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beolab 3 with or without beolab 11

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Duels
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Duels posted on Tue, Aug 19 2014 9:57 PM

Hey folks

I currently have a beosound 5 / beolab 3 set-up.  I adore everything about it.  The sound from the lab 3's is excellent (very punchy bass and crisp high notes).   However, I'm always looking to improve where I can and my question is whether  adding a beolab 11 would enhance what I've already got.

I've thought about a beolab19 but think that this might be a bit OTT alongside the lab 3's, particularly with neighbours in mind.  I do think that the design of the lab 11 is also pretty fine.

Any thoughts would be much appreciated.

 

 

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moxxey
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moxxey replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 11:00 AM

Duels:

Hey folks

I currently have a beosound 5 / beolab 3 set-up.  I adore everything about it.  The sound from the lab 3's is excellent (very punchy bass and crisp high notes).   However, I'm always looking to improve where I can and my question is whether  adding a beolab 11 would enhance what I've already got.

I have had both setups so can comment.

The BL3s were impressive without the BL11. The BL11 did improve the BL3s, marginally. Small improvement, perhaps 10-15% more bass? If you can pick up a well-priced pre-loved BL11, it's worth adding. If not, it's probably not worth adding as the improvement (although present), is marginal.

The BL18s are a BL3+BL11 upgrade, though. Same bright sound, but deeper bass and more powerful all-round, I've found. I love my BL18s (but still own the BL3/BL11 combo, too).

 

Duels
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Duels replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 1:18 PM

Many thanks for your reply.  Your comment re 10-15% improvement is probably what I would have hoped for/expected and could well be worth investing in.

Also very interested in your observations on the BL18s compared to the BL3's and BL11.  Do you have them with a sub or without?  When I've heard them demonstrated I've felt that they need the BL19 to complete the sound.  Without a sub, the punch low-down that I love with the BL3's just wasn't there. However, with the BL19 they were extremely impressive and of course look absolutely gorgeous.   It may well be down to the acoustics in the shop and that a home demo is required.

Duels
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Duels replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 2:54 PM

Moxxey

 

an update....... Just been to my local dealer and test drove the BL18s again. Fell in love. Great deal.  No absence of bass. Delivery and installation tonight.

Joy! 

Thanks again..

 

moxxey
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moxxey replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 2:56 PM

Duels:

Many thanks for your reply.  Your comment re 10-15% improvement is probably what I would have hoped for/expected and could well be worth investing in.

If you can get a BL11 at a reasonable price, definitely worth adding to your system.

Duels:

Also very interested in your observations on the BL18s compared to the BL3's and BL11.  Do you have them with a sub or without?  

No, the BL18s do not need a sub. Having listened to my BL3s for eight years (without a sub, then the last two years with a sub), then listening to the BL18s over the last 6 months, the BL18s are like the BL3s+BL11 combined, plus about 15-20%. It has the same bright sound, but slightly more rounded, with slightly better bass.

True a sub adds even more, but the difference is more subtle. I prefer the BL18s standalone than with the BL19 sub, for example. I took a few people to the B&O store and the four people I asked, all preferred the BL18s without the BL19, for regular audio. The BL19 made the BL18s sound more mid-range, to us. The BL18s are simply incredible for listening to live music.

Sal
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Sal replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 4:02 PM

I had a Lab 3 / Lab 2 combination for years with a first gen Avant and Beosound 9000. I can't say I was ever displeased. Maybe a Lab 2 pre-owned (might be sometimes cheaper than a Lab11) can deliver the punch for both audio only / video (when and if you add these to a television). I love the fact that the Lab 2 is subtle in the sound it delivers. It rarely if ever took the stage away from the Lab 3, or the sounds which it was processing through to the Lab 3.

Duels
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Duels replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 4:29 PM

I suspect I was posting my update (above) at precisely the same time as Moxxey was posting his latest (and very helpful) comments.

In a nutshell I agree with Moxxey's analysis and earlier this afternoon fell in love with the BL18's with oak fronts which (because I live half a mile from my local dealer) will be delivered tonight.  BL3's traded in.

cant wait to get home!!!!!!!

 

moxxey
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moxxey replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 8:16 PM

Duels:

In a nutshell I agree with Moxxey's analysis and earlier this afternoon fell in love with the BL18's with oak fronts which (because I live half a mile from my local dealer) will be delivered tonight.  BL3's traded in.

Great news! This might not be to everyone's taste, but get the George Michael Symphonica deluxe version. The tracks sound simply outstanding through the BL18s. The BL18s handle this kind of audio, amazingly well, especially as it's live. Really sounds like they are playing in the same room!

Essentially, it's a superb demo album for showing people the power of your BL18s, in my opinion. Even my dealer was impressed.

BTW I edited my post above as I wrote "BL20" when I meant "BL19" sub!

Duels
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Duels replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 8:25 PM

I'm happy to listen to almost anything that proves the quality of these speakers.  I cannot say just how impressed I am with what I've heard so far.  Familiar tracks sound new, if that makes sense? Rich full sound, the punchy base I've always loved from my BL3s but taken to another level.  

Plus, the twins (left and right) look absolutely beautiful.

right, I'm off to find George Michael on spotify

 

 

 

 

 

elephant
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elephant replied on Wed, Aug 20 2014 11:41 PM
Duels:

I'm happy to listen to almost anything that proves the quality of these speakers. I cannot say just how impressed I am with what I've heard so far. Familiar tracks sound new, if that makes sense? Rich full sound, the punchy base I've always loved from my BL3s but taken to another level.

Plus, the twins (left and right) look absolutely beautiful.

right, I'm off to find George Michael on spotify

Congratulations on a very happy outcome !

BeoNut since '75

Superpaul
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Hi, I also hv BL3 and want much more bass.  So, I consider to upgrade.  Have u compare BL18 & BL20.  Do u think BL18 is suitable for music & BL20 for movie?

Duels
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Duels replied on Thu, Aug 21 2014 7:09 AM

Superpaul:

Hi, I also hv BL3 and want much more bass.  So, I consider to upgrade.  Have u compare BL18 & BL20.  Do u think BL18 is suitable for music & BL20 for movie?

What I can say is that having owned them for 12 hours the BL18s are absolutely fantastic for music.  I loved my BL3s but the sound from the BL18s is more complete and powerful all round. The base is most definitely improved.  I've tried them out with all sorts of different flavours of music so far from Damien Rice and Birdy to Kings of Leon, Bastille, Imagine Dragons and Pendulum.  And everything I've tried so far sounds incredible.

Although I don't generally listen to much classical I went for a couple of piano concertos (Chopin and Bach) late last night and the sound just took my breath away.  So pure and clear.

I also tried some of George Michael's live symphonica on Moxxey's recommendation which was immense and showed their capabilities off extremely well.

From what I've heard in demos the BL20s are fantastic too .  In store they sounded almost as good as the BL5 to me but I haven't had them at home so can't directly compare with my BL18 experience. But for me, the design of the BL18s would make me chose them over the BL20s.  I fully appreciate that it's a matter of personal taste but the BL18s are a work of art and turn heads in the same way as my BS9000 used to ( I use a BS5 now).  They don't look like speakers or anything else for that matter.  And that visual wow factor was what first got me into B&O in the first place (together with my father and grandfather!).

I haven't heard either with movies so can't comment on that I'm afraid.

Superpaul
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thanks, enjoy BL18:)

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