Acapella vs. Avantgarde

I currently run a Cary CD-306, Cary SLP-05 preamp, and Cary 805AE monoblocks with a pair of ProAc D38's (see system). The combination is sweet and involving, but the combo just does not boogie when asked to play a large orchestral piece, by Mahler/Wagner/Shostakovich. When the volume is turned up, dynamics are poor and the system starts to sound compressed. I suspect that the 50W Cary's simply does not have enough guts to drive the ProAc's, so I am considering replacing them with a more efficient speaker. Since most SET afficionadoes love horns, this led me to look into Avantgarde and Acapella.

I live in Melbourne, Australia. Avantgarde is available through a dealer here, but he does not have any in stock. The Acapella dealer is in Sydney (a plane flight away). I am looking to spend A$30,000 - which will buy a nice Avantgarde Duo, or a secondhand Acapella High Violon.

I have read plenty about the dynamics of the Avantgardes, but my concern is if they have horn coloration. Also, how do they image? Are they sensitive to room placement?

Would the Acapella High Violon's be a better buy, considering the pair I can potentially get my hands on have been heavily discounted? I have read that Acapella's suffer from disjointed sound because of the three different driver technologies (plasma tweeter, horn mids, conventional woofer). How much is this a problem? And are there any room placement issues? Given that the Acapella's have lower sensitivity (91 dB/W/m) would I be achieving a real upgrade by moving from the ProAc's?
Since this thread has attracted a lot of knowledgeable Avantegarde owners, I wanted to see if any of you have experience with a couple of mods available.
Ozhan Atalay designed these to decouple his tweeter and mid from the frame. Anyone tried them yet or something similar.

Audio Consulting's Wiring and Crossover mods
silver wiring, silver crossover coils, and paper and oil caps for the tweeter, plus the option of moving the corsover outside of the speaker. Any experience?
I'm not against mods. I personally know of some that actually improve the speakers.

But what has bothered me in the past is actually getting to hear some of these mods, on the (mod) designers' personal systems.

Unfortunately the basic set-up was ghastly, reflecting no basic voicing and set-up knowledge whatsoever. I guess they thought the mods would (or did) do something. And probably they did.

But mods from folks who have bad sound in their own systems?


Best regards,

Jim Smith
Question for Jim Smith , DUO (Omega) midhorn with no crossover, plasma tweeter from Acapella, and 2 JL Audio f113, how does it sound to you ? Thanks,
I have no idea how that would sound. Probably pretty poor.

Most woofers aren't linear to an octave or more above 500 Hz, which is required for the DUO system to blend properly.

A subwoofer of any kind would be a disaster, unless it was used to crossover to the DUO SUB 225 woofer.

The plasma tweeter would be interesting, IF it could be mounted and time aligned without diffractions off the mid horn. And IF it has sufficient sensitivity to mate with the DUO Omega 107 dB sensitivity.

Best regards,

Jim Smith
Thanks , sub was intended as you said to sharpen up the SUB231-G.
The highest setting is 220 Hz on them, not 500, but they are
well integrated with the midrange driver.
The Acapella tweeter , despite having its own xover and volume control is a bit difficult to integrate, but to my ears sounds sweeter than the "normal" ones, some claim however that ozone ( which is constantly generated) + the strong electromagnetic field can be potentially harmful.
Don't believe sensitivity is such an issue, due to self amplification ( and own volume control).
I'm using above concoction in one of my systems, the main one is still having 5 Permandur ALE drivers, including a quad P160 for the 50' long straight bass horns.
Now we can talk crossover quality to integrate them and time alignment ( like in Haas) of the bass , sadly there is no Jim Smith in Europe :-)
I know there is always a degree of subjectivity, but I like the Avantgarde Solo as well, as well as the DUO for its musical midrange, more than the TRIO that I also have ( with metal membrane), maybe the latter was not optimally set-up, who knows.
Enjoy the music and the weekend,