Q. A reader writes: which speakers you think would be more appropriate in my case? Towers or stand mounters?
A. This is an age-old question, without a simple answer. There are so many variables! In this case, the reader is using a quality entry-level integrated amp (NAD C316BEE) and a Chromecast Audio streaming TIDAL. I have used this combo a lot in the past, so I’m quite familiar with it. They also have a pair of 24-inch stands on hand, and their listening space is almost square with measurements about 17′ X 16″.
They have about a foot between the speakers and the surrounding back/sidewalls. The listening position is about 9 feet from the speakers. They also seem like they have the right amount of material in the space to keep the room from being too “live.”
As far as sound requirements are concerned, the reader “wants a balanced and full sound as possible with a good bass extension because I don’t want to use a subwoofer. And also to be able to listen to music at a lower volume without sacrificing the sound, and for long listening sessions.”
There’s a $350 budget, and he is trying to pick between two speakers. One is the Triangle BOREA BR-03 standmount, which I made one of my 2019 Products Of The Year, and the Monitor Audio Bronze 5 floorstanders, both of which he says he can get at a decent discount.
This is quite interesting because the reader’s room dimensions and sound preferences are very similar to my own, which is probably why they read my reviews in the first place.
Like I said, in the beginning, there are many variables when picking between standmounts and floorstanders. One is the type of sound you are going for. Then you have the size of the room, plus the amp you’re driving them with, just to name a few.
In my room, which isn’t huge, I prefer a larger standmount, because a lot of floorstanders (especially large ones) load the room with too much bass energy. Bigger is not always better. I like deep bass, but just enough to make the presentation credible. That’s why I don’t usually use a sub when doing two-channel listening. As the reader says, I want “a balanced and full sound.”
I have a bunch of amps and sources to play with now, but one of the first integrated amps I had the pleasure of owning was the NAD C316BEE. This is what the reader is using, and while it’s powerful for what it is, it’s not going to drive huge floorstanders or less sensitive bookshelf speakers to their full potential.
It does best with sensitive speakers, which both the BOREA BR03 and Monitor Audio BRONZE are, so no issue there. The BRONZE floorstander is also compact and made for small rooms so it will work in the reader’s space.
That leaves the sound, and I think if you’re looking for balanced sound with decent bass extension, then the BOREA BR03 should be your pick out of the two speakers you listed. It’s a larger standmount speaker, and it has plenty of deep bass for its size.
Along with that, it has a sweet and engaging sound that draws you into the music without trying too hard. They also sound great at lower volumes.
The Monitor Audio BRONZE, in my experience, is a more revealing speaker with a slightly elevated top end, something that turned me off a little bit during my audition. Of course, with two five and a half inch drivers and a larger cabinet, it will give you more bass than the BOREAs, so if you want bass closer to subwoofer levels, that might be your pick.
With the variables provided, taking into account the type of sound desired, the size of the room, and the electronics used, I recommend the BOREA BR03 standmount speakers. If the reader had a larger room, I might say a floorstander like the BRONZE 5’s or even the DALI OBERON 5 to fill the space with sound.
But in the reader’s case, I think the balanced, sweet sound of the BR03 will suit his space and NAD amp better. Put your 24-inch stands to good use! Hope that helps!
BTW, if you have a question about 2-Channel audio, whether it be about the gear itself, or setup, drop us a line at email@example.com! You may see your inquiry published on the site!
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