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CONFUSED ABOUT 28s vs 50s?!!!

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geomir
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geomir posted on Fri, Jul 9 2021 6:41 AM

I am getting the harmony tv. but am doubled minded about the speakers.....should i get 4 beolab 28s vs getting the 50s and at the back getting 18s. 

The 50s are display demo item so they are giving me a 20% discount, but still with the 2 18s at the back its the more expensive options by at least 9k usd I think. 

 

 

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The Beonic Man
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Well I would say that if you’re listening to more music than watching the TV then go the 50s route, otherwise the 28s will be more than capable. I am also thinking if your buying the harmony to begin with, and prepared to buy the 50s, 18s and/or 28s then it sounds like its not particularly a financial decision in which case go for the best, why compromise at all if your not compromising on the tv?

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BeoJosh
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It’ll be an amazing setup no matter what you decide, so don’t stress too much—just enjoy. But if you can swing the extra $9k, I’d recommend going with the 50s/18s combo. I was in a similar situation to you a few months ago, having just ordered the 50s to replace my front 18s with my living room Harmony when the 28s were announced. I thought of going with 2 pairs of 28s instead. Having auditioned them both, the 28s are very impressive, but the 50s are in an entirely different league IMO. I ended up keeping my 50s order (and will have the same setup as you’re thinking about in our living room) and bought a pair of 28s to pair as rear surrounds with the Harmony in my office, and to be used on their own for music from my turntable there. Both sets of speakers are being installed next week just before I go away on holiday, and I can report back further once I’m back. By then you’ll likely have made your choice—and really, you can’t go wrong either way. Let us know what you decide.

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Mikipidia
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Not as good no, but better for movies as the sound stays the same from speaker to speaker. Also if you like volume and do sort of semi passive listening you can set them up in double stereo and every corner will sound the same.

If space is really constrained, 50’s will work, but you will not get the best out of them by having them fight physics all the time.

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Esax
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Answered (Verified) Esax replied on Sat, Jul 10 2021 9:41 PM
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Go for the beolab 50. The difference is like marying the mother insted of the lovly girl.

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BeoJosh
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Answered (Verified) BeoJosh replied on Thu, Jul 22 2021 11:17 PM
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I’ll post more detailed thoughts when I’m back and have spent more quality time with the new 28s and 50s. I only had about an hour with the 50s and even less with the 28s after they were installed before I had to leave for vacation. My initial impression of the 28s was even better than when I auditioned them in store, where I found the bass to be unnaturally boomy on some music. Whether it was a software update or the ARC for my room, that was gone—and all that was left was great sound. But while the 28s sound great, the 50s have been phenomenal. In my short time with them, I’ve already heard things in my favorite music that I’ve never heard before—and all vacation I’ve been dying to get home so I can listen to them some more.

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Chris Townsend
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I listened to the 28s after listening to some 90s right next to them, and I was mightily impressed. But and considering their price relative to some 50s I’ve seen being advertised, I’d always have in the back of my mind as to whether I should have just got the 50s.

A friend of mine back in England bought a Bentley, it was a bit cheaper than a Rolls and is a fabulous car which made him very happy. Right up until he saw a Rolls going past a few months later…….

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Answered (Verified) jowus replied on Sat, Jul 24 2021 4:22 PM
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Hi Geomir,

I think, if you’re thinking getting Lab 50’s +19, then I would suggest, you go for Lab 28 + 28! I think 4 of the Lab 28 would sound phenomenal! And besides, if you don’t have a Large Place, then I don’t think, you would enjoy the 50’s that much! The 50’s needs a Big Room to expand!

I was in the Store the other day to listen to both, and I did like the Sound of the 28’s Better, due to the the Size of the Room they had it in. The 50’s were Great but, the Room was too small for it!

And I also think, Lab 18’s will get lost in the room with the 50’s! Lab 28 will go well with the 18’s! Wish You Good luck with your decision!
Sandyb
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Answered (Verified) Sandyb replied on Sat, Jul 24 2021 4:44 PM
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I respectfully disagree.

My lounge is not large (6m by 5m), and I have 50s as left right for stereo listening.

I'm sure the 28s would be pretty good as well in my room, but having spent time with the 28s, the 50s are better, both in terms of soundstage, bass, and sound a bit richer. A larger room may need 50s, but thats not to say a smaller room dont benefit from them too.

I also have only BL3's as rears, for surround / movie watching, and even those dont get lost - especially considering rear effects are only occasional in many movies.

Adding 19 to a pari of BL50s is also completely unnecessary.

None of the above is accounting for value for money, and I can perfectly see why the value proposition is pretty good with the 28s.

 

 

jowus:
Hi Geomir,

 

 

I think, if you’re thinking getting Lab 50’s +19, then I would suggest, you go for Lab 28 + 28! I think 4 of the Lab 28 would sound phenomenal! And besides, if you don’t have a Large Place, then I don’t think, you would enjoy the 50’s that much! The 50’s needs a Big Room to expand!

 

I was in the Store the other day to listen to both, and I did like the Sound of the 28’s Better, due to the the Size of the Room they had it in. The 50’s were Great but, the Room was too small for it!

 

And I also think, Lab 18’s will get lost in the room with the 50’s! Lab 28 will go well with the 18’s! Wish You Good luck with your decision!

 

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jowus
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jowus replied on Mon, Jul 26 2021 2:52 AM
Sandyb:

I respectfully disagree.

My lounge is not large (6m by 5m), and I have 50s as left right for stereo listening.

I'm sure the 28s would be pretty good as well in my room, but having spent time with the 28s, the 50s are better, both in terms of soundstage, bass, and sound a bit richer. A larger room may need 50s, but thats not to say a smaller room dont benefit from them too.

I also have only BL3's as rears, for surround / movie watching, and even those dont get lost - especially considering rear effects are only occasional in many movies.

Adding 19 to a pari of BL50s is also completely unnecessary.

None of the above is accounting for value for money, and I can perfectly see why the value proposition is pretty good with the 28s.

Hi Sandy,

Everything, you said means, you totally agree with me! First off all, I wasn’t downplaying Lab 50’s, they’re way Better than Lab 28’s only if you have large Place. And that doesn’t mean you can’t use in a Smaller Place, but you get get Better feel of it if you have a larger Place!

When I was at the store to listen to Both, the walls were trembling just a half way up, you can imagine 70-89% up of the volume! Whilst lab 28’s can do fine whether Small Place or large, because, you have an option to use either a Pair or 2 Pairs! And off course, 4 Pairs of 28’s will do Magic in any Set up comparatively with a Pair of Lab 50’s!
Sandyb
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Sandyb replied on Mon, Jul 26 2021 8:58 AM
jowus:

Hi Sandy,

Everything, you said means, you totally agree with me! First off all, I wasn’t downplaying Lab 50’s, they’re way Better than Lab 28’s only if you have large Place. And that doesn’t mean you can’t use in a Smaller Place, but you get get Better feel of it if you have a larger Place!

When I was at the store to listen to Both, the walls were trembling just a half way up, you can imagine 70-89% up of the volume! Whilst lab 28’s can do fine whether Small Place or large, because, you have an option to use either a Pair or 2 Pairs! And off course, 4 Pairs of 28’s will do Magic in any Set up comparatively with a Pair of Lab 50’s!

I have solid concrete walls in my not large room

No issues with the 50’s

And no booming bass issues/ questions with the 50’s

To be honest, my previous 18’s + 19 were perfectly fine in my room, but only for movies. For music though, they were unsatisfactory
BeoJosh
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So after spending the weekend with my new 50s and 28s, I've been thinking about what to say that will add constructively to this discussion. I guess it comes down to with the budget and enough space, and if you really enjoy critical listening of music in addition to watching TV/movies, I'd definitely go with 50s/18s over 2 pairs of 28s. If you don't have the space (considering you'll need at least 5.5 inches on either side of the Harmony for the speakers to open up without hitting the 50s) or care about more casual listening, or just don't want to spend the extra money, then I think the 28s would be a great option.

The 28s are nice speakers, with quite an impressive soundstage. Upper frequencies and midrange are amazingly clear and bass is strong and is tightly controlled after calibration on most music and at most listening levels. To my ears the bass is still a bit overbearing on some music and at higher volumes. It's not displeasing, it's just not what I'm used to from B&O. It's a different sound signature.

I tend to prefer music and movies that are as true to the original intent as possible--you could read this as "neutral"--and the bass on the 28s on some material and at higher volumes gives music a different and seemingly less neutral feel. I'm happy I got the 28s--and they work well for my office where I placed them--but I'm also happy that I went with the 50s for my main room to pair with my 18s as rear surrounds. I wanted "reference" speakers for my main listening area, and I think the 50s fit the bill there in a way the 28s simply cannot.

My time with the 50s has been nothing less than sheer joy. Given the size, design and seating constraints of my living room, the 50s aren't in the "perfect" position (nor are they toed in), but it doesn't seem to matter. In the short time I've had them I've heard nuances in songs I've listened to hundreds of times before that I could not previously discern. There's ample bass that sounds natural and effortless, and regardless of what type of music I throw at them, they sound phenomenal. (So far my favorite has been Solsbury Hill on 45rpm half-speed remastered vinyl--utterly amazing). I had high hopes for them, but they've surpassed every expectation. The best way I can describe it is that there's a fullness and richness to the sound that it's like I'm inside the music.

I don't know if any of this is helpful to you, but I wish you luck with your decision. It's all great equipment, it's about finding what's best for you. Good luck and keep us posted....

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BeoJosh
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Just a quick update to my last comments here on the 28s. It turns out there was something wrong with one of my speakers, as it was not responding properly, and the pair was replaced and reinstalled a few days ago. My dealer was amazing, incredibly responsive, and worked tirelessly to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.

Now, having spent more quality time with the 28s, they are working flawlessly and sound great. To my ears, the bass heaviness I heard in my original auditions and on some material previously in home has been resolved through the ARC, and they sound pristine, well-balanced and expansive. I'd still rank the 50s significantly higher, but I can now unequivocally recommend the 28s to anyone who doesn't have the room or budget for the 50s.

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Fansastic
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Hi BeoJosh, did you setup the 50’s with the microphone?

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BeoJosh
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Fansastic:
Hi BeoJosh, did you setup the 50’s with the microphone?

Yes, the 50s were calibrated using the mic to 5 different seating positions/presets. They sound stunning from every location, and have performed well beyond my expectations from the start. 

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Allianz
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If you have a car with top speed 180km/h it would not matter to have 4 same car’s to achieve 300km/h top speed. It is just not happening.

 

No matter how many bl28’s you add your setup they will not produce low frequency effect’s with force.

 

Did some field research today. Running with same source and avr pair of 50’s and pair of 28’s. Both connected to Denon x4500 and lossless Atmos demo’s from Nvidia Shield. Stereo without subwoofer/xt32 and full band.

 

Amaze:

Below 50db volume in Denon 28’s will sound full and subwoofer like. But when you go 60/70db it start’s to be a different story. 28’s wont even try to play lowest frequency’s. ABL is really different from example Stage. Stage will try like 0,3 second and then cut all the bass. 00:30 “sound you can feel” has some nice slam/punch but 00:37 “powerful bass” is really really week. Beolab 19 would have much more force and pressure on this later part. Beolab 50’s have no problems try to destroy my house. Terrible pressure and really powerful bass.

 

Horizon:

Volume 60/70db in Denon. 00:34 when spaceship make fly over 28’s bass is nice and rumbles sofa also but again 00:59 (what if sound can be deeper) basicly 0 bass from 28’s nada. 50’s “May the Force be with you”

 

Apollo 13:

Launch sequence with 28’s is really week. No rumbles No pressure. 50’s you can guess.

 

Conclusion:

28’s will deliver nice and forceful sound mostly but when the power is really needed you will not have anything. Adding more 28’s would not make these play any lower than 1 pair. For music I would not add bl19 with bl28 but for movies I would or just any subwoofer. Don’t know if Beovision bass management even allow to transfer lowest bass to 19 from 28’s. If you want to hear movies as intended then just 28’s will not deliver that. For music 28’s mostly have all the bass you ever need.

 

My opinion:

2 pairs of 28’s are no match to 1 pair of 50’s. For movies 1 pair of 50’s and bl3/12/17/18 as surround would be 100 times better option than 2 pairs of 28’s.

50’s and no amount of 28’s are not rivals. Different products with different power reserves. And when I say 28’s are week I mean they are weak compared 50’s or speakers paired with powerful subwoofers. 28’s are definately not weak compared to 18’s etc. Similar comparison would be “should I get 1 pair of bl20’s or 2 pair bl3’s”. Performance cap is just so huge for tv/movie usage.

 

I still love my Beolab 28’s. Nice and beautiful speakers with strong performance BUT with some limitations.

(originally posted 28.7)

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