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4 Pi vs Competitors [message #89632] Mon, 28 January 2019 23:24 Go to next message
nashvilleaudio is currently offline  nashvilleaudio
Messages: 2
Registered: January 2019

I'm considering purchasing a set of 4 Pi speakers ($1,000 each) and a set of 3 Pi subs ($500 each). Without selecting additional upgrades, the cost excluding receiver/amps comes to $3,000. I live in a house with an average size living room. I use my speakers for vinyl (Project record player), movies, and music streaming (Spotify, Pandora, etc.). I know two people who have built Pi speakers (and they love their setups), but I would prefer to purchase pre-built speakers.

My question for the community: Is Pi the correct route to take? I realize that there is a lot of subjectivity in preference, and passion in building your own speakers. I am prepared to spend $3,000 - $4,000 on a great audio setup. Do you all mind weighing in on why Pi might be the right/wrong route, and other competitors to consider/disregard?

Really appreciate the help
Re: 4 Pi vs Competitors [message #89655 is a reply to message #89632] Wed, 30 January 2019 15:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Barryso is currently offline  Barryso
Messages: 117
Registered: May 2009
If your friends are reasonably local then go sit and listen to their systems. That should tell you everything you need to know.

Otherwise, here's my two cents. With the standard disclaimer that everybody's ears are different ...

The Pi speakers are exceptional in several ways.

They are very good at getting the percussive nature of music right. It's not just that the drum strike will sound right but the guitar and bass will sound dynamic, too. There are too many audiophile speakers out there, in my opinion, that just can't reproduce percussion with any sort of realism and it leads to a very lifeless presentation. The percussive nature of the Pi's is one of my favorite things about them.

The models with the waveguides produce a very uniform presentation throughout their coverage. Sit on a couch in the sweet spot or on either side of the sweet spot and you'll pretty much get the same presentation. Everyone gets the best seat in the house because of their uniform coverage. It's actually a bit odd because when you finally get into the center position you are expecting a change ... and there isn't one.

They are very sensitive so they don't need amplifiers with massive power. They tend to be easy to drive with tube amps, too, as they have easy impedance curves. There are quite a few really good sounding low powered amplifiers out there that will pair well with the Pi's.

They'll also get loud. It's not something I do but if you really want uncompressed and loud then the Pi's will do it. Feed them enough watts and they just keep getting louder and louder.

So there's a few of the things that make the Pi's unique. Their percussive/dynamic quality really makes them stand out for me but other folks have different priorities so they may prefer other speakers. If you know what's important to you in a speaker it'll make the decision a lot easier.

Wayne brings a pair to The Lone Star Audio Fest every year so if you have a reason to visit Dallas it's worth stopping by for a listen. The Pi room is always one of the better sounding rooms and Wayne's speakers cost a fraction of what some of the other good sounding speakers cost at the show. It's also a really good show.

Re: 4 Pi vs Competitors [message #89838 is a reply to message #89632] Sat, 16 February 2019 15:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
nashvilleaudio is currently offline  nashvilleaudio
Messages: 2
Registered: January 2019
Thank you, Barryso! I was allowing time for others to respond, but I didn't want to leave you hanging. Really appreciate the thorough response.
Re: 4 Pi vs Competitors [message #89840 is a reply to message #89632] Mon, 18 February 2019 16:42 Go to previous message
tom-m is currently offline  tom-m
Messages: 44
Registered: December 2009
Location: Texas
Here are 2 speakers that I would put in a similar category as the 4Pi.

The smaller Klipsch Heritage speakers, Heresy or Forte. Prices on the new speakers are not too bad. My guess is the 4Pi may be a little better, more neutral.

The other to consider is the new JBL L100 Classic. More pricey. I have not heard these, but what I have read online was positive.

I have a pair of 4Pi, with JBL woofer, and crossovers built by Wayne. I may sell the 4Pi pair. And I have another pair using the 3Pi crossover, built by Wayne, with a different horn and Radian compression driver. I like them both. Wayne does good work. I just don't need 2 pair.

DFW area

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