Joseph Audio RM25XL or Salk Veracity HT2-TL...how do they compare?

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Larkston Zinaspic

I've been considering Joseph or Salk as candidates for a future purchase, possibly. I'll admit that I have not heard either of these speakers yet but hopefully will have an audition sometime in the future.

I was wondering if anyone here had the opportunity to audition speakers from both manufacturers and what their impressions were, comparatively speaking. While I realize that this a Salk-centric Circle, Joseph Audio speakers seem to receive positive reviews as well and I am intrigued by both products based on what I've read here and elsewhere.

I would be interested in any comments or opinions regarding both manufacturers, not necessarily limited to the models indicated in the thread title (those are considerations in my price range). I don't know if I'll get to hear these speakers any time soon so any suggestions about what I might expect or any further recommendations I may be overlooking are greatly appreciated.

fsimms

I heard the $16k JA Pearls at the RMAF.  I told a friend of mine that they sounded as good as my $2150 HT1's.  Joseph heard me and was insensed!  I told him that my speakers have the same midrange as his Pearl's.  He said that the important part was the crossover network.  I didn't tell him that I thought the crossover network in my HT1's was better.  I thought my tweeter was better too! The Pearl's do sound absolutly fabulous.  They deseved the "Best in Show" at the CES a couple of years ago.  But so do mine. aa aa

carusoracer

Very good comparison for two good speaker companies. I would say that if you are interested in the two speakers it would come down to choices of the options in the Salk speaker and customizing versus the palatte of finishes from Joseph.
With that said, I'm not sure about the gear you would be driving them with the HT2 TL has a fairly efficient :icon_lol:. I know it has to be higher than the HT3's. I do not know the rating for the RM25XL

I have heard extensively in a home dealer's showroom with some very good solid state and tube gear driving them, most of the Joseph Audio line up.
IMHO, it would take the new "Pulsar" to match what little I heard of the HT2 TL. It is a (Pulsar) a fanatastic speaker with top rated gear in front of it.
The downside is it is projected to price around $7K and 83db@ 8 ohms, I could be wrong. The HT2 TL with the ribbon tweeter is significantly less money and is a venerable opponent to the Pulsar. I do not think the RM25XL will buy as much speaker for your money as the HT2 TL, but a nice speaker.

The Pearl, IMHO, is quite a speaker. I have listen to it several times with a Top Rated 35K stack in front of it. The dome tweeter is a little fatiguing after extended listen periods, but that is a very nice speaker. I'm sensitive to high frequencies.
I have not heard my HT3's with that set up so I can't compare the two since my gear is 1/3 cost of the full monty stuff the dealer auditions with.

Good luck with your search! Personally I would just give Jim Salk a call. Excellent source,builder, communicator and audiophile :beer:

Jeff B.

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 77
For any given price point the Salk speakers should offer a better value than nearly all other commercial brands. Most other brands - with their dealer network and distribution costs have much more mark-up than Jim's speakers. Even other "buy direct" products do as well. Not only will you get more speaker for your dollar from Jim, but you have the added advantage of custom finishes that are rarely found anywhere else in the audio business. If you remove the cost/value element and simply consider the quality of construction, parts used, and the experience and knowledge that goes into the design - yielding flat response and proper crossover slope and intergration; the Salk speakers are still second to none. This doesn't mean someone may not prefer  a speaker from another company. We all have personal preferences and prefer different speakers for different reasons, and that's fine. However, I do believe that from Jim you will get a product and service that far exceeds the price compared to anything else you will find.

Art_Chicago

I've been considering Joseph or Salk as candidates for a future purchase, possibly. I'll admit that I have not heard either of these speakers yet but hopefully will have an audition sometime in the future.

I was wondering if anyone here had the opportunity to audition speakers from both manufacturers and what their impressions were, comparatively speaking. While I realize that this a Salk-centric Circle, Joseph Audio speakers seem to receive positive reviews as well and I am intrigued by both products based on what I've read here and elsewhere.

I would be interested in any comments or opinions regarding both manufacturers, not necessarily limited to the models indicated in the thread title (those are considerations in my price range). I don't know if I'll get to hear these speakers any time soon so any suggestions about what I might expect or any further recommendations I may be overlooking are greatly appreciated.

How far are you from Chicago suburbs?
There is a store near by http://www.holmaudio.com/ that has Joseph Audio.

I heard Joseph at Holm audio several years ago, do not recall which speakers, but I think they were  2-way 2-driver ones. Nice sound, but I was not shocked like I was by the ST's.
You could always stop at my place to compare them with STs if you ever make it here.



zybar

For any given price point the Salk speakers should offer a better value than nearly all other commercial brands. Most other brands - with their dealer network and distribution costs have much more mark-up than Jim's speakers. Even other "buy direct" products do as well. Not only will you get more speaker for your dollar from Jim, but you have the added advantage of custom finishes that are rarely found anywhere else in the audio business. If you remove the cost/value element and simply consider the quality of construction, parts used, and the experience and knowledge that goes into the design - yielding flat response and proper crossover slope and intergration; the Salk speakers are still second to none. This doesn't mean someone may not prefer  a speaker from another company. We all have personal preferences and prefer different speakers for different reasons, and that's fine. However, I do believe that from Jim you will get a product and service that far exceeds the price compared to anything else you will find.

Jeff,

I agree that it will be very difficult to find a better combination of performance, value, and personalization than what Jim offers across his entire product line.

This isn't just a simple slogan, but it is how I genuinely feel as a current Salk owner (5 ST's) and former owner (HT3's). 

In order for me to "significantly" gain in the area of performance (over the HT3's), I had to take a hit on value.  While I do feel that my current speakers (Vandersteen 5A's) outperform the HT3's, they cost roughly 3x the price of a pair of HT3's, and clearly don't have the same value proposition.

There is also the added bonus of the tremendously friendly and knowledgeable customer service one gets from talking to Jim and Dennis.  I know I am not having the same types of conversations with Richard Vandersteen.   aa

George

Larkston Zinaspic

I heard the $16k JA Pearls at the RMAF.  I told a friend of mine that they sounded as good as my $2150 HT1's....I thought my tweeter was better too!

The Pearl, IMHO, is quite a speaker. I have listen to it several times with a Top Rated 35K stack in front of it. The dome tweeter is a little fatiguing after extended listen periods, but that is a very nice speaker. I'm sensitive to high frequencies.

That is an important consideration for me as well.

How far are you from Chicago suburbs?

You could always stop at my place to compare them with STs if you ever make it here.

That's very gracious of you, although I live in Nassau County, NY. I probably should get out more.  :)

Thanks to all of you for sharing your insights. Looking forward to more commentary. :thumb:

srb

The Salk is much better than the Joseph!
 
Disclaimer:  I have not heard any Salk Sound models nor any Joseph Audio models.
 
I just wanted to jump on the Salk bandwagon, as from all my reading of posts in this circle, the Salk owners are the happiest and most satisified on each and every aspect - design, sound quality, value, appearance/finish, service and feedback.
 
And oh my gosh, did you see the veneer and color matching Jim did when given an actual wood sample?  Scary.
 
Steve

topround

I know this is sacred ground hear, and I don't want to offend anyone out there.
I would like to make one suggestion, having heard most of the speakers you guys are talking about.

Proac.

I don't own them, but will one day.
I heard the D38 a few times and it blew me away, it exceeds in musicality. I really like the Vandy 5A's, but if I had my choice, it would be the Proac D38. It lists at 9k, but these days deals are available I am sure.

The HT3 is a very nice speaker.
But if you want to be moved, emotionally, then Proac, it will seduce you.
You should give them a listen.

Mike

Wind Chaser

I know this is sacred ground hear...
I would like to make one suggestion...
You should give them a listen...

Very good advice.

There is no substitute for hearing something for yourself.  And ideally that should be in your own listening room. 

oneinthepipe

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 1381
  • Trainee
    • Salk Signature Sound/Audio by Van Alstine two-channel system
Yes, for some of us, this is sacred ground.  Salk legend teaches us that there were times when Jim was finishing cabinets outside in a snowstorm with a table saw to get a pair of speakers completed.  Dennis designs speakers without any remuneration.  Jim sells his speakers at the lowest price possible in an effort to bring high end speakers to as many listeners as possible.  These speakers sound better than any speaker at their price and better than speakers at higher prices.  The speakers are custom built in the US with US labor.  Customer service starts the day you contact Jim or Dennis, either on the forum or otherwise, to discuss a speaker.  Customer service never ends.  I hope that Jim and Dennis made it very big someday.  They deserve it.

I have never heard the Proac speakers but don't doubt that they sound very nice. I think that they are made in England.  I like the English.  I have a car built in England and several pairs of speakers that we made in England that I used to listen to before I purchased my Salk speakers.  If I weren't going to support an American business and American workers, I would probably support an English company.  If Proac has a pair of speakers that compares price-wise and sonically with the HT2-TL or HT-3, I will give them a serious listen, as you advised. There must be a dealer in Boston we let me take a couple of pairs of speakers to my house, where I can compare them to my Salk speakers. If not, I would be happy to bring my HT2-TL to a dealer to compare them to other speakers with a maximum price of 3995.00 per pair. Maybe the dealer would want to invite other prospective buyers to listen to his speakers strut their stuff and make a few extra sales. I'll bring some Salk brochures just in case.

I am planning to hear George's Vandy's soon, and if the Proac bests the Vandy, they must be an incredible speaker.  If they aren't appreciably more expensive than the Salk, they must be selling like hotcakes, since they would be one-third the price of the Vandy.

Thank you for the recommendation, topround.

« Last Edit: 2 Jul 2009, 05:46 am by oneinthepipe »

lonewolfny42

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 16918
  • Speakers....What Speakers ?
I've been considering Joseph or Salk as candidates for a future purchase, possibly. I'll admit that I have not heard either of these speakers yet but hopefully will have an audition sometime in the future.


Quote
I live in Nassau County, NY


There are a few members of the N.Y. Audio Rave that own Salk speakers....
.....maybe they will offer an invite.... :wink:

topround

Please don't be offended by my remarks.
No offense was meant.
I have a friend in Staten Island with a killer system, based on the HT3's.

Also I just started posting and did not realize I was in the Salk circle.
Some people stick feverishly to one brand, I am quilty as well of this, but have found happines comes in many different flavors.
Just throwing out another suggestion.
The Proac is expensive, not made in America, I am sure you will not get the customer support of Jim Salk, but they might make you happy.
Vandy 5 A's are awesome speakers, capable of amazing things, they are expensive, maybe the Quattro would work for you. I heard a nice pair in wood that blew me away a few times.

Anyway

Thanks

Rocket

Hi,

How much do Joseph Audio speakers cost?  I have a pair of ht2's and I'm wondering if a speaker from Joseph Audio for a similiar price would provide the same performance?

Jim's customer service is very good.  He was very helpful with my enquiries and I had my speakers sent to Australia and I experienced no problems.  To be totally honest it was probably a bit of pain for him deal with my order because he had to do customs paperwork and I kept bugging him.

I still keep in touch with him and I tell him how much I like the speakers.  Btw they sound at least a level better than my nuforce s9's that retail for $5500US.

Regards

Rod
« Last Edit: 3 Jul 2009, 09:17 am by Rocket »

topround

Rod,
I like dealing with the small manufactureres as well.
You do get great value.
Larger busuness's have the whole dealer network which adds a lot to the cost. But hey, they gotta eat too I guess.
I usually buy used, since I really can't afford most of the stuff I own.

Enjoy

Big Red Machine


How much do Joseph Audio speakers cost?  I have ht2's and I'm wondering if a speaker from Joseph Audio for the same price would sound as good?


Let me twist that just a pinch: What comparable speaker in drivers and layout from each manufacturer would compare best?  Then look at the price and try to rationalize how much more the Joseph may cost because it is in the dealer network and mark-ups are added.  That would essentially be close to what the Salk would cost if Jim sold through a dealer network.  There is the possibility that someone would pay the higher cost if toe-to-toe comparisons revealed that they preferred the Joseph regardless of the price differential.  Just trying to be fair to Joseph speakers since they are sold through dealers it becomes an apples and oranges in the price category.  So you can't select a 2 way from Joseph and compare it to a 3 way, as an example, based on price, otherwise they would not be equipped comparably.

carusoracer

I'm glad the thread is growing for the originator. I did want to help steer his topic back to the original question he posed. Can anyone else talk from firsthand experience regarding the Joseph RM25? It might help with his perspective as that is a model that either he likes or has heard to be a good performer from the Joseph line up :scratch:
What will you be driving the new speakers with?

I think we all can vouch for the quality and experience from the Salk family and their collaborators. As the line from Caddyshack goes, "Top Notch!"

Nuance

I know this is sacred ground hear, and I don't want to offend anyone out there.
I would like to make one suggestion, having heard most of the speakers you guys are talking about.

Proac.

I don't own them, but will one day.
I heard the D38 a few times and it blew me away, it exceeds in musicality. I really like the Vandy 5A's, but if I had my choice, it would be the Proac D38. It lists at 9k, but these days deals are available I am sure.

The HT3 is a very nice speaker.
But if you want to be moved, emotionally, then Proac, it will seduce you.
You should give them a listen.

Mike
I've listened to plenty of Proac.  For the price, I've heard better, but they are pretty decent.  The place in downtown Milwaukee that carries Vandersteen also carries Proac, so I got to directly compare the two.  For me, Vandersteen came out on top every time (as far as sound quality goes), as the Proac's always had too much treble energy (fatiguing).  The Proac's look better, of course.  And since I like Salk better than Vandersteen (other than the 5A's...though to be fair, I've not heard anything in the Salk line above the HT2 TL's (bet the HT4's are very competitive with the 5A's)), well, I think you can guess where I stand.  :)

I've never heard Joseph's stuff, but I've always wanted to because I have heard good things. 

Best wishes to you in your search.  Salk is a winner in my book - no question.  :)

mr_bill

I corresponded with someone the other day that sold his Revel Studios and went to a pair of Joseph Audio Pulsars and it sounds like the Pulsars are really good.

Larkston Zinaspic

Just wanted to say thanks for the 'outside' recommendations for Vandersteen and ProAc. Even if I'm unable to afford them right now I'd like to hear them in the future to see what my options are further up the ladder.

The national sales manager for Joseph Audio informed me that there is one dealer in Levittown, NY and I'm going to see if I can make an arrangement to hear the RM25's there.


Straight off the bat it appears the Salks are the better value. My wife happens to like the HT2-TLs in curly walnut, and so do I. I'd just like to hear these speakers first before plunking down any cash, and hopefully invest my money more wisely in the end.

I was unaware of this at the beginning, but I think it's important to mention that there is a $400 discrepancy between the RM25XL's and the HT2-TL's, with the Joseph's being the pricier model of the two.
« Last Edit: 4 Jul 2009, 01:28 pm by Larkston Zinaspic »