Spatial Audio X4 official review

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Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #40 on: 3 Aug 2022, 11:24 pm »
This is why I like AudioCircle... We respect each others preferences. Nice to see that I do not need to turn in my Audiophile card because I like Class D and solid state amps. Like others have mentioned tubes are cool as well. I just leave music playing 24/7 so have generally leaned to solid state.


Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #41 on: 13 Aug 2022, 11:51 am »
New Apollon Audio PNC1200s arrived and are running in. If you look back at my prior photos I removed a lot of the room treatments as I tested with and without. Since I prefer a large soundstage that extends beyond the speakers I prefer the X4s without room treatments. The midrange and treble now sounds much more holographic and I gave up little to nothing in the bass since the dipoles don't load the room nearly as much as a box speaker. Behind the curtain is treated and that is a positive improvement in separation.

I used to run a MSB Premier >Pass Xp22 >X250.8 and now just MSB Reference > Apollon PNC1200. All of these changes have resulted in a material improvement in sound and rival anything that I have personally heard. Having been to many hifi shows the conditions are so poor... I am sure there are better systems than mine but show conditions seriously hamstring what those megabuck systems can do.

If you don't hear much from me on this forum there is a reason why :)


Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #42 on: 13 Aug 2022, 11:52 am »

newzooreview

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #43 on: 13 Aug 2022, 02:42 pm »
I used to run a MSB Premier >Pass Xp22 >X250.8 and now just MSB Reference > Apollon PNC1200.

The MSB Reference has the preamp out module? How would you compare MSB direct to X250.8 vs. direct to Apollon?

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #44 on: 13 Aug 2022, 03:08 pm »
Quote
The MSB Reference has the preamp out module? How would you compare MSB direct to X250.8 vs. direct to Apollon?

Yes all MSB DACs have built in volume controls. The Reference and Select II have full analog preamps and I run the Network Renderer using Roon. Keeps everything simple and allows for more budget where I got return on investment vs. spreading on Preamp, streamer, cables, racks, etc.

I will answer your MSB Reference direct to X250.8 vs Apollon PNC1200 in the context of my room, my taste and with the X4. The Apollon has significantly more bass control, dynamics, larger soundstage and is smoother while retaining detail and resolution. I also ran a stereo VTV Purifi with Sparkos pro op amp from another room while I waited for the Apollon monos. It also bested the Pass X250.8 with the X4. The main difference between the Apollon PNC1200 and VTV Purifi is dynamics and resolution. I suspect that the mono version of the VTV Purifi with the Weiss Op Amp would get very close. VTV had me the Purifi amp in 4 days and it took much longer for the Apollon to be custom built and shipped.

Bottom line is that the new Class D amps with the X4 is a win.

I leave my gear on 24/7 link multiple systems in Roon and always have music playing so the added benefit is high efficiency, low heat, etc.


newzooreview

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #45 on: 13 Aug 2022, 03:28 pm »
Thanks. Intriguing.

I currently use a Pass Labs XA25 with my M3 Sapphires and have X4s on order.

VTV seems to offer good customer service. Based in Ohio, it looks like.

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #46 on: 13 Aug 2022, 03:34 pm »
Congrats on the X4 order. They are an amazing speaker. Take the time to set them up for success and you will be rewarded.

I am sure that you and others know I am not knocking Pass as they make great gear. I just prefer the control and dynamics of the new well constructed class D amps. After a certain level this all becomes preferences. Warren at VTV replied to most of my emails same day.

newzooreview

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #47 on: 13 Aug 2022, 04:27 pm »
Thanks. I am very happy with the XA25, and it drives the Sapphires beautifully in my medium-sized room.

A Class-D option with rollable op-amps is interesting, however.

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #48 on: 14 Aug 2022, 01:06 pm »
Quote
A Class-D option with rollable op-amps is interesting, however.

Exactly- Options are a wonderful thing :)

Yesterday I shot a demo video using a quality mic on 6k video. If that turns out good post processing I will try and store the file somewhere since YouTube is not an option. Hopefully the mic captures the soundstage and mind blowing dynamics.

When I read on forums that people are considering some of the larger Spatial Audio models and they are concerned about bass I develop an evil laugh. You haven't actually heard bass until you have these speakers.

There is a trend with today's box speakers to develop this warmish, woolly audiophile bass that is so "pleasing", not sure who thinks that this is pleasing. Maybe in 2022 dynamics and slam are offensive and this is the HiFi equivalent of being politically correct to where instruments can't even speak their mind. Here to say that bass doesn't sound like that. If anyone thinks that a kick drum or a run on a bass guitar is not a visceral event... Step out of your mom's basement and go hear live music.

Those non-offensive speakers might be good for background music but when I press play on my system people tend to shut up and become locked into the event because you are there... wherever there is for you.


morganc

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #49 on: 15 Aug 2022, 12:38 am »
I’m curious how the Apollon stereo 1200 would sound with my X-3’s?  Perhaps the sub amp would make it similar to what you’re getting with the monos? 

By the way Bingenito, what music genres do you most appreciate and listen to?

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #50 on: 15 Aug 2022, 01:19 am »
Quote
I’m curious how the Apollon stereo 1200 would sound with my X-3’s?  Perhaps the sub amp would make it similar to what you’re getting with the monos? 

By the way Bingenito, what music genres do you most appreciate and listen to?

Need is a strong word on audio gear :) but I might recommend the Purifi based amp which has more than enough headroom for the more sensitive X3. Same OpAmp.

I listen to a wide variety of music depending on mood and time of day.
- Jazz
- Latin
- Electronic
- Classic rock
- 90's-2000 hip hop back when the lyrics were funny
- Hard Rock or Metal or even covers of tracks done by other studio bands that are properly recorded... you know with like >5db of dynamic range
- Pretty much everything except country and classical. I tried to like classical but I lack the patience... My personality is like... Get to the point so the quiet passages and long build up just do not appeal to me. Someone feel free to recommend a few tracks to change my mind!

Tyson

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  • Audio - It's all a big fake.
Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #51 on: 15 Aug 2022, 03:09 am »
Mahler symphony 5.  Shostakovich cello concerto 1.  Liszt Hungarian Rhapsodies.  Brahms piano quintet.  All are pretty vigorous.

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #52 on: 15 Aug 2022, 11:12 am »
Thanks Tyson I really appreciate it. It is official I still have no interest in Classical  :lol: Sounds great but the music itself does not appeal to me at all. If I went to a Hifi demo I would not get up and leave because the massive dynamic range is cool but I would never sit in a dark room by myself and play classical. Appreciate you attempting to show me the way.

Tyson

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  • Audio - It's all a big fake.
Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #53 on: 15 Aug 2022, 06:03 pm »
Thanks Tyson I really appreciate it. It is official I still have no interest in Classical  :lol: Sounds great but the music itself does not appeal to me at all. If I went to a Hifi demo I would not get up and leave because the massive dynamic range is cool but I would never sit in a dark room by myself and play classical. Appreciate you attempting to show me the way.

Nothing wrong with knowing yourself :thumb:

ItWasRaskolnikov

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Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #54 on: 24 Sep 2022, 07:24 pm »
Bingenito, regarding the Carbon Special subs you sold, what specifically do you prefer about the sound of the X4s on their own?

I considered a pair of Carbon Specials with my X4s too at one point, although I'm currently leaning towards building a pair of GR Research triple H-frame subs. Neither are a high priority since, as you said, the bass on fully-broken-in X4s is spectacular.

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #55 on: 24 Sep 2022, 09:14 pm »
With the right amps and positioned correctly the X4s in no way need subs. They pound out the hardest hitting bass I have ever had in a hifi system.

The carbon specials added nothing once those 4 beyma 12” were broken in. My advise is avoid subs but if you most have them stick with open baffle subs.

morganc

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #56 on: 24 Sep 2022, 09:38 pm »
Bingenito, regarding the Carbon Special subs you sold, what specifically do you prefer about the sound of the X4s on their own?

I considered a pair of Carbon Specials with my X4s too at one point, although I'm currently leaning towards building a pair of GR Research triple H-frame subs. Neither are a high priority since, as you said, the bass on fully-broken-in X4s is spectacular.

I may add a GR Research Servo sub to my X-3'a but I'm first working on room treatments , speaker placement, etc. I did have dual servos with X-5's in my former home and it was a great pairing.  With my very large listening space I may very well do this again.  2 duals was amazing.  Add in dual triples and boy you're gonna be rocking the neighborhood '!

Bingenito

Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #57 on: 24 Sep 2022, 09:54 pm »
Subs can be lots of fun but also very complex to get right. Time, phase and crossover to the mains is much easier said than done.

Without powerful dsp not sure it is even possible. The sub integration in my HT room is top notch. You have no idea that the subs are there until the source material calls for it and then the house feels like it is about to explode.

Sp33ls

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Re: Spatial Audio X4 official review
« Reply #58 on: 29 Sep 2022, 02:37 am »
I'm very interested what you learn about the pairing of the Pass XA25 & the X4's, newzooreview.

I've built some Pass-Inspires VFET amps which sound amazing, but am generally curious how they may pair up with the X4. Seems like folks are enjoying the X4's with amps that can output 300W+ :0

And, here I am cross-shopping Spatial with other, horn designs, thinking that 30W should be plenty.

The XA25/X4 impressions will be very interesting in this regard.