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Thread: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

  1. #1
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    Default New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Hi Everyone,

    When I started thinking about upgrading my Onkyo HTIB system, I looked at a lot of options. I was trying to keep things relatively inexpensive and initially though I would just add a BIC Sub to upgrade my current system. But reviews of the BIC subs on Amazon got me interested in HSU and I almost pulled the trigger on a complete 7.2 HSU system. But with my new higher budget in mind, I though I should look around at other ID speaker companies a bit. When I finally stumbled across Ascend, The size and specs of the CMT-340 SEs and the HTM-200 SEs really fit what I was looking for exactly. So never having heard them, I took the gamble and ordered a complete 7.2 system complete with 2 Rythmik FVX15s.

    Although I don't think the FedEx guy was very happy about the subs, everything arrived in perfect condition. It took a while to get everything installed, as my previous mounts were not quite beefy enough for the HTM-200s. But, once everything was hooked up and calibrated, I was blown away. The system really sounds great and I am very happy with the performance. I love to sit an listen to all of my music in stereo mode, and movies sound awesome with all channels firing.

    Guitar and other string instruments really seem to shine on the 340s. I hear so much detail coming from guitar that I never noticed before. Vocals also sound great, and it is amazing how you can sense the performer's location.

    The bass form the Rythmiks is really incredible. Even with my open floor plan basement on a slab, you can really feel the bass.

    I do think that I am a bit underpowered driving the entire system with my old Onkyo TX-NR717. I am looking at adding a Monolith 7 from Monoprice to boost the power levels.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Nice looking system! I'm not surprised that you're thrilled with the sound quality of Ascend. Do you have all of your speakers set to 'small' with a crossover of 80 Hz? Having all of the bass sent to the subs really takes a load off of the receiver. Your speakers aren't hard to drive by any means so an external amp may not be necessary.
    Nate

  3. #3
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    Feb 2016
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    456

    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Fantastic job, it looks great, and you chose well!

    I'd personally go with the new Emotiva BasX series 7 channel amp and their new processor. You'll get a much, much better DAC and processor, with better room correction, and an amp that has plenty of power. I've never been a huge fan of Monoprice, and the Monolith amp is just a clone of an ATI amp. The MC-700 sells out as soon as they make a batch, so you have to wait a bit, but their products are well worth it. Top notch customer service, and they take great care of their customers by releasing updates and new upgrades.

    https://emotiva.com/products/pres-and-pros/mc-700
    https://emotiva.com/products/amplifiers/700
    -Alex
    PS4/Nvidia Shield --> Emotiva XMC-1 --> Emotiva XPA-5 --> Ascend Acoustics Sierra Towers and Horizon Center w/ RAAL tweeters (L/C/R), HTM-200 SE (Surrounds), 2x Rythmik F12 subwoofers

  4. #4
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Quote Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
    I've never been a huge fan of Monoprice, and the Monolith amp is just a clone of an ATI amp.
    ATI makes solid amps...bullet proof. The Monolith isn't exactly a clone, but all indications suggest it is also a very good amp. ATI also makes amps for Lexicon and Outlaw, among others. I use an ATI 1505...it is getting old, but still performing as solid as ever, and would not hesitate getting another ATI amp.

    That said, Emotiva would not be a bad choice either. I just got an XMC-1 pre/pro on Tuesday, and very happy with its performance, but I did have some reservations after being told by Emotiva they had all the parts to build it (specifically the 2,0 HDMI board), only to be told a week after ordering it that they didn't and would have to wait another week, only to find out it would be much farther out, so I took delivery of one with the 1.4 board earlier this week and will wait until summer for the new HDMI board. in all, it took about 5 weeks from order to delivery after initially thinking it would take 2 weeks.

    The good news, and as Alex alluded to, Emotiva has made the XMC-1 upgradeable, so I will be able to install the new HDMI board when it arrives.

    As I am getting ready to go to bed, my XMC-1, ATI amp, Sierra-2's, Rythmik F15HP, with the signal starting with a JRiver iD, are making some sweet sounds.
    -curtis

  5. #5
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Congratulations for your new system and set-up. Earlier this year I got a pair of CMT-340 SE Main as my new LR speakers. They joined a Rythmik L12 I got at the end of 2015. For just a little over $1k combined it is an absolute steal of setup. Despite my 18x14x8 room being part of an oper floor plan as well and the relatively modest power of my Emotiva AVR (5x80W or 2x110W), I got plenty of SPL for both 2.1 music and 5.1 movies, thanks to the CMT-304 SE sensitivity and the "little sub who could" L12 relieving the Fusion 8100 taking care of the low end.

    I need to find the time to post a more detailed review of the CMT-340 SE, because those speakers do not get the recognition they deserve IMHO. I suppose because of the superstar status of the Sierra's

    What stunned me of the 340 the first few minutes I listened to them was their control. You cannot hear "residual energy", if that even makes sense. Once a sound stops, it stops. To my ear that is particularly noticeable with high-pitched percussive instruments. That is for sure impacted also by the room, but given the same room, my old speakers did not sound like that.

    Voice are also rendered beautifully, I agree. It is really easy to tell if a recording is closed miked or not, the 340 reveals all of the details in the midrange. The pair is also very well matched. When listening to 2.1 music at first I thought I had switched on a multichannel mode by mistake, because I could swear that the center channel was on, so precisely was the singer voice centered.

    The 340s seem also to be quite tolerant of positioning. I was initially worried about getting them because of the rear port, since they are not on a shelf but in a shelf. However, with the AVR xover set at 80Hz, I cannot hear any negative interaction of the port with the enclosed shelf space. One of those cases where having a speaker that can reach low is an advantage even if you do not use its extension, as the port tuning is quite below the bass management xover frequency.

    Most definitely I am an happy camper with the CMT-340 SE pair. I foresee them staying in my system for many years. Even if I decide to upgrade later on (I have my eyes set on the Luna for LR mains ), I will move the two 340s to surround duty.
    Last edited by MusicHead; 04-08-2017 at 09:41 AM.
    Emotiva Fusion 8100
    Ascend Acoustics CMT-340 SE Main
    Rythmik L12 Sub

  6. #6
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Quote Originally Posted by curtis View Post
    ATI makes solid amps...bullet proof. The Monolith isn't exactly a clone, but all indications suggest it is also a very good amp. ATI also makes amps for Lexicon and Outlaw, among others. I use an ATI 1505...it is getting old, but still performing as solid as ever, and would not hesitate getting another ATI amp.

    That said, Emotiva would not be a bad choice either. I just got an XMC-1 pre/pro on Tuesday, and very happy with its performance, but I did have some reservations after being told by Emotiva they had all the parts to build it (specifically the 2,0 HDMI board), only to be told a week after ordering it that they didn't and would have to wait another week, only to find out it would be much farther out, so I took delivery of one with the 1.4 board earlier this week and will wait until summer for the new HDMI board. in all, it took about 5 weeks from order to delivery after initially thinking it would take 2 weeks.

    The good news, and as Alex alluded to, Emotiva has made the XMC-1 upgradeable, so I will be able to install the new HDMI board when it arrives.

    As I am getting ready to go to bed, my XMC-1, ATI amp, Sierra-2's, Rythmik F15HP, with the signal starting with a JRiver iD, are making some sweet sounds.
    I'm not trashing ATI amps at all, sorry if I made that impression. They make really stellar gear. I've just been told and read in a few places that they are just ripping off designs of other companies (Monolith headphones are based on Audeze's designs, etc) while some of the others are licensing a technology and renaming it (The amps and the K-BAS speakers are licensed from what I can find). Other than that, I've had more than a few cables and phone chargers that I've bought from them simply fall apart or stop functioning all together. It would be worth it to buy it directly from ATI instead of Monoprice, in my opinion.

    The problem with the XMC parts is that there is a huge delay across the industry for the chips they need for the HDMI 2.0 board, it's not their fault. Everyone in the industry is having trouble getting access to parts and Emotiva has some of the most fervent fans. The parts they have to buy are specced and sold by member companies of the HDMI Forum. Apparently HDMI 2.0 has been a massive marketing success for all of the companies involved, people are clawing to upgrade even when most of their equipment won't need it. Atmos just sends people into a buying frenzy. Offer people more channels and they all jump at the chance, even if there's only a dozen movies that take advantage of it. HDMI 2.1 is already around the corner, too, it's just incredible. http://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/hdmi_2_1/index.aspx

    I love my HDMI 1.4 version XMC-1. It sounds so incredibly fantastic. Dirac has the best sound signature I've yet heard in a room processor and I love the amount of detail I can hear in everything I listen to, even vinyl sounds better (took me a while to get it there, though). As along as you don't plan to buy into the 4K and HDR market you don't need to upgrade for a while. Might as well wait out all of this changing technology for a while and see who wins out in the adoption race. I'm so happy with Blu-Rays and 5.1 I just don't feel the need for it at all. Saving 500 bucks by getting the 1.4 version and another 300 on sale was also really great. Emotiva rocks.
    -Alex
    PS4/Nvidia Shield --> Emotiva XMC-1 --> Emotiva XPA-5 --> Ascend Acoustics Sierra Towers and Horizon Center w/ RAAL tweeters (L/C/R), HTM-200 SE (Surrounds), 2x Rythmik F12 subwoofers

  7. #7
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Quote Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
    I'm not trashing ATI amps at all, sorry if I made that impression. They make really stellar gear. I've just been told and read in a few places that they are just ripping off designs of other companies (Monolith headphones are based on Audeze's designs, etc) while some of the others are licensing a technology and renaming it (The amps and the K-BAS speakers are licensed from what I can find). Other than that, I've had more than a few cables and phone chargers that I've bought from them simply fall apart or stop functioning all together. It would be worth it to buy it directly from ATI instead of Monoprice, in my opinion.

    The problem with the XMC parts is that there is a huge delay across the industry for the chips they need for the HDMI 2.0 board, it's not their fault. Everyone in the industry is having trouble getting access to parts and Emotiva has some of the most fervent fans. The parts they have to buy are specced and sold by member companies of the HDMI Forum. Apparently HDMI 2.0 has been a massive marketing success for all of the companies involved, people are clawing to upgrade even when most of their equipment won't need it. Atmos just sends people into a buying frenzy. Offer people more channels and they all jump at the chance, even if there's only a dozen movies that take advantage of it. HDMI 2.1 is already around the corner, too, it's just incredible. http://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/hdmi_2_1/index.aspx

    I love my HDMI 1.4 version XMC-1. It sounds so incredibly fantastic. Dirac has the best sound signature I've yet heard in a room processor and I love the amount of detail I can hear in everything I listen to, even vinyl sounds better (took me a while to get it there, though). As along as you don't plan to buy into the 4K and HDR market you don't need to upgrade for a while. Might as well wait out all of this changing technology for a while and see who wins out in the adoption race. I'm so happy with Blu-Rays and 5.1 I just don't feel the need for it at all. Saving 500 bucks by getting the 1.4 version and another 300 on sale was also really great. Emotiva rocks.
    For the price of the Monolith, I think it is worthy of strong consideration.

    As for Emotiva's supply issues, all I am saying is I was misinformed. My communication is with Emotiva, not their suppliers.

    Yes, the XMC-1 is sounding great. I am actually messing around with target curves now. I am waiting for the new HDMI board as I am not in a hurry to go to 4K.

    Back to amps...there is an ADA 6150 on ebay right now for $700...if I needed an amp, I would snatch that up. It is the same amp Ascend/Dave uses in their demo room.

    Back to the CMT-340SE, IMO, there is nothing that can touch it for the price. It is Ascend's biggest bang for the buck!
    -curtis

  8. #8
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    It was my understanding that ATI is actually manufacturing the Monolith 7 for Monoprice. That was the only reason I was actually considering it. I haven't been able to find a bad review of it anywhere.

    As far as processors are concerned, I am looking for something that can get my 2 subs to work well together. I am unfortunately not able to place them symmetrically in the room due to WAF issues. The XMC-1 looks awesome, but is pricey.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: New Ascend / Rythmik 7.2 System in North Atlanta

    Quote Originally Posted by smote View Post
    It was my understanding that ATI is actually manufacturing the Monolith 7 for Monoprice. That was the only reason I was actually considering it. I haven't been able to find a bad review of it anywhere.

    As far as processors are concerned, I am looking for something that can get my 2 subs to work well together. I am unfortunately not able to place them symmetrically in the room due to WAF issues. The XMC-1 looks awesome, but is pricey.
    That understanding is correct. ATI makes the Monolith.

    The XMC-1/Dirac actually doesn't do two together well, it doesn't take into account how the two subs will interact together. My understanding is that Dirac will update the software to remedy this(it is a Dirac issue not Emotiva), just not sure when. I think what many do is us a splitter into two subs and calibrate the two subs as one.

    That said, the flexibility with the XMC-1 with Dirac in setting up different target curves(full version of Dirac), and different crossover points and slopes (12db octave/24db octave).

    FWIW, symmetrically placed subwoofers isn't necessarily what you want for best room response, so thank the wife.
    Last edited by curtis; 04-08-2017 at 02:44 PM.
    -curtis

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