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Seriously considering getting in at the last moment on this drop. I have a bit of an interesting setup as I have an open studio in NYC (60'x20') that narrows to 12' wide for ~40' of the center of the apartment.
I have a "living room" set up in the middle with a wall-mounted LCD and flanking Pioneer SP-22 speakers on stands and driven by a Onkyo TX-507 (I think). They have a very narrow sweet spot and my fianceé and I often have trouble with dynamics while watching TV. This makes the "home theater" 12' x 12' with a speaker distance of ~10ft but with completely open sides to the rest of the apartment.
1) Any idea if these would be powerful enough for couch-based apartment-friendly home theater?
2) It seems like these would be a serious step up in terms of sound quality from the Andrew Jones SP-22s I have right now... is that a fair assumption to make?
Thanks in advance for any responses... would like to jump in on this drop if it'd be a good fit!
You're sitting along the long side of your apartment, facing your TV/speakers that are ~10-12 feet away, correct? In the middle of the strange tapered rectangle? So you have something like 25-30 feet on either side of you? Sounds similar to an apartment a friend of mine had.
I have the Arx A3rx-c and while they definitely have a sweet spot with optimal imaging, it's nothing like my buddy's Martin Logans which have about an 8-12" pinpoint center for imaging. I'd say from the exact center point of the Arx, you still have decent imaging/soundstage around 2 feet to the left or right. Any more than that and you're obviously going to have the left or right dominate the opposite direction of sound, but that's going to happen with all speakers. As long as your tweeters are roughly ear height and you don't angle the speakers inward too far, you should be okay on the "sweet spot".
As far as power goes, these will more than fill your apartment with sound, provided you give them enough power. Jon could give you better numbers, but I'd say even 50-60W should make these loud enough without clipping. At 10-12ft, you won't need that much volume anyway.
I think the signature of the Arx line is definitely on the more neutral side of things, maybe even on the ever so slightly warm side of neutral. From what I understand, the Andrew Jones Pioneer line is a little more treble forward, so the signature of the sound will likely be the most obvious change -- but I could be completely wrong since I've never heard the Andrew Jones. I noticed more detail in the A3rx-c compared to my Polk Monitor70 even though the Polks are definitely brighter. The sound is more laid back with the Arx so sometimes I find myself straining to listen for certain details in songs when I can hear them clearly on my other systems (car & desk audio) which have speakers geared toward brighter sound signatures. This also makes the Arx less fatiguing to listen to overall. Keep in mind I have the A3rx-c, but I believe the tweeters are the same in the A1rx-c.
I will say that Jon & company over at Chane definitely know what they're doing, and Jon was extremely helpful and talked me through the strengths and details of the entire Arx lineup when I was choosing mine. They certainly make high quality products. It ends up coming down to whether you like the sound or not, and you'll only know once you try.
I'd say go for it. :)
I looked up your Pioneer SP-22 speakers. Compared to them, these Chanes:
Have the same efficiency (85 dB) so they should play equally loud, except...
They have a higher impedance (8 ohms vs. 6) which is actually better for the amp. Might perform better/play louder due to this, even at the same efficiency.
Their quoted frequency response is the same, but Pioneer doesn't qualify theirs so it's possible the A1rx-c may well perform better in the lower octaves.
Dynamics are harder to quantify, because this is more of an impulse response thing rather than raw frequency response. To really measure this you need an anechoic chamber. However, generally speaking planar designs wipe the floor with their conventional cousins in this category, so I would venture the A1rx-c would be superior here.