I have been experimenting with a variety of better monitors for the last couple years. The SR-17iii probably ends my search. With Class A amplification, the bass is formidable, the top end is detailed without even the hint of harshness, and the soundstage is terrific. Interestingly, these speakers are actually louder with my First Watt amp than several other speakers with supposedly higher sensitivity. Any solid state amp can power them, and I suspect that you are alright with all but the small SET kit.
While I also have the SR-17.5s, I think you gain very little for the extra size and money. Frankly, I am thinking about selling the SR-17.5s if I can find another pair of these. They are simply easier to place for a condo dweller with a moderately sized listening area.
These are very fine speakers with a great look and greater sound.
I have had the Silverline SR17 for over 3 months now, and have to admit that these speakers keep on superising me on just how good they are. In the past I have owned a set of Wilson Benesch actors, Jamo Concerts 8,Quad 11 AE 109, these are eaisly the best speakers to live with. I have a wide taste in music that varies from progressive metal to world music to Jazz to Classical. Over that period I have found it hard to find a speaker that can peform well with all types of music.
The first thing I noticed about these speakers is there sense of scale, this really brought home to me how much music I was missing, the next is how clear these speakers are, I am now able to listen to music for extended periods of 3 hours or more without any sense of tiredness, I feel that the speakers have played a big part in this.
As you might have read they image so well, you cannot really tell where the sound is comung from when your are closed.
I have read that they do not sound good with rock, but I find that they really do have a good sense of crunch with the right equipment and sound simply devine with acoustic music.
The equipment it is used with are
Musical Fidelity 3d nu-vista cd player.
Advantage pre-amp Pre1
Gamut D200 Mark 1
Ps audio Plus speaker cable in a bi-wired version (2 sets)
Ps audio Lab mains cable x2
Synesgistic rearch Master coupler Mains Cable
This review is for a 2002 model year SR17 with piano (gloss) black finish.?xD;?xA;?xD;?xA;These speakers really move me and draw me into the music much more so that other speakers I've listened to. They are very accurate in their reproduction of music with no coloration. They are not forward or too laid back, either, but more neutral, placing the listener on the first row. For most music types, these monitors really get it right from top to bottom of the frequency range, with the only exception that they don't resolve that low string of a 5-stringed bass (32Hz) well enough. Of course, you don't really expect that from a mini monitor anyway! There's very good coherence from the highest of highs down to upright bass territory, making it difficult to pinpoint the crossover point by listening. (One nice thing is that the crossover point is at 2500Hz, which is slightly above the point where our ears are most sensitive.) ?xD;?xA;?xD;?xA;Being two-way speakers, there's also a great deal of purity (and transparency) to the music from not having more complex crossover networking mucking up the signal. Plus, they're very revealing of weak links upstream. Probably their greatest strength is in their exceptional imaging and soundstaging. They may give up a bit on the bottom end, but they make up for it in the areas that count the most (the rest of the bandwidth!). These speakers really disappear, and it makes every listening session a very visual experience and like you're really listening to your favorite group play live. This is something that you just don't get with most floorstanders. Sure the large floorstanders have the thunderous kodo-ready bass and they do indeed image, but not on the level of an exceptional monitor as the SR17.?xD;?xA;?xD;?xA;Not only are they very attractive and like works of art, but they work well with tubed & SS amps. Especially if you're into jazz, you'll love these monitors, but they work surperbly well with strings, vocals, brass, and even rock music (but you may wish to add a nice powered 10" sub or something to beef up the lows). These speakers arrive triple-boxed and have exceptional workmanship. They're heavy and, did I say "attractive!"?xD;?xA;?xD;?xA;Hats off to Alan Yun for providing first class customer support and returning emails and being available via phone for advice and suggestions on how to get the most out of the product.
I thought it would be appropriate to offer some observations on the Silverline SR-17 after it has been in my system for one year.
The SR-17’s most striking feature is an absence of midband coloration attributable to its cathedral-shaped enclosure, when compared to speakers in conventional rectangular boxes. The midrange is thus very articulate and clear, being free of “honkiness”. This could partially be due to the piano-black lacquer which I opted for on my pair.
The treble is very smooth and airy with no harsh edges, due to the unique aluminium tweeter template ring. The bass is not artificially tight, as in many speakers intentionally damped to give a controlled but dull & colorless bass effect. Rather, the aeriferous tuned port allows acoustic bass to bloom in its natural tonal colors.
The SR17 is transparent in the way it reveals with upgrades in source, cabling and amplification and A/C treatment. It required too much current than my previous 11 watt Cary 300 SEI could offer, but the beefier Plinius is a good match. After a one year break-in, the drivers sound noticeably less constrained, and more smooth and dynamic.
Positioning is easy in a big room, but with a great deal of careful positioning I was rewarded with exceptional sound even in a room as small as 13’ x 9’ x8’. Needless to say, it needs to be coned to rigid heavily mass loaded and damped stands. An electrostatic transparent quality was attained by placing a pair of Audio Industries Sonic Enhancers (mass loaded alloy cylinders)as well as Teknasonic absorbers on top of them.
This special port also enables the speaker to have a remarkably spacious and three-dimensional sound, a engaging effect which is clearly experienced when comparing it to other speakers. Imaging is as holographic as any closely priced Sonus Faber, due to the simple hardwired crossover (1inductor & 1 capacitor –2nd order) . As the SR17 uses a bigger cabinet, one might be led to feel it concedes slightly in pin-point imaging or mid-range when compared to the Pro-AC Response 1sC or a Rogers LS3-5A. However the powerful dynamics, overwhelming soundstage and CLEAN thunderous bass it delivers during orchestral climaxes is in the league of a good floorstander. It does this with a scale which makes the LS3/5a or 1SC sound miniscule and dwarfed. What is important is that one never feels that one is enjoying big sound at the expense of accuracy, or vice versa.
Lastly, its price is ridiculously low for such a magnificent level of performance and craftsmanship.
Meridian 508.24 Audio Synthesis Passion balanced passive attenuator Plinius SA-100 Mk.III Harmonic Technology Pro Silway II balanced interconnects & Pro 9 speaker cable Target R-6 speaker stand Chang Lightspeed 6400 , 3 AC Enacom filters, Tice Power Enhancer DH cones/squares/pads & DIY sand bases
Music used comprises largely orchestral & chamber classical music, as well as small ensemble and big band jazz
I just finished a home audition of the Silverline SR-17 mini-monitor. This is a truly outstanding product whose price does not nearly reflect it's level of quality and performance. Background: I have been actively shopping for speakers for about four months and had not heard of Silverline when I came across their web site. An e-mail inquiry about local dealers was answered by Silverline president, Alan Yun. Alan was very helpful and referred me to Steve Klein at Sounds of Silence in Nashua, NH for local help. It turned out that Steve had a pair of SR 17's that he had just finished breaking in and we arranged for a demo. Optimally, I am shopping for a floorstanding speaker, but a few more e-mails to Steve and Alan as well some outstanding reviews by Barry Willis (Stereophile) and Mike Masztal (Soundstage) convinced me that the SR-17 would give me a good representation of Silverline's design philosophy.
The Sound: This is about speakers right? In my 120 days or so of serious loudspeaker shopping, I have listened critically to Aerial (5, 6 & 7B), Avalon (Arcus), B & W (802, 803) Hales (Transcendence 5) JM Lab (Electra 915 & 920) Joseph (RM30 & RM50) Legacy (Sig III & Focus), Martin Logan (Aerius, SL-3, ReQuest), Meadowlark (Heron), Montana (EPS & SPII), Sonus Faber (Concert Grand Piano). To say that the SR-17 "blows these products away" is not accurate or fair. What the SR-17 does do is deliver music clearly, effortlessly and dynamically in a way that I have not heard from these other fine products.
Music is presented...musically! I listen mostly to jazz and acoustic music and I have been leaning more toward forward sounding, highly detailed speakers. While the SR-17 delivers the goods in the detail department, it does so in a way that does not sound harsh or analytical. Whether it is through good component selection, engineering or plain craftsmanship, Alan Yun has put together a speaker that has a natural ease and absolute lack of coloration. Highs are extended and airy; mids are detailed, liquid and alive. Bass extension is not on a par with the big floorstanders but does go way down for a mini-monitor - the bowed bass on Patricia Barber's Constantinople (Modern Cool) was as "there" as I needed it to be.
Soundstage is outstanding. I absolutely could not place the speakers with my eyes closed. On James Carter's Lianmo (In Carterian Fashion), Dwight Adams on trumpet is just outside the left speaker, James Carter is standing slightly behind and to the right and Cassius Richmond on alto is forward and just inside of the right speaker. Placement is absolute - these guys are there! Cabinetry is excellent - the demo pair were in walnut with grain that literally wraps the speaker seamlessly.
Ultimately, my 12 x 20 room is not ideal for a mini-monitor - while the bass extension is outstanding, I want just a little more presence in the bottom end. I have however, heard enough of Silverline's sound quality to pursue the SR-17's bigger brother, the floorstanding Sonatina. Based on what I have heard from the SR-17 and with confidence and the manufacturer and excellent local representation, I am inclined to do something I swore I never would - buy a speaker without an audition. Keep your eye on Silverline. This California based company was well established in Hong Kong and is only a recent arrival in the US market. Silverline is a true jewel waiting to be discovered. With any luck, I'll have my Sonatinas before the audio world learns of the incredible value that Silverline offers.
Five speaker thingies for a most righteous product.