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whats more important?


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I would say the speakers. After all, the speakers is what ultmatly produces the sound in your system. Also, if you get a good set of speakers, they will last you a long time, as evidenced by folks that have Heritage and even KG series speakers on here for many many years (10-20plus years). The reciever is more likely to be upgraded due to changing technology and so forth.

This can be mitigated somewhat with seperates. If you get some very good amps that matches well with your speakers, giving you the sound you like, you could keep the amps for as long as, if not longer, than the speakers. Only the pre/pro would need to be upgraded to take advantage of the newer sound formats and technology, and that may be possible just with a software upgrade. Modern pre/pros are really nothing more than specialized computers.

For example, I have my current system because my old Yamaha RV-702 reciever could not do Dolby Digital. Shortly after getting the Denon AVR3802, I decided I wanted much better speakers. Now, I plan on keeping the Reference 7 speakers for along time - perhaps the rest of my life, but in a few years, I'll most likely replace the Denon with new electronics. Beside the TV, my next upgrade is going to find some really nice amps for my speakers and use the Denon as a "poor-mans" pre/pro. The Denon will then get upgraded when it becomes obsolete.

The Denon may just be used as part of a two-channel setup with a pair of LaScalas or K-horns that I also plan on getting.

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It's all about the speakers!!!

My belief is that you should find the speakers that you like, then find appropriate amplification and electronics to drive them. While some speakers are more particular about which amps make them sound best, I feel that there is no one single purchase in audio that affects the sound of your system than the speakers do. Want a quick system upgrade? Upgrade the speakers.

Sure, the amps, preamps, and sources matter, but not to the degree that the speakers do. Hook your Bose up to your favorite Krell/Mark Levinson/McIntosh/other very high end system of your choice, then hook those same electronics up to Klipsch/other good speakers, and you will discover what I mean.

If you choose the speakers that make you happy, odds are you will be more happy with the system as a whole. If you get the speakers right, everything else is tweaks/system matching, IMO.

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Speakers, Speakers, Speakers!

The amp will only sound as good as the speakers that are reproducing what it puts out. You could have the best amp in the world and still not get good sound if the speakers aren't doing their job.

Thus you shall buy all Klipsch, Hertage line preferably.

Noting that Klipsch speakers could make an amp sound worse, but only because it is more accurately reproducing a tainted signal that is being fed to them.


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Just another slant on the same topic

Let us apply Logic and Economics Here....

The electronics that you bought last year for $1000 are now worth $500 or less and in another year....OUCH.

On the other hand ...quality speakers...keep their value. So In my mind Speakers are the important factor....Electronics these days....Literally just a bunch of sand....

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SPEAKERS,anyone here with even modest audio knowledge will tell you this.Its not rocket science after all speakers are the final link.

Take a $99 Antique Soundlabs tube cheapo monoblock(the lowest of the low tube gear) with K-Horns or Avangarde horns and listen...ah great sound.

Now take a $14000 Krell FPB600 and use B0$e AcousticMess DirectDistorting speaker set with their spiffy muddy band pass tubey sub.Oh LORD make me lose hearing for a moment,AH NOOOOOO.

Speakers are THE component...in ANY system.

I would say the room ranks up there with the speakers ,at second place.Great room acoustics plus great speakers is a solid footstep towards audio nirvana.

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Here is the order:

Speakers, then source, then everything in between.

Speakers are what you are actually hearing, so they are the most important.

Source is second, because well its the source and it needs to be as good as it can get.

Amps, preamps, speaker cable etc etc. all fall below the oter two.


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Good call Jmal. That is exactly why I get a little PO'd when some get so uptight on the subject of Amp selection. Amp's are definitlely something to think about and everyone has their own taste but they wont make or break a system the way the speakers do unless of course the amp is pure sh1t. Plus the amp is tweakable if you need to cut or boost, not so with speakers your stuck with what you got.

Hell once there was a time when I played my Heresey's through this little Realistic reciever I bought when I was like 11. They sounded great, they lost a little punch after volume got up aways but hey it's the speakers. A good analogy for the Heresey's is they are 10lbs of sand in a 5lb bag.

Beating a dead horse,


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that is a catch 22, of course speakers are the ultimate, it is where your sound comes from, but 1 without the other is? if you have best speakers, and mediocre reeciever than you only output mediocre, and visa versa. you do build your system around your speakers, but there is the key, build baby, build.12.gif

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Gotta disagree there.

Good speakers + Mediocore Amp does not equal mediocore system.

As Ear said a good set of klipsch will soud great even with a medicore amp.


Here are my feelings on setups from good to bad with 99.9% being the best and 0% being the worst. You hit 90% just by starting with Klipsch speakers.

<80.0% 90% of non-Klipsch speakers with any amps/system setup.

90.0% Klisch speakers with a $100 SS amp

95.0% Klisch speakers with a $200 SS (80-100wpc) Big jump just becuse of increased clean power.

97.0% Use quality Interconnects and Speaker Wire.

98.0% Upgrade your receiver to $500-$1000 dollar range (Amps w/100-130 rms WPC @ 8ohms w/ lower distortion ratios.

98.5% Use receiver in +$1000 Range (Little bit of grey area here because there are alot of receivers out there in the 600+ range that will sound great.)

99.0% Upgrade Source components to Top Of the Line

99.5% Super Expensive Amplifier +$3000. All separates, preamps, amps, etc. Top of the line stuff.

>99.5% All the other little stuff that we are always talking about on the BB to make our systems sound better.

Obviously this is a rather simplistic breakdown that leaves out alot of different scenarios but the point is that we tend to mull over little things that we can do to our systems that really aren't going make a huge difference in the whole grand scheme of things. On top of that we give advise to newbies to get this and that and tell guys that there system aint sh1t because they have whatever amp, etc. I am not being brand specific in my list with the exception of the speakers which ARE the foundation of the system.

I am pretty happy being in the 98.5% to 99.0% brackets. IMO If you have a good set of Klipsch, and a +$1000 reciever w/ good speaker wire and interconnects you are not ging to notice a whole lot of improvement from anything you will do. I mean you can notice improvement but you are already at like 98%to 98.9% of pure audio bliss.

You will spend alot of money to get to 99% and above and it will cost you. Those moneys you spend getting above the 99% will not give you near the bang for your buck that that you have spent up to that point.

Don't think you don't have a killer system just because you don't have the best of everything. For HT, Five Heresy's with a decent amp and sub will blow 99% of the systems out there away as far as sound quality goes. Hell a pair of hereseys and a sub will blow away any setup you will ever find in a Circuit City or Best Buy and you can even power them up with their KLH receiver.

Anyone entering this website should be forewarned that they are entering a site of sound junkies seeking audio perfection and to take our comments with a grain of salt. We are just so used to having the most awesome sounding systems we forget that to many alot of what we want or feel we need is really overkill or unattainable due to budget constriants. Continous audio improvemet is a sickness and I will be the first to admit that I am stricken with the disease.

Also want to comment to some of those who say Heritage have to many high's(annoying) unless ran through a tube amp. Since the Heresey was introduced it has probably been used in more mixing studios for final mixdowns ran with SS amps than any other single speaker. Why? Because of it's compactness and flat response. So it's not the speakers, it's you and your taste.

I consider myself a realist who likes to cut thoruogh all of the crap and hype. I mean I still use zip cord for speaker wire, no worries mate.


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Here is my two cents.

Good speakers can still sound good with a mediocre amp.

My dad has a pair of jbl 4311 studio monitors he got back in the early seventies.

Over the years we have gone through(but not thrown out) a number of different amps.

When I started listening to music when I was little(early eighties) I think we had a JVC ss receiver that put out about 35 watts. The JVC has since stopped functioning on one side but the preamp section still works. Somewhere around 1990 we got a Technics receiver that put out 55wpc stereo, we didn't have a TV at that point so HT was out of the question. The technics amp turned out to be a real piece of junk, it was pretty noisy with a good bit of added hiss14.gif

Mid nineties we got a sony receiver that sounds pretty good for the money, but boy does it run hot.

When the sony has to go in for repairs, which it does on occasion7.gif my dad pulls out his Dynaco 70 and hooks it up using the old JVC as the preamp. You are propably wondering why he doesn't use the Dynaco all of the time, well it has some issues that must be fixed before it can be pressed into active duty(new tubes and I think I recall him saying something about filter caps).

My point being, all along we've had decent sound because of the good speakers.

When it came time for me to buy some thing to power my jbl L46s(two way speaker, 8" woofer,3/4" direct radiating tweeter) I resisted peer pressure saying bigger is better and went with a Yamaha that puts out a measly2.gif 75wpc. For the amount of money I had to spend it had pretty good Thd specs, as well as having all that DD5.1 DTS junk we like so much.

Well I think good speakers deserve a good amp, but can still be enjoyed with a mediocre one.

btw, my dad still uses zip cord and not "real" speaker wire3.gif

Peace, Josh

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A now for a somewhat contrary viewpoint...

Broadly speaking, the speaker will have the greatest impact on the sound of a system. You can spend as much money as you want on *EVERYTHING* else, and if your speakers don't sound the way you want your system to sound, you are not going to be happy. Likewise, if your speakers sound the way you want your system to sound, then you're going to get sound you'll be at least somewhat happy with no matter *WHAT* you drive them with.

* H O W E V E R *

Within any given speaker line, assuming that the various models in the line are voiced similarly and have similar performance characteristics, and vary in more subtle ways, such as slighty better extension at the frequency extremes, or better off-axis control, or more sophisticated cabinet / crossover construction which reduces some abberations, and assuming that you're willing to continue to read a sentence from someone who obviously has no idea how to write concisely and clearly, you might well find that spending more money on the amplifier will provide a more significant improvement in sound that spending the same amount of money moving up the line in the speaker chain.

Ears - which do YOU think would sound better - a Dynaudio Confidence C2 driven by a really good amp (Krell, Halcro, Moon, Wytech, whatever), or a Dynaucio Confidence C4 driven by, say, an Adcom or similar? A JMLab Mezzo Utopia driven by a LAMM, or a JMLab Utopia driven by a Denon? A Klipsch RF-5 driven by a Linn Klimax, or a RF-7 driven by a Rotel?

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