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IWalker

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I am going to have right around $10k to spend on speakers (I already have the electronics/cables/etc. that I want) and I am a little bit torn between two options.

For a little bit of background, my fiancee is not an audiophile, and so would like as small a visual footprint as possible, in order to minimize the impact on her side of things (the decorating)

I'm not really too interested right now in surround sound, and will split the usage of the speakers between stereo music listening and Home theater/TV.

So now, my choices are (in my mind)
1. ML Summits.
2. ML Vantages, Theater/Stage, Descent.

The difference between cost in the two systems is a non-factor. The way I see it, I like the finishes and the overall look of the Summits over the Vantages by a significant margin (I think I'd go with the Wenge), and would have real trouble "hiding" the Theater/Stage so that it wouldn't make the fiancee unhappy. However, I think that the difference that the Theater/Stage would make in terms of HT performance would be quite significant, and might be worth the tradeoffs.

I am leaning towards the Summits right now, but want to know if anyone here has strong opinions either way, or has found themselves in a similar position.

Thanks!
-Ian
 

roberto

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IWalker said:
I am going to have right around $10k to spend on speakers (I already have the electronics/cables/etc. that I want) and I am a little bit torn between two options.

For a little bit of background, my fiancee is not an audiophile, and so would like as small a visual footprint as possible, in order to minimize the impact on her side of things (the decorating)

I'm not really too interested right now in surround sound, and will split the usage of the speakers between stereo music listening and Home theater/TV.

So now, my choices are (in my mind)
1. ML Summits.
2. ML Vantages, Theater/Stage, Descent.

The difference between cost in the two systems is a non-factor. The way I see it, I like the finishes and the overall look of the Summits over the Vantages by a significant margin (I think I'd go with the Wenge), and would have real trouble "hiding" the Theater/Stage so that it wouldn't make the fiancee unhappy. However, I think that the difference that the Theater/Stage would make in terms of HT performance would be quite significant, and might be worth the tradeoffs.

I am leaning towards the Summits right now, but want to know if anyone here has strong opinions either way, or has found themselves in a similar position.

Thanks!
-Ian
Hola and welcome Ian. You can't go wrong with the Summits. They are one of the best speakers of the whole world. Also, you can take it easy, and later add the center and surrounds...if I were you, that's what I would do...happy listening,
Pura vida,
Roberto.
 

IWalker

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Thanks!

Thanks! That's what I was leaning towards, and I'm better set up to handle just 2 channels right now (in terms of amplification) anyway, so it sounds like it's how I'm going to go. Thanks for taking away some of the uncertainty!
 

Robin

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Summits...

IWalker said:
Thanks! That's what I was leaning towards, and I'm better set up to handle just 2 channels right now (in terms of amplification) anyway, so it sounds like it's how I'm going to go. Thanks for taking away some of the uncertainty!
Ian,

Welcome to the ML Club!

I concur with Roberto... I would choose Your first option #1, the Summits - as you can always continue to add ML speakers as needed later on. Your idea of eventually adding a Stage (center), for HT is excellent. If you require more powered bass beyond the Summits (four 600 watts of umpf), for your ears, you can add a Descent later as well. I am curious what finish tickles your fancy for your Summits? IMHO, I would recommend Bird's Eye Maple or Piano Black (Goes with everything & looks very elegant)... :D

It is good to have you here. :D
 

SteveInNC

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I use my system mostly for 2-channnel audio, with HT as a bonus. To throw a heretical view out there, I don't think that a center is critical for HT purposes - it may be better, but is not critical. All decent HT receivers or prepros will simulate a center by feeding that channel to the R/L mains. Since you're not that interested in multi-channel, you can also get by with pretty cheap rears, since for HT, they're mainly used for effects as opposed to quality audio. If you do eventually upgrade them to high $$, you can move the old ones to the bedroom or kitchen for ambient music.

I run Ascent is with no center, a Depth, and JBL bookshelf speaker surrounds (the horror, the horror...). As said, I consider the HT aspect of this a bonus. I do play some multi-channel SACD/DVDA, and in my experience, the balance is usually weighted towards the mains in most cases, so the mains are the most important speakers.

Summits were not available when I got my Ascents, nor did I have the cash to make that step at the the time. I do now, and having auditioned Summits, in your proposed situation, I'd go for the Summits alone instead of the Vantage/Descent/etc. Your fiancee will not like the look of the Theater, unless you can hide it behind acoustically transparent screening of some sort. It's 43 inches wide and a foot high. You never stated what type of video you're using, so a Theater/Stage may or may not visually fit.

Any store worth the money should let you audition any/all of the above at home, so you and your fiancee can directly experience how the physical and audio aspects of these systems work for your environment.
 
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twich54

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Welcome, first off she is your fiancee not your wife yet !!, don't lose control now, you'll never get it back !! On a more serious note if you really are considering her side of the fence the one thing you didn't tell us is what are the demensions of you listening room ?? if it's 14x20 or larger go with the Summitt's , remember like all di-pole speakers they need room to "breath".
 
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Steve Daigneault

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how big is your room? do you listen to music more or are is this more of a home theatre setup? what are your electronics/amps?
 

socialxray

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I find it best to stay out of other peoples business but I have to agree whole heartedly with what Twich said.
 
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Statman

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Buy all of it now because when you get married you will get vetoed when you want something else in the future! To try and paraphrase, "It is better to ask for forgiveness than permission". ;)
 
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Joey_V

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I would go Summits hands down.. and I have the Vantage for your reference.
 

MarkNewbie

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Ian,

You are getting some great advice and there is an overwhelming consensus to go with the Summits. I concur. You were also given some advice that I whole heartedly agree with and something tells me that you need to read it over and over again. Look at Twich's comments again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and again... ;)

Welcome to the club! :cool:
 

IWalker

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A Consensus!

Wow, thanks for all the responses. I'm feeling really good about the summit option right now :)

My listening room will be far from ideal, and again, I won't have all the flexibility in the world to make it ideal, but it will be of decent size, (it's a townhome that is being built, so I don't know the exact dimensions), and won't have a back to it (the kitchen and family room are attached, in about a 30ft long room) and I will ensure that I give them enough space to "breathe." That's something that I've already let her know up front :)

My philosophy on the whole thing is that I do want to eventually build up to top level stuff, piece by piece, so instead of getting all matching level gear, I want to get "good enough" stuff to fill in the gaps, and then get nice pieces one by one as I can afford them. My pre-amp is going to be an Emotiva LMC-1 once they finish them. A leap of faith, but it's really what I'm looking for in terms of flexibility+ quality at this point. And for the amplification, I got a crown pro amp. Heretical I'm sure, but once again, I've heard great things about it at the price point. I got some pretty decent interconnects/cables as well, so hopefully I have a system that is fairly well matched, and can grow over time into the full potential of the summits.

As for the fiancee thing...we'll be married by the time we close on our new house (preconstruction) and some of the money we're making out of the deal is going towards the speakers...so I'm kind of stuck on the timing :)

As for the finish, I'm letting her have a big say in it...but from the trim browser on ML's site, I like the dark cherry, Bird's Eye Maple, and Wenge, with the aluminum trim. She's vetoed the Bird's Eye Maple already, and I'm thinking that we're both leaning towards the Wenge, since that'll probably be close to the color of the furniture we're looking at. I don't really like piano black all that much...to me, it makes it look more like a speaker and less like a nice piece of furniture.

Thanks again for all the advice. I'm open to all suggestions, and am very hard to offend, so I welcome anything you might have to say.

The electronics choices I've made are based on what I can afford day to day without having to finance anything, as when the date for the big purchase comes, it needs to just be a 1 shot deal for the speakers, or else I'll run into more resistance. (I already tried that route :p) I'd love to have more expensive electronics...but it just won't happen in the short term. Inexpensive alternatives are always welcome, though! (as are unobtrusive room treatments!)
 

Robin

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Women and control...

twich54 said:
Welcome, first off she is your fiancee not your wife yet !!, don't lose control now, you'll never get it back !!
Dave,

Women do not need to be controling. IMHO, It is not a matter of who has control or getting it back, which really seems to be an over simplifiaction / generalization. I think we should more be constructive when considering the female point of view... :)
Ian, should concider all major purchases with his soon to be wife, as it could affect their future family finances. I trust, Ian and his fiancee, will soon cleve to one another as a happy married couple. I hope they can do that with beautiful Summits, if not now then someday soon. The important thing is for this new couple to keep the lines of communication open and come to financial agreements between themselves for their new family... ;)
I wish Ian and his fiancee only the very best with his coming marrage. :)
 
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twich54

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Robin, Just pokin' a little fun !! Hell my wife has multiple masters degree's , art education, do you think I would question her decorating tastes. Besides I've been married 30 plus years and in todays day and age .....Thats saying something !!! And yes youre right, her place in Sainthood is assurd !!
 

Robin

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Ian & Fiancee - Live Long and Prosper...

twich54 said:
Robin, Just pokin' a little fun !! Hell my wife has multiple masters degree's , art education, do you think I would question her decorating tastes. Besides I've been married 30 plus years and in todays day and age .....Thats saying something !!! And yes youre right, her place in Sainthood is assurd !!
Dave,

I knew you were just kidding around... :D Thrity years of marrage that is great! Your wife sounds like a very good women. Plus it seems like she understands your audio needs too... ;)

I'm sure you and I would both wish / hope for Ian and his new wife to have a fantastic marrage for the next thirty years as well and hopefully, comfortably surrounded in ML audio bliss... :D
 

amey01

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I would go the Summits straight out - but it depends on a few things. Do you have the amplification for the extra channels? Do you spend more time listening to movies or music. Don't forget, movies can be almost as entralling with a good front 2-channel set up than with surround sound. And with music, well what can I say - the Summits any day!
 

IWalker

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I've got 2 good solid channels of amplification (lots of power, but it's not an "audiophile brand" amp) so I'd have to get more if I went with something beyond just the summits.

I too hope for 30+ years of marriage. Congratulations on the success in yours :) I'm hoping to convert her into a ML fan as well, but I'd be happy enough if she'll just let me enjoy them in her presence ;)

I wasn't expecting such a unanimous response to the question. This makes the decision easy :)

Any advice on the finish? I'm thinking I'm about 70% decided on the Wenge with aluminum trim, as the dark brown would best match my furniture and is a little more unique than a piano black. I know this is a pure taste question...but I'm just interested...especially if anyone has seen the different finishes in person!
 

Robin

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Beautiful Summits...

IWalker said:
I've got 2 good solid channels of amplification (lots of power, but it's not an "audiophile brand" amp) so I'd have to get more if I went with something beyond just the summits.

I too hope for 30+ years of marriage. Congratulations on the success in yours I'm hoping to convert her into a ML fan as well, but I'd be happy enough if she'll just let me enjoy them in her presence

I wasn't expecting such a unanimous response to the question. This makes the decision easy

Any advice on the finish? I'm thinking I'm about 70% decided on the Wenge with aluminum trim, as the dark brown would best match my furniture and is a little more unique than a piano black. I know this is a pure taste question...but I'm just interested...especially if anyone has seen the different finishes in person!
Ian,

Your fiancee seems like a wonderful women and a nice person. I know her ears will enjoy the beautiful sounds of ML Summit speakers, I do... :D

My Ascent i's and Descent are finished in "Natural Cherry", they look very nice, but my personal favorite is Bird's Eye Maple (BEM), which can be finished darker or in glossy or flat finish, at your request before as you order your Summits, for a nominal cost of course. If you are interested, I would recommend calling ML directly and they can tell you of all of the currently available hard wood options, as well as finishes they can do. Just so you know ML has wonderful customer service. Ask to talk with Jim Powers, he is the best... :D
HTH
 

tonyc

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Welcome to the club Iwalker! I too would go the Summit route. Although you have said your fiancee is not an audiophile per se I would try to figure out her favorite music and make sure she gets to hear it on your new Summits. Wives do like to listen to music they enjoy on a good system, especially if she is included in decisions about which equipment to buy and especially what music is heard. I have found that my wife has better high frequency hearing than I (too many years in Ft Silly, Jokelahoma around artillery) and can spot a bright unmusical component at 100 yards! She has saved me from many stupid buys over our 23 years together and we now have two sweet sounding systems in our home. By the way, let HER pick the finish!
 
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