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Enigmatic ML Scenario audition: Please identify the culprit!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Arnel Enero, Jun 15, 2002.

  1. Arnel Enero

    Arnel Enero Stunt Coordinator

    May 2, 2002
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    I just auditioned the MartinLogan Scenario in a home theater setup powered by the Marantz SR-14EX receiver. That place wasn't a MartinLogan dealer, so they only got the Scenario demo and some discontinued models like Aerius i and SL3.

    I've read rave reviews about both the Scenario and the SR-14EX. But during the auditioning, I was disappointed because of these issues:

    1. The treble sounded too soft, and midrange was very prominent. Is it possible that the Scenarios were just too widely spaced in that rather big room (26' x 20') and toe-in wasn't enough to cover the "sweet spot"? Or the amplifier couldn't cope with low impedances in the treble? Btw, I also auditioned the (now discontinued) Aerius i in another (also big) room. I didn't notice any problem like this.

    2. When I played full-scale orchestral music, when I turned up the volume (not even very loud in that big room, actually) the system produced a VERY audible distortion, like it couldn't handle that volume level. Could it be the amplifier just clipping, or the speaker's electrostatic panel just couldn't handle that much sound pressure level? Or is it simply because a system like that shouldn't be expected to play loud (moderately loud) in a big room like that? (I have heard conventional standmounts in that same room that sounded ok even at moderately loud volumes)

    ... Or is it just that the Aerius i, having double the electrostatic panel area, is much more suitable for bigger rooms than the Scenario? Btw, I don't plan to use them in a big room, anyway.

    ... Or maybe that pair was damaged? What does a damaged panel sound like, btw?

    I have no experience with planars, so I can only speculate about the possible culprit(s). Please help me identify if the problem was in the speakers themselves or somewhere else.

  2. Kevin T

    Kevin T Screenwriter

    Jul 12, 2001
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    i'm not trying to defend the logans in any way but i believe the culprit is the receiver. i seriously doubt that any receiver can show off what the logans are capable of. just one man's opinion.

    kevin t
  3. ling_w

    ling_w Second Unit

    Sep 3, 2001
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    ML's impedence drops to a very low level at high freq, providing a very hard load for low-fi equipments like receivers in general.

    The primary problem with HT budget allocation is too much for speakers and too little for source/amplification. Or worse, too much for video display and practically nothing for the audio end of things.

    Those Martin Logans deserves a Krell or Roland. Heck, even better, rip those transformers out and get a tube amp and rip its output transformers out and run it OTL/ITL. The tube amp's impedence characteristics complements the stat's. If gain is not enough, you would just need a transformer with much smaller step-up than the original.

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