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Article: Dynaudio Focus 600 XD Loudspeaker Review

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Brilliant review, based on measured evidence sadly all too rare in high end who's reviews now generally mimic automotive - hype and attitude over substance (see Dan Neil from WSJ). Automotive went there because the market for reviews - content - was saturated, so the author's attitude is 'differentiating.' High end doesn't have a good excuse.

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Brilliant review, based on measured evidence sadly all too rare in high end who's reviews now generally mimic automotive - hype and attitude over substance (see Dan Neil from WSJ). Automotive went there because the market for reviews - content - was saturated, so the author's attitude is 'differentiating.' High end doesn't have a good excuse.

 

Totally agree with apple2k.

 

Fantastic work Mitch on a review of the most difficult device to quantify in the audio chain - speakers! Clearly to produce a review of this quality requires much work and dedication. Appreciate your focus in allowing the reader to not just imagine the sound based on pure subjectivity and at times idiosyncratic adjectives but also an opportunity to grasp the sound through the objective results.

 

Clearly the Dynaudios work well... But your old speakers are no slouch either :-).

 

Looking forward to future installments in the series!


Archimago's Musings... A "more objective" audiophile blog.

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Top notch review friend. Very well done, very thorough. Have you thought about starting a magazine or web review site? Too much work for just one, but if you could train a half dozen guys to do similar reviews I think you might have something.


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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Definitely try to get some Kii Three's in for evaluation. They demand someone with your approach to reviewing.


Main listening (small home office):

Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>CAPS IV Pipeline Server + Sonore 12V PS>Kii Control>Audiolense DRC>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.
 

Secondary Listening: CAPS Pipeline>IFi iOne DAC>Schiit Freya>Kii Three . Also an SBT and a RB Pi 3B+ running piCorePlayer as an SBT emulator. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Very impressive, thank you very much.

I hope you get the opportunity to address a review of kii three.

Exciting times ahead.

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Great review Mitch! It looks like there were a couple of lower frequency modes in the step. Would that be improved with a little EQ? Thank you for your details about the speaker design.

Michael.


THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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Top notch review friend. Very well done, very thorough. Have you thought about starting a magazine or web review site? Too much work for just one, but if you could train a half dozen guys to do similar reviews I think you might have something.

 

I'd hire anyone in a heartbeat if s/he could write like Mitch. I'm always looking for people who can write like this. I'd publish every review exactly like this if I could only find people to do it.

 

P.S. I emailed Mitch after receiving the review and told him I wish I had the knowledge, skills, and ability to produce reviews like his with all the components that come in here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Definitely try to get some Kii Three's in for evaluation. They demand someone with your approach to reviewing.
Very impressive, thank you very much.

I hope you get the opportunity to address a review of kii three.

Exciting times ahead.

 

We asked for the Kii Three several months ago. I will follow up with the distributor and point him to Mitch's work.

 

 

 

 

I liked the review but I wouldn't recommend including your baseline rules for reviewing in future articles. The pics were great.

 

 

I don't speak for Mitch, but I'm pretty sure he will not include the baseline stuff in every review.


Founder of Audiophile Style

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Hi Guys - Good news with respect to Kii Three loudspeakers. I just heard back from the company. Here is a copy and past of the response.

 

 

 

 

"Kii Audio would be extremely happy to get a pair of Kii THREEs reviewed by you.

 

Now that we are shipping Kii Controls, Bill will supply you with a full set.

 

Should you have any technical questions that are not covered on our website or in the manuals please reach out to our product manager Tom.

 

Tom is on CC and will be happy to help.

 

All the best

 

I hope to see you in Chicago in April"


Founder of Audiophile Style

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Try to review the Kef LS50 Wireless too. I predict you will be delighted!

You dont absolutely need a SW either, but a nice TBI active sub or 2 will make it and outright killer!

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Hi Guys - Good news with respect to Kii Three loudspeakers. I just heard back from the company. Here is a copy and past of the response.

 

 

 

 

"Kii Audio would be extremely happy to get a pair of Kii THREEs reviewed by you.

 

Now that we are shipping Kii Controls, Bill will supply you with a full set.

 

Should you have any technical questions that are not covered on our website or in the manuals please reach out to our product manager Tom.

 

Tom is on CC and will be happy to help.

 

All the best

 

I hope to see you in Chicago in April"

 

Thanks Chris, great news. I will be auditioning them in about 5 weeks (when I get close to a dealer); would love to hear what you or Mitch think of them.


Main listening (small home office):

Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>CAPS IV Pipeline Server + Sonore 12V PS>Kii Control>Audiolense DRC>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.
 

Secondary Listening: CAPS Pipeline>IFi iOne DAC>Schiit Freya>Kii Three . Also an SBT and a RB Pi 3B+ running piCorePlayer as an SBT emulator. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Speakers $13500

wireless hub: $299.


In any dispute the intensity of feeling is inversely proportional to the value of the issues at stake ~ Sayre's Law

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apple2k, Archimago, MikeJazz, firedog, thanks for your kind words. Took way longer than I thought!

 

@esldude – good to hear from you Dennis. Someday… :)

 

@dallasjustice – Michael, thanks. Yah, I could have turned down the speaker position DSP by one or two positions which should smooth the decay on the step response a bit more. More FIR filter taps on the low end would also make it smoother, but at the expense of more filter delay. So it is a design tradeoff. I must say I got used to watching Netflix through the 600 xD’s without any lipsync issues.

 

@witchdoctor – no worries, the industry guidelines won’t appear in future reviews. However, I did need to establish an approach and baseline reference.

 

@wisnon - thanks for the suggestion, I will look at those more closely.

 

Looking forward to the reviewing the Kii Threes!

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First rate job on the review. You brought a lot of the best thought on correlating measurement to listening experience to your review. You put lots of your own thought and effort into it too.

 

Could you convince Dynaudio to know that first digit off the price?

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Could you convince Dynaudio to knock that first digit off the price?

 

That would be great.

 

But it is worth keeping in mind that this is the entire system (Dac, pre, amp, speakers, DSP/equalizer) apart from the digital source. In addition, these are the first set of active speakers I have seen that I could put in my living room without precipitating a far more costly trip to divorce court.


--

Do facts matter?

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That would be great.

 

But it is worth keeping in mind that this is the entire system (Dac, pre, amp, speakers, DSP/equalizer) apart from the digital source. In addition, these are the first set of active speakers I have seen that I could put in my living room without precipitating a far more costly trip to divorce court.

 

Well, I'm keeping in mind how much I'm willing to spend on the next iteration of my library system and my current criteria. The last one almost 20 years ago consisted of 3 way active speakers with an external crossover and 6 channels of amplification. In inflation adjusted dollars, it was more expensive than the Dynaudio speakers are now.

 

Too many boxes, way too many cables for me now.

 

 

This time around, I'd be in the market for a pair of 2 way active speakers for $ 2000 or less. I recently bought a pair of powered 2-way speakers (Audioengine HDP6, $ 750 list, 5.5" woofers) for our home office. I tried them out in the living room and in the library and found that they produced good sound with good dynamics and a very natural soundstage those 15 by 20' rooms. In the office, they are mighty nice. I can be happy with simple and not very expensive gear now.

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With the first of 3 kids less than half way through college, dropping $13.5K on an audio upgrade ain't gonna happen here either for a very long time. However, there are a lot of examples around here of folks paying a lot more for (apparently) a lot less.


--

Do facts matter?

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Great review. Exceptional attention to detail

 

I checked to manual for the speakers and the hub. Did not see how to hook up a turntable. I think I must have missed it.


In any dispute the intensity of feeling is inversely proportional to the value of the issues at stake ~ Sayre's Law

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That's an amazingly well done review, with a complete lesson in how and why you took the approaches you took. I agree that you probably don't need to include all of it all the time, but please do pull out the lessons sections and have them available via a footnote link for each review... it'll save you a lot of people asking "but you probably didn't" questions.

 

Really, I found myself re-reading the sections on time alignment, listening rooms, etc a couple times. I'm not in the market for new speakers, but am trying to improve the basic qualities of my listening rooms, and now I understand much better why a couple things worked and a couple things didn't.

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Honestly, that's the best speaker review I've ever read. My current speakers the Avantgarde zero pro xD are in the same vein as these (except being horns). Fully digital, time aligned 3 way system. Really the future of hifi, Imho. I learned a lot, thanks.

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@NOMBEDES - thank you. Re: turntable. It depends on the turntable output. If just cartridge output, a preamp is required, then line level output into the analog input of the 600 xD. If preamp already built in and outputs line level, then directly into analog input of the 600 xD. If USB, then into a computer, typically to record. Suggest converting analog to digital first, like in this article I wrote: Computer Audiophile - Guide to Converting Analog Vinyl To Digital Files Using Windows

 

@ednaz - thank you for your kind words, I am glad you enjoyed it.

 

@avantgardiac - thank you, I really appreciate that. Those Zero 1 Pro's look cool. Love the waveguides.

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It's not often that I come away from a speaker review with anything more than "The reviewer really liked these speakers." This time, I got a lot of useful information I can apply in my own listening environment. Great job, and thanks for all your work on this. I hope you do many more reviews of this quality.


Listening Room: Mac mini (Roon Core) > iMac (HQP) > exaSound PlayPoint (as NAA) > exaSound e32 > W4S STP-SE > Benchmark AHB2 > Wilson Sophia Series 2 (Details)

Office: Mac Pro >  AudioQuest DragonFly Red > JBL LSR305

Mobile: iPhone 6S > AudioQuest DragonFly Black > JH Audio JH5

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Excellent review! One question though: could a phase measurement be also included? Many - maybe not all - will agree it is also an important part of a loudspeaker performance. That would be a first, I have never seen a phase being measured (and published) before...

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