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Mission MX-3 Floor Standing Speakers

  • Written by Denom
  • Category: Speakers
  • Hits: 1133

Usually the most ignored speakers in the product range of any speaker model is the entry level floor stander model. This is no different with Mission and their MX-3 floor standing speakers, which appearance wise fool people as speakers that are neither here nor there. How can the MX-3 prove that assumption really is true or not!

UnBoxing:

The Mission MX-3 came packed in cardboard boxes covered in plastic foam wrap+plastic covers, with lots of egg crate type paper mache packing at the top, bottom and sides. The Floor base platforms came packed separately in individual cardboard packing which was also placed inside the boxes along with the speakers. A set of 4 philips screws to secure the platforms to the speaker’s bottom ends and 4 spikes came along packed in small boxes separately. The quality of the packing indicates that they can be re-used for 2-3 times at the most which is adequate for most.

Appearance:

We received our pair of MX-3’s in a black ash finish which have a matt grey baffle finish rounded off with silver inserts around the drive units. The Grilles are only around the drive units which is good as the speakers appear rather handsome in this fashion. A plinth is provided with the speakers which has to be fastened to the bottom end of the speakers by means of 4 philips headed screws. Mission also provide 4 spikes for each speaker to further isolate the speakers from the floor. Attention to detail is fantastic and not expected from a pair that costs so less, but we shall discuss the pricing later on. The rear of the speakers has 2 ports one at the top & the other at the bottom. Oddly enough, the speaker wire binding posts are located some what in the centre of the speakers, which is not in line with most of the speakers available in the market. Makes wires hang in a rather ugly fashion but there is no choice. The speakers have 4 binding posts which means that the speakers can be bi-wired, which due to the odd placement will make wiring look even worse in context with the surrounding. Not WAF friendly at all! The quality of the binding posts is rather poor, with bare wire termination being rather difficult as the wires do not get firmly secured due to the design of the binding posts. Our advice is to stick with banana plug terminated speaker wires for peace of mind.

Build Quality: 4 stars

Specifications:

System type - 2-way Enclosure type Bass-reflex

Frequency response ±3dB - 48Hz to 20000 kHz

Nominal impedance - 8 Ohm

Amplifier Requirements - 25 - 100 W

Sensitivity - (2.83V/1m) 89 dB

Tweeter - 25 mm (1 in.) dome

Woofer - 2 x 130 mm (5 in.)

Dimensions (H x W x D) 815 x 172 x 340 mm / 32.09 x 6.77 x 13.39 in

Weight 19.2 kg / 42.24 lbs

Performance:

We tried a variety of gears along with the MX-3 Speakers, namely:

Source:

Marantz CD6006

Marantz SA7003

Oppo Sonica DAC

Klipsch Gate

Cocktail Audio N15

Marantz TT5005

Marantz TT15S1

Amplifiers:

Marantz 6006

Exposure 1010

Exposure 3010V2 Pre with 3010V2 Power

NAD356

Klipsch Power Gate

Marantz M-CR610

PS Audio GCC100

Cables:

Speaker: Taga TAVC-14

Nordost White Lightning

Interconnects: Nordost White Lightning

USB: Nordost Purple Flare

Right from the get go, the MX-3’s indicate that something special is part of their DNA. We heard a variety of music genre’s and each time the MX-3’s showed us what they are capable of. Every frequency is well spaced out and is showcased in the right manner, with neither piercing highs or shouty mids being present as is with most entry level floor standing speakers. The low frequencies are well fleshed out and rather in plentiful keeping in mind the size of the drive units & the form factor of the speakers. It is astonishing that the bass is so good. We tried the MX-3’s in various positions possible in a room and each time the MX-3’s performed without a sweat. The bass was always present be it near the rear walls or even when they were placed almost in the mid room position, which was surprising to say the least. The accompaniment of clear highs and mids aid in the speaker being a delight for listening to long periods of time without any indication of fatigue. Though we did not test the MX-3’s in a home theatre scenario, we are sure that the MX-3’s will do well in that aspect as well. Ideally the MX-3’s will perform in room sizes between 100 to 250 sq ft.

Verdict:

For the princely sum of Rs.33900/- we are amazed at how much value is being provided by Mission for their lovely MX-3’s. The Mx-3’s can be part of a living room or a moderately sized bedroom as the high WAF they are providing for makes complete sense. We wish that more enthusiasts looking for a budget system pay attention to the MX-3’s in order to make the most of the performance and value they provide for in either stereo or home theatre scenarios.

Chapeau Time!

Swans Jam & Lab 8 Floorstanding Speakers

  • Written by pulastya
  • Category: Speakers
  • Hits: 654

 

Swans Jam & Lab 8 are the flagship speakers in the Jam & Lab Series. Having reviewed the Jam & Lab 6 Tower Speakers along with the centre, surround speakers and sub woofer earlier, we decided to focus only the Jam & Lab 8 Tower Speakers, as the rest of the speakers which are part of the HT package remain the same for the Jam & Lab 8 HT Speaker package.

HiVi Jam&Lab 8 Front Main Speaker 

System Type

3-way 4th-order Vented Box System

Drivers Configuration

Two 8" woofers

Two 5" midrange drivers

1" soft dome tweeter

Frequency Range

38Hz - 20kHz

Harmonic Distortion

60Hz - 20kHz ≤1%(2.83v/1m)

Sensitivity(2.83V/1m)

88dB   

Nominal Impedance

6Ω   

Power Handling

10W - 200W

Dimension (W×D×H)

9.4" x 14.1" x  42.5"

Net Weight(each)

63.9lbs

Associated Test Equipment:

Amps:

Cambridge Audio 840A

Cyrus 6vs2

Cary Audio Pre/Power

Onkyo CRN-765

Source:

2 Channel -

Marantz SA7003

Onkyo CRN-765

Asus Xonar U7 DAC

Cables:

Nordost White Lightning Speaker Cables

Nordost Blue Heaven IC’s VDH The Name IC’s

Nordost Q-Base QB4 MkII

Nordost Red Dawn Power Cords

Home Theatre –

Pioneer BDP180

AVR's

Pioneer VSX1131

Yamaha RXV581

Marantz SR5011

Unboxing:

The Jam & Lab 8 speakers come securely packed in good / thick quality card board boxes with adequate thermocol inserts, resulting in one receiving the contents in a damage free manner. The packing can be re-used easily for re-locations as well which is good news in these days of cutting costs/corners. A small zip lock pouch contains a small manual that comes with all the speakers. Since the sets we received were brand new, we tried to break-in all the speakers as much as possible (50 hours) in order to get a better idea of how they will sound once they had appreciably opened up. We started off with the Jam & Lab 8 Floor Standers in a stereo configuration and tried them out with various amps/sources as stated above.

Appearance:

The Jam & Lab 8 Speakers come in black ash, with a very good level of fit and finish. The tower speakers are rear ported with the port at the lower end just above the speaker wire binding posts. The binding posts are gold plated and are of good quality. Four hard plastic footers are located at the bottom of the tower speakers only. The baffle of the entire 8 series is in matt black finish with dark silver grey surrounds onto which the drivers are mounted. Good quality speaker grilles with equally good mounting fasteners are mounted into the grill frame to ensure a proper and secure fit to the baffle of the speakers. The HiVi Swan logo is located on the bottom end of the baffle of the towers. The Jam & lab 8 Tower speakers are substantially bigger than the Jam & Lab 6 Tower Speakers and are heavier and look imposing as well.

Performance:

Be in stereo or in HT, the Jam & Lab 8 speakers are very much worth their price points and do admirably well in going about the tasks given to them. Yes, they shine with quality associated equipment in the chain and really do so without any fuss. Where the 8 differ from the six is in the way the low frequency is pronounced. The 8's are far more bass heavy than the 6 and should be a welcome addition to people who are looking for more bass. The rest of the frequency range is decent but gets a tad over shadowed by the presence of the bass frequencies. The Jam & Lab 8 fronts would ideally be suited for rooms around 250 to 400 sq ft. Placement is not very fussy but ideally being placed at a distance above 6 inches from the rear walls and at least 12 inches from the side walls will get the balance of the low frequencies optimized. A minimum distance between 4 feet and upto 8 feet between the 2 speakers also is advised from our experience of the Jam & Lab 8. We played a variety of music genre's and found that the Jam & Lab 8 excel with electronic music, r&b, jazz and bass heavy music. Addition of a sub woofer generally is not required for the Jam & Lab 8 tower speakers, as by and large there is no need to enhance the bass provided by them as far as music duties are concerned but for enhancing the movies watching experience, surely one can add a sub woofer.

Verdict:

At an introductory price of Rs. 77,000/- the Jam & Lab 8 Tower Speakers are a good option for not only first time buyers but also ones that have started off and are well into their HT journey but are looking for an upgrade on a shoe string budget. The Jam & Lab 8 Tower Speakers provide more than satisfactory performance for the end user., are well put together having a good level of fit and finish with very appreciable levels of quality components put together. Highly recommended by us!

SWAN - JAM & LAB 6 5.0 SPEAKERS WITH SUB 10 SUBWOOFER

  • Written by Denom
  • Category: Speakers
  • Hits: 745

Swan speakers have been around in the Indian market for quite a few years now and their product range has been very well received in the desktop speakers segment for their quality and price points. To further develop the market and make inroads into the home theatre(HT) segment, HiVi Inc. US, have appointed M/s. ProAudioHome as the new distributor for the Indian market. We received a 5.0 set of Jam & Lab6 speakers which we used for conducting reviews for stereo and HT purposes.

A little insight into HiVi:

HiVi is a leading manufacturer of quality audio systems. Employing some of the world's finest electro-acoustical technicians and craftsmen, the company established state-of-the art R+D facilities in Toronto, Canada in 1994 and was fueled by early successes with innovative driver designs. In 1997, HiVi merged with highly-regarded speaker manufacturer Swans Speaker Systems and opened corporate offices in Monterey Park, California. 

HiVi have a large product portfolio, which includes a sub brand of home theatre speakers under the name of Jam & Lab, which consist of 2 models, the 6 and 8. It is interesting to note that the center and surround speakers for both series are the same, with only the main speakers having different specifications.

Jam & Lab 6 Specifications:

HiVi Jam&Lab 6 Front Main Speaker 

System Type

3-way 4th-order Vented Box System

Drivers Configuration

Two 6.5" woofers

5" midrange driver

1" soft dome tweeter

Frequency Range

40Hz - 20kHz

Harmonic Distortion

70Hz - 20kHz ≤1%(2.83V/1m)

Sensitivity(2.83V/1m)

88dB

Nominal Impedance

6Ω   

Power Handling

10W - 160W

Dimension(W×D×H)

8.1" x 13.1" x 38.0"

Net Weight(each)

48.5lbs

 

HiVi Jam&Lab 6C Front Center Speaker 

System Type

2-way 2nd-order Sealed Box System

Drivers Configuration

Two 5" bass-midrange driver

1" soft dome tweeter

Frequency Range

66Hz - 20kHz

Harmonic Distortion

110Hz - 20kHz ≤1%(2.83V/1m)

Sensitivity(2.83V/1m)

88dB   

Nominal Impedance

6Ω 

Power Handling

10W - 120W  

Dimension (W×D×H)

15.7" x 7.2" x  6.8"

Net Weight(each)

13.2lbs

 

HiVi Jam&Lab 6R Surround Speaker

System Type

2-way 2nd-order Sealed Box System

Drivers Configuration

5" bass-midrange drivers

1" soft dome tweeter

Frequency Range

66Hz - 20kHz

Harmonic Distortion

110Hz - 20kHz ≤1%(2.83V/1m)

Sensitivity (2.83V/1m)

87dB 

Nominal Impedance

Power Handling

10W - 60W

Dimensions (W×D×H)

6.9" x 5.9" x  10.6"

Net Weight (each)

8.8lbs

 

 

HiVi Jam&Lab 8 Front Main Speaker 

System Type

3-way 4th-order Vented Box System

Drivers Configuration

Two 8" woofers

Two 5" midrange drivers

1" soft dome tweeter

Frequency Range

38Hz - 20kHz

Harmonic Distortion

60Hz - 20kHz ≤1%(2.83v/1m)

Sensitivity(2.83V/1m)

88dB   

Nominal Impedance

6Ω   

Power Handling

10W - 200W

Dimension (W×D×H)

9.4" x 14.1" x  42.5"

Net Weight(each)

63.9lbs

Associated Test Equipment:

Amps:

Cambridge Audio 840A

Cyrus 6vs2

Cary Audio Pre/Power

Onkyo CRN-765

Source:

2 Channel -

Marantz SA7003

Onkyo CRN-765

Asus Xonar U7 DAC

Cables:

Nordost White Lightning Speaker Cables

Nordost Blue Heaven IC’s

VDH The Name IC’s

Nordost Q-Base QB4 MkII

Nordost Red Dawn Power Cords

HT –

Pioneer BDP180

Pioneer VSX1131

Yamaha RXV581

Marantz SR5011

Unboxing:

The Jam & Lab 6 speakers come securely packed in good / thick quality card board boxes with adequate thermocol inserts, resulting in one receiving the contents in a damage free manner. The packing can be re-used easily for re-locations as well which is good news in these days of cutting costs/corners. A small zip lock pouch contains a small manual that comes with all the speakers. In the case of the 6R surrounds, two bracket plates along with the desired number of screws/grips are also provided along with the speakers.

Since the sets we received were brand new, we tried to break-in all the speakers as much as possible (30 hours) in order to get a better idea of how they will sound once they had appreciably opened up.

We started off with the Jam & Lab 6 Floor Standers which we hooked up in a stereo configuration and tried them out with various amps/sources as stated above.

Appearance:

The Jam & Lab Speakers come in black ash, with a very good level of fit and finish. The tower speakers are rear ported with the port at the lower end just above the speaker wire binding posts. The binding posts are gold plated and are of good quality. Four hard plastic footers are located at the bottom of the tower speakers only. The baffle of the entire 6 series is in matt black finish with dark silver grey surrounds onto which the drivers are mounted. Good quality speaker grilles with equally good mounting fasteners are mounted into the grill frame to ensure a proper and secure fit to the baffle of the speakers. The HiVi Swan logo is present on the bottom of the grille of the center and surround speakers, whilst it is located on the bottom end of the baffle of the towers. The 6R surround speakers have a 4 way mounting bracket attached to the rear of the speakers so that they can be mounted up/down or sideways as intended. Matching bracket plates with securing screws and grips come along with the 6R surround speakers. All in all the quality of the speakers appear to be good and ones that should last a while.

 

Performance:

Be in stereo or in HT, the Jam & Lab 6 speakers are very much worth their price points and do admirably well in going about the tasks given to them. Yes, they shine with quality associated equipment in the chain and really do so without any fuss. The 6 provide a good balance across the frequency range.

The Jam & Lab 6 fronts would ideally be suited for rooms around 250 to 300 sq ft. Placement is not very fussy but ideally being placed at a distance above 6 inches from the rear walls and at least 12 inches from the side walls will get the balance of the low frequencies optimized. A minimum distance between 4 feet and upto 8 feet between the 2 speakers also is advised from our experience of the Jam & Lab 6. The towers have a slight forward presentation but having said that, they can still be non fatiguing to listen to for appreciable period of time. The highs, mids and lows are pretty much in balance across the frequency spectrum and perform admirably well with all types of genres of music. We were certainly impressed by their performance especially at their price point.

The Jam & lab 6C center channel is quite powerful and adequate for center channel duties, though one might have to increase the gain levels of the center channel depending on the size of the room.

The Jam & Lab 6R surround speakers are equally good in the duties as surrounds, but can also double up as front channels in a smaller room be it for stereo or HT purposes. Yes, being sealed speakers they do not go very low with respect to low frequency response but when augmented with a sub woofer, especially the sub10, which is also a sealed box design, they work extremely well in tandem. The 6R’s in fact work extremely well when all they have to deliver is the mid range and high frequencies.

The sub10 sub woofer does a reasonably good job in adding body to the bass with the 6 towers, but needs to be positioned in the right area of the room to make it work at it's best. Fine tuning takes care of the desired bass response which when achieved blends in very well with the rest of the 6 package. Having said that, the sub 10 does have it's limitations in providing very deep bass, that some bass heads would desire, so one should keep in mind that the sub10 cannot achieve outright room shaking levels. We would advise a pair of the sub10's would be able to do a better job than what one would be able to do. For a room size of upto 275 sq ft, the sub 10 will be able to do a very good job indeed.

Verdict:

At an introductory price of Rs. 95,000/- the Jam & Lab 6 5.0 Set up with a Sub10 Sub Woofer is truly value for money and ideal for not only first time buyers but also ones that have started off and are well into their HT journey but are looking for an upgrade on a shoe string budget. At the price point they are offered at the moment, we feel they are truly worth every penny and will provide more than satisfactory performance for the end user. The Jam & Lab Series speakers are well put together, with a good level of fit and finish and have very appreciable levels of quality components put together.

Kudos to the distributor for selling the set at this price and passing on the full benefit to the end user.

We highly recommend this set and urge buyers to make most of this introductory price!

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