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  1. #1

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    Default Usher Dancer Mini 2's: IN THE HOUSE!!!

    Well, the Usher Dancer Mini 2's are my next stop the search for a perfect 2-channel speaker. I got them about a month ago; I've just been slow to update the community on my progress!

    Anyway, I'm basically deciding whether I'm going to keep these or keep the Magnepan 3.6's as my main 2-channel speaker. I'm not keeping both, so don't bother.

    What attracted me to these Ushers (and all Ushers for that matter), is their highly-regarded bang-for-your-buck ratio. One reviewer said that the only speaker he knew of with a similar price to performance was the Maggie 3.6, so, naturally, my interest was peaked.

    The Maggies and these Ushers retailed for about the same price, they sell for about the same amount on the used market, and they both offer an incredible performance for the price; however, the similarities stop there.

    These are two very different designs, and the results are, as expected, very different. You would think that with two speakers that sound this different, I would immediately gravitate to one over the other... not the case. I love both. They both do things that the other can't do. I've been going back and forth for a month now, and I still don't know.

    Here's a slight complication to the decision: I like to have (2) different pairs of speakers (generally a ribbon and a cone) in my 2-channel setup, so I can switch it up. If I keep the Ushers as my main speakers, I will use a pair of Magnepan 1.6's as the backups. If I keep the Magnepan 3.6's as my mains, I will use a pair of SDA-1C's as my backups. Between the 1C's and the 1.6's, whichever speaker does not get used as a backup in the main rig will be used as the main speaker in a secondary rig. Got that?

    I'll figure it out.

    Pics: (oh, note the new ARC CD-1 !!! thanks Santa!!!)

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    Last edited by falconcry72; 12-29-2011 at 07:10 PM.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  2. #2

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    Wow, what an AWESOME problem you have on your hands

    I say keep the ushers. They take up less space and they kick the same amount of ass.

    Care to elaborate on your conclusion of both styles of speakers? I really enjoy comparisons like this.

  3. #3

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    I'd let the dog make the decision
    DKG999
    -----------------------------------------
    HT System: LSi9, LSiCx2, LSiFX, LSi7, SVS 20-39 PC+, B&K 507.s2 AVR, B&K Ref 125.2, Tripplite LCR-2400, Cambridge 650BD, Signal Cable PC/SC, BJC IC, Samsung 55" LED

    Music System: Magnepan 1.6QR, SVS SB12+, ARC pre, Parasound HCA1500 vertically bi-amped, Jolida CDP, Pro-Ject RM5.1SE TT, Pro-Ject TubeBox SE phono pre, SBT, PS Audio DLIII DAC

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiocr381ve View Post
    I say keep the ushers. They take up less space and they kick the same amount of ass.
    That is definitely a consideration. My next place probably won't have as much space as my current place, so the Ushers are more future proof. Then again, I've heard those 3.6's in a small room and they sounded great.

    These Ushers use the Beryllium composite tweeter (BE). Usher has new Diamond-based tweeter out (DMD). I called a dealer, and he said the DMD is a drop-in replacement, no crossover mods or anything. I'm interested for sure, but they're expensive!
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkg999 View Post
    I'd let the dog make the decision
    He'll lay in front of both when I'm jammin', so I think he has mixed feelings too.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by falconcry72 View Post
    These Ushers use the Beryllium composite tweeter (BE). Usher has new Diamond-based tweeter out (DMD). I called a dealer, and he said the DMD is a drop-in replacement, no crossover mods or anything. I'm interested for sure, but they're expensive!
    http://www.avguide.com/forums/the-wh...ium-diaphragms
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  7. #7

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    Hence the "Beryllium Composite" phrasing.

    From Steve Mowry's "The Truth" article:


    In short, some of the diaphragms have lower beryllium content than the supplier represented to Usher. Fortunately, all of the diaphragms still exceed Usher’s criteria by a comfortable margin in terms of measured performance.
    Last edited by falconcry72; 12-30-2011 at 10:18 AM.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  8. #8

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    Looks to me like your in a can't lose situation. Either way your in for good sound. Congrats man, but your missing one thing to top it all off............TUBES BRO !!!

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    Looks to me like your in a can't lose situation. Either way your in for good sound. Congrats man, but your missing one thing to top it all off............TUBES BRO !!!
    Tubes?


    What tubes?







    OHHHHHHHHHH, THESE tubes!!!!

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    ARC LS-15 Preamp: (4) 6922's.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  10. #10

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    Ha ha.....see....the older ya get the more blind you become. Nice my man, very nice.

    Actualy, it was a secret squirrel tactic to get you to post pics of all your tubes.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    Actualy, it was a secret squirrel tactic to get you to post pics of all your tubes.
    Well I guess you were successful!

    I've got the Bugle Boys in now. The PQ's are more accurate, but there's something about these BB's that keeps drawing me in.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  12. #12

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    here's the thing, to upgrade the maggies you have to buy new speakers $$$$$, to upgrade the ushers you buy the diamond tweeters $$$
    Main system
    http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr...pin&1162599347 Freelance reviewer for StereoMojo

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by falconcry72 View Post
    That is definitely a consideration. My next place probably won't have as much space as my current place, so the Ushers are more future proof. Then again, I've heard those 3.6's in a small room and they sounded great.

    These Ushers use the Beryllium composite tweeter (BE). Usher has new Diamond-based tweeter out (DMD). I called a dealer, and he said the DMD is a drop-in replacement, no crossover mods or anything. I'm interested for sure, but they're expensive!
    I think my old Paradigm Signature S2's had those tweeters. Insanely smooth.

    I definitely say save on space in this situation. You already have the 1.6's for crying out loud! (I owned the 1.7's btw). You have so many options in your price range I'm thinking you'll move the Usher's in a few months anyway

  14. #14

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    Very nice man, beautiful speakers!

    Source: Squeezebox Touch/CIA Power Supply
    DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Linestage: Placette RVC Passive
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Subwoofer: SVS PB12-NSD

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by dkg999 View Post
    I'd let the dog make the decision
    Shhhh... can't you see he's working on it?

    Quote Originally Posted by falconcry72 View Post
    The Maggies and these Ushers retailed for about the same price, they sell for about the same amount on the used market, and they both offer an incredible performance for the price; however, the similarities stop there.

    These are two very different designs, and the results are, as expected, very different. You would think that with two speakers that sound this different, I would immediately gravitate to one over the other... not the case. I love both. They both do things that the other can't do. I've been going back and forth for a month now, and I still don't know.
    First, you have to love someone who takes his listening so seriously that he sits behind a desk.

    That said, what are the differences?
    More later,
    Tour...
    Vox Copuli
    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. - Old English Proverb

    "It's easy to get lost in price vs performance vs ego vs illusion." - doro
    "There is a certain entertainment value in ripping the occaisonal (sic) buttmunch..." - TroyD
    "Death doesn't come with a Uhaul." - Dennis Gardner

    Rebuilding Maggie 2-ch & Amazing 2-ch... Building 2-ch "wall"... Figuring out the HT

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by steveinaz View Post
    Very nice man, beautiful speakers!
    Thank you, sir!
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  17. #17

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    Very sweet rig...you are in a win win situation!

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tour2ma View Post
    That said, what are the differences?
    Ushers:

    Pros:

    - deeper bass extension (flat to 28, but they make serious noise into the low 20's)
    - more visceral bass impact. they can pressurize the room, you feel the kick drum in your chest.
    - more detailed high frequency range. This attribute surprised me, but it's true.

    Cons:

    - I'm aware that I'm listening to speakers.
    - bass is slightly bloated, or boxy.
    - more fatiguing.


    Maggies:

    Pros:

    - I forget I'm listening to speakers because of how their bipolar design fills the space.
    - more realistic mid-range.
    - bass, though not as low or loud, is more articulate and textural.

    Cons:

    - not as dynamic.
    - not as good at electric guitar.
    - bass drops off in the mid 30's.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiocr381ve View Post
    ...I'm thinking you'll move the Usher's in a few months anyway
    You could be right. I love both of these pairs, but I feel like there's somehthing better out there... the problem is that I don't know if it exists at this price range. I'm open to suggestions on alternatives in the 3k range.

    I'm tempted by the 3.7's; I think they'd do everything right, but they don't exist on the used market yet, and I can't stomach the price at this point. With tax and Mye Stands, you're looking at 6.5k, which opens up a whole new can of worms on the used market, and I just don't want to go there.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  20. #20

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    Falconcry,

    I've gotta ask, do the SDA-1C's keep up with these modern designs in resolution, accuracy and detail? When you gave your scenarios in the OP I was thinking, man those SDA's have got to be outclassed.

    Xavier





    Spelling

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by xsmi View Post
    ...do the SDA-1C's keep up with these modern designs in resolution, accuracy and detail?
    First of all, keep in mind that my 1C's are unmodded, with the exception of the RD0 tweets.

    Resolution, accuracy, and detail? No. They do not keep up; however, there is much more to musical enjoyment than accuracy. As noted above, the Ushers have a more accurate high end than the Maggies, but the Maggies are more pleasing to listen to.

    What the SDA's lack in resolution they make up for with a liquidy-velvet envelopment that can transport you to a live venue. I would call the SDA's a whole third class of speakers: you got cones, ribbons, and SDA's.

    No other speaker sounds like an SDA, which is why I plan on always having a set handy. If you love the SDA sound, as many do, they can be the final destination for speaker choice.

    Generally speaking, the speakers should be the most expensive part of a 2-channel rig, to get the most out of your money, but there are many here who have several times the cost of their SDA's in associated electronics because they love the SDA sound and want to get the most out of them. There are people here who have more money in their cables than in their SDA's. I bet there are people here who have 10 times what they paid for their SDA's in associated electronics. That's a rare thing.


    I'm not sure if that answers your question, but, for me, there is life after SDA.
    Last edited by falconcry72; 12-30-2011 at 03:29 PM.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  22. #22

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    Yes it does. I LOVE my SRS 2's as well. Although, I think I'm done buying speakers and want to concentrate on electronics (I'll be in the camp who spends many times more on associated gear), I'm not under the notion that these are the most revealing speaker in the world. But, as you said I LOVE the SDA sound.

  23. #23

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    Look at the "cons" of each speaker, determine what can be feasably delt with, and what cannot (ie, different placement, etc) then go from there. In other words, which speaker would be easiest to address it's respective cons.

    Source: Squeezebox Touch/CIA Power Supply
    DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Linestage: Placette RVC Passive
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Subwoofer: SVS PB12-NSD

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by xsmi View Post
    Yes it does. I LOVE my SRS 2's as well. Although, I think I'm done buying speakers and want to concentrate on electronics (I'll be in the camp who spends many times more on associated gear), I'm not under the notion that these are the most revealing speaker in the world. But, as you said I LOVE the SDA sound.
    Nice. I think if I were to get another pair of SDA's it would be the SRS 2's.

    Have you modded them? Are they the pin/blade version and thus TL'able?
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  25. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by steveinaz View Post
    Look at the "cons" of each speaker, determine what can be feasably delt with, and what cannot (ie, different placement, etc) then go from there. In other words, which speaker would be easiest to address it's respective cons.
    That's a good way to look at it.

    I could add subs to the Maggies, but to do it right I'd have to spend a couple grand, and at that point I'd rather just get the 3.7's... but that's out of the question for now.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  26. #26

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    They are the B/B which are TL able. I am still collecting all the parts. I hope to be ready to do them this spring.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by xsmi View Post
    They are the B/B which are TL able. I am still collecting all the parts. I hope to be ready to do them this spring.
    Ah. b/b, p/b, whatever....Hell yea, man. Good luck on the project.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

  28. #28

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    My Magnepan dealer had a single Paradigm Servo-15 sub running with 3.6's on Mye stands and it was outstanding. That system was much better than the 3.7's without a sub.
    DKG999
    -----------------------------------------
    HT System: LSi9, LSiCx2, LSiFX, LSi7, SVS 20-39 PC+, B&K 507.s2 AVR, B&K Ref 125.2, Tripplite LCR-2400, Cambridge 650BD, Signal Cable PC/SC, BJC IC, Samsung 55" LED

    Music System: Magnepan 1.6QR, SVS SB12+, ARC pre, Parasound HCA1500 vertically bi-amped, Jolida CDP, Pro-Ject RM5.1SE TT, Pro-Ject TubeBox SE phono pre, SBT, PS Audio DLIII DAC

  29. #29

    Member Sales Rating: (58)

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    Feb 2003
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    6 Underground
    Posts
    25,306

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    I'm a big USher fan and have owned the Dancer series. I would go back to a pair with no problems.

  30. #30

    Member Sales Rating: (6)

    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
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    3,434

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    Quote Originally Posted by dorokusai View Post
    I'm a big USher fan and have owned the Dancer series. I would go back to a pair with no problems.
    Which ones??? Was it the BE-718's? If so, these Mini Two's are very similar... they just have an extra driver and more air space.
    2-Channel:

    Source 1: PC
    Source 2: Rega Apollo CDP
    USB > SPDIF Converter: Stello U3
    DAC: Audio GD NFB-7
    Preamp: Audio Research LS-15
    Power Amp: BAT VK-500
    Speakers: Magnepan 3.7's

    HT:

    Source 1: HTPC
    Source 2: Oppo 103
    Pre/Pro: Marantz av8003
    Power Amp: Rotel RMB-1095
    Fronts: LSiM-705's
    Center: LSiM-704c
    Surrounds: LSiM-702's
    Subs: Dual SVS PC12-NSD's

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