey, red and blue are the colours...
killyp, how do those speakers sound man? I've been wondering what the sound quality on those are. Comparable to your B&W's? I believe I read some where that you owned some B&W's :D



Peace
 

Shotglass

macrumors 65816
Feb 4, 2006
1,176
0
B&O? Quality?

LOL. ;)
Now you're really hurting him. :D

Seriously though, if I may jump in here and defend him - I had the chance to compare a friend's 10k € custom built speakers+ Luxman amps and the whole shizzle to a pair of BeoLab 5s on a BeoSound 9000. Trust me, B&O equals Quality. They may be way over priced, but don't ever underestimate their products.
 

bartelby

macrumors Core
Jun 16, 2004
19,797
5
B&O make the best TVs by far on the market, no denying that.
Their top-of-the-range loudspeakers are incredible, makes the competition look incredibly overpriced and, well, not all that impressive.
Loewe make better TVs than B&O.

B&Os top of the range speakers are surpassed in every way by some cheaper speakers by different companies.

B&O are over-priced and WAY over-rated.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
I could have agreed with most of what you're saying 6 or so years ago, but things have changed, hugely. B&O went very downhill in the late 80s through to the early 2000's, until they released the BL5s.

B&O? Quality?

LOL. ;)
You've obviously never owned any B&O. You will find nothing on the market as well built, thought out, designed and executed as some of their stuff.

Thats what I was about to say, I have never heard anyone talk about B&O TV's in the same sentence as "the best"

They are literally a non existent name in the television world.
I'm sorry but that's nonsense. Go to your nearest B&O dealer and look at the BeoVision 9. You will be amazed how ahead the picture is in comparison to other TVs.

killyp, how do those speakers sound man? I've been wondering what the sound quality on those are. Comparable to your B&W's? I believe I read some where that you owned some B&W's :D


Peace
Yeh, I've got some B&W DM7 mk2s with a crossover upgrade as well as some DM303s, DM601s3s, assorted studio monitors and some custom far-field monitors, and tbh, the B&Os are rubbish in comparison to everything else I've got. It's a shame, these are the weakest speakers in B&O's range by far, and don't represent what B&O can really do if they put all their R&D into it. I would never spend £900 on these speakers, but their top of the range speakers are just incredible, and wipe the floor with the B&W 800Ds.

Loewe make better TVs than B&O.

B&Os top of the range speakers are surpassed in every way by some cheaper speakers by different companies.

B&O are over-priced and WAY over-rated.
No they are not, they are WAY underrated. You're telling me you've listened to BeoLab 5s and not been impressed?

Review 1

Disagree with that.

Having compared B&O's BL5s directly to B&W's 800D + 3 x Naim NAP 500s, and there was no comparison. The B&Os won easily, just better from every respect. We're talking about £52k worth of kit in comparison to £12k, the B&Os were just more musical, more effortless and powerful, even, showed a more rock-solid soundstage, sounded more focussed and controlled. The B&W system (which is a truly phenomenal system, and I love to bits) just sounded all over the place, and believe me, it was set up correctly.

B&O also just bought out the BeoLab 9, a smaller sibling to the BeoLab 5, and they're again, very impressive. Shame about some of their other speakers, which just aren't all that impressive and hence, overpriced in comparison.
 

RevToTheRedline

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 27, 2007
581
153
Loewe make better TVs than B&O.

B&Os top of the range speakers are surpassed in every way by some cheaper speakers by different companies.

B&O are over-priced and WAY over-rated.
Yep, I'm glad someone here isn't all mixed up in the B&O name to realize that. But I'm not gonna go on arguing about it anymore, cause there is no point. B&O is in the same boat as Bose and no denying it. Overpriced and overrated equipment.
 

bartelby

macrumors Core
Jun 16, 2004
19,797
5
No they are not, they are WAY underrated. You're telling me you've listened to BeoLab 5s and not been impressed?

Review 1

Disagree with that.

I have heard them. For £12,000 you expect them to be good. But unfortunately they got beaten by Sonus Faber Auditor Ms. Neither me, my dad (who upgrades highend hi-fi stuff) nor a friend who deals in Hi-Fi equipment thought they sounded like they were worth the money.
No-one I know, who is in to high end audio rate B&O much for the money you spend.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
The problem in my eyes is that B&O's most popular products tend to be the ones which are more lookers than performers. Not that there's anything 'wrong ' with that, as a lot of people obviously prefer that kind of thing.

However, because of this, their higher performance speakers and kit suffers. B&O dealers tend to set up in-store kit with the appearance in mind, and generally don't think about the performance impact by placing such and such speaker here, or matching this CD player with that pair of speakers. As a result, what can be truly fantastic kit actually ends up sounding pretty mediocre. Having heard BL5s set up in a theatre, next to a pair of B&W 800Ds, Linn Artikulats (which sounded pretty dull to my ears), Wilson Watt Puppy and JM Focal Utopias, all the passive speakers being driven by the same arrangement of Naim amps. Nothing 'went' as well as the B&Os, or indeed seemed as spacious and airy. Bass power and extension like you wouldn't imagine as well...
 

ebouwman

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2007
641
17
Canada
Yep, I'm glad someone here isn't all mixed up in the B&O name to realize that. But I'm not gonna go on arguing about it anymore, cause there is no point. B&O is in the same boat as Bose and no denying it. Overpriced and overrated equipment.
Bose is overpriced but they make some great stuff, like what i said before about the ANC headsets, they are amazing, but they are way more than the next leading brands, so in the end you have to ask do i pay a $800 for one thats pretty good, or do you pay 50% more to get the one thats amazing.

Overpriced? definately. Overrated? No.
I'm not sure about B&O though, never dealt with them.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
I think we're going to have to agree to disagree here. For the money there's better solutions out there. You're paying a huge premium for the name.
Some would say you're paying a huge premium for going Apple rather than PC. After all, you can build a much higher performance PC for a quarter of the price of a Mac, but you don't get half the stuff Mac users have come to love, but can't really list as a 'spec' or write on paper. It's the same with B&O, to me so much other gear just seems to lack a huge amount that the B&O has in it's favour. I have numerous other hifi systems, and a B&O seperates and now these computer speakers (including a few other B&O relics). None if it's got the overall finish of the B&O. Same with my Macs...

He didn't actually pay anything. He won them.
Exactly.
 

bartelby

macrumors Core
Jun 16, 2004
19,797
5
Some would say you're paying a huge premium for going Apple rather than PC. After all, you can build a much higher performance PC for a quarter of the price of a Mac, but you don't get half the stuff Mac users have come to love, but can't really list as a 'spec' or write on paper. It's the same with B&O, to me so much other gear just seems to lack a huge amount that the B&O has in it's favour. I have numerous other hifi systems, and a B&O seperates and now these computer speakers (including a few other B&O relics). None if it's got the overall finish of the B&O. Same with my Macs...
Not the same with Macs at all.
Mac OS will only run on Macs.

If Apple computers only ran windows I'd not buy them and I'd class them up there with B&O, BMW and Designer clothing.

CDs will play on any hifi.
 

Mord

macrumors G4
Aug 24, 2003
10,090
21
UK
Some would say you're paying a huge premium for going Apple rather than PC. After all, you can build a much higher performance PC for a quarter of the price of a Mac, but you don't get half the stuff Mac users have come to love, but can't really list as a 'spec' or write on paper. It's the same with B&O, to me so much other gear just seems to lack a huge amount that the B&O has in it's favour. I have numerous other hifi systems, and a B&O seperates and now these computer speakers (including a few other B&O relics). None if it's got the overall finish of the B&O. Same with my Macs...

Personally i'd rather go with a pair of these:





What 60's technology hand build naff looking supremely awesome sounding speakers equate to in computer technology I have no idea, B&O has never particularly impressed me and their design has always struck me as without function and frankly rather ugly.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
Not the same with Macs at all.
Mac OS will only run on Macs.

If Apple computers only ran windows I'd not buy them and I'd class them up there with B&O, BMW and Designer clothing.

CDs will play on any hifi.
B&O will only do BeoLink, VisionClear, reliable remotes (no other company has mastered this like B&O), DataLink, motorized TVs (looks like a gimick, but it actually changes the way you set out your lounge, rather than everything being focussed around the TV).

There's a lot more to B&O than meets the eye. My B&O seperates does things no other system will do nowadays, and it's 20 years old.
 

bartelby

macrumors Core
Jun 16, 2004
19,797
5
B&O will only do BeoLink, VisionClear, reliable remotes (no other company has mastered this like B&O), DataLink, motorized TVs (looks like a gimick, but it actually changes the way you set out your lounge, rather than everything being focussed around the TV).

There's a lot more to B&O than meets the eye. My B&O seperates does things no other system will do nowadays, and it's 20 years old.
But I only want to put a cd in the player and listen to music. What the hell do I want non-essential tricks for?

How many companies have you tried for remotes?

The more electronic crap you add into audio/visual stuff the more it decreases the quality of the output.
 

M3G4

macrumors regular
May 4, 2007
100
0
Kent, UK
You've obviously never owned any B&O. You will find nothing on the market as well built, thought out, designed and executed as some of their stuff.
I've demo-ed many a B&W systems (with a view to buying one), and I've also demo-ed the seperates kit you can get for the same money. Believe me when I say B&O is no way the be-all-and-end-all of sound quality. I had a listen to the 6 disc changer system and column speakers (I forgot their names) which all in all would fetch around £8,500. As soon as the guy fired up Prodigy's Their Law, I could tell that I was going to be so badly let down. What I hear when I put the CD into my modest £500 system is hard hitting defined music, with plenty of low-end clout along with a high end that could cut glass. What I heard from the B&O system was a flat, undefined and incredibly lacking sound - somewhat "clinical". The whole idea of speakers with their own active amps is a bit silly, and something usually only studio monitors adopt.

Not trying to be rude, but I hardly think a CD player that returns the disc to the position you originally put them in after you've finished playing them is desperately well built or thought out - it's a gimmick. I heard some pretty nice KEF speakers hooked up to some Musical Fidelity components and it literally blew everything I've ever heard out of the water. Effortlessly musical.
 

Killyp

macrumors 68040
Jun 14, 2006
3,860
5
I've demo-ed many a B&W systems (with a view to buying one), and I've also demo-ed the seperates kit you can get for the same money. Believe me when I say B&O is no way the be-all-and-end-all of sound quality. I had a listen to the 6 disc changer system and column speakers (I forgot their names) which all in all would fetch around £8,500. As soon as the guy fired up Prodigy's Their Law, I could tell that I was going to be so badly let down. What I hear when I put the CD into my modest £500 system is hard hitting defined music, with plenty of low-end clout along with a high end that could cut glass. What I heard from the B&O system was a flat, undefined and incredibly lacking sound - somewhat "clinical". The whole idea of speakers with their own active amps is a bit silly, and something usually only studio monitors adopt.

Not trying to be rude, but I hardly think a CD player that returns the disc to the position you originally put them in after you've finished playing them is desperately well built or thought out - it's a gimmick. I heard some pretty nice KEF speakers hooked up to some Musical Fidelity components and it literally blew everything I've ever heard out of the water. Effortlessly musical.
Yes, I know a lot of B&O's stuff can be quite disappointing, their column speakers in particular have never done anything for me sonically (although they work very very well in home theatre, as their maximum SPL is very high). But their newest speakers, BeoLab 3s, BeoLab 9s and BeoLab 5s are very impressive, especially the 9s and 5s, both of which punch way above their price and size, and are at last speakers that audiophiles will sit down and listen to and go 'wow' when set up properly.

As for the CD changer, it's beautifully built. None of my Cyrus kit comes any where near the build quality of my B&O kit. It may seem like a gimmick, but it's those little touches which help you realise that you're getting a 'complete' package, not a 'very good sounding, but rubbish at everything else' one-trick-pony system (of which I've had far too many).

Yes, B&W make some beautiful speakers, I own quite a few pairs of B&Ws, and they are all wonderful. Sadly, the B&O speakers I own aren't some of their better efforts. However, correctly set up, BeoLab 9s or 5s will easily compete with any other amplifier/speaker combination out there, which helps B&O get back into the world of proper hifi. To put it this way, every review I read of the BeoLab 9s recently (of which there were a lot) gave them 5 stars.

Maybe a moderator should merge those posts into a new discussion in the audio or community section.
I agree, I'd like to continue this discussion.
 

M3G4

macrumors regular
May 4, 2007
100
0
Kent, UK
Yes, I know a lot of B&O's stuff can be quite disappointing, their column speakers in particular have never done anything for me sonically (although they work very very well in home theatre, as their maximum SPL is very high). But their newest speakers, BeoLab 3s, BeoLab 9s and BeoLab 5s are very impressive, especially the 9s and 5s, both of which punch way above their price and size, and are at last speakers that audiophiles will sit down and listen to and go 'wow' when set up properly.

As for the CD changer, it's beautifully built. None of my Cyrus kit comes any where near the build quality of my B&O kit. It may seem like a gimmick, but it's those little touches which help you realise that you're getting a 'complete' package, not a 'very good sounding, but rubbish at everything else' one-trick-pony system (of which I've had far too many).

Yes, B&W make some beautiful speakers, I own quite a few pairs of B&Ws, and they are all wonderful. Sadly, the B&O speakers I own aren't some of their better efforts. However, correctly set up, BeoLab 9s or 5s will easily compete with any other amplifier/speaker combination out there, which helps B&O get back into the world of proper hifi. To put it this way, every review I read of the BeoLab 9s recently (of which there were a lot) gave them 5 stars.



I agree, I'd like to continue this discussion.
I'm sorry, but if I'm spending £2,000+ on a speaker system, it would not be on a B&O speaker system. It's flat, dull and lifeless. And spending £8,000 or so on their top of the range speaker is just silly. You really cannot compare B&O with proper audiophile equipment.

The idea of these "one trick ponies" as you put them is to provide the ultimate in sound quality - not to put your discs in the right place or percolate your coffee. You simply cannot pitch a B&O system alongside a well-research and expertly picked audiophile system - it'd lose on almost every count!
 

Tucom

macrumors 65816
Jul 29, 2006
1,192
261
A speaker having a flat characteristic is a damn good thing, you want the speaker to as flat as possible.

M3G4, have you personally listened to the systems aforementioned by killyp? If not, I suggest you go out and have a critical listen, then come back and base your judgement.



Peace
 
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