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Speaker Asylum: REVIEW: Usher ac-10 Speakers by ff116@hotmail.com

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REVIEW: Usher ac-10 Speakers

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Model: ac-10
Category: Speakers
Suggested Retail Price: $8400.00
Description: full range
Manufacturer URL: Usher
Model Picture: View

Review by ff116@hotmail.com on June 16, 2007 at 11:55:48
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for the ac-10

The AC-10's are Korean made by Usher, circa 2003. Coming from NHT 2.9's as my main reference speakers, to the AC-10's proved very frustrating. I had read the reviews, particularly by the pros, and felt I was making an informed decision. Surely the AC-10's and I armed with stellar reviews in tow, would soon be entering the long awaited audiophila I'd been dreaming of since I was 12 years old. I was able to score a pair virtually new for about 4,000 dollars, (about half the retail price). Alas my joy would be postponed when first introducing the Usher's to my existing equipment. They sounded tinny, shrill, almost as though I was listening to a Radio Shack transistor radio from the sixties. What happened to my system, what have I done? Anybody else ever go through this? I was fortunate enough to have the speakers on a trial, but I was sure these speakers were garbage after first listening. I went back to the net to get more info, and realized two things; I had to let the speakers burn in, and I had to do some tweaking with the positioning of the speakers. I was racing the clock because my ten day trial would soon end, so I put the old CD player on repeat, and left things alone for a few days. When I sat down to take a critical listen after about 60 hours of burn-in time, gloriously they sounded markedly better, however I wasn't able to use any of the superlatives the pro's had used when describing these speakers. What happened next to my shame, became an obsession for me of epic proportion. After agreeing reluctantly to purchase the speakers, I began buying, selling, trading and going into debt, eventually replacing virtually every part of my existing system. The amp, preamp, interconnects, speaker cable, power conditioner, power cords, and rack were all gone. I had become crazed, and possessed, yet I had to see this through to a logical end. After replacing everything except my trusty cd player, and letting some burn-in time take place with the newly assembled components, the moment of truth had arrived. On went the switch to kick things off, and to my surprise one speaker was not working, and the remaining sound was awful. A quick inspection would reveal an improperly connected cable. After this correction, and then firing up Sweetie, that's what I call her now, simply was something I wasn't prepared for. The sound, the music, the magic was all there. Bass extension, deep and fast, the highs were crystal clear with a shimmer I hadn't heard before. The mids were to die for, velvety smooth with resolution beyond belief, surely I could die, and hopefully go to heaven now.

With my old system I was getting perhaps 75 percent of the music. With my new system, in part owned by the bank, I'm getting about 90 percent, a tremendous improvement indeed. Is it worth it? Only time will tell, but I'm very happy with the end result. The Ushers are fantastic, but very finicky. They must be matched carefully with other equipment, for synergy, and brilliance, but when done, they are wonderful, and non-fatiguing, and will reward you with many hours of blissful listening.

I tell this story for two reasons; one, with every fiber of my being I pray I never find myself blinded by a chase of consumerism like this ever again, two, by putting my temporary insanity into words, perhaps it may help someone out here in internet land. Hey...I figured I could pen my thoughts here, so to speak, this is Audio Asylum after all. Let me go to work, I have to pay for this system, in the mean time, all of you...enjoy the music!
lifes just too short!

Product Weakness: very system dependent, large, heavy
Product Strengths: Musical, velvety midrange, great bass, non-fatiguing-

Associated Equipment for this Review:

Amplifier: Prima Luna 7
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): Modwright 9.0se
Sources (CDP/Turntable): Cary 306/200
Speakers: Usher AC-10
Cables/Interconnects: Harmonic Tech Prosilsway Mk II
Music Used (Genre/Selections): jazz, R&B, Classical
Room Size (LxWxH): 16 x 13 x 8
Room Comments/Treatments: n/a
Time Period/Length of Audition: 3 mos
Other (Power Conditioner etc.): Running Springs Haley
Type of Audition/Review: Product Owner
Your System (if other than home audition): In store, and home

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Topic - REVIEW: Usher ac-10 Speakers - ff116@hotmail.com 11:55:48 06/16/07 ( 12)