Reviews of Attainable Hi-Fi & Home-Theater Equipment


Reviews of Attainable Hi-Fi & Home-Theater Equipment

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To Hans Wetzel,

I just bought a Hegel Music Systems H360 integrated amplifier-DAC, which for the time being will be connected to an Arcam CD37 (doing transport duties) via a Nordost coaxial cable. I understand that you own a Hegel H300, which may be an H360 by now. Here’s the question: I’m looking for speakers to pair to this and before I go on an extended search, I thought I’d ask you about possible matches. I’ve got the following list so far: Revel Performa3 F206 and F208, Focal Aria 936 and 948, Dynaudio Focus 340, and at a higher price (at least here in Canada), the Aerial Acoustics 6T. Any of these strike you as having any particular synergy with the Hegel? Any other recommendations at a comparable price point? Thanks for your time.

Laurence
Canada

As you suggest, I have made the jump from the H300 to the H360, so I am going on greater than three years with a Hegel product as my reference amplifier. During that time, I have partnered the Hegel amps with a wide variety of speakers. Given the H360’s output of 250Wpc into 8 ohms, and substantial power supplies, I think the number of speakers that wouldn’t work well are few.

That said, I believe you have compiled a great list here. The Revel Performa3s, for instance, are superb, and a couple of our writers use the F206es as their reference loudspeakers. I haven't heard the Dynaudios or Focals that you reference, but other SoundStage! writers have reviewed products from the Focus and Aria ranges, respectively, and Reviewers’ Choice awards were bestowed on each of them. Aerial Acoustics also has a very good reputation. 

I do have several suggestions to add to your list, however. GoldenEar Technology’s Triton One is a monster of a loudspeaker for the money, and truly full-range, if you can get past its somewhat pedestrian appearance. KEF’s R700 and R900 offer the top-to-bottom neutrality and high performance akin to Revel’s Performa3 line, via a slightly different approach and design aesthetic. Finally, Monitor Audio’s Gold 300 and Paradigm's Reference Prestige 85F and 95F are all solid options from two companies with decades of experience between them.

The takeaway is that you have many options in the price range that you are looking at, and each of them is excellent in their own way. Try and listen to as many of these as you can and trust your ears. I assure you, there is no wrong choice here. . . . Hans Wetzel