Acoustic Research AR11 Floorstanding Speakers

4.53/5 (19 Reviews) MSRP : $900.00


Product Description

3-way Floorstanding Speaker - Titanium Dome, 5 1/4" MagAlloy mid-range, 8" woofer


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Reviews 1 - 5 (19 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by TonyP a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: March 7, 2005

Bottom Line:   
I couldn't pass up the offer of $200 per pair with shipping. I read the reviews first to get an idea of what to expect. I figured for $200, how could I go wrong? First, my impression visually. The speakers looked very nice and solidly built. I expected passable sound, but was I surprised after extended listening (with the grills removed. The midrange and hi-end opened up once the grills were removed). The inner detail within the music was more than I expected from a pair of speakers in this price range. The midrange driver and tweeter operated seamlessly together. The speakers disappeared in my dedicated listening room. The soundstage was very 3 dimensional with adequate width and depth, while the height was "shorter" than what I am used to. I have the speakers 30" from rear wall and 6' from side walls. It smoothed out the bass response which seemed a little boomy closer to the boundary walls. The low end was there within it's limit and did not overpowered the midrange and high end. This speaker does not "sizzle" or sound "forward". It does not "thump" with the midbass-one note sound. The sound characteristic in my listening room is relaxed and natural, draing you into the music. Again, I can not over emphasis the inner detail that was present in the music. The "space" that was present around the individual instruments/singers. The attack and decay of the musical notes. The detail in the percussion or the bowing of string instruments. I wish I had a chance to listen to it's larger siblings.
On a budget, I could certainly live with these. I have heard NHT's that cost more and yet, to me, do not sound any better. In their respective price range, I would think that these are very hard to beat.

My home equipment:

Marsh P2000T hybrid tube pre amp
Counterpoint SA 3 Tube pre amp
Counterpoint SA220 Hybrid tube power amp
Parasound HCA 2200mk II power amp
ART DI/O modified DAC.
Pioneer universal player

Von Schwiekert VR 4 speakers

AudioQuest Indigo II shotgunned
Canare L4E6S Star Quad Cable interconnects

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2002

Price Paid:    $200.00

Purchased At:   private



Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by DanD a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: February 5, 2003

Bottom Line:   
Build Quality: The speakers in my opinion are not built really well, but I suppose for the price it really isn't a problem. The knock test produced a somewhat low and hollow sound, which shows that it isn't the most solid of speakers. The grilles present two problems.

1. They are totally over-extended. I would much rather see the finish on the bottom half of the speaker.

2. The grille is not sonically transparent. In fact it really does limit the high frequencies.

The feet are not really a big complaint, but I think spikes would've been better.

Sound Quality: Overall, the sound quality did not impress me a whole lot. The treble with the grilles on are a little bright and and undetailed. Without the grilles, it opens up and is more detailed, but becomes overbright.

The mids have good detail, but they can become overshadowed by the tweeter and the woofer. Also it is fairly far from being pleasant... I noticed harshness. This was especially apparent when I popped in some Hendrix and "Doctor, Doctor" by UFO. I thought I was going to go deaf the vocals sounded so harsh.

The bass is exceptionally powerful for its size and loneliness in the cabinet (not separately powered). However it is definitely boomy and very picky about placement. The bass is also loose at the same time, resulting in muddiness.

Now all this being said, one must realize that at this closeout price it is a pretty good deal. People on a strict budget should definitely consider this speaker. But I'd say the $800 to $2000 range is where real (or sometimes tolerable, depending on the person) hi-fi starts.

System:

Onkyo DX-C606 CD
JoLida JD-1701 integrated hybrid amp w/ JJ-Tesla 12AX7/ECC83S in the pre
AR11s (soon to be replaced by Dynaudio or Meadowlark)
Clarity Labs Emberglow interconnects
AQ4 speaker cable bi-wire

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Price Paid:    $465.00

Purchased At:   Brandnamez



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bogrod a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: May 19, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I wasn't going to give a review on these speakers until I had used them for at least a few months. I must say that I am enthusiastic about the purchase that I made! As many have already mentioned, the bass response is FIRST RATE for not being seperately powered. My HK 110 drives them with ease. The buld quality I give kudos to as well. The only knock I'd give to these speakers is the very long grilles, which cover the entire front of the speaker. This seems silly since there are only two speakers on the front, both located at the top. Also - a real good deal considering that I bought these speakers at 1/2 the retail price.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001

Price Paid:    $399.00

Purchased At:   accessories4less.com



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by cburbs a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 16, 2002

Bottom Line:   
After looking at many speakers at local stores I went with the AR 11's. Bought them from accessories4less.
I took a chance considering I was not able to listen to them before hand. After reading reviews and finding out a friend owned them and enjoyed them I thought I would give them a shot.
For the price you can't beat them.
Great sound for having only a 8" side firing sub.
If your on a budget like I was try and get your hands on these.
I have these bi wired with MIT wire. Not sure if I can tell a difference(testing one bi-wired and the other non.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001

Price Paid:    $379.00

Purchased At:   Accessories 4 less



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by BSEE a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: March 6, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I replaced a set of much larger JVC 3-ways(which were really quite good) with the AR11's. The crossovers actually have intelligently selected roll-off points at 3200 and 100 Hz. They have filled in a gap I had between 80 and 100Hz with the JVC's in my system creating a seamless transition between the AR11's and my sub.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2001

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   AC4L




Reviews 1 - 5 (19 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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