I use these for my home theater. They are terriffic for the price and would be a bargain used. Not quite as refined as my Epos floorstanders, but at 1/3 the proce they are not far off. I would highly recommend for home theater application.
First off, I should briefly explain why I decided on buying these speakers. My old speakers were a pair of old Fisher's that served me very well. They were 3-way's with a 10" for the lows a 4" more mids and a 2" tweeter (along with two front ports) ratted at 100 Watts RMS (8 Ohms impedance). They gave a very nice warm sound, but lacked mid range....to the point it bothered me. So, the first thing I did was use my receivers EQ (Equalizer) to enhance the mid range, it helped a bit, but not nearly enough. So, then I picked up a used 10 band ADC equalizer (Sound Shaper 33) and wow, what a difference. But, then I discovered the limits of my Fisher Speakers. The mid range speaker would begin to distort at certain peaks...I could hear the speaker garble...So, I backed off on the mid range boost of the ADC Equalizer realizing that the limiting factor of my system were my speakers. Actually, I wasn't surprised.
So, along came the PSB's T-45's (Image Series). I heard them at an arena where there was an audio/visual
sale going on. There where a many other brands there, but the style an look of the T-45's is what caught my eye (but I have listed to others). First off the fit and finish is immaculate. The T-45's that were being showcased were the Sienna finish....lighter the cherry wood, but darker then maple.
The sales rep hooked both the T-45's and T-55's for me. I felt the T-45's were better suited for the mid range. This is probably partly due to the mid/low drivers being a bit smaller then the T-55's. The T-55's were better equipped for the lower ends, they had excellent mid range...but I felt the T-45's were a bit crisper. So, since I have a Sub, low end was not a big issue with me. First of, with the T-45's, the clarity was very impressive. While listening to them, I realized how 'muddy' my old Fishers were. It's a little hard to explain, but to put it to you the best way I can, these speakers really help with the 'distinction'...or 'resolution' of the sound I you hear....so much that I was visualizing the instruments I was hearing. The rep played a jazz CD for me and the voice had real presence, so much that people walking by would stop or people standing far away would come over. Next off, I figured if this is how they sound in an arena, imagine how they will sound in my apartment. Furthermore, when I walked from side to side to test how they filled the area with sound, I was impressed. Unlike my old speakers, where if you walk past them there was this 'distinctive wall' where sound would drop off, these T-45's filled a much wider area with a more 'feathered' drop off rather then severe, distinct, cut off.
When I did get the speakers back to my apartment, I was also impressed with the top notch packaging and a 'real manual' that actually teaches you some basic audio concepts and helpful cautionary advice...not like some manuals that say 'do not immerse in water', or 'not for outdoor use'. Someone actually took the time to put a real manual together helping you with the set up and proper speaker placement.
When I hooked up the speakers, one of the first CD's I played was Rolling Stones 'Can't You Hear Me Knocking?" (great guitar riff by the way). Well, let me say...when I was standing in my kitchen...not in front of my speakers, pouring myself a cup of coffee...I almost poured a second cup for Keith Richard's whom I thought was in my living room jamming away. Let's just say I was 'in the zone'.
Some of the other motivating factors in this purchase is that PSB (which stands for Paul Sue Barton) is a Canadian Company. The speakers are designed and engineered in Canada (I believe the drivers are made in Canada too) and the unit is custom manufactured in China...this is where the cost saving comes to you. I'm pretty sure PSB was the first Canadian Speaker manufacturer to use Canada's Acoustic Research Facility to help design their speakers back in 1972 (pretty sure they still do).
Back to the cost, I really think it's true when some people say you have to spend more then $2000 to get speakers better then the T-45's. Hands down, this is the best 'bang for buck' speaker you can buy, ecspecially with looks and style that compete with much more expensive units.
I have had the ImageT45s for several months now and have played a good portion of my music library through them and can attest to their strengths and weaknesses. My library
runs the gamut from groups like Tool and Audioslave, to Buddy Guy, Muddy Waters, to Norah Jones, Diana Krall, to
Eric Clapton, Mark Knopfler, to Beethoven Mozart, Tchiakovsky etc.
My speakers are set about 7ft apart and toed in slightly.
I wasn't a big believer in speaker break-in until I brought these speakers home. I felt the bass was bit polite or a
little weak but the longer I played them the stronger the bass got. It is now quite apparent, still well controlled
and even, not bloated but tight and responsive. I played Tchaikovsky 1812 overture on vinyl, a "London" recording
and I heard the bass to its deepest response and with authority. Not only that but I heard the resonance of the
double bass's cabinet. It was just so awesome to hear this. To make sure it wasn't my speakers, I played Cowboy Junkies' Crescent moon album where the bass is strong and deep. The
only thing rattling were my basement sliders.
To test the tweeters, I played Tchaiskovsky violin Concerto in D . This is a real acid test to see if the tweeters
become shrill or not, especially at higher volumes. I can honestly say that these speakers behaved flawlessly on this
peace of work. I had to take my Radio Shack meter out to determine how loud I was playing because it came across so
smooth. These speakers are definitely not bright.
To test the midrange, I chose Diana Krall's "Live in Paris" and Norah Jones's "Come Away With Me" and Buddy Guy's acoustic blues album "Blues Singer" Again, I was very impressed with smoothness of the mids in the female vocals. No strident overtones, just smooth sensuous vocals. Buddy Guy
came across really smooth with none of that artificial chestiness ("added bass") that some speakers add. In all
three of these albums, I felt that the vocalists were singing in the room in front of me. This was really
apparent from comfortable volume levels (low 60db) to high volume levels ( excess of 85db sustained) .
I used Dave Matthew's Band "Before These Crowded Streets", Beethoven's Piano Concerto #5, Mark Knopfler's Rag Pickers
dream to test the resolution of the soundstage. I'm still amazed how revealing these speakers are. I know these works very well and I was surprised at the nuances these speakers
brought out in the music. The sound stage was fairly deep and really wide and I could easily hear the positions of the
instruments relative to one another. These speakers just disappeared in the background and let the music come out.
Are they perfect? No.. During crowded passages, they started to compress a little during loud volume levels and I
noticed a slight shift in frequency as I lowered the volume again. But for $750.00 US, you will be hard pressed to beat
the level of performance these speakers are capable of.
After lots of research and giving a good listen to a lot of speakers i brought the psb t45 in to give it a serious listen.
Everything is to par in terms of imaging the clarity and the sound stage is superb. These speakers as said do dissapear in the room and u can really enjoy the playback.
I had been listening to a lot of jazz and some classical.
Then things quickly changed as i started to watch a movie or two and some other flavours of music.
I was somewhat dissapointed in the excessive frequency response in the 4-6khz range. I would definatly call these speakers bright.
5 1/4" being small enough to move they were fast and very responsive. If you are going to be running a stereo rig without a sub i would recommend looking at t55 or t65 as they do not handle low frequencies very well.
Barry white's deep voice was done great unjustice in stereo mode. The tune from the new ipod commercial was unbearable to listen to (Casesars).
I would have prefered the speakers tweeters being a bit shinny rather than bright. The frequencies in my opinion that are over emphasized make the listening experience really un-enjoyable for me.
Just fyi I tried the speakers on the SR7000 mainly and then to confirm my findings tried it on the SR7300ose.
Wow, I'm very impressed. I need to put together a complete HT set that could also do music. I ended up with T45's, C40, S50, & Sub 6i.
The T45's are probably the best speaker that can be had for under $1,000. You could spend more to get a better sound, but it will cost you closer to $2,000 or more. The 5 1/4" woofers are amazing, they seem to be able to handle everything I throw at them. I have them paired with a Rotel RSX-1065 & RCD-1070. Needless to say my equipment is probably overkill for what these speakers will normally get paired with.
All I can say it that I've been listening to Nora Jones & Diana Krell for the past few hours and I'm in love. I blown away by how fast these speakers are, because they keep up so effortlessly with everything I throw at them, the separation is amazing. I'm definately hearing details I haven't heard for a while. Music clean and natural with a beautiful clarity.
What about movies. Wow, I am blown away. The T45's complement all it's brothers (C40, S50's & Sub 6i). I'm really impressed by the matched Bipolar S50's. While watching Saving Private Ryan the open sceen was spectacular. They handled the DTS Explosive action with authroity. I had to turn the system down a little because I was afraid of neighbors complaining, but even on a lower volume all the detail and excitement was there.
For the money this speaker is clearly a 5 out of 5. It does so many things right, separation of the instruments is great, and it fills the room with ease. I had to double check that my center speaker was not on because the speakers just disapper. Performances are very convincing wheather HT or Music. If your budget doesn't warrent speakers over 2k these are your babies.