Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: Upgrade from 170se

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    307

    Default Upgrade from 170se

    Hi y'all!

    I haven't posted in quite a while and wanted to get some opinions on a good move up from the 170se that have been my mains. I also have a center 340se that I never used really, I really didn't enjoy it as a center channel and preferred stereo mode, with my sub. The sub I have is modest (Yamaha yst 10") and usually leave it off as of late. The question is what should I do now? I want a bit more fullness, but want to keep the clean imaging the 170s have. They did lack a bit when I pumped them for movies. I do about 70% tv time, the rest music. My amp is a Denon 1909 AVR which works well enough for now, I will probably replace it with a standard 2ch amp in the future.
    So what should I do? I think I can turn he 340se center into a stereo and buy another center to also rotate. That's he cheapest solution but my reservation is I've never been happy with it; albeit it was center duty only. Another option is a b stock sierra if there are any left. The final option in considering is a hsu ccb-8, but the verdict is still out on them.
    Are the sierras justifiable over 340s? How do other brands compare to the 340/sierra in this price range?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    457

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    Do you need to stay with a bookshelf speaker? I ask because based on what you're saying it sounds like tower speakers are really the way to go for you. You'll get deeper bass extension and even bigger sound. If you can squeeze it I'd go for the Sierra Towers personally. Go with the RAAL upgrade if you can afford it.

    It's hard to say what is justifiable as an upgrade for anyone. I think most people will say that it is, but it all depends on budget and what you want to hear from your speakers. I personally am totally addicted to my Sierra Towers and Horizon and haven't had a single thought about upgrading them since I bought them almost two years ago.
    -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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Somewhere in the Boston area
    Posts
    132

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    If I am not mistaken the 340 Mains are not exactly the same as the 340 Center (something in the crossover?)

    Since you do 70% TV (I assume that includes movies) and want to add fullness, I would consider keeping the 170s and getting a Rythmik L12 sub. It will cost you about the same as a new pairs of 340s.

    Doing that and crossing the sub with the 170 at 80HZ will give significant relief to your AVR. You will notice an improvement in how the 170s sound.

    If on the other hand your leaning toward a stereo amp means you may shift use more to music, then going with a couple of towers, as sludgeogre said, would be the way to go.

    Just my two cents.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    307

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    Ok, talked to Dave a bit via email and he said the 340 see center can be turned into a stereo pair; I believe the tweeter is just rotated but didn't inquire further yet-- he also would sell me a single channel 340 to match it. I looked at the rythmiks and forgot how much I have wanted one. I was looking into RAAL and rythmik before AA integrated them, and now that Dave did I am very confident they are top quality products/components.
    The towers and raal are out of the question for now, maybe in another 10 years
    I'm pondering sierra1 b stock and maybe even that L12 sub. Hard to say if the 340s are worth bothering about over the 170s, especially if paired with a sub. And it's very hard to just know if the sierra1 is worth the upgrade over the 170 when with a sub, my gut says yes.
    Thanks for the input!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Manhattan Beach, California
    Posts
    6,281

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    Quote Originally Posted by scape View Post
    ...I believe the tweeter is just rotated but didn't inquire further yet--
    Not necessary on the 340SE's....it was on the older "classic" 340's.
    -curtis

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    275

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    340s are very similar to 170s in sound quality, but can play louder with less distortion. If you're looking for a significant jump in sound quality, my recommendation is the Sierra-2.
    Last edited by mikesiskav; 06-12-2017 at 11:00 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    307

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    I appreciate everyone's feedback! I have given some thought and think $1200 is doable, a stretch tho. I see the bstock sierra with a l12 would be roughly similarly priced as a bstock sierra2. While the s1 bstock with nrt upgrade is almost as much. It's tough to decide really. Is the sierra2 that significant of a leap over the original? Especially when paired with such a nice sub? On a side note I did some testing with the center 340 as a main channel and it sounds clearer than the 170, just a bit. The sound stage seemed to improve a tad as well, but it does still feel like it's missing something. Another concern for sierra 2 is with the RAAL, I get up and walk around quite a bit and may not like the dip in highs. So I wonder, is the tower nrt worth waiting for when compared to the sierras I mentioned? I might be able to swing it next year.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    275

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    The improvement going from Sierra 1 to Sierra 2 is not in bass extension or output bit rather in the mids and highs frequencies. I think the Sierra 2 actually has a bit less bass output than the original, but the bass it does have is more articulate. Having a nice subwoofer is even more reason to get the best main speakers you can. The Sierra 2 still sounds fantastic even if you stand up and walk around.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    I really struggled that first month I had the Sierra 2's (three identical across the front) to find $1.8K (B stock) difference between them and the 170's I'd had for over a decade.

    I wanted to be floored right out of the box, but I honestly have to say I wasn't.

    Even when I though I had 'proof' that they'd finally justified themselves - I was watching a film with a 2 channel stereo track, and the imaging was perfectly matched to the screen between them- i swapped the 170s back in afterward expecting them to fail the test and they didn't. The truth was they just didn't seem that far off from what I'd heard with the Sierra 2's.

    However I ended up keeping them past the 30 day trial, taking it on a leap of faith that other people were right and I just needed to devote some more time to placement and critical listening.

    It was well past the 30 days (closer to 60) when they finally started to click for me. I started to recognize subtle qualities to the sound and presentation that I'd actually never gotten with the 170s.
    Once I started to hear it, it became more and more apparent. They were doing things the 170 just never could.

    A Toyota Corolla will get you from point a to b- save you gas, and be plenty reliable.
    A Lexus will get you from a to b as well. But once you get used to the little luxuries of the ride, it's hard to go back to the Corolla, even though you are still just going from a to b.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,897

    Default Re: Upgrade from 170se

    Quote Originally Posted by Mose Harper View Post
    I really struggled that first month I had the Sierra 2's (three identical across the front) to find $1.8K (B stock) difference between them and the 170's I'd had for over a decade.

    I wanted to be floored right out of the box, but I honestly have to say I wasn't.

    Even when I though I had 'proof' that they'd finally justified themselves - I was watching a film with a 2 channel stereo track, and the imaging was perfectly matched to the screen between them- i swapped the 170s back in afterward expecting them to fail the test and they didn't. The truth was they just didn't seem that far off from what I'd heard with the Sierra 2's.

    However I ended up keeping them past the 30 day trial, taking it on a leap of faith that other people were right and I just needed to devote some more time to placement and critical listening.

    It was well past the 30 days (closer to 60) when they finally started to click for me. I started to recognize subtle qualities to the sound and presentation that I'd actually never gotten with the 170s.
    Once I started to hear it, it became more and more apparent. They were doing things the 170 just never could.

    A Toyota Corolla will get you from point a to b- save you gas, and be plenty reliable.
    A Lexus will get you from a to b as well. But once you get used to the little luxuries of the ride, it's hard to go back to the Corolla, even though you are still just going from a to b.
    This is an excellent post. Many consumers naturally expect to be "blown away" when upgrading from an already very capable speaker like the 170 to something considerably more expensive. It takes time to develop more critical listening skills, not much different than developing a more refined sense of taste for beer, wine, food etc. Once you develop those skills - and start to really notice the differences, it is impossible to go back.
    .
    .
    .
    Good Sound To You!

    David Fabrikant
    www.ascendacoustics.com

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •