Canton Owners/Listeners Question

tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
Hi folks,
I've been considering giving Canton a test drive in my home theater setup and hoped to get some input from folks that may have had some experience with both their floor standers as well as their higher end bookshelf speakers. Feedback on experience with either is definitely welcome, but I'm hoping some of you may have experience with both. I've narrowed it down to two options:

Canton Chrono SL 596 floor standers
Canton Vento Reference 9.2 DC bookshelf speakers

I have the low-end pretty well covered and imagine I should be able to integrate just as well with either of these. Use is probably 65/35% music/movies, decent sized listening area (26' x 11' x 7' 6"). I've typically gravitated to towers with it being a dedicated area, but I'm open to good sized bookshelfs that are up to the task as well. Knowing I'll need a complimentary center, this is about the top of the price ceiling I'm considering. I've had my current setup in place (see sig below) for approximately 8 years now and have been very pleased with the results, nevertheless this hobby, like others, often have many striving to achieve that next level.

Any and all input/feedback is welcome, thanks all in advance.
 
Bucknekked

Bucknekked

Audioholic Field Marshall
Any and all input/feedback is welcome, thanks all in advance.
You said any feedback is welcome and since the rest of the AH is producing crickets I guess I will take a small step forward. Welcome to the AH forum and welcome to the place where there are no lack of opinions (present case excepted).

This post is typical of many where someone comes in and asks about an upgrade to an existing system with which they are fairly well pleased without stating anything specific about what they would like to improve. Its a great idea to ask these questions BEFORE you invest so I give you high fives for doing that.

One of the most difficult things about recommending anything is you have no defined problem. Nothing your existing system does poorly or needs to do better. That means when you go out and spend money, install the whole thing and get it up and running how are you going to answer the question about "what's better now?". It sets you up for disappointment, not joy.

So before you invest, sit down and do some critical listening tests and see if you can define what are your existing systems deficiencies? Shortcomings? What does your best buddies system do head n shoulders better than yours? Why do you want to upgrade? (Sometimes the itch is just there and you are doomed to upgrade).

Just as an example, your existing system front speakers seem to be a lot more expensive than the replacements you outlined. Just as a thumb in the wind, that means in a general sense, you are moving laterally not up in terms of speakers. There's nothing in particular those Cantons will do that your BA's wont. I'm not saying its a poor choice, but, there's nothing about the choice that says loud n clear they will outperform your Boston Acoustics.

If I recommend an "upgrade" I truly want it to be an audible, OMG, yeah I can hear it, upgrade. You are on the right track: seeking info before you invest. Now I think some grinding on what needs to be improved is the logical next step.
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
Not sure if @KEW has any experience with Boston but he has Canton bookshelves and towers.

I have the Vento 836 bookshelves.
 
tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
Thanks @snakeeyes, hopefully Kurt can chime in when he has a chance. I was looking at the 836s as an another option as well as the 9.2 bookshelfs, what size listening area are you currently using them in if you don't mind me asking?
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
For me, That is an easy call - definitely the Vento Reference bookshelf speakers!
Here is my reasoning on this:
The Chrono model you are looking at does not have the ceramic tweeter I like so much!
I have heard a lot of aluminum tweeters, The SVS Ultra and the KEF LS 50 have the best ones I have heard and they are pretty good. The Canton Al tweeter stacks up okay against them, but once you compare it to the Canton Ceramic, there is no contest IMHO!
The 1" Canton Al-Mg tweeter used in the Chrono series (I am assuming this is the same 1" Al-Mg tweeter as used in the Chrono 502.2 that I have) Is clearly better than the one that Energy RC-10 used and the same for the Paradigm Studio 20, V.3. but not close to the ceramic!
The Vento Reference series does use the same ceramic tweeter as the other Vento models use. I consider this a world class tweeter on par with Focal's Be and the RAAL ribbon!
I believe the main difference between the Canton Ceramic and the RAAL or Focal Be can be attributed to the Wave guide. I do like the RAAL and Focal Be (which do not use a wave-guide) slightly better, but when you start looking at prices of the speakers, the Canton works out as a very good option in your price range!
The less expensive ($900/pair at A4L) 836 also has this same tweeter and I wonder how much the Reference model has to offer once you cross them to subwoofers.
All of that said, since you are considering towers vs bookshelf speakers, I want to offer a caution - it has been my experience that bigger speakers sound bigger as long as you can see them, but in a blind test that difference is not validated.
I realize this is a bit of a ramble, I would call Mark at A4L and ask him what the difference is between the Vento 836 and the Reference 9.2 DC, but I would not consider the older Chrono tower with Al tweeter!
 
tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
You said any feedback is welcome and since the rest of the AH is producing crickets I guess I will take a small step forward. Welcome to the AH forum and welcome to the place where there are no lack of opinions (present case excepted).

This post is typical of many where someone comes in and asks about an upgrade to an existing system with which they are fairly well pleased without stating anything specific about what they would like to improve. Its a great idea to ask these questions BEFORE you invest so I give you high fives for doing that.

One of the most difficult things about recommending anything is you have no defined problem. Nothing your existing system does poorly or needs to do better. That means when you go out and spend money, install the whole thing and get it up and running how are you going to answer the question about "what's better now?". It sets you up for disappointment, not joy.

So before you invest, sit down and do some critical listening tests and see if you can define what are your existing systems deficiencies? Shortcomings? What does your best buddies system do head n shoulders better than yours? Why do you want to upgrade? (Sometimes the itch is just there and you are doomed to upgrade).

Just as an example, your existing system front speakers seem to be a lot more expensive than the replacements you outlined. Just as a thumb in the wind, that means in a general sense, you are moving laterally not up in terms of speakers. There's nothing in particular those Cantons will do that your BA's wont. I'm not saying its a poor choice, but, there's nothing about the choice that says loud n clear they will outperform your Boston Acoustics.

If I recommend an "upgrade" I truly want it to be an audible, OMG, yeah I can hear it, upgrade. You are on the right track: seeking info before you invest. Now I think some grinding on what needs to be improved is the logical next step.
Thanks for the input, @Bucknekked ! I've been around AH for some time, but unfortunately haven't had the chance to hit the forum over the past couple years as much as I'd like and have in the past. I think you might've hit the nail on the head with your "Sometimes the itch is just there and you are doomed to upgrade" statement. :D I don't find my BAs are lacking per se, but I will say they are slightly less "forward" (for a lack of a better term?) than the VR3s they replaced. While I did have an affinity for my VR3s, particularly the VR tweeters, I did find the VR3s started to lose their composure at reference level and while I don't listen that loud often, it was a disappointment when experiencing it on occasion, which prompted the change several years back.

I will say the clarity and sound stage of the VS336s are excellent, but part of me feels the upper range is ever so slightly recessed, specifically for my tastes and may not to others. I was fortunate enough to get my VS 336s refurbished and the VS325c on markdown, so while like you noted it might be somewhat of a lateral move, it would be more refining the sound to my own personal tastes than the VS336s not performing up to standards.

Thanks for the input, great advice and much appreciated.
 
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tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
For me, That is an easy call - definitely the Vento Reference bookshelf speakers!
Here is my reasoning on this:
The Chrono model you are looking at does not have the ceramic tweeter I like so much!
I have heard a lot of aluminum tweeters, The SVS Ultra and the KEF LS 50 have the best ones I have heard and they are pretty good. The Canton Al tweeter stacks up okay against them, but once you compare it to the Canton Ceramic, there is no contest IMHO!
The 1" Canton Al-Mg tweeter used in the Chrono series (I am assuming this is the same 1" Al-Mg tweeter as used in the Chrono 502.2 that I have) Is clearly better than the one that Energy RC-10 used and the same for the Paradigm Studio 20, V.3. but not close to the ceramic!
The Vento Reference series does use the same ceramic tweeter as the other Vento models use. I consider this a world class tweeter on par with Focal's Be and the RAAL ribbon!
I believe the main difference between the Canton Ceramic and the RAAL or Focal Be can be attributed to the Wave guide. I do like the RAAL and Focal Be (which do not use a wave-guide) slightly better, but when you start looking at prices of the speakers, the Canton works out as a very good option in your price range!
The less expensive ($900/pair at A4L) 836 also has this same tweeter and I wonder how much the Reference model has to offer once you cross them to subwoofers.
All of that said, since you are considering towers vs bookshelf speakers, I want to offer a caution - it has been my experience that bigger speakers sound bigger as long as you can see them, but in a blind test that difference is not validated.
I realize this is a bit of a ramble, I would call Mark at A4L and ask him what the difference is between the Vento 836 and the Reference 9.2 DC, but I would not consider the older Chrono tower with Al tweeter!
Thanks @KEW ! Good point regarding the tweeter difference, I swear the Chrono 596 tower I referenced had the ceramic tweeter, but I must've somehow overlooked that. I'm curious to know if any of the other Chrono towers do have the ceramic tweeter. While I do find the Vento cabinet more aesthetic, I'm fine with the Chrono cabinets as well as they'll be hidden behind a theater curtain.

Update: I think I realized why I was under the impression the Chrono 596 tower had the ceramic tweeter. Researching the Chrono line led me to Canton's website, where I must have inadvertently confused the '596.2 DC', which has the ceramic tweeter, with the '596 DC', which uses the aluminum-manganese you noted... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 
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Bucknekked

Bucknekked

Audioholic Field Marshall
@tomd51
Sometimes the itch is just there and you are doomed to upgrade" :D
The itch to upgrade is a plague in our hobby. The plague never goes away because places like the AH make sure it never goes away and in fact they fan the flames. Nobody gets advice that says "nah, do nothing it will be better than buying something". Nobody ever hears that advice even if it was given.

While I did have an affinity for my VR3s, particularly the VR tweeters, I did find the VR3s started to lose their composure at reference level
Dude, I often lose my composure when listening at reference level to a song.

I will say the clarity and sound stage of the VS336s are excellent, but part of me feels the upper range is ever so slightly recessed,
The older I get the more "slightly recessed" the upper ranges get. I'm told by young whippersnappers (and by audio researchers) that the upper registers are the province of young ears. I know I don't hear in the upper registers as well as younger ears might, but it does not dampen my enthusiasm for music and listening. One thing on the positive side is that investing thousands in the latest tweeter technology is probably something I don't have to do anymore. For me, if its above 15K, I aint hearing it at all. So "recessed" might just be 100% ok with me.
YMMV and caveats and all to your own personal tastes.

If you've been bitten by the upgrade bug you may be "doomed" to upgrade. Enjoy the crap out of it! Its awesome to buy new stuff
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
Alas, but I can only aspire to be a Canton owner/listener at this current point in time...
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
@tomd51
Sometimes the itch is just there and you are doomed to upgrade" :D
The itch to upgrade is a plague in our hobby. The plague never goes away because places like the AH make sure it never goes away and in fact they fan the flames. Nobody gets advice that says "nah, do nothing it will be better than buying something". Nobody ever hears that advice even if it was given.

While I did have an affinity for my VR3s, particularly the VR tweeters, I did find the VR3s started to lose their composure at reference level
Dude, I often lose my composure when listening at reference level to a song.

I will say the clarity and sound stage of the VS336s are excellent, but part of me feels the upper range is ever so slightly recessed,
The older I get the more "slightly recessed" the upper ranges get. I'm told by young whippersnappers (and by audio researchers) that the upper registers are the province of young ears. I know I don't hear in the upper registers as well as younger ears might, but it does not dampen my enthusiasm for music and listening. One thing on the positive side is that investing thousands in the latest tweeter technology is probably something I don't have to do anymore. For me, if its above 15K, I aint hearing it at all. So "recessed" might just be 100% ok with me.
YMMV and caveats and all to your own personal tastes.

If you've been bitten by the upgrade bug you may be "doomed" to upgrade. Enjoy the crap out of it! Its awesome to buy new stuff
Upgraditis. The struggle is real. I'm thinking about buckling down and saving up for something cool that can best my Ultras. Maybe even a TL kit...
 
tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
The itch to upgrade is a plague in our hobby. The plague never goes away because places like the AH make sure it never goes away and in fact they fan the flames. Nobody gets advice that says "nah, do nothing it will be better than buying something". Nobody ever hears that advice even if it was given.
Ain't that the truth, bunch of damn enablers! ;)
The older I get the more "slightly recessed" the upper ranges get. I'm told by young whippersnappers (and by audio researchers) that the upper registers are the province of young ears. I know I don't hear in the upper registers as well as younger ears might, but it does not dampen my enthusiasm for music and listening. One thing on the positive side is that investing thousands in the latest tweeter technology is probably something I don't have to do anymore. For me, if its above 15K, I aint hearing it at all. So "recessed" might just be 100% ok with me.
YMMV and caveats and all to your own personal tastes.
I had considered the 'age' thing being a possible factor, but I've always preferred a slightly sharper/crisper tweet over a laid back one. Going the bookshelf route, at least for an in-home demo, would allow me the possible benefit of A-B demo/testing and wouldn't brutalize me if I decided on a return.
If you've been bitten by the upgrade bug you may be "doomed" to upgrade. Enjoy the crap out of it! Its awesome to buy new stuff
You might be right, it is pretty fun, but damn does it get expensive!
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Update: I think I realized why I was under the impression the Chrono 596 tower had the ceramic tweeter. Researching the Chrono line led me to Canton's website, where I must have inadvertently confused the '596.2 DC', which has the ceramic tweeter, with the '596 DC', which uses the aluminum-manganese you noted... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Canton's model number system is rather abstruse, but I figured that might be the issue. It seems that the Chrono models with the Ceramic tweeter have the following convention Chrono SL 5X6.2" where X designates the specific speaker style in this series.
Currently, none of these towers are in stock and as I recall, the 596.2 was priced higher than the Vento 876, so the 596.2 would not be such a close in price to the Vento Reference you are looking at.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
"Abstruse"?? Is that what you get when you combine obtuse with abstract? Lol.
Yep, that pretty well covers it.
It's a nice word (at least I thought so ... that is why I use it).
The official "Google" definition is:
difficult to understand; obscure.
But I think they went out of their way to avoid using abstract or obtuse in the definition!
Between reading and a varied cross-section of friends, I have an interesting vocabulary, but not to worry, modern times are well on the way to homogenizing our wording. Don't believe me? Try to use a less common word like "notion" with speech to text and see how that goes!:)
 
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Bucknekked

Bucknekked

Audioholic Field Marshall
Yep, that pretty well covers it.
It's a nice word (at least I thought so ... that is why I use it).
The official "Google" definition is:

But I think they went out of their way to avoid using abstract or obtuse in the definition!
Between reading and a varied cross-section of friends, I have an interesting vocabulary, but not to worry, modern times are well on the way to homogenizing our wording. Don't believe me? Try to use a less common word like "notion" with speech to text and see how that goes!:)
my wife invents new word abstractions and conjugations on a weekly basis. I have long since stopped trying to correct them. My only hope now is that there's enough context in what she's saying I can grasp some semblance of meaning.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
Yep, that pretty well covers it.
It's a nice word (at least I thought so ... that is why I use it).
The official "Google" definition is:

But I think they went out of their way to avoid using abstract or obtuse in the definition!
Between reading and a varied cross-section of friends, I have an interesting vocabulary, but not to worry, modern times are well on the way to homogenizing our wording. Don't believe me? Try to use a less common word like "notion" with speech to text and see how that goes!:)
Honestly I thought you made it up, lol.

My vocabulary has just been expanded. :cool:
 
tomd51

tomd51

Audioholic General
my wife invents new word abstractions and conjugations on a weekly basis. I have long since stopped trying to correct them. My only hope now is that there's enough context in what she's saying I can grasp some semblance of meaning.
Same here, yet they still wonder why we don’t “understand” them... :rolleyes:
 
Timforhifi

Timforhifi

Junior Audioholic
If you like playing loud I’d recommend a tower speaker. The 9.2 is great but I’d do even regular 596 with aluminum tweeters. Unless you never go past 100db dynamics, then it’s 9.2.

I think the ceramic tweeter is nice but isn’t a reason to buy 596.2.

I have 596.2, 518 and 896 and they are all great in different ways.

I heard a few days ago with friend the canton karat m30 vs his 9.2 reference. The m30 are better in every way to both of us with its aluminum tweeter. Really comes down to personal preference and what gear you run.

If you want it for 2ch music options you’re more open. For movies I’d get the speakers that you can put the biggest matching center speaker with.

596.2 is more like the 518 than 896. 518 is sharper in highs with more bite. The 596.2 does similar but has more peaks from 1khz up but not as sharp as 518 up top. 896 is most neutral of those 3 with a much larger sound.

596 is really similar to 596.2 overall and if you like a little more sparkle or detail the 596 is a better speaker than .2 version. Also need to realize SL is a cosmetic upgrade over chrono line. Doesn’t sound better. So 519 vs 596 sound very similar.

A4L doesn’t have matching center ch to 596 though but 515 would match but finishing isn’t as nice. I actually like 515 better than 556.2 center. Seems a little bigger and heavier too.
 

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