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Man in the Box

New to Klipsch! Love my RP-160s but disappointed with performance of classical music. What to buy next?

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On 7/17/2019 at 10:02 AM, Man in the Box said:


At the moment the speakers are about 6 feet apart. They’re positioned slightly off center and slightly diagonally (with one speaker a bit farther from the wall compared to the other). I’m still experimenting with their position. 


Did you add any acoustic panels or anything of the sort to your listening room? Mine is also my bedroom, and I feel that bass traps are a bit of an eyesore for my personal living space. But there’s certainly unwelcome reverb in my room that I can do without. It’s most pronounced when I play high frequency notes on my piano (also in my bedroom) at forte or fortissimo. I imagine the speakers would sound better if room surfaces are somewhat treated. 


It’s good to know that I can get away with one rear speaker for 5.1 classical music. I’ll try it after I add the next pair of speakers (probably the 280s/ 8000) — before I add the central speaker as the system’s final piece, as has been suggested to me in this thread. 


With the main speakers only 6 feet apart in a 13ft x 13ft room, I think a 2.1 (stereo plus subwoofer) system would work great.  (All Blu-ray recordings have two audio tracks:  stereo and 5.1.  Each time you play a Blu-ray recording you choose which audio track to play via a Blu-ray menu selection.)    If at some point your budget allows you to upgrade to 5.1 you probably won't regret it.  There are many surround-sound classical recordings on SACD and Blu-ray.


FWIW, I put art on my walls, not acoustic panels.   Of course, it's highly personal what you choose to put on your walls.  I have hardwood floors, and use oriental rugs.  You said that you have ceramic floors with rugs.   I suggest covering as much of the ceramic tile with rugs as possible.  Draperies over the windows can also help tame live acoustics.   You can use your receiver's tone controls to tailor the sound (e.g., if you need to tame the high frequencies a bit).


I suggest living with the RP-8000F (or RP-280F) for a while before adding more speakers.  Because the most important thing is the music, and recording quality is extremely important (garbage-in/garbage-out), I suggest getting a universal player and start investing in Blu-ray audio/video classical recordings.   (Am I correct in assuming that you have an HDTV?)    I suggested in an earlier post Blu-ray box sets of all symphonies by Beethoven, Sibelius, and Tchaikovsky.  I also have Blu-ray box sets of all symphonies by Brahms , Bruckner, Schumann, and  Mahler.  Plus Blu-ray recordings of other classical concerts, opera, and ballet.   Once you get a good quality hi-fi system that is suitable for your room, IME the best investment you can make is in quality recordings of the music you love.  I can suggest more Blu-ray recordings (including opera and ballet) if you'd like.  (Do you participate in a classical music discussion forum, such as talkclassical?)  


Later, if you want to get a step closer to the illusion that you're in the symphony hall, I think the next priority would be a subwoofer.  I'd get the biggest one your budget and space allow (while being respectful of your neighbors' right to peace and quiet).   


If after living with a 2.1 system for a while you find yourself wanting to take another step towards recreating the concert hall experience, then upgrade to surround-sound.


That my 2 cents.  Hope it helps.


Please keep us posted.

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