"The Emperor's New Clothes" or don't trust all the hype.
Reseñado en los Estados Unidos el 10 de enero de 2020
Although the ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 Bookshelf Speakers have received fanatical praise in the media, I shall be a dissenting voice. In theory, they should sound great. In actual experience, while not dreadful they really are horrible reproducing voice, and even orchestral music (for example Holst: The Planets/R.Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra [CD/Blu-Ray Audio Combo] of the Boston Symphony conducted by William Steinberg).
Gary V 3.0 in his review wrote, "Voices sound like people are holding a cardboard tube between them and the microphone" and he's right. I get no sense of depth, detail, air, and emotional power, since it's so artificial.
If you're on a budget, find a pair of Dynaco A10s in good condition on eBay; they can be equalized for greater highs (I use an Emotiva UMC-200) and drop in replacement tweeters with extended highs are available from Madisound. They sell a Vifva tweeter, which like the Elac is made in China (see my review) but it sounds far better than the Elac's, although on paper its specs aren't as "good" as the brochure description.
If you have the money, consider purchasing the SEAS A26 (only in an easy to assemble kit form, just screw in parts), the 21st century successor to the million unit selling classic Dyanco A25. Madisound has it but doesn't sell it through their Amazon storefront but through their site. Also, consider Human Speakers (not an Amazon vendor) that is the 21st century upgrade of the Consumer Reports top rated and also a cult classic EPI line. While there are kits, the Model 81 and 61 (with a 6 inch woofer) are worth considering and although more expensive, they're custom crafted.
Specs and brochure are nice; but 35KHZ (while Red Book CD maxes out at 20KHZ) is just hype.
I discussed the Elac with a prominent, highly respected (and very nice people!) high end audiophile firm that sells this it with an affordable electronics product they manufacture; the Sale's Rep who answered the phone said, "They're only so much you can do [in 21st century depreciated dollars] at this price point" and my observation that the Elac is mediocre is correct; they'll be building their own speaker but it will be priced around $1,000/pair.
So, Caveat Emptor; you get what you pay for. Be wary of too much hype. They're not a total loss; they're OK for height speakers using Dolby Prologic IIZ on my Emotiva to stream Amazon Prime mind candy spectaculars. So I guess Jack Ryan won't sound badly on these when it comes to height effects; the music. however, no, not so much.
What's wonderful if you buy from Amazon, like I did, you can return them if you don't like them. This is why I love Amazon!
If these are the best that's out there--at least they're not bright--think of it this way. Boeing built the 747 using slide rules; it was just about a perfect machine. Then with state of the art computer tech, they created this century the 737 Max; just look at the engines, how grotesquely out of proportion they are. You don't need an engineering degree to realize something was out of whack. The proportions are all wrong, so of course there'd be an imbalance. Of course, I use the Boeing 737 Max as a metaphor for high tech design versus old fashioned, careful, passionate thought.
The Elac is the 737 Max of loudspeakers. I hate to think how bad most other currently manufactured loudspeakers are for the rave reviews, especially by customers. I don't completely hate it, but the Elac is pretty pathetic. I have no idea what the reviewers who gushed over it are thinking. Really. Steve Guttenberg liked the earlier version of the speaker; he has a wonderful CD to test your system, "Ultimate Demonstration Disc: Chesky Records' Guide to Critical Listening" and it's well worth getting. I have no idea why he gushes over the Elacs. Really. I'd love to ask. The Elacs have a distinctive "hollow" sound. Maybe the spirit of T.S. Eliot had something to do with them, I've no idea.
I do have for height Elac designer's Andrew Jones designed Pioneer SP-T22A-LR Add-on speaker that have no bass below 150hz; and *they* did a better job reproducing voice but still sounded "hollow" too.
But the drivers are from Pioneer.
I much prefer, although they cannot play as loud, the Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2" 2-Way Bookshelf Speaker with AMT Tweeter Pair, which I'll be reviewing here shortly. Just get a good sub.
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