How do you determine how much to spend on speakers

Hello all,

I am just starting out in this HI-FI stuff and have a pretty modest budget (prospectively about 5K) for all. Any suggestions as to how funds should be distributed. At this stage, I have no interest in any analog components. Most notably, whether or not it is favorable to splurge on speakers and settle for less expensive components and upgrade later, or set a target price range and stick to it.

OK, going to place this in this thread and hope the answers make sense to me.

Wife and I have been looking and listening to speakers. She is trained vocal, teacher wanted her to go pro as a teenager. Her likes are classical and opera. Now mine are rock and Jazz. Same story again I know.

Went out to listen to speakers,she liked/loved the Sonus Faber auditor series, the flute player in one piece was a note late she said and like the placement of instruments from the recording. Ok high price here, I also like because of the rich sound and warmth of the speakers

Next set was the Definitive tech Mythos. These speakers are harsh to me. But the wife loved them for the placement of instruments, a major thing for her.

Martin logan, more transparent and warmer sounding to me. Wife could not find the placement of instrument. Could be room set up here as I gather they do need to be placed correctly.

B&W nicer than the Definitive tech Mythos but still harsh to me.

Maggies, both of us liked but how much amp do you need with these? Thinking of probaly 1.6's so you can help figure amp size.

Any help appricated.
hi inwanw:

i own 1.6s. there have been threads regarding this speaker. i will be brief. room size and spl will determine power requirement. i have a 30 watt amp and a 120 watt amp. i use both and have no problems. leave space between speaker and rear wall. at least 4 feet is advisable. ironically, i am looking to replace my 1.6s because of the tweeter. it's too hot, even with a tube amp.

this thread is relevant to me, as i am shopping for a speaker. i am considering only panel speakers.

they can be pricey, i.e., more than $7000, retail.
it makes no sense to have a budget constrain me from findinga speaker which i prefer over the magnepan. there are so few speakers i like, period.

i would say, out of the totality of current production speakers, i like or would own, no more than about 7.

thus, for me, i have an upper limit of $20,000, which shouldn't be a problem. if i were less fussy, it would be easier to find a speaker under $10,000. i have received several suggestions but invariably they are cone-based speakers, which, in general are annoying after some period of time.
Mr Tennis - I just spoke to Soundlabs and tried to resurrect the Rennaisance - that was exactly what I wanted. They build-to-order, so they considered it, but in the end they didn't go for it. Part of it is because I wanted it for 5 or 6 or maybe 7 at most k. They are working on getting the new PX stuff into all their models, and the PX stuff is expensive and still relatively new, so there would have been design costs just for my one-off. In any case, their cheapest full range speaker is the Millenium-2PX and am not sure of price, but perhaps in the 9 - 11k range. They have a high-freq adjustment, so shouldn't be too hot. If your upper limit is 20k, you might be able to go a model or two up the line from M2PX.

I'm getting 3.6s right now, which is under your price range and I assume your very familiar with them, just to say they have option for tweeter resistor to calm it down a bit if desired. I was shocked when I heard how different 3.6 is to 1.6 fwiw.

And lastly I heard Martin Logan was coming out with another full range, could be wrong, but I heard that, so might be worth waiting for.

You are also in 20.1 range, but I assume you are super-familiar with those as well.

Hey - for real fun get a Tympanni IVa and have them reconditioned. Many say those are still the best Maggies, but I don't know how much of that is nostalgia. But there are many, many pairs still running and people swear by them!

Even crazier, some people are taking 3.6s and adding the woofer sections of a Tympani IVa... That should be awesome!
A chime in note on cables. If you haven't already broken the bank on speakers and amps, always ALWAYS get rid of the stock power and interconnect cables that may come with your equipment - especially where the analog signal path is concerned. You can get low-end hi-fi (still very decent) for $50-100 which gives you a good bang for the buck.

The nice thing about cables is you can do it gradually over time as you feel the need. I suggest starting with your amp since it's the most power hungry component. Better the signal path with quality interconnects next and then the power cords to the rest of your components. Finally, add a conditioner if you can - even simple ones will do wonders for imaging.

Adding it up, I spent about 10% of my system cost (~$11,000) on cables (60% of that was speaker cable). $100 Transparent Audio power cables (3) and interconnects (1) have done a lot for me. I've tried some more expensive stuff, but found better use for the money in a power conditioner.