Anyone have the Magnepans?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brent_H, Nov 30, 2002.

  1. Brent_H

    Brent_H Second Unit

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    I am going to be purchasing a speaker system in the next year and the Magbepans really intrigue me. Reviews I have read are setllar and I was just wondering if anyone has ever heard or owned them? All I know is that I will need a tight and fast sub to keep up....the Maggies can't handle a ton of low end....

    ~Brent
     
  2. Mark Leitch

    Mark Leitch Stunt Coordinator

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    I owned MGIIIa's for many many years.... you have no idea how good a sub has to be to match the planar bass... I would run without a sub for awhile to get a good feeling for what they can do (it will help with your sub choice later on).

    M
     
  3. Brent_H

    Brent_H Second Unit

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    so what kind of sub do you use?? [​IMG]
     
  4. Matt Meyer

    Matt Meyer Stunt Coordinator

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    Back when I had Maggies.... [​IMG] I miss them you know. Any way back to the story: I ran a Rel q401 I found it worked very well and was able to keep up with the maggies reaction time. It came recommended from the dealer I bought the maggies from and it beat out a few units I brought home for extended demos. I Would strongly recommend that you home demo both the maggies and a sub if you go with the maggies. The maggies are placement sensitive and do sound different depending on their enviroment, not that I am trying to disuade you I loved mine and will buy them again when I have a room suitable for them.
    Matt[​IMG]
     
  5. Brent_H

    Brent_H Second Unit

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    Matt:
    The nice thing about living in MN is we can go to the FACTORY and check em out... [​IMG] Anyways, I wonder fi an SVS could keep up with them..?
     
  6. Colin Dunn

    Colin Dunn Supporting Actor

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    I am using Maggies all throughout in my home theater. A pair of 3.3s in front (this is not a current model), 1.6s in the rear, and the MGC-1 for the center. My sub is a Velodyne FSR-15 (15" servo-controlled model with ~275W amp built-in).

    You must get a quality subwoofer with TIGHT bass. Magneplanars have very accurate sound, and a boomy sub's overhang will not integrate well. That said, I strongly recommend using a sub with Maggies. Loud, deep bass can overwhelm the planar woofers, causing them to 'bottom out' and rattle. It is best to route bass
     
  7. Brent_H

    Brent_H Second Unit

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    Colin--

    sounds complex man.....

    one thing I noticed today is that my center channel gets quite a bit of bass sent to it. i have a mixed and matched speaker setup right now....old Pioneer 4 ways in the front, KLH 3 ways in the back and a Paradigm CC-350 (i think) in the front. if you get an Outlaw to cutoff the frequency to the center, what do you use to fill the hole you were talking about??
     
  8. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  9. Mark Leitch

    Mark Leitch Stunt Coordinator

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    I ran a REL Storm III sub with my maggies... it integrates very well (that is what RELs do) but it is not a "great" HT sub...

    As for maggies, I had an all planar home theater. For what I like, I would not buy any of the quasi ribbon models. It is not that they are bad, it is just the true ribbon is just that much better.

    M
     
  10. Meaux

    Meaux Stunt Coordinator

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    If all you listen to is Jazz, they're fine.

    If you have bunches of money to constantly dump for this improvement or that improvement I say Maggies are cool.

    I have fianally found the perfect place for my 1.5qr's, in my 12x13 office, 3ft. from the back wall, 200wpc., Jazz guitar music, stereo, moderate level.

    If you like JBL's for instance, when you get these gutless things home you'll be pissed. They sound great in the store, but in a house, it's a different matter. Hope you live alone.

    Some people that have'em are in denial, they know they've been had, just won't admit it.

    If I had 50K I'd try it again, but then I'd buy electrostatics....but that's just me.
     
  11. Mark Leitch

    Mark Leitch Stunt Coordinator

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    Meaux... I really do not agree with your assessment. Then again I only used QRs for surrounds... I would only go for the true ribbon for my mains. Maggies can rock out if you feed them enough power and go to the true ribbons. I used to have Klipschorn's and generally preferred the maggies, even on rock (something like Lou Reed's New York sounded great on them). As for going to stats, you get more dynamics but (as an ex-ESL63 owner, current CLS IIz owner) they have their compromises as well. I think the Innersounds look very promising though (likely my next speaker)...

    While much depends on personal taste, maggies can play loud and can rock. Also, the bass is amazing for what it is. The two greatest problems I think are they do not sound their best at low levels and and they tend to "maggi-ize" everything (including limited dynamics).

    M.
     
  12. Meaux

    Meaux Stunt Coordinator

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    >they tend to "maggi-ize" everything (including limited dynamics).

    Well put...."maggi-ize" is the word I was looking for.
     
  13. Meaux

    Meaux Stunt Coordinator

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    When I lived in Houston I stumbled into a hi-end store for some interconnects and had a listen to a Krell/Martin Logan system. CD, Preamp, Amp, and 2 huge speakers the size of large doors, Jumper cable size "speaker wire", after a half hour of almost having a singer breathing in my face, I had to force myself to leave, and on the way out I asked the salesman, "how much does that setup cost"?, "100K" he said. I believe him cause I've never heard anything that even comes close since. And worth every penny I might add. Went home and just "sat" there.
     
  14. Meaux

    Meaux Stunt Coordinator

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    Oh, I forgot to mention I did improve my bass on the 1.5qr's by adding a aural exicter 104 w/big bottom to tighten the bass.
     
  15. Burke Strickland

    Burke Strickland Second Unit

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    Congratulations on choosing a really fine speaker family to choose from. You have already read some interesting perspectives on the Maggies, and have gotten some good advice regarding home theater combos. You very fortunate to be able to go to the factory for your demos. As an irrelevant aside, the factory is located five blocks from the house I lived in while growing up in White Bear Lake. (Their facility is in a “clean industry” park near some very nice neighborhoods.) After finding out that is where they are made, I’ve always wanted to go back to take the factory tour. But I digress.

    After listening to many speakers in all price ranges from Rat Shack budget "specials" to “if you have to ask the price, move on" :>) super-speakers over a five year period, none of which convinced me that I needed to replace what I had at home, I heard a demo of all Martin Logans in a surround configuration and felt for the first time in that time that I had heard something better than I could go home to. I was really planning to get MLs – until I happened to listen to some Magnepans almost by accident at another dealer while I was waiting for a salesman to talk about turntables. (Ironically the ML dealer suggested I go to the Maggie dealer to get my turntable since he didn’t carry the brand he recommended for my system.)

    I first heard the highly regarded MG 1.6s and was very favorably impressed, but not enough to change my thinking about my speaker selection for my HT. (On a budget that had not already been stretched to snag a set of the MLs, it would have been a serious contender.) Then they connected up the MG 3.6s with the true ribbon tweeter and much larger bass panel area, and my jaw dropped (literally). I had to ask myself “where are the speakers?” I was hearing a music performance as if the ensemble was in the room and the speakers just “disappeared” – there was no perception of sound emanating from those flat panels at all.

    I knew right then they were the speakers regardless of price that most convincingly transported me to the performing space and, particularly since I could afford them, they deserved serious consideration. I resolved to forego my HT speaker upgrade and buy the Maggies for music. (I also went back and listened to the MLs for music with the same audition material and realized their sizzle was suited for impressive soundtrack performance, but just didn’t do it for me on music.) But as he was helping me set them up in my HT, the dealer suggested I at least try them with a movie sometime. Once I did, I never reconnected the previous front L/R speakers for my surround system (except for a comparison demo for some friends), and ended up merging my music and movie systems.

    I believe that with the right power behind them, the Magnepan MG 3.6s “answer” previous concerns about dynamics and bass output (volume at least within the range of which they are capable, but not really deep extension), and yet still deliver the sonic virtues that have made the Maggies so popular with so many music lovers (and now HT buffs as well). And they sound superb at very low volume levels as well as at higher volumes - on all kinds of music. I have mine mated with a Velodyne FSR-18 for the very lowest bass, but I surprise myself occasionally listening without the sub turned on while playing music and not missing it. (That would not happen with a bass-heavy movie soundtrack – for that, the Maggies really do need to be working with a high quality, fast sub to yield the expected LFE “slam”.)

    I still marvel every day that my “dream system” for music was actually within my grasp (not all at once – the “right” power amp came a year later, and a pre/pro more worthy of those components followed a year after that – but the Maggies have sounded great with every combo of equipment I’ve used with them – just a lot “greater” with the final set up.) :>) That the Maggies also serve so well in a movie soundtrack playback role is rich icing on an already very nice cake.

    I hope when all is said and done, that you find the right speakers for your listening tastes. I can't help but believe that once you hear how the Maggies "enliven" a room and "transport" you to the performers and their space, you'll be thinking about placing an order. :>)

    Burke

    PS – I am using the Maggie MGMC1 center and find it good to have when others are sharing the movie experience but really prefer “phantom” center when I am watching alone.
     
  16. Jason Brent

    Jason Brent Second Unit

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    I have heard that the Titan sub matches well with the Maggies.
    www.audioc.com
    I have not personally heard it though...
     
  17. Mark Leitch

    Mark Leitch Stunt Coordinator

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    Burke... an excellent post. I think the 3 series is, quite simply, one of the greatest speakers ever. The only speakers I have heard that I think better them are the ML CLS IIz (a more limited speaker in some ways... but more fulfilling in others) and the Innersound Eros (my next speaker ;-). I think the only areas I differ from you are:

    o I far prefer my dynamic home theater to my maggie based one (and my IIIa's were biamped with some lovely amps and sounded amazing for music... I just did not like planars for the surround effects... and the limited center channel).
    o I stand by my statement that maggies do not sound good at low levels. They need volume to come alive, and simply hide detail at low levels.

    I have yet to find the perfect speaker. The fact that I could live with my IIIa's for over a decade is pretty telling.
     
  18. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Maggies can be very impressive in a home theater set-up but as Colin mentioned above, you got to have proper crossover flexibility to deal with all five speakers varying bass limits.

    Listened to Colin's system recently for LOTR:FOTR - EE and was smitten.

    Maggies have always impressed the hell out of me but their size and the need to really have the room dedidcated to them forced me to look elsewhere.

    By the way you could get the Outlaw crossover or even better get the Theta CasaNova pre/pro as Colin did, which took his system to another level and fixed all his bass problems.
     
  19. Burke Strickland

    Burke Strickland Second Unit

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  20. Lito

    Lito Agent

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