NEAR 15M Floorstanding Speakers

4.9/5 (10 Reviews)


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Reviews 1 - 5 (10 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Abex a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: June 8, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I was doing research for someone for an HT system and I mentioned the NEAR's to them,but did not know where I could get any at the time.I did some digging and got lucky!I was considering Axiom's,but a recording Engineer in LA told the dude not to go there.He was not impressed,but he liked the Paradigm's or PSB's.

I was able to pickup a set of NEAR M15's by luckily calling a few people here in Maine and finding a dealer that still had a few pairs with replacement driver's.
I had heard the M50's about 10yrs. ago before the Stereophile review that I think really hurt the Cos. place in the Audiophile Kingdom.To say the least I was blown away by what I had heard (M50's)!

Anyways,I asked to get the M50's but in the meantime I wanted a pair of NEAR's to play while selling a few other pair's of speaker's(Maggie 1.4 & PSB 40's)in order to get the M50's.

I never heard the M15's before,but I knew I would need them for Rear spks..Believe what is said here by others.I recently heard the B&W CDM 1 NT's and Paradigm Mini's and they don't have what the M15's have.The Maggies don't come close either!Maggies are known for their ability to reveal info,well the M15's beat them hands down!And I always loved the Maggies.

Talk about Bass.I played Sheryl Crows Global Sessions and got up to turn down the Subwoofer's Vol. on the controller only to findout that the Bass was coming from the M15's.It simply amazed me!These are incredible speaker's and I have heard some of the finest speaker's ever made!

Roger Water's Amused to Death with Q sound was better all around than the other speaker's I had here.Outstanding! I heard things that the Maggies simply did not reveal!And the speaker's do a dissapearing act!Exit Stage left during the performance!

I have replacement driver's that are the updates to the stock driver's that are in now and I cannot fathom them sounding much better,but I will try them also!

GOOD NEWS! I heard there is a company here in Maine that will be coming to market soon that use the same technology that NEAR used.The speaker's will be named after places like Moosehead for Moosehead Lake.So there is hope for us yet.Hopefully they takeoff so more people can hear what I and other posters already know.
THE BOTTOMLINE!
If you can find a set buy them!If you can find the M50's do not hesitate to buy them!

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999

Price Paid:    $350.00

Purchased At:   Private Owner



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jim Stannard a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: June 17, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I boought Bielecki"s speakers (see his very positive reviewreview this page).Why he sould them will never make sense to me, but I am glad he did. These speakers give the best sound in the price range up to about $2500 that I ahve ever heard, rivalling the best electrostatics for clarity, detail and airy transparency. They are an incredible treasure. They require a powerful, quality ,amp. Will reveal any flaws in your system without exxagera ting them. These speakers are amazingly neutrak and right.A very impressive low end,close to 40hz, for a speaker of its size. My personal prefernce is for the Near over similar, pricier. and slightly
tizzy Monito Audio offerings.

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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1996



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Scott a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: May 6, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I was set to purchase a pair of floor-standing NHT's to replace my older Infinities, which I discovered had become the weak link in my music system. Then I came upon a second-hand, but unused pair of NEAR 15M's online for $450. Based on the other reviews here and a previous audition of larger NEAR speakers (40M's I believe), I decided to take a chance on the NEARs.

I put off writing this review for a few months due to the relatively long break-in period required to transform these speakers from slightly thin and analytical to a more balanced, neutral presentation. The 15M's are very much cleaner than the Infinities they replaced, and also cleaner with more extended bass response than some NHT Super Ones I had available for comparison. They are remarkably free of any resonances or colorations that plague lesser designs (many of which cost significantly more than the 15M's). One gets the feeling of listening directly to the source material, rather than to a pair of speakers. The combination of the fluid damped metal cone technology and vibration isolators in the cabinet seem very effective in removing anything extraneous to the input signal.

One possible con is that the virtues of the NEAR design make the speaker very source-sensitive. I had two amplifiers that I had been somewhat undecided about when using my Infinity speakers, but the NEARs made the decision quite obvious. Similarly, I had always had some trouble hearing the effect of switching the phase on my Audio Alchemy D/A converter - but with the NEAR's, I could discern precisely the effect that the manual described.

Overall, I couldn't be happier with my purchase. Highs and mid are detailed without the harshness I had feared from a metal cone speaker. Bass is very tight with no discernable overhang. Response drops quickly below 40 Hz, so these are probably not the best choice for the bottom-feeders of the world - but they are truly an outstanding value for anyone else who is fortunate enough to find a pair.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Eric a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: April 8, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Having moved away from high end audio to home theater for a while, I was looking to re-enter the arena and cost was going to be a definite factor this time. In the past, I have had more in cables than I did in my whole system now. As I looked to assemble a system on a budget I new the front-end and speaker would be the most important components. I purchased an MSB Link DAC III for the front end and am very satisfied, but that is another review. When looking for speakers I budgeted $1000 and began my search with the usual suspects; Paradigm, B&W, Totem, PSB etc. One day while I was in a dealer looking at Paradigms, I noticed an ordinary looking black pair of speakers in the corner. When I asked what they were, the dealer told me the were NEAR's but they were out of business so I wouldn't want to go there. I asked him to play them anyway just to widen my speaker experience. Now before this I had basically decided on some B&W CDM's and was pretty much dead set on my decision. When we played the NEAR's I liked what I heard but not enough to change my mind, but it did plant a seed. I went home and looked at the reviews on the NEAR's and became more intrigued. I was finally able to compare the NEAR's directly to the B&W's and was really suprised that I liked the NEAR's better. Every time I listened to a selection I kept coming back to the NEAR's and thinking it just sounded more like music. I purchased the NEAR's for $450 and felt like I had stolen something.

When I got the speakers home and put them in my system I truly began to fall in love with them. Their sound is so nuetral and spacious. Low level detail is resolved as good as any speaker under $2000. This speaker is very revealing of any changes made in your system upstream. I purchase some new Kimber Silver Streak and could not believe the differences I heard. Your just not suppose to hear that much difference in cables through speakers at this price. I also added some DH Labs Silver Sonic and had the same results. These speakers just love silver wire. In passing I was able to get in touch with Bill Kieltyka, the designer at NEAR and he gave me some advice on a few tweaks for the speakers. I wired the inside of the speaker with the DH Labs and the results were again wonderful. From what my previous experience had told me, mixing metal cone speakers with silver wiring would be suicide, but that is just not the case here. The highs are sooo much more extended and detail is much greater without any brightness.

All in all, I would say I have not regretted my purchase in the least and would put these speakers up against any under $2000. I have heard and even owned better speakers, but these speakers just do not do ANYTHING wrong. The only weaknesses are ones of omission and not comission. Bravo NEAR and here's to you getting back into the fray of HIGH END sometime in the future.

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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1999



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Stan D. a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: March 4, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I did not want to send review untill I am shure that the spekers are broken in. Since their sound did not change for few amonths now I can confidently write this review.

Summary:
Speakers are amazing considering the price and size. You would have to spend much more for any significant improvement, if any. Full bodied, detailed, not harsh (unless your equipment is such)

Details:
Associated equipment, Rega Planar 2/RB250, Grado Prestige Silver, Parasound PHP-850/HCA-750 combo, Monster cables and interconects, Lovan stands.
At first they sounded on the bright side, after six months (yes it takes a while) sound smoothed out bringing magic. Stands are a must sice theyhave to be at least 1.5 ft from back walls. It goes deep for the size but do not expect miracles. I listened bigger speakers that did not go as deep as these. Amount of bass is also very good ules you want to open a disco club.

Excelent for the jaz, classical, pop and vocal music (Joan Baez, Pavaroti sound like from haven), not bad with rock, and pop.

In the price range I listened Monitor Audios, Missions, PSB Pinacles and they did not come even close.

Expand full review >>

Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1999




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