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Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

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Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby James Steele » Mon Apr 11, 2016 1:10 pm

Well it looks like Equator Audio finally has these in stock again. I've been somewhat tiring of my old Event ASP8s and have heard good things about the Equators. Seems hard to beat at $399. I feel some money "burning a hole in my pocket" as my dad used to say.
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby mikehalloran » Mon Apr 11, 2016 1:46 pm

I love mine still. I have also resisted the temptation to purchase the latest version to see if I could hear a difference. When I hear problems in a recording, it's the recording.

I can't imagine anyone using these without a subwoofer, however. Yes the bottom end is good for a 5" speaker—but it's not that good.

I'm using this sub with my D5s. Very good match.
http://www.jblpro.com/www/products/reco ... wwLrBMrKV4

I bought one of these for my daughter at the introductory price last year and thought it ok (I do prefer the JBL).
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/K10Sub
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby mikehalloran » Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:04 pm

Rather than start a new thread...

I upgraded to the v.2 of the Equator D8 and received my pair a couple of hours ago. Right now, The Jethro Tull Christmas Album from 2003 is playing—there are worse albums to try. Steely Dan was first. Nice!

They aren't broken in yet so it's hard to say what the bottom end really is but I am liking them a whole lot—these aren't going back.

First off, these don't sound that much different than my D5s but there is some difference. A little more efficient, better mid-bass... still needs a subwoofer, IMO, if not as obvious as the D5s. Like the D5s, I have the boundary knobs in the #2, flat position. My passive Radial MC3 controller doesn't present as hot a signal as an active controller but it's enough for me.

My studio is quite noisy and my first gen. D5s picked up every stray electrical signal in the neighborhood, it seems. Star Quad input cables helped a lot as did a Furman PL-1800 PF R. Star Quad power cables made little difference. Program material masked it quite well but it was annoying and I'm glad it's nearly gone at last! I swapped out a Furman PL-8C and noticed no difference.

These D8s are much better shielded. There's still a tiny bit of residual noise but I now have to get close to the cone to hear it. Keeping the Star Quad cables in the chain, of course, as I don't expect miracles. I would expect the current generation D5s to be equally quiet, BTW.

Perhaps another day, I'll be curious enough to take the Furman and Star Quad cables out of the chain to see if it makes a difference. Today is not that day. What works, works!

I can't say that I am hearing any great revelations in my mixes over the D5. There is better stereo imaging of low frequencies as I expected. I'll know after many hours if they are less fatiguing but the D5s are very good in that regards. With a decent sub, D5s gave great mix.

I'm going to have to rethink my desk. I practically had to use a shoehorn to get the new monitors onto it. There are a bookcase and lamp that need to be somewhere else. I'll figure it out, no doubt. My big concern was that these would overwhelm my desk and not sound good at the lower levels where I prefer to listen. Those fears were entirely unfounded, I'm glad to report.

Ted gives you a 60 day eval period. No need in my case. These are keepers and the D5s will go on Craigslist or eBay very soon.
July 2010 iMac 2.93G i7 Quad, OWC eSATA mod, 32G RAM, OS 10.13.1
828mkII FW; MOTU MTP/AV USB with Firmware 2.0.1; DP 9.5.1; IK-NI-Izotope-PSP-Garritan Antares, 32Lives, MachFive 3.2.1
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby James Steele » Fri Dec 30, 2016 4:33 pm

mikehalloran wrote:Rather than start a new thread...

I upgraded to the v.2 of the Equator D8 and received my pair a couple of hours ago. Right now, The Jethro Tull Christmas Album from 2003 is playing—there are worse albums to try. Steely Dan was first. Nice!

They aren't broken in yet so it's hard to say what the bottom end really is but I am liking them a whole lot—these aren't going back.

First off, these don't sound that much different than my D5s but there is some difference. A little more efficient, better mid-bass... still needs a subwoofer, IMO, if not as obvious as the D5s. Like the D5s, I have the boundary knobs in the #2, flat position. My passive Radial MC3 controller doesn't present as hot a signal as an active controller but it's enough for me.

My studio is quite noisy and my first gen. D5s picked up every stray electrical signal in the neighborhood, it seems. Star Quad input cables helped a lot as did a Furman PL-1800 PF R. Star Quad power cables made little difference. Program material masked it quite well but it was annoying and I'm glad it's nearly gone at last! I swapped out a Furman PL-8C and noticed no difference.

These D8s are much better shielded. There's still a tiny bit of residual noise but I now have to get close to the cone to hear it. Keeping the Star Quad cables in the chain, of course, as I don't expect miracles. I would expect the current generation D5s to be equally quiet, BTW.

Perhaps another day, I'll be curious enough to take the Furman and Star Quad cables out of the chain to see if it makes a difference. Today is not that day. What works, works!

I can't say that I am hearing any great revelations in my mixes over the D5. There is better stereo imaging of low frequencies as I expected. I'll know after many hours if they are less fatiguing but the D5s are very good in that regards. With a decent sub, D5s gave great mix.

I'm going to have to rethink my desk. I practically had to use a shoehorn to get the new monitors onto it. There are a bookcase and lamp that need to be somewhere else. I'll figure it out, no doubt. My big concern was that these would overwhelm my desk and not sound good at the lower levels where I prefer to listen. Those fears were entirely unfounded, I'm glad to report.

Ted gives you a 60 day eval period. No need in my case. These are keepers and the D5s will go on Craigslist or eBay very soon.



Ahhh... thank you so much for the info! I've been becoming less enamored of my Event ASP8s recently. They sound somewhat "boxy" to me. Wanted to check out coaxials and noticed that Ted has the D8s in stock and am very much interested. With the 60-day trial you can't go wrong. I just have to come up with the $$$. Used ASP8s aren't getting much these days. I'll have to make a list of some used gear to turn over to make it fly. But again, thanks for sharing this Mike. Anxious to hear your impressions the more you use them! :)
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby mikehalloran » Fri Dec 30, 2016 5:46 pm

Since I have extra cables, am wondering if I should set the D5s on top for an A/B comparison. My Radial MC3 makes it easy as can adjust the trim pots for balance and switch the sub in/out.

Being one-armed makes it difficult. Unpacking and setting up speakers that weigh 25Lb each was hard. So, not today...

I am noticing that everything I listen to has a better sounding kick drum. Back to the mid-bass.
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby mikehalloran » Sat Dec 31, 2016 2:19 pm

mikehalloran wrote:Since I have extra cables, am wondering if I should set the D5s on top for an A/B comparison. My Radial MC3 makes it easy as can adjust the trim pots for balance and switch the sub in/out.
...

I am noticing that everything I listen to has a better sounding kick drum. Back to the mid-bass.

Did the above. Adjusted the trim pots on my MC3 so that the levels are as close as I can get them. As the speakers break in, I'm still balancing the levels between the D8s and my JBL sub. Having those trim pots on top makes this quite easy.
Image

Put both pairs into the #2 flat position (how they sound best to me). Put on Steely Dan Best of and some of my own tracks, new and old.

Besides the kick drum, acoustic guitars and cymbals sound better on the D8s. The highs and mid bass sound more natural—not by a huge amount but more than enough to convince me I spent the money well. I never heard any moments that caused me to rethink my mixes beyond some minor eq tweaks if I were to revisit them.

The D5s are very good speakers; the D8s are better. I don't know how my 1st gen D5s would stack up against the current version other than the new ones would have to be quieter.

I'm not remembering that much noise in my D5s when new and think that the noise is a problem that developed over time. I will contact Equator this week and find out how much it would cost to send mine back for repair or upgrade.
July 2010 iMac 2.93G i7 Quad, OWC eSATA mod, 32G RAM, OS 10.13.1
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LogicPro X 10.3.2, Finale 25.5, 2014.5, Encore 5.0.7, Notion 6, Overture 5, TwistedWave 1.18, DSP-Q 4.4, QuickTime Pro 7.6.6, SmartScore Pro X2 10.5.5, Toast 16
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby James Steele » Sat Dec 31, 2016 2:34 pm

Thanks for the follow up, Mike!
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby mikehalloran » Sat Dec 31, 2016 2:37 pm

A word about the Radial MC3. I bought it because, being passive, it couldn't introduce high-frequency noises into my system. It has control over my sub, two pairs of mains — exactly what I needed. The three headphone outs are active but only have one overall level control, not an issue for me. $treet is $259.

Image

Some have complained about these using such terms as "grit" — whatever that means. In any case, a number of people were unhappy with these. I figured they have been on the market long enough and pulled the trigger at Sweetwater.

I had some issues about 6 months after I got it. The channels didn't balance correctly and rotating the plugs in the jacks restored it for awhile. Finally, I sprayed some DeOxIt into the jacks and it has been perfect ever since. This was about a year or so ago.

The trim pots and polarity switch for the sub means I never have to go under my desk or reach behind my mains to adjust my system. Works for me.
July 2010 iMac 2.93G i7 Quad, OWC eSATA mod, 32G RAM, OS 10.13.1
828mkII FW; MOTU MTP/AV USB with Firmware 2.0.1; DP 9.5.1; IK-NI-Izotope-PSP-Garritan Antares, 32Lives, MachFive 3.2.1
LogicPro X 10.3.2, Finale 25.5, 2014.5, Encore 5.0.7, Notion 6, Overture 5, TwistedWave 1.18, DSP-Q 4.4, QuickTime Pro 7.6.6, SmartScore Pro X2 10.5.5, Toast 16
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Re: Equator D5 Opinions (Again)

Postby James Steele » Sat Dec 31, 2016 4:41 pm

Cool... I have the Presonus Central Station that I've had for years. Seems to work fine for me. Not sure if sub is trimmable but I think it is. It's Monitor C which is meant for the sub I believe as selecting it does not cause A or B to become unselected. It's not passive AFAIK.
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