Recommendations for 93+ DB efficient moniters

I am looking to replace my 90db/6 > 8 ohm/2way bookshelf speakers, wall mounted, that are just not quite efficient enough for my 300b SET amplifier. I have only found the following speakers that appear suitable:

Galante Rhapsody....96db
Omega Super 3 Reference with Alnico upgrade, 93db

Both are about the same price; ie, 1200 bucks. Used for the Galante and new with trial period for the Omega. I keep leaning to the Galante because it, clearly, is in another class from the Omega speakers at least in cabinet construction. It is also much more efficient and will put out better bass so it could be used w/o a subwoofer. The Omega requires a woofer for close to full range reproduction.

I was looking at the Coincident Triumph Signature but I read some reports that concluded that its rated sensitivity is, in the real world, closer to 90db so I dropped that one from consideration.

I want to be able to reproduce symphonic works at moderate volume levels and I cannot do that right now without the sound starting to compress/clip.

I'd like to keep the cost around 1000 to 1500 so that lovely Royal Devices speaker with the horn is out of the question.
Check out

I have the McCullough, and am very happy with them.
At just a bit above your budget, used you may want to consider the Reference 3a Decapo monitors. The 'i' is the more recent version. Art Dudley wet his skivvies over these monitors about a year ago in Stereophile. His drool bucket doth often runneth over though. Never heard anything bad about them and folks who use them seem to like em'. No direct experience myself beyond a single listen a few years back which was significanly impressive to my ears If I were looking for an efficient monitor in that range, the Decapo would be on my short list.

I was in the same situation a while back. Trying to find a pair of monitor speakers to match with 3.5 W/ch 2A3 speakers. Can't use horn speakers due to space consideration. The final solution was Coincident Triumphs UHS.

I am not sure what Triump's actual efficency measurement is. It was definitely loud enough for most Jazz trio and vocal performance, but not quite enough for pop/rock/symphony. The room size is about 18 x 26 x 9.

The final solution was to go to a 845 SET amp instead. 22W/ch. Very dynamic sound although not quite as transparent as 2A3 SET.

So given the choices again, I would say find a pair of used Klipsch horn speakers if you have the space. If not, I would suggest changing the amp might be a better option. Cary makes some higher powered 300B SETs.
I would agree with the Reference 3a MM Decapo monitors. I own them and drive them with a 3.5 watt/ch. 2A3 amp and have even driven them with a 1.5 watt/ch. '45 amp.

The Decapo is rated at 92 db/8 ohm but is a very simple and easy to drive crossover. With my 3.5 watts, it can get "way too loud". Also, the Decapo has excellent bass for its size. I have not heard many monitors that had sufficent bass for large scale classical, but I feel the Decapo does justice to the genre.

BTW, my pair are the non "i" version and they sound great. The non "i" version sell for about $1000-$1200 used and the "i" version seem to be about $300-500 more for a used pair. I don't feel any need to spend the extra bucks for an upgrade.

In your original post you mentioned that your current speakers are "wall mounted". Will you be doing the same with the new speakers? If so, the Decapos are not a good match as they are rear ported and need some room behind them. If you will be placing them on/near the wall, you might want to consider the Carolina Audio speakers or a speaker made specifically for that application.


I figure I can hang them from the ceiling if they are rear ported. I did that for a pair of Linn Tukans (rear ported small moniter) in a home theatre setup and they sound great; just a bit of bass boost from they ceiling.

Thank for the advice on the diCapo; had only seen the Dulcet before and it is, clearly, not efficient enough.

One more added to the list. The galante rhapsody is 1200 so this is a bit more expensive; getting up there again.

As the boys once said "All you need is dough..."

dum dum dum da dum...
What about the Reference 3A virtuoso models? It has similar sensitivity numbers but is substantially more expensive new; used the increase is not earth shattering IF the performance over the diCapo warrants the outlay.
Purchased the Rhapsody speakers and hung them from the ceiling; 20" from rear wall and 20" from side wall and angled down to listening position. sounds great..the increased dynamics are quite obvious over the prior speakers which were 90db vs the 96db of these. The prior speakers sounded very, very good, too, so there is not much of a qualititative improvement in sound. There is more dynamics which was the point of the exercise.

Lovely looking speakers, too; wonderful craftsmanship.