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Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

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Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:13 pm

Hi,

I'm currently using Neumann KH120a's which to be honest I love but am looking to step things up a little this year. I have tried a few options in the past (Dynaudio BM5a, SE Eggs 150, Focal CMS65, Acoustic Energy AE22, Adam A7, KRK VXT8 and Mackie HR828 and the Neumann's were my favourites.
Ideally I'd like something with a similar sized footprint within a £1500 budget and was impressed with the CMS65 when I tried them. My main complaint with the CMS65 was quality control as I was sent three faulty pairs. However, in not heard of any issues with Focal monitors in recent years so am presuming these have be sorted.
I'm particularly interested in the Focal Shape Twins as they are a 3-way and am interested to know what benefit's this may give? The Shape 65 also looks like a potential option.

Has anyone had any experience with either the Shape Twin or Shape 65 and the Neumann KH120a?
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:22 pm

You could also add the Neumann KH80 to your list. The DSP crossover and driver correction built into that model really lifts it above conventional analogue two-ways in a most impressive way.

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh80-dsp
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:42 pm

Thanks Hugh I'll check out the review! Ideally I'd like something that can go a little lower than my KH120's though which is why I'm interested in the Focal Shape's.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Sun Aug 12, 2018 3:43 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:You could also add the Neumann KH80 to your list. The DSP crossover and driver correction built into that model really lifts it above conventional analogue two-ways in a most impressive way.

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh80-dsp

Maybe Neumann will update the KH120 to KH120DSP!? That would definitely be worth waiting for :thumbup:
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby blinddrew » Sun Aug 12, 2018 4:23 pm

It's got to be on the cards at some point - along with a similar 310 update. Personally I hope they do the latter first because that will be too expensive to be tempting! :)
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:19 am

blinddrew wrote:It's got to be on the cards at some point - along with a similar 310 update. Personally I hope they do the latter first because that will be too expensive to be tempting! :)

A Neumann KH310-DSP would be my dream monitor but sadly not a reality for me budget wise.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:21 am

I'm particularly interested in the Focal Shape's but have read a few find the auto standby power saving feature a little annoying. It would have been great if this feature could be switched on or off. Also, I read that the EQ knobs on the back are not indented and are on a continuous pot? This seems a little poor choice for a monitor in this price bracket as this makes monitor matching a little more fiddly.

I really like the fact that the Focal Shapes use a passive radiators as I really dislike port turbulence. Saying that, I don't really encounter this as it's extremely rare I'm monitoring at a volume that would cause this! However, I sometimes have bass plays in that like tracking their 5 string bass quite loud in the monitors. I've also had people doing EDM and like the monitors pumping a little more which is when I hear a little port turbulence from really deep synth bass patches. The KH120's are more than loud enough as I have the output level turned down two notches from 114dB down to 100dB. Also, I never have the master output on my audio interface above 50% and the KH120's are plenty loud enough!!

I don't want to compromise accuracy but would like the monitor to be able to cope with EDM at the levels I'm working without any port turbulence. I'm leaning towards the Focal Shape Twins and may get a pair here in the next few weeks. I can pick up the Shape Twins for £1330 per pair so will see how things pan out over the next few weeks.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:38 pm

One other option I’m considering is adding a sub to my KH120’s. Unfortunately the matching Neumann KH805 sub is completely out of my price range so I’m considering the Eve Audio TS range.
I really like the look of the features on the Eve TS subs and they also have remote controls for muting the sub and sending full range to the Neumanns. This feature will be seriously useful for me.
I’m particularly interested in the 8” and 10” options.

http://www.eve-audio.com/index.php?page=TS108

http://www.eve-audio.com/index.php?page=TS110

I’m wondering if the TS108 would be a good match for the KH120’s?
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby IvanSC » Mon Aug 20, 2018 10:33 am

If you liked the AE22s try the The Rocks. Same characteristics but more refined and with an amazing low end response for a sealed box.

Had mine for several years and I would bet you can pick up a pair even if they are used well within your budget. I paid about £1800 for mine new.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:05 pm

Yes the Rocks would be high on my list but didn't like the v1's. The soundstage sounded pretty narrow. They also cost around £2250 new! There's also the new Mini Rocks, Rock mkIII DSP and Super Rocks but they're more expensive again!
The Mini Rocks look like a good option but these are not available at the moment there's no spec on these yet!

The Eve TS108 Sub has just arrived so I'm going to try this out with the KH120's and see how I get on.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Tue Aug 21, 2018 7:34 am

I’ve been trying the TS108 out very briefly. I haven’t experimented with positioning or done any sweeps etc yet but initial impressions are good.
I will be using this sub for mixing a wide range of acoustic music - Jazz, Classical, Gospel, Rock/Pop etc and the TS108 is sounding very nice during my brief tests. I don’t have them turned up very high in my current small mixing room as it’s unnecessary but you can still feel the punch of the bass and the TS108 goes pretty low.
I’ve tried a sub in my small room before as I was given an Acoustic Energy dual 10” Pro Sub. This was a good sub but was complete overkill for my room and I found it hard to integrate with my satellite speakers. So far, the Eve TS108 seems to integrate with the KH120’s much better despite not calibrating the system yet!

However, in the next few months I’m going to be moving to a space almost twice as big as my current mixing room. Whilst the TS108 seems like it will integrate with the KH120’s really well for my small space I am partly wondering if I should go with the larger TS110 (though these are almost double the price of what I paid for the TS108).

I’m not sure it will be a good idea getting the bigger TS110 because of the problems even lower frequencies can cause in a room? I’m also wondering if it will be necessary for the styles of music I’ll be mixing?

I’m going to get some measurements for the new mix room over the next couple days and will report back
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby Zukan » Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:16 am

Dickie, sleep with someone and get the 310s.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby dickiefunk » Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:03 am

I’ve measured the room that I will be moving to and it’s not quite as big as I thought. The room measures 5.6 x 4.4 x 2.2m.
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Re: Focal Shape Twin/Shape 65 vs Neumann KH120?

Postby Forum Admin » Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:23 am

FYI, Phil Ward has reviewed the Focal Shape Twin monitors in SOS September 2018 issue and this article will become available (to subscribers) around 10:30am Thursday 23 August 2018. There's a 10% teaser for everyone, and a single PDF (or Full Issue PDF) of the review can be purchased from that page for non-subscribers who can't wait 5 months for it to be unlocked.

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/focal-shape-twin
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