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Considering the new Buchardt A500 Active system


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1 hour ago, Topman_Chief said:

It's a fair observation, given the assumption "Class D is inferior to Class A or A/B" is still being held by many. I can only go by what I've read, but for me it feels like Class D is being unfairly branded as inferior due to early versions - just as early CD player reviews caused many long term views that digital audio was inferior. Being poorly implemented in AVRs probably hasn't helped its cause either. Class D seems to have caught up in terms of sounding relaxed and organic, while still retaining better overall performance specs. Again, this is what I've read, because I'm not fortunate enough to be in a position to try them all out. But the real point is that there is so much great tech in the Buchardt A500, Kii Three, Dutch & Dutch 8c, etc. that the amplifiers and the drivers are assumed to be great because the overall sound is great. 

 

The good news from all this? We'll see more and more of these types of speakers, and they'll only get better and cheaper. Think about the materials list for these speakers compared to what is sitting in your system today. Much of the tech is in the software, which will be quickly replicated. Look at the three manufacturers above - all are fairly new. The big brands are capable of most of this, but they know it will canabilise their existing ranges. 

 

I think you are correct, " the assumption "Class D is inferior to Class A or A/B" is still being held by many". Unless someone try active speakers and suddenly class D is sooo good.

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None in recent times. I grew up with old school technics in the home, I've played with out of the box 5.1 stuff (which sucked) and most recently binned a sound-bar before I tried to do my music experi

I just ordered a walnut speaker bundle?

Hasn't that ship already sailed? Quite a few still use AB class amps for the tweeter, but let's be clear, IMO, it's class D improvements that has enabled this surge in the range and quality of actives

Certainly was unusually explicit praise compared to the usual Darko review delivery style.

I realise that he's reporting these speakers as having great bottom end extension and weight. However, what do people think are the limitations or possibilities of adding subwoofer(s) to these?

Could it be done?

Or these need to be treated as a non-tamper single box type solution?

 

Edit: just saw that they offer the A700 model. I think if you wanted more certainty about the sub end of things you go that way.

Edited by pistachio
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2 hours ago, pistachio said:

Certainly was unusually explicit praise compared to the usual Darko review delivery style.

I realise that he's reporting these speakers as having great bottom end extension and weight. However, what do people think are the limitations or possibilities of adding subwoofer(s) to these?

Could it be done?

Or these need to be treated as a non-tamper single box type solution?

 

My understanding is that Buchardt have a compatible subwoofer in mind sometime in the unknown future

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2 hours ago, Gee Emm said:

My understanding is that Buchardt have a compatible subwoofer in mind sometime in the unknown future

That's great to know!

 

I was going to respond to the query above and say if you need a sub, the A700 may be more appropriate. But floorstanders don't always fit your space, so bookshelf speakers and a sub or two can be easier to locate. Moving subs around can also provide a better bottom end response in your room.

 

Looking forward to hearing what these A500's are like :)

 

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12 minutes ago, wikeeboy said:

Review on Audiophile Style...  https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/review-buchardt-audio-a500-speaker-system-r962/

 

Can't wait to get mine and compare them to my Kii Three's (and possibly Kef LS50 II's)

Given that you said you could not feel the bass with your Kii, would be interesting to get your feedback on the Burchardt.  Note that reviewer has the BXT module with the Kii Three.

 

Going OT, can't see the LS500 IIs delivering on the bass either?

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5 hours ago, Snoopy8 said:

Given that you said you could not feel the bass with your Kii, would be interesting to get your feedback on the Burchardt.  Note that reviewer has the BXT module with the Kii Three.

 

Going OT, can't see the LS500 IIs delivering on the bass either?

 

Don't get me wrong, i love the Kii Three's. I also really enjoyed the Kef LS50w's (Version 1).

 

The Kef's are of course in a different league (price bracket) to the Kii's, and you take that in to consideration when you listen to them.

 

You need the right speaker to fit the application... and at the moment, most of my listening happens in our compromised shared kitchen/lounge/dining. In that space, where i'm not often being overly 'critical with my listening, it's cramped, speakers need to be close up to the wall, and if using stands i'm very limited with positioning (too wide), there's only so much you can expect.

 

That being my current situation, the TAD's i have are a waste in that area. Sure i can sit them there and play them, but you only get a poofteenth of what they're capable of. On the flip side, the Kii's really make the most of that setting.

 

I had Kef LS50's sitting on top of my TV bench, and i found them a lot of fun. Very friendly/usable for the family too. I liked the sound and imagining, and with a little tweaking (dsp) the bottom end was good.

 

I have given the Kii's more time lately, and hooked a turntable up to it. They really do a great job and are very flexible. The bottom end is plenty enough for sure. I play them flat, no bass boost, but tweak the boundary setting when i want a little extra. The bass does not punch you in to the back wall like the TAD's can, but you don't expect it to.

 

I think my earlier comments were not taken the right way (poor communication on my behalf). The Kii's can do plenty of bass (and accurately), that's for sure. It's only when you can A/B them side by side with something like the TAD's do you realise the differences and what you've been missing. There's just more depth, weight, scale, dynamics.... but we're talking completely different beasts, price points and of course driver sizes! I only compared the Kii's previously to the TAD's because people often say they've traded in their $100k+ systems for them, and whilst the Kii's are absolutely amazing, in my experience, there is still a difference with a mega bucks high end system containing big floorstanders and a heap of boxes to run them (unfortunately).

 

The reality is that in my current space, the Kii's do a better job than anything else i've had in that position (TAD's included). For that reason, i'd love to hear in that same space what the Dutch & Dutch 8C's, Buchardt A500, and Kef LS50w!!'s can do. The A500's i've ordered, and i'll likely buy some LS50wII's as well. Only missing the D&D 8C's if anyone wants to sell me a used pair!

 

I've included some crappy pics of my room so you can see what i'm playing with (apologies for the poor light and quality!)

IMG_5589 copy.jpg

IMG_5590 copy.jpg

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49 minutes ago, wikeeboy said:

You need the right speaker to fit the application... and at the moment, most of my listening happens in our compromised shared kitchen/lounge/dining. In that space, where i'm not often being overly 'critical with my listening, it's cramped, speakers need to be close up to the wall, and if using stands i'm very limited with positioning (too wide), there's only so much you 

Have you tried setting the Kii 90 degrees and listening at end of soda?  I had a similar challenge in my shared room until I turned the speakers to point down the length of the room.

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These actually look very interesting. The only bugbear I have is the loss of room correction if you go XLR input instead of the hub. 
 

will be very interested in hearing your thoughts @wikeeboy. If I test pilot these, I’d be going the floor standers though.

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On 08/10/2020 at 2:28 PM, Satanica said:

Having the active electronics and amplifiers outside of the speaker generally means they're going to be less proprietary and easier to maintain.

The proprietariness of the Buchardt speakers is what turns me off them especially when they are a purchase from the manufacturer and one who happens to be in Europe.

I'd be shocked if they didn't sound superb though.

It’s a double edged sword isn’t it? You buy all-in-one solutions for their integration, not their flexibility.  If the versatility of swapping amps in and out is a priority then I would think active speakers are the wrong choice for your needs.  “Proprietariness” can be offset by good customer service and good warranty.

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5 hours ago, BugPowderDust said:

These actually look very interesting. The only bugbear I have is the loss of room correction if you go XLR input instead of the hub. 

I understand that the analog XLR inputs are converted to digital for the DSP to work  (same as Kii Three).  The additional A2D conversion does not appear affect sound quality.  In the AS review, the reviewer was using an Auralic Altair G1 to input analog XLR to the A500. 

 

On 20/11/2020 at 3:19 PM, wikeeboy said:

Review on Audiophile Style...  https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/review-buchardt-audio-a500-speaker-system-r962/

 

Can't wait to get mine and compare them to my Kii Three's (and possibly Kef LS50 II's)

Does your order include the hub? There is a promotion till 1 Dec.  Looking forward to your comparison even more based on what I discovered below.

 

-----

Been looking at the Buchardt A500 in detail.  Some differences between the Kii Three and A500 (aside from the huge price gap!)

  • A500 uses Wisa (wireless) which works  at 24/96 PCM; Kii Three uses Ethernet cabling with internal protocol
  • Kii Three can handle DSD via USB input on Control; A500 does not take DSD
  • Buchardt hub has a lot more connectivity options than Kii Control
  • Burchardt hub includes a remote; can buy Apple TV remote to use with Kii Control

I suspect that if I started now,  I would trial the Buchardt A500 or maybe go up to the A700!  

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On 20/11/2020 at 10:55 PM, Snoopy8 said:

Have you tried setting the Kii 90 degrees and listening at end of soda?  I had a similar challenge in my shared room until I turned the speakers to point down the length of the room.

 

Do you mean no toe in, flat face? No... My assumption has been that they're too wide apart as it is, and i'm seated too close hence the current toe-in. I'll give it a try mate and let you know. Thanks for the tip.

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57 minutes ago, Snoopy8 said:

I understand that the analog XLR inputs are converted to digital for the DSP to work  (same as Kii Three).  The additional A2D conversion does not appear affect sound quality.  In the AS review, the reviewer was using an Auralic Altair G1 to input analog XLR to the A500. 

 

Does your order include the hub? There is a promotion till 1 Dec.  Looking forward to your comparison even more based on what I discovered below.

 

-----

Been looking at the Buchardt A500 in detail.  Some differences between the Kii Three and A500 (aside from the huge price gap!)

  • A500 uses Wisa (wireless) which works  at 24/96 PCM; Kii Three uses Ethernet cabling with internal protocol
  • Kii Three can handle DSD via USB input on Control; A500 does not take DSD
  • Buchardt hub has a lot more connectivity options than Kii Control
  • Burchardt hub includes a remote; can buy Apple TV remote to use with Kii Control

I suspect that if I started now,  I would trial the Buchardt A500 or maybe go up to the A700!  

 

I purchased the bundle which includes the hub.

 

Adding a couple of subs could be fun... may try that also down the track.

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12 hours ago, wikeeboy said:

 

Do you mean no toe in, flat face? No... My assumption has been that they're too wide apart as it is, and i'm seated too close hence the current toe-in. I'll give it a try mate and let you know. Thanks for the tip.

Have a L shaped room, with TV on the long side of the L.  Like you, I had my old speakers next to my TV, but avoided spreading them too far apart.  The downside was lots of  empty space to the left of the left speaker.  The hardest part was convincing myself, and the better half, that it did not look odd with HT speakers facing one way and the stereo at right angles.  The Kii Three now face down the length of the L with much better sound.   

 

12 hours ago, wikeeboy said:

 

I purchased the bundle which includes the hub.

 

Adding a couple of subs could be fun... may try that also down the track.

Looking forward to your comparison with the Kii Three.  The AS reviewer appeared to enamored with the hub, but for serious listening chose not to use it. Will be interesting to know whether Wisa 24/96 has any impact on sound quality, especially in less than ideal wifi setups, but so far, have not read anyone finding fault.

 

My understanding is that you will need Wisa enabled subs to interact with the Buchardt hub.  If you intend to experiment with a standard sub, better to get a Wisa box which has a streamer DAC to output analog eg. Primare SC15.  

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I have been considering active speakers for a while now and when I saw these Buchardts with added functionality like DSP, master tunings and all streaming options I decided to order them.

My only slight reservations are the limitation of 24bit/96 on wireless transmission to speakers (not a biggie) and they are not fully Roon certified (a biggie, but hopefully will be done by the time they are delivered).

 

Now I have to wait until Feb which is the estimated ship date before I can find out how they sound.....😒

 

I also like the direct sale model and trial period to keep prices down but wondering how much of a pain it will be if it develops faults.

 

Anyway, can't wait to listen to them!   

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On 27/11/2020 at 10:44 AM, sir sanders zingmore said:

Buchardt have a Black Friday special on: EUR 200 savings on all products if that helps anyone's decision making 


Noticed this on the website, does that make the special package price in white A500 now €3350?

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Currently run Dynaudio Focus 200 XD and would be tempted to get the Buchardts, not able to find any online comparisons but the additional bottom end and more versatile DSP tempting.

 

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On 08/10/2020 at 2:16 PM, sir sanders zingmore said:

It's the fact that when you build a complete unit like this you have an opportunity to makes sure everything works well together

This guy gets it ....  😎

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2 hours ago, hammerharry said:


Noticed this on the website, does that make the special package price in white A500 now €3350?

 

I had a quick look and i think the 200 euro is off stock they're holding. The A500 'special price' is due to it being a preorder so don't think another 200 comes off that...

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2 hours ago, wikeeboy said:

 

I had a quick look and i think the 200 euro is off stock they're holding. The A500 'special price' is due to it being a preorder so don't think another 200 comes off that...

That was the price last week, states save €200 on all products.

Have asked the question via their Facebook page but no response.

Adding item to basket retains the €3550.

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Can anyone help a dummy here?    I'm looking at these instead of a KEF ls50/bluesound system, but wondered if this system easily integrates into multi room sound?

 

I have a large room and whenever we have guests/parties I like to have both systems operating, which is currently by chromecast set up as a room, so we can match volume and delays as well.

 

Can these Burchardts play with others nicely in this regard?

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36 minutes ago, pharmaboy said:

Can anyone help a dummy here?    I'm looking at these instead of a KEF ls50/bluesound system, but wondered if this system easily integrates into multi room sound?

 

I have a large room and whenever we have guests/parties I like to have both systems operating, which is currently by chromecast set up as a room, so we can match volume and delays as well.

 

Can these Burchardts play with others nicely in this regard?

According to this guide, WISA can work in a 9 X 9 m room, but not as a multi room setup.

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I am looking at using a separate pre-amp with two outputs.

One to the WISA black box.

One to another power amp running another pair of speakers.

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On 05/12/2020 at 3:14 PM, pharmaboy said:

Can anyone help a dummy here?    I'm looking at these instead of a KEF ls50/bluesound system, but wondered if this system easily integrates into multi room sound?

 

I have a large room and whenever we have guests/parties I like to have both systems operating, which is currently by chromecast set up as a room, so we can match volume and delays as well.

 

Can these Burchardts play with others nicely in this regard?

 

Stumbled across this question so thought I'd jump in with my experiences to date.

 

I've had the A500s for about 4 months now (they are amazing and happy to answer any questions if you have any) but I have been playing with integrating them with my outdoor system so it's all in sync for a full house mode. 

 

I started with a hope that Airplay 2 would suffice for a party mode, but the sync was way out and Apple doesn't offer signal delay to get it synced up. 

 

I dropped the airplay source and bought a chrome-cast audio a the source for the outdoor speakers and set that up with the A500s as a group and that works perfectly. I had a bit of play with delay in the google home app but really didn't even need to. It's simple, available directly from Spotify or Tidal, works with voice control etc. 

 

Only thing to note is that I exclusively stream music, and this setup does that really well but I can't play an external source like CD player around the house like you could with Bluesound. That said you could always used a Bluesound as the source with these speakers rather than using the streamer in the hub and get all that extra functionality. 

 

 

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18 hours ago, RoscoP said:

 

Stumbled across this question so thought I'd jump in with my experiences to date.

 

I've had the A500s for about 4 months now (they are amazing and happy to answer any questions if you have any) but I have been playing with integrating them with my outdoor system so it's all in sync for a full house mode. 

 

I started with a hope that Airplay 2 would suffice for a party mode, but the sync was way out and Apple doesn't offer signal delay to get it synced up. 

 

I dropped the airplay source and bought a chrome-cast audio a the source for the outdoor speakers and set that up with the A500s as a group and that works perfectly. I had a bit of play with delay in the google home app but really didn't even need to. It's simple, available directly from Spotify or Tidal, works with voice control etc. 

 

Only thing to note is that I exclusively stream music, and this setup does that really well but I can't play an external source like CD player around the house like you could with Bluesound. That said you could always used a Bluesound as the source with these speakers rather than using the streamer in the hub and get all that extra functionality. 

 

 

What speakers did you use previously?

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On 12/12/2020 at 10:17 AM, hammerharry said:

What speakers did you use previously?

None in recent times. I grew up with old school technics in the home, I've played with out of the box 5.1 stuff (which sucked) and most recently binned a sound-bar before I tried to do my music experience justice with something 'proper'.

 

 

 

I spent a good year auditioning, KEF LS50, KEF R3, Klipsch Reference, Dynaudio, D-tech, Martin Logan but those were always in a controlled environment (not in the home). 

 

As such I don't have the best basis of comparison for the in home sound, but in all my auditions could feel something was missing compared to what I had in my head as to what I was looking for (e.g. LS50 for all it's accuracy just felt like it lacked body, Dynaudio were effortless and integrated but sounded unremarkable etc).

 

All I can say is that I haven't felt anything is missing from the A500s at all and I still can't wait to get home and turn them on each day. 

 

 

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my cousin at last has ordered a pair of A500s. i cant wait to see and hear them now. he even asked if could run them in for him. which i indicated i would but i maybe too busy running my own system in.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I was looking at the A700.

They are not as big a floorstander as you might think.

About 28 kg each, 1000 mm high (1035 mm with the feet), 180 mm wide and 280 mm deep).

 

they have 6” drivers, and are only 7” wide.

 

They seem to be small form floorstanders with bigger sound.

I might be interested in 18 months time - a new project looms.

Really clean, simple lines, few components needed, and few wires needed.  Yay!

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I ordered the A500s last month. I would like the A700s, but in order to save $4k, I'll start with the A500s and if they satisfy, then I'll stick with them and sell some of my existing components. If not, I could either send them back or upgrade to the A700s.

 

I current run some floorstanders with 2 sub-woofers, so it will be interesting to see how this works with the A500s. If you pair in the sub-woofers, you lose the room correction (which is managed by the WISA box). If I use the WISA box, then I can't run subwoofers unless WISA enabled (I have a Sonos sub in my other system which I believe would work and I might be able to re-purpose if required).

 

 

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I reckon my A500's should be here in 6 weeks.

Just sayin'... for a friend.

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10 minutes ago, Gee Emm said:

I reckon my A500's should be here in 6 weeks.

Just sayin'... for a friend.

Sounds like I might be racing you...

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1 hour ago, tfj100 said:

Sounds like I might be racing you...

 

Which colour?

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2 minutes ago, Gee Emm said:

 

Which colour?

I went for walnut. I really don't like white speakers and black look a bit bland. How about yours?

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1 hour ago, tfj100 said:

I went for walnut. I really don't like white speakers and black look a bit bland. How about yours?

 

Damn, i guess i'll have to just suck it up and be happy with my plain old boring white ones then :D

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