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Forward sound at low volume


harman
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Hello, folks! No experience here with Klipsch, only East Coast acoustic suspension. Looking for more presence at low volumes. Not muffled. Please recommend a Klipsch speaker that might meet those conditions. Budget $500; 20 WPC harman/kardon solid state integrated. Thanks to all.

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Welcome to the forum, I think you will find just about any Klipsch will scratch that itch. Some will just leave a bigger smile on your face.

 

500 bucks should get you a pair of used Heresys, the gateway drug to Klipsch.

 

If you are really lucky you might find a pair of Tangent 400/500/4000 or even 5000 for less money.

 

Keep your eyes on the for sale ads in your area and chime in with whatever you find. Lots of experience on here.

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Horns tend to be "forward."  If you can find a pair of Klipsch with the mids and highs horn loaded, that is a good bet.  Listening highly recommended.

 

You may be familiar with the equal loudness curves; they specify the amount of compensation needed at various frequencies at various volumes for the system to sound "flat" or natural (rather than thin and muffled) -- the way it would at concert volume.  Some "loudness controls" will provide this compensation, but beware the ones that don't provide treble compensation, as well as correction in the bass.  If you have tone controls, you can do something like this by hand.  Try turning up the treble a bit for low volume listening.  The bass attenuation at low volume (as perceived by us) is well known, but the treble suffers also.  See the curve at 60 dB (low  level listening).  For the treble to sound as "there" at 10K as it does at 1K, the 10K signal needs to be boosted by about 12 dB. Equal-loudness contour - Wikipedia

There is little agreement on where the so-called "presence" range is, but I place it between about 3K Hz and 10K Hz, where at 60 dB, the needed compensation is nearly "all uphill."
 

A similar boost in the bass is needed at about 100 Hz.  As @billybob said a "loudness" button or control may help, provided it gives you the treble boost as well as the bass boost -- most do, but some don't.  See your manual.

 

I used to have a 12 dB treble boost switch on my old Centralab loudness control, when I was 14.  It was just right for late night parent mandated low level listening.  That, along with the standard bass boost provided by the loudness control, worked well.

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Also take a listen to Klipsch RP600M. Should sound a little more "balanced" than an older model used Heresy. The Heresy will definitely kick *** better but it will also be more "in your face" and not as refined as the current version.

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On 8/11/2021 at 12:05 PM, harman said:

Hello, folks! No experience here with Klipsch, only East Coast acoustic suspension. Looking for more presence at low volumes. Not muffled. Please recommend a Klipsch speaker that might meet those conditions. Budget $500; 20 WPC harman/kardon solid state integrated. Thanks to all.

Forte II with Crites upgrades, maybe?  Not sure if cost used where you are. 

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