Home Speaker Asylum

General speaker questions for audio and home theater.

Re: My tastes in sound seem to be virtually identical to yours.


I have never heard on any other speaker Ella Fitzgerald's voice sound so wonderful as it did on the Monitor 40s. It was absolutely entrancing. Simularly, on other music I thought the midrange certainly was a contender for the best I ever heard, But as I said, the highs seemed exaggerated. For example, I played one CD (he had an excellent CD player) derived from an analog tape that I had heard many times on many speakers. The tape hiss was always there, but with the 40s it was very prominent, obvious. But this could have been the electronics. In any event, I tend to associate exaggerated highs with what is often called an analytical sound. My attempt at a second hearing of the 40s to be arranged in London by the designer got frustrated by a schedule mixup, so I never had another chance to hear them. Mr. Shaw himself, in a note to me, stated that the 40s had almost an electrostatic quality. You can make of that what you will.

I did not mention that the 40's shared one fault with the Spendor SP100s: they do have a tendency to boom. This is something that can be mitigated/eliminated in the Spendors with careful placement and the right SS amp. I suspect the same must be true of the 40's, but I didn't have the opportunity to try. I am not a big fan of ported speakers, though both the SP 100s and the 40s have done a pretty good job with the ports. Ports are still to some extent a fake, and it is in the area of the port response that I could hear one of the biggest differences between the SP 100s and the Vandersteens.


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