Big Picture Big SoundAperion Audio is one of those companies that's easy to forget. We say that with love, and only because you won't see their products prominently displayed in Best Buy or in your other favorite local audio/video store. In fact, you won't find them there at all. If you want an Aperion product, you're going to have to deal with them directly, which is actually a good thing.
In a world where we rely on communicating through third parties, it's nice to see a company that actually wants to rub elbows with its customers. Maybe they just love to be loved, because Aperion's Verus Forte Speaker Line has exactly the types of products you'll want to call them up and thank them for.
65" VT50 / Oppo 103D
Denon 4520CI / Emotiva XPA-3
Klipsch RF82 II and RC62 II / Hsu VTF-15H (2)
I'm actually auditioning these right now, here are my initial thoughts:
I upgraded my receiver from an Onkyo to a Marantz during this process, & the Marantz seems to pair a lot better with the Fortes. The towers are pretty small from what I'm used to - measuring about 6" x 8" x 35", but do a respectable job filling the room (13' x 18' with a vaulted ceiling). I received the newer Bravus IIa 8D sub with this order, in a nice matte black. The Verus line is ridiculously good looking wearing cherry with black trim and sleek curves.
With music: after a week or so break-in, I put the Forte's through a large range of selections. Most of what I listened to sounded really good, though I did feel that I had to play the fortes a bit louder to get them to reveal their best. The soundstage is a fair bit wider and more nuanced that I've heard in my living room in quite some time. When the ASR tweeters are asked to perform, they put on a show that makes you smile. I talked with Jason and Oliver over at Aperion about the tower's sensitivity and such - they are very helpful folks. In any event, the Forte cabinets are much smaller than my old Infinity's - and therefore the sound seemed a bit thinner, understandably.
With movies: For some reason I didn't have big expectations for the Forte center and surrounds, and was pleasantly surprised when they got involved. Dialogue was crisp and clear, and both center and surrounds really seemed do a good job disappearing - yet coming fully alive when called upon. I was very happy with the Forte's home-theater sound, though again I still felt like I wanted a bit more from the towers.
The subwoofer: The Bravus IIa 8d sub produces nice lows with good punch for an 8" sub - those passive radiators really help. Most of the music I played (85%) sounded great, though that last 15% asked the sub to do more than it was capable of. HT was another affair. When the IIa 8d was in it's zone, movies sounded incredible! However, too many films pushed the sub past what it could handle - and when that happened it failed in what I can only describe as a catastrophic rattling of the cage. I should mention that I'm running a 5.2 system with my old Infinity sub in the mix - used to combat standing waves and support the main sub. While the IIa 8d provided cleaner, deeper bass - it also failed faster and more harshly than the ported Infinity. That said, when the IIa 8d wasn't bottoming out, the pairing of two 8" subs sounded sublime.
The verdict: I returned the Bravus IIa 8d. Initially, I was going to wait for a IIa 10d and give that a try. However, I discovered GoldenEar's ForceField 3/4 series subs which are priced similarly to Aperion's Bravus IIa 8 and 10d offerings, yet have a lot more power and are rated a heckuva lot lower. I have a FF3 on order, which should be here in a couple of weeks.
Which leaves me in a spot on the Forte towers. Sonically - I don't sense that I'm missing anything, but it feels as though I have to play them somewhat loud to reach their upper potential - and even then I'm not experiencing the envelopment you'd get from larger cabinets. I have about 15 days to make a call on moving up to Verus Grand Towers, which in all probability I think I will since I enjoy the sound signature of the Verus line.
Last edited by Timecop; 05-15-2011 at 08:26 PM.
I see dead pixels
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