I took receipt of my Swan Diva 6.1s a few days ago. I had been nervous about ordering $1000 speakers on the internet without actually hearing them. I have to say the reviews I based my purchase on were correct - these speakers are very, very good. My thanks to those who have posted here before me for the sound advice (pun intended).
The Diva 6.1s are better than almost all of what I auditioned in the stores. I think the only speakers that were better were the Martin Logan Vantage speakers (which were $5000 electrostatics with a built-in subwoofer amp).
The definition and clarity of the Diva 6.1s is superb. The bass is really very good on my Breakbeat Bass (e.g. The Breakfastaz), they really kick out the deep electronic sounds and not a hint of being muddy or blurred. Adagio for Strings (Barber / Eugene Ormandy) came to life wonderfully. The midrange and highs are so clear and crisp, and the bass is so well proportioned. I think I'm hearing music how it was meant to sound! Corny, but that's how this sounds right now.
I heard ML Vistas and was disappointed (compared to the $5000 Vantages) and I didn’t think the Vistas were worth the cost. I think $3000 Viennas were the next best after the Vantages that I heard in the stores, in terms of clarity, but the bass was a bit weak. I heard some other speakers that had loud but muddy bass and no high end clarity. In the end I would have gone for a pair of B&Ws at about $1500 which had good bass but less clarity.
Having read so many reviews of the Swans, I figured at $999 for the pair (+ $99 shipping) they could be a big disappointment but not a huge disaster. Fortunately, I am very impressed and I think they are better than all but the Vantages. If I'm honest I'd be hard pushed to really appreciate the difference with the Vantages (in the room I have) and I certainly appreciate the bank balance.
The speakers arrived from Oz Home Theater after a week or so (tracked by FedEx) and the outer boxes were a bit bashed, but the inner box was intact and the speakers very securely padded. They are big heavy speakers and I love the look of the 6.1s with the cool colored speaker cones with the front grill off.
I don't often feel compelled to write this kind of thing, but I am very impressed and very pleased with my purchase and thought it was worth sharing since you can't easily audition these speakers.
I've owned the 6.1's for a little over 3 months and I continue to be floored. They replaced my old PSB 800's and are a significant upgrade. I was originally demoing Paradigm Studio 60's, and a pair of Canton's with a built in sub but found that both were missing something. Paradigm gave a great soundfield but lacked the really present yet tight bass of the Canton's. The Canton's were too directional and didn't offer the wide soundstage that i was looking for. The Diva's managed to do both. They offer a great soundfield where musical instruments get the separation that they need; great mids and highs; and the bass is spot-on, deep and tight. I absolutely LOVE listening to music with these speakers!
I mated them with the C3 center channel and they do a very good job with HT and virtually eliminate the need for a sub. Clear, accurate and powerful is how I would describe the front soundstage in HT.
I am very pleased that I took the leap of faith to order these speakers.
Bought a pair around last Chrismas. At first listening I thought ' crap', but they needed a few days to break in and now I am really satisfied.
Detailed, open, good bass. I'm sure these can compete to a major bunch of higher priced models and even blow away some of them.
For a few years my set-up was with a pair of Audiostatics Es-100 in front, B&W center and Norh at the back.
The ideal was to use my Denon avc-11sr solely as a 7.1 system with the Swans and the audiostatics with a pair of Shanlings monoblocks and Shanling tube-sacd.
However hearing the Swans on the Shanling system makes me thinking of selling the audiostatics all the way.
Normally nothing can compete in clarity and open sound to the audiostatics, but they need space.
These swans are the best buy to date.
Previous used : Pioneers, JBL L40, Audiostatic ES-100, Norh 6.0
The review is for Swan Diva 6.1 Full range, tower speakers. Colombo-Sri Lanka, California-USA.
Excellent performer for the price paid, I actually paid a little over 2K including tax when they first came out. Prices dropped Bummer! But I have no regrets, they are worth every penny. I have a owned many speaker brands I dont wanna mention, many 6 times the price of the Diva 6.1's and with very minor differences, even the most crucial listener would be able to live with. Compared to those prices Vs the sound quality Swan Diva 6.1's really shine. There is a catch the 5.1 speaker system is not aligned. If the 5.1 is set up, you hear the towers outstand all the other speakers. I only used it for Audio purpose and I am very happy with them. Unlike most expensive audiophile speakers they dont consume power. 120 watts per Channel is good 200 watts per channel is plenty. They are 8 Ohms speakers.
The Swans are very sensitive to components they show the difference very fast and clear. If you run a system with good Components and cables no worries. The First thing you will notice in these speakers are the "FIDELITY" all other speakers will sound like they are under a Blanket. Very natural sound, extremely detailed, revealing, 3D imaging is breath taking, Mids are very emotional, strings and vocals are as real as its ever gonna get (approved by over 20 listners), superb low end bass, upper bass can be better, but its perfect for me. I am not a bass head. It has a very strong mids, apart from the bass you can actually feel the tingle from the mids. It could be be a 3D effect but if you close your eyes, strings and vocals get right in your face at exact stage points. You can feel the space between the main singer and the co-singers. There is an absorbsion like feeling between notes, I know its mainly because of my system but none of my other speakers gave me this experience so its obvious the speakers play an important roll. I heard so much detail in vastness in vocals and the low end bass that I never thought existed. For every system it is very important you have good set of components, cables, good room to match the accoustics and placement. Before investing money learn what real Audiophiling is all about, some people abuse a good hobby. Everyone have thier own taste in sound. I prefer warm neutral sound. When you compare this speaker its not the money factor you should be concerned about if there is a better speaker at the price. I have tried Ribbons, eletrostats, large heavy speakers top name brands, not that they were bad but when I heard the Swan's I felt like why did I not find them earlier, overall value is much better on these. There may be better speakers but to my system and settings the Swan Diva 6.1's are a great set of speakers.
I am just completely blown away by these speakers (they arrived yesterday)...
As soon as I got home, I knew this thing was up to a good start, because the 3 boxes arrived on top of a wooden Palette, each box made of really thick carton, and the whole thing wrapped in plastic so it doesn't get wet, etc.... I started to open the center channel box (which was huge for the size of the center channel iitself) and removed all the foam bricks and corners just to realize there was another box inside! :) I took the inner box out, and again, there was plenty of foam bricks and corners, and the foam molds holding the thing in place!
I pulled speaker out (it was HEAVY!) but it was wrapped in an anti-scratching white fiber bag. There were two small gloves made of thin material on the top as well, so I used them to handle the speakers and remove the bag. When I pulled it out, my jaw dropped at the finish of this thing....I did the same thing with the mains, which were much bigger, and needless to say, the packaging on them was even more impressive than the center...it took me about 20 min to take each freaggin thing out!
If you are in the market for a $5000 speaker look at sub$1000 prices, this is the speaker for you! When I took these speakers out, the first thing I stared at was the Lacquer finish (truly it was Grand Piano quality) and the details. The floor studs where heafty, the connectors in the back where [B]HuGE[/B] and solid...they are bi-wire capable and they have a solid plastic cover so that they don't get dinged or anything. I thought I had pretty thick IXOS speaker wires, but when you connect them to these speakers, they look tiny.
Once the speakers were setup around my TV, they are just a BEAUTY to look at....truly, I looked at them for about 10 min before I even turned them on, because they were such an impressive and fine looking piece of furniture....
During the last few months, I was able to see several speakers, some at much higher price as well....I saw the B&W 603s, 704s, Nautilus 804s, as well as auditioning the Rockets 750 (in South miami....Thanks Enrique!), the Energy veritas 2.4, and some Paradigm Studios.....In true honesty, I can sit here and tell you that they don't come Close to the finish and look of these Swans! The Nautilus was the only one that I was equally or more impressed by than the swan 6.1s.
These speakers need about 100 hours to break in, so this is not an accurate assesment, but if they are going to get better with time, I cannot fathom how much better they can sound!!! I started by playing a mozart CD, a Jazz CD, then some MP3s from my iPod, followed by Norah Jones SACD, Pink Floyd, and then my AIXrecords' DVD audio sampler (all of these thru my Denon 3910 player, except the iPod). The musical accuracy was [B]AMAZING![/B]....these speakers produced sounds I have not heard on my CD's. I still have my Infinity IL10's as my surrounds, and they are overshadowed big time by the mains...they are just stunning and so clear.
The 3 things that surprised me the most are: very tight yet musically deep bass, crispy highs (perhaps too much for some, but I love them), and just astounding depth and acoustic resonance in the mids and voices. I will let them run for a couple of weeks, before giving my full review, but they are off to a blazing Start!
I started by testing the levels using THX tests on the incredibles....the center channel had a louder level, but I left it like that for now. I then played LOTR-ROTK battle scene, Shark Tale 2 chasing scene, and Fifth Element Ultimate Edition last fighting scene....one word: WOW! he voices coming off that center channel were life-like, with depth and strenght! They had like a 3D spacial effect on them...wierd to explain....just like in the theaters! The mains did a Superb job in doing the effects and the sounds when needed...but the Center channel here was the one who stole the show.
With the exception of B&W 704s, which were very close in sound quality, and the Nautilus 804s which I think did sound a little better, there is no speaker out there that has the combination of Sound, finish, and quality that the Swan 6.1s have, specially at this price range.
My colleague and neighbor has a set of B&W 603 S3 paired with a Denon 4803 Rx, and he came over to the house to check them out last nite... he was amazed at them as well, and told me that although it hurts to admit it, these bad boys are the better speakers musically (he didn't stay for the HT tests I did).
To all of you considering upgrading your mains (or your center channel) to something $2000 or less, I will tell you to give the Swan Diva 6.1s a test and I will guarantee you that it will be the speaker you end up choosing, specially when you realize they sound better, and are cheaper than a lot of speakers with much higher prices.