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Pro vs Heritage


tomy2
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I’m anxiously and excitedly awaiting a pair of 396’s I ordered from Cory at MetropolisLakeOutfitters and to help pass the time I thought maybe creating a topic here would be fun. I had heard a pair of Heresy III’s not too long ago and was smitten by the Klipsch sound and was thinking real hard about going ahead and getting a pair myself but was intrigued about the Forte III and it’s new midhorn so pretty much had my heart set on getting a pair. As I was waiting to save money for the purchase ( just recently got a new car but I’m more excited to get new Klipsch speakers) I was reading I think about the Cornwall’s here in one of the threads and was surprised to see the glowing comments about the Pro series speakers and it made me second guess my desire to get the Forte’s. I had never read any reviews or comments about Klipsch’s Pro series speakers until that thread so I started digging some more and was hard pressed to find any negative thoughts or impressions about the Pro speakers whereas it was easy to find debates amongst the various Heritage line of speakers. 

 

So im not looking for a flame war here between the two (although I can’t promise anything) but just more thoughts and insight between these two lines of speakers from Klipsch and what or why one is preferred over the other and what went into those decisions. If you have any experience with both the Pro/Heritage models and would like to share your thoughts please do so. If you want to ask questions about anything please do so. Hopefully this can be a nice and constructive thread to give those who are considering either line of speakers a chance to digest some good feedback.

Edited by tomy2
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justrecently got a new car but I’m more excited to get new Klipsch speakers) 

 

Your mind is in the right place.   You can't go wrong with that mindset.  

 

So im not looking for a flame war here between the two (although I can’t promise anything) 

 

Haha thia is where at least one member will surely chime in with someone eating popcorn GIF. 

 

MY thoughts you know since we have been discussing via PM.  I have owned all models in heritage and after buying 396s blindly myself, it was the right purchase for me.  Effortless and dynamic at any volume level due to larger compression and heavy duty drivers are what I love the most.   They are just as detailed as the other heritage odels, just with serious balls and capabilities.   If you like to jam out even occasionally, they amaze as the loud knob increases.   

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1 hour ago, tomy2 said:

So I'm not looking for a flame war here between the two...but just more thoughts and insight between these two lines of speakers from Klipsch and what or why one is preferred over the other and what went into those decisions. If you have any experience with both the Pro/Heritage models and would like to share your thoughts please do so.

What MikeTN says is correct--with the understanding that there are actually options available for the compression drivers that you see on some models--that cost a lot more to the cinema owners.  Sound quality is paramount for cinema...movie theaters.  If the loudspeakers were only for PA duty, the sound quality could be much lower if lowest cost were the controlling factor, but with cinema loudspeakers, i.e., the KPT-396s that you have bought were designed to be surround loudspeakers for cinemas where the sound quality is more important.

 

So is the acoustic coverage requirements, which typically are even more stressing than for home hi-fi loudspeakers.  A lot of people I think miss this point.  Loudspeakers having the best controlled directivity will actually sound the best in home hi-fi rooms.  That is perhaps the most obvious reason that I see that pushes the sound quality of the Klipsch Professional loudspeakers over the top for hi-fi duty.  When the Klipsch Heritage loudspeakers were designed originally (by PWK himself), the acoustic coverage requirements for home hi-fi and even cinema were not recognized.  Today's Klipsch Profession models meet the requirements of THX and other quality standards in terms of minimum performance for cinema duty, and those requirements are much more stressing than home hi-fi loudspeakers are built to.

 

I've owned a pair of two-way Jubilees for 11 years now (as MikeTN has had his for 12 years), and I can say that I've actually learned a lot from Roy D. on the sound of different controlled directivities, and I can also say that this is most challenging and most important area for loudspeaker design.  Frequency response can be EQed flat, but controlled coverage cannot be. You get what was designed into the loudspeaker in terms of coverage performance.  That's the real difference, in my experience.

 

Chris

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Thanks guys for the responses. The 396’s will be my first controlled directivity set of speakers so I’m curious to see how they work and like that they are a two way design so as not to be limited by placement. I’ve heard from a couple people that they are possibly the next best speaker from Klipsch next to the Jubilee so I wonder why there’s not more talk about them or in general more discussion about the Pro series. Maybe there has been and I’m just new to it all. 

 

The purpose of the 396’s I got coming are strictly for two channel music as I have not had much of a home theatre setup for several years now. Makes me wonder if Klipsch offered a “home” version of some of its Pro speakers how that might change who the audience is. Meaning if they gave you the choice of walnut/cherry veneered or painted finishes for something like the 396. Reading from reports of the RMAF show it didn’t sound like Klipsch had any Pro speakers on display, if they did I didn’t see or hear about it but certainly heard good things about the Forte’s and LaScalas.

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The 396s are available in raw birch.   Veneer ing would be up to you. Perhaps they would even veneer for you (very costly in sure if they would).  I thought strongly baotu raw birch and finishing them up locally somehow.   I skipped the hassle and don't regret it.   I only use them for two channel music and seldom TV as well.   They excel with whatever they are fed.   They sound great with anything I have played through them thus far.  I too am somewhat curious why there isn't more enthusiasm for them in comparison to jubes. Certainly, many don't have the budget and room required for a pair of those monsters.   If I did, that might have been my purchase after auditioning in the dedicated Jube owners thread.   

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I do have some ideas of either veneering or painting the 396’s myself as a fun project down the road. 

 

Duke Lejeune of Audiokinesis makes some nice controlled directivity speakers that I think Klipsch could mimic for the 396.

 

 

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I’m guessing Klipsch has no interest in tapping into the market of people who want the best possible sound and have it look good too but I know there are those who would pay for it.

 

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1 minute ago, tomy2 said:

I do have some ideas of either veneering or painting the 396’s myself as a fun project down the road. 

 

Duke Lejeune of Audiokinesis makes some nice controlled directivity speakers that I think Klipsch could mimic for the 396.

 

 

53424458-259A-49B3-BEFD-A29C655A6FD9.jpeg.593d6a08aaa5be2ec0c597f09f9b1424.jpeg

 

 

 

I’m guessing Klipsch has no interest in tapping into the market of people who want the best possible sound and have it look good too but I know there are those who would pay for it.

 

I am just going out on a limb here, but people willing to purchase and pay the kind of coin for klipsch Pro gear (the target audio, not the klipsch forum nuts) will not want or pay extra for veneered options that will be going into a blacked out theater or high end bar of some sort.  Birch raw at least gives the option of customization.  

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5 minutes ago, Westcoastdrums said:

I am just going out on a limb here, but people willing to purchase and pay the kind of coin for klipsch Pro gear (the target audio, not the klipsch forum nuts) will not want or pay extra for veneered options that will be going into a blacked out theater or high end bar of some sort.  Birch raw at least gives the option of customization.  

 

True, which is why I thought for those who would want them for two channel in a listening room of some sort could have the best of both worlds. I’m always on the side of great sound comes first and then aesthetics second but there are those who have to have both. If Cory didn’t have such a good price on black 396’s of limited stock I probably would have waited to get the birch.

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10 minutes ago, jimjimbo said:

Wha?  I take it that you have never seen nor heard Khorns or La Scala II?

 

I have not but would love to sometime. Part of the reason of starting this thread was hearing from a few Klipsch owners who said the Pro gear is hands down better than most if not all the Heritage line stuff so I thought if Klipsch would entertain the thought of making an option for the Pro gear to have some nice veneer or paint they could satisfy those who want both looks and performance. But.....I’m sure there’s got to be some who think the Heritage line is just as good as the Pro, I just haven’t come across them yet.

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9 minutes ago, Westcoastdrums said:

 

If you think they sound awful after you get them, I am very sorry to have recommended them and also VERY curious on the matter.   

 

‘You weren’t the only one to recommend them. I chatted with about 5 owners who happened to use them for two channel music only and all of them gave the 396’s the highest praise and recommendation. 

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  I am getting old. The looks of equipment does matter today. Even in “my” listening area. My wife hated a pair of B&W 801 S2, has never commented on the La Scala ii sitting in the same spot. The LS are maybe 50% larger and almost cubes. Think it is the all wood. No black. 

  At my listening levels the Pro series does not offer much over the Heritage. Loud is maybe low 90’s. If I still cranked it up that might be different. 

  And I like three ways better than two ways. Played with and carried too many A7’s and other big two ways to love them anymore. 

  So one vote for Heritage.

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3 minutes ago, tomy2 said:

 

‘You weren’t the only one to recommend them. I chatted with about 5 owners who happened to use them for two channel music only and all of them gave the 396’s the highest praise and recommendation. 

I am glad to hear that and would be curious as to what they had to say.  A quick search of the forums here and I didn't turn up with much before buying them blind and deaf.   

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