MB Quart, opinions?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Carlo Medina, Jun 4, 2003.

  1. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Hi all,

    My local dealer just got a special deal on the "S" line of MB Quart speakers (they are authorized dealers). I guess MBQ is clearing out their warehouse, and perhaps a new line is coming out. When I say local, they are like 30 miles away (in L.A. traffic that can be a bear) so I'd like to hear what owners or people who've heard them have to say before trekking out there.

    Check out this link - they are selling them for like 40% off of list!

    I have Energy C-6 speakers and an AC-300 center, which I've loved for 4+ years now, but am looking to upgrade.

    Can anyone speak as to the quality of these speakers? I know MBQ has a good rep in the car stereo world, does that carry over to HT?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Jon_Welker

    Jon_Welker Second Unit

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    Carlo,

    I was just about to say the same thing, but you beat me to the punch with your last comment about having a good rep in the car stereo world. From what I have experienced with Pioneer Premier (car stero) to Pioneer Elite (home theater), one would thing that this would hold for other maunufacuters. Have you listened to the MB's? I would say that would be a good place to start.
     
  3. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    At MB-Q's USUAL home speaker/s price point, there are better speaks IMO to be found for the same money....

    But, the roughly 40% deal your looking into is worth the trip to the listen room. Will you like what you hear, you tell us! [​IMG]

    I have not listened to the Quarts your looking into so I can't give you personal take one way or the other. A year and half or so back, I did listen to some of their home speaks. Found them to be very well built, some what plain looking and a bit to forward for me.
    Means nothing as I prefer a more typical Britt type sound (detailed but a more laid back presentation).

    These MB-Q speaks certainly are better looking and may very well have a whole different sound than what I heard some time ago.

    They are well respected in the car audio world and certainly have the ability to R&D a fine home speaker line.

    I'd take the trip as you have nothing to loose but a few hours and some gas. You may even have a heavier car/truck on the way back and save a little cash with the "possible" upgrade.

    Regards
    Geoff
     
  4. RichardHOS

    RichardHOS Second Unit

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    I compared MB-Quarts in a blind listening trial several years ago agains Magnepan, Boston Acoustic, Kef (two different models), DefTech, Energy, and Paradigm systems of equivalent design (except for the maggies).

    At that time, my rankings (and those of my two friends, who also participated, and who scored all the systems fairly similarly) placed them in about the middle of that pack. The more expensive Kef and the Energy took top prizes for box speakers, MB-Quart in the middle, with Paradibm, Deftech, and the cheaper Kef coming in a bit lower. For the money, I think the Energy and MB-Quart were some of the better choices, though the Kef edged out the Energy. The Quarts were just a bit cheaper than the Energy's (C8's) at that time.

    Not sure which model Quarts I tested, and I'm not sure how that relates to their current lineup at all. But that's my opinion and I'm sticking with it. [​IMG]
     
  5. Bolivar G

    Bolivar G Second Unit

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    I didnt even know MB Quart made home speakers [​IMG]
    When ever I hear MBQ 1st thing that pops to my mind is 6.5 component speakers:b
     
  6. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    MB Quart is also a highly-regarded speaker driver manufacturer, like Dynaudio. Its drivers, especially its 1-inch metal tweeter, have appeared on many very high-end European speakers by other speaker manufacturers. Used to be a German company, now owned by Rockford Fosgate, which also just purchased NHT.
     
  7. Matt Odegard

    Matt Odegard Stunt Coordinator

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    Even if they sound half as good as their car speakers, they'll still sound great. IMO

    They have wonderfull car audio component speakers.
     
  8. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Hmmm, perhaps I will make a trek out there to audition.

    I have Energy C6s and those were pretty well respected and I love the sound. I am not really in need of an upgrade but these clearance prices were a little too enticing.

    Perhaps in a week or two I'll head out there.

    Any other opinions would be welcome! And if anyone buys (or swings by, for all you local Los Angeles HTF'ers) from Yawa, let me know how those speakers sound! I'll post my experience after I get a chance to listen to 'em.

    Does look like a great deal, though...
     
  9. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    If you are truly happy with your current set up, certainly don't let a sale beggan you to think upgrade.....!

    You do sound somewhat un-sure about even looking at/into a speaker upgrade. Then your waiting to go look and listen because of a 40% off sale that beggened your intrest in the first place, sends a message to me it's a hoe hum thing for ya.

    Interested but not needed..

    Certainly NO Disrespect intended, but stay home & save your money and time...

    Sales & Closeouts come and go, some are much better than others, but unless you really are looking to upgrade, IMO, thats what I'd do...

    Regards
    Geoff
     
  10. Rob Rodier

    Rob Rodier Supporting Actor

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    I listened to the quart 1000, and 2000 models 7-10 years ago which were in the $1500-$2000 range. My impression was excellent.

    Those titanium tweeters can be a bit much in the wrong systems. Also, most are a 4ohm load. Make sure you amps can handle it.

    If so, they are well worth a hour or two in the car.

    -rob
     
  11. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    Thanks for the correction, Brent!
     
  12. Patrick Wilmes

    Patrick Wilmes Stunt Coordinator

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    I am probably the only person on the forum that uses MB Quart's in their home theater set-up.I've been using them since 1997 and obviously I'm pretty happy with mine or I would have upgraded them by now.

    I do agree with another post that they are very plain looking but I thought they sounded great back then and I think they sound even better today.Excellent music speakers and not to shabby on home theater. I'm using Quart 3's for my mains and the QLC300 for my center.I did upgrade to Paradigm Reference ADP 450's for my surround's but that was only because my theater room has changed and speakers on the back wall were not an option.I think the Paradigm's blend very well with the Quarts.

    Bottom line,if they sound good to you and the price is right go for it.But,I would bring in your old speakers and do a side by side in the showroom if they will let you because the Quarts may sound totally different in your room.Hope this helps.
     
  13. JohnFF

    JohnFF Agent

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    I have MB Quart speakers in my secondary HT room. I'm very pleased with them. I believe they are 'Domains'.
     
  14. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    John,

    The "Domains" are the models with the interchangable front panels, right?

    [​IMG] this was my 1000th post!
     
  15. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I now have a pair of MB Quart QLS1030 in my living room, check out this link from my local dealer's website .

    I know Geoff counseled that if I didn't need an upgrade I should stand pat.

    But the truth about me is I do at least 60% (probably more like 70%) of my listening to music, so my HT setup isn't just for movie enjoyment, but music as well. So sound quality matters to me.

    I have loved my Energy C6s for nearly five years now. They were very respected and well-reviewed speakers in their day, to the point where when Energy's new Connoisseur line came out, they did not rate as high as the original C2, 4, 6 & 8 line. I purchased the C6s over the C8, despite the 8s having slightly larger midrange/woofers because after extensive listening, I felt the C6s to be more accurate, detailed and musical than its bigger brother.

    Well I went back to Yawa today (70 mile round trip on Saturday did not take as long as I feared). I went there just to say hi to the great people there who have helped me put together a kickass HT for a reasonable price over the last half-decade. I don't have the best HT, but I think I have the "best bang for my buck" HT I could have. Yawa salespeople have always been informative and helpful, never pressured me into a sale, and are just good people all around (hence why I'm giving them a free plug). In this day of internet deals and Big Three Indifference (Best Buy, Good Guys, Circuit City) or even worse, Big Three B.S. I think that finding a good, honest, friendly local dealer is priceless. And the fact that Yawa does business online is a bonus and I'd like to recommend anyone interested to give them a try.

    For locals, please swing by! They have way more stuff than on their website, because by agreement they can sell some of their stuff online, and others are in-store sales only. That way they maintain their "official dealer" status. No gray market stuff there at all! (Oh and tell em I sent ya, it reflects well on me if you do) [​IMG]

    Anyway, I auditioned the MB Quart QLS-530 first, the little bookshelfs hooked up to a modest $500 NAD amp. Wow, I didn't think bookshelfs could pack a nice punch and have such clarity! Sure you will need a sub to get the deep bass, but for casual listening those things were awesome!

    I went into the 2nd room and auditioned both the 830 and 1030. The 830 has 2 6.5" drivers above and below a 1" titanium tweeter. The 1030 has the same 2 6.5" drivers, but both below the 1" tweeter, and an additional 5.5" driver above the tweeter.

    I started with the 830s and was, quite frankly, impressed. I didn't think they were very "forward" as Geoff mentioned (though that's a real subjective term so take both comments with a grain of salt). They were a little punchier than my C6 sounds, but not bright. They were very accurate, I could hear the decay of symbals in songs I listened to as if the drummer were in the room!

    I switched to the 1030s and found the same impressive sound with a slight difference: a bit more bass presence. Since I have a dedicated 12" sub, that wasn't really a selling point. Both sounded fantastic.

    One thing I do notice, the 1030 is taller by a bit. And since my couch at home sits a little high I thought I would prefer the 1030 since it puts the tweeter closer to my hearing level while seated. One complaint I have about my C6 is that it could stand to be about 6" taller. I have always planned on building some sort of stand but have procrastinated all this time.

    Well I could hear a distinct improvement in clarity, punch and detail with the MBQs. But I also noted that he had a B&K507 driving the speakers. I have a Sony 5ES receiver. That is hardly a fair fight ($4000 vs $1000 MSRPs, and mine is 3 years old).

    We talked about how I liked the sound coming out of the MBs but wasn't sure if that was because of the speakers or the kickass receiver it was hooked up to. Music reproduction is a "weakest link" scenario. You can have awesome speakers hooked up to a $100 receiver and, well, you know what the limiting component is. [​IMG]

    Well the great folks at Yawa, having done business with me for a while now (and I actually consider them friends as well as business acquaintances), offered me something I couldn't refuse:

    They let me take home my pick of the 830 or 1030 for a 30 day in-home trial. Talk about trust! If in 30 days I don't like it, I return it, no fees, nothing. If I like it, I simply keep it and pay their already great sale price! How could I pass this up?

    I opted for the 1030s in cherry (I like darker wood than Beech, and although black would match my system better I like the wood look). I wanted to make sure that if I kept them, it would be an "upgrade" as the C6 be considered a competitor with the 830. And I wanted the extra height.

    That was a few hours ago. I'm home now and have hooked up the 1030s.

    Wow!

    They sound just as in the store. Granted my receiver can't compare, but my room is a bit more intimate than their showroom which is very big. I'm glad I bought the extra height.

    I can't stop listening to music right now. Sure, part of this is "new toy excitement" so I'm going to wait until that wears off before doing A/B testing. I also have a lot of friends coming over next weekend and that will be a great time to do A/B with the Energys.

    One thing I can definitely say: the off-axis sound is much better on the MBs than the Energy. My PC is off to the other side of my living room and I listen to music while working on my PC and am familiar with the quality drop off from not being in the sweetspot. It's a small price to pay since I'm usually too involved in my work to really pay attention to the music.

    Well as I type this I could swear I'm dang near the sweetspot! Okay, a bit of an exaggeration, but not much. The sound is way, way better than with the C6. I can say that definitively.

    Again, I'll wait for the newness to wear off before doing a real nitty gritty A/B, but my initial impressions are that the 1030 is a fabulous speaker, especially at the price Yawa is selling for. I'm going to run these for a while and try to break them in a bit before next week when my friends come by.

    I'm a music addict, I admit it, and these 1030s are satisfying my craving in a great way!

    NP: James Taylor Live at the Beacon Theater, PCM stereo track.
     
  16. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Hi Carlo

    Glad to see you made the trip and what a nice offer your friends their made you!

    You may have misunderstood my first post regarding the MBQ's...
    I spoke of MBQ's that I listened to a year+ back, as being slightly forward for my tastes. Also, in terms of attractive cabinets were rather plain looking. Have no idea if these would follow with the sound that I heard then...

    They definitley were not what you are currently demoing!
    This line has a very attractive appearence and from your description while listening in store and now at home, certainly seems to have a sound you like allot...[​IMG]

    Keep us informend as you listen and break in time continues goes by. MBQ certainly dose not get much air time on the boards and many will be reading your take on them!

    Enjoy the new toys
    Geoff
     
  17. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Blasted Sever [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Double post.....
     
  18. JohnFF

    JohnFF Agent

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    Congratulations on the new speakers Carlos. The QL-S1030s look like great and beautiful speakers. Let us know what you think of them after a couple weeks.
     
  19. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Will do! I'm trying to find a place to host pics, because I'm going to take some of the "shootout" and just to have a reference point so people can see how the MBs look next to the Energys.

    Geoff, ah yep, missed it. The S line is definitely more attractive than MB's C line (which may be the ones you demo'd). No gloss finish like the C6, but the wood finish is thick (you can tell it's not just a thin little layer ala IKEA furniture) and the cherry is a great color. Again if I can find a host for the pics I'll take close ups.

    As far as "forward sounding" if you did indeed audition the C series (QLC###) the brochure I have advertises them as "A slight rise to the midbass response gives you good impact and 'liveliness' to any recording."

    As opposed to the S series which says "The result is a remarkable transparent sound." Yikes, sounds like they were trying to juice the sound a bit in the C series and make the S series more accurate. Yawa doesn't carry the C series so I can't make a comparison, but those descriptions straight fromt the manufacturer's literature may explain our differences in what we heard.

    Break-in may prove interesting, in that I wonder how much the sound will change. My new home ones sound a lot like the ones in the showroom which had already been broken in.

    My C6s were bright at first, so bright I thought I might regret the purchase, but after the first 50 hours or so they calmed down a lot! I don't think these will change as dramatically.

    NP: JS Bach, Concerto no.1 in F major, New London Consort, Philip Pickett.
     

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