ELAC Debut B5
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
If you are like me, you are always searching for the sweet spot when purchasing audio gear. These ELAC B5s produce the best sound I've ever heard from this size cabinet and at this price point. And Crutchfield was willing to price match a special running on another website, so it was no contest to select Crutchfield's superb customer-oriented service. But back to the B5s... I wrestled with buying the B5 or B6 but in the end it came down to my room configuration (open and flowing from dining room to living room with a vaulted ceiling) and speaker placement. For the latter, it has to be on the wall, which is not ideal for SQ but then neither is the room. I've always needed a subwoofer in this space for the lower frequencies (a Polk PSW-10), so that really addresses the reported low frequency low-off of the B5s. My listening in this 2.1 configuration is probably 80 percent streaming (ALAC files) from an Airport Express-to-Benchmark DAC1-to-Sony TA-AX500 (80 wpc), and 20 percent CD/SACDs from an Oppo BDP83SE connected to the same amp. In either mode, the SQ from the B5s is startlingly clear and detailed. I am hearing subtle instrument detail for the first time, and the sound stage from my listening chair is very life-like. I have not owned these B5s for long and my enthusiasm might mellow, but I doubt it.
Pros: Sound quality and price = amazing value.
Cons: I wished their was a walnut or cherry finish option to compliment the B5's performance.