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Martin Logan itch.

Discussion in 'audio' started by Rug Doc, May 25, 2023.

  1. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    I have decided that the next step my hifi should take is a panel speaker so looking for a bit of advice..

    I think that Martin Logan’s and Magnepans appeal most. Quads in my space will be too low (sofa in the way on one side, I need speakers higher up)

    I have a Lyngdorf 3400 to drive them, wondered if anyone had experience of this amp with panels?

    I also have a Lyngdorf BW-2 Subwoofer (one atm, works well with my current 12” speakers, but will double up if panels are bought)

    Where in the range should I go? I’d be looking at second hand - can’t afford new, and am curious about the benefits of the ML’s with active time delayed subs (as I have the Lyngdorf subs) … ideal would be to use the Lyngdorf to drive the panels and then also use the Lyngdorf to drive the MLs active subs via line level but don’t know if this is possible(?)

    2nd option is to use a panel with less bass and then use the pair of BW-2s…

    I listen to an eclectic mix but love ambient, electronica, EDM and my listening desires are for a big stage, precise imaging and and fun.

    Room is this one below 27 x 14ft, system firing down the room.

    Mr Pig and Darren like this.
  2. uncl_nigel

    uncl_nigel pfm Member

    You'll have to rethink your picture hanging either side of the TV :)

    Listen at length to whatever you consider - preferably on more than one occasion. Panels are a different species compared to boxes.

    My experience of Martin Logan's has not been very positive. I can generally hear the break between the panels and the bas box (I'd describe it as the bass lagging behind the mid and treble, a bit like a tired old grandad trying to keep up with the grandchildren).
  3. camverton

    camverton pfm Member

    I’ve had three different models over the years and found them very enjoyable to listen to. They should sound great in your decent sized room but that room size rules out, ime, the cheapest models. They do need at least a metre behind them but are less fussy about distance to side walls. They are best for a solo listener as their ideal listening position is quite narrow. As a speaker they can sound everything from dire to sublime depending on the room and how they are set up.

    Auditioning in your room is more or less mandatory although I appreciate this is difficult if buying secondhand. Talking of buying secondhand, enquire about the age of the panels and check that replacement panels are available for the model you choose. The panels deteriorate slowly and a reasonable life expectancy might be between 10-20 years. A lot depends on the environment they are used in. Smoky, dusty, in sunshine can all reduce the life. Nonetheless I have found Logans much more rugged and trouble free than Quads.

    Speaking of Quads I have found Logans sound more “alive” and forward than Quads; think front row of a concert hall as opposed to a fair way back in the stalls. Quads are less fussy about amps but Logans need the best you can afford and should be stable at low impedances.
  4. hifinutt

    hifinutt hifinutt

    i loved my martin logans . if you get some summit you wont need a sub, the bass is crushing if you turn up the knobs . we had them for 4 years awesome

    mark at missing link cables has a beautiful pair of summit .... highly recommended

    may i say i used them near walls in a room smaller than yours and they sounded amazing . even better with townshend stella underneath

    [​IMG]005 by s, on Flickr

    [​IMG]007 by , on Flickr
    Salamander likes this.
  5. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    Hi and thanks for posting as I hoped you might..

    I’ve read your enthusiastic posts re the ML’s and you like me have also had Taus, so how do the two compare?

    The Summit look great, maybe a little out of budget, but will ponder.
    hifinutt likes this.
  6. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    Thankyou. Yes I like to feel involved, rather than have the music presented to me, so Logan’s sound like a better fit compared to quads.
  7. crimsondonkey

    crimsondonkey pfm Member

    I’d go listen to MLs for yourself and make your own mind up. Opinions tend to differ quite markedly, while some like them I’ve always found the bass completely disconnected to the rest of the audio and can’t keep pace with the panels, and the sweet spot is very very narrow - I’d say just about the width of your head, and centimetre outside of that and the soundstage and coherence disintegrates very rapidly.

    I can’t say enough bad things about them! Then again ymmv and all that.

    The answer is of course, horns (ducks for cover).
  8. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    No I love horns!
  9. Whaleblue

    Whaleblue Southbound

    I was going to post something similar. Definitely ones to listen to prior to purchase.
    camverton likes this.
  10. camverton

    camverton pfm Member

    They can be a bit marmite it is true, although I suspect much is down to how they are positioned in the room. Distance to walls, toe-in and tilt back all have marked effect, and that's assuming that the room is sympathetic to them in the first place. I was happily using a pair in my old place, moved to where there was a larger and livelier room and they really didn't work for me.

    For the very reasons that the measurists hate them they are highly tunable to taste, everything from a highly focussed "hifi" effect to a pretty good illusion of having the performer in front of you in a real space, although I do feel they are only really suitable for a single listener for serious listening.

    They do have a reputation for bass and panel sounding disconnected, as can be true of many speakers, although I personally only found it noticeable when used on a hard floor. Certainly something a prospective purchaser should check on but on modern models it's more a myth than reality imho.

    As for horns, at Scalford 2016 most of the time most of the horns sounded not "right" to me although one pair were sublime on one particular recording.
  11. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    Re horns - Don’t forget I use a Lyngdorf with room correction, so this will get them sounding as good as they can.

    I have a pair of B&C DE250 compression drivers sitting idle, maybe I should get a pair of midbass drivers and build a pair? Hmmm an exciting proposition.

    Where do I go for Horn kits? And throats etc?!
  12. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I’ve heard MLs sound very impressive, though I do have a problem with the bass both in not quite integrating (it can get very, very close) and also with it being slumped on the floor. One thing to understand with MLs, especially the smaller ones, is the crossover point is higher in frequency than one would think on all but the really huge ones, i.e. quite a bit of mid comes out of that bass unit on the floor. I personally find that odd.

    Of the two my choice would be for Magnepan as they are full-range. They can really sound superb, though they take a lot if amp to do it. I could definitely live with Maggies given the right room. With both of them bigger is better. Every time. I’d love to hear the full range CL2 MLs, I bet they are really good.
  13. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    A good friend of mine has Summit X and loves them.

    If I have the pair of Lyngdorf subs, these can play upto 800hz each side, so will look at where Maggie’s drop down to to see if they’d integrate well.
    hifinutt likes this.
  14. Lurch

    Lurch pfm Member

    @Rug Doc
    Your not to far from me (am in Chichester) and I run a pair of Summits in a 12 x 14 room, (wish I had yours) PM me and come round for a listen as I'm about most days after 9am.
    The bass definitely doesn't sound slow or separated from the panels, and to me they sound absolutely awesome driven by either a pair of Nord NC500Ms or currently on trial a GamuT D200 mk2.
    I went from Usher Dancer mini2 DMD > Quad 989 > ML Summits and to my ears they're the best sound I've ever had, smooth, rich and detailed with nuanced, fast, deep (23Hz) impactful bass.
    Happy for you to bring your own music (Vinyl or CD) or we can run Qobuz.

    If you do decide to go for a pair and there's no boxes, then no problem.
    I have a full set of the internal packing and a friend who has a pair has had a set of ply crates made (his dad was a chippy) just give me a shout and we can sort.
    Last edited: May 25, 2023
  15. tonerei

    tonerei pfm Member

    Quads will work fine if you are concerned about the height you just have to put them on stands or a box. The worlds your oyster in the UK for whatever Quad you fancy. Not sure if ML's are as plentiful. Ideally whatever speaker you are getting you should put the corner bit with the arm rest in the bin or the shed :D
    Rug Doc likes this.
  16. Darren

    Darren Doin' the Southern Freeeez

    HI Ruggie! Ive owned both Magneplanars and Martin Logans - both are superb.
    As Tony says - the Magneplanars are beautifully integrated while the ML's come close.
    Of course you have to factor in that both are dipoles and need space to give their best.
    The one thing I would say is that I've recently discovered that Maggies can be repaired with two kinds of glue and some patience when they fail. In contrast, I threw my ML's away when one panel failed - the replacement panels were just so expensive (in the context of second hand speakers)
    PS. Your room looks frikkin gorgeous.
    Rug Doc likes this.
  17. mark.king

    mark.king pfm Member

    When I bought my ML clarity’s about 20 years ago I listened to quads and a lot of box speakers at a similar price. That was then about £2700. The quads were just too soft sounding with little punch. After hearing the Logan’s at MAX there was nothing else that compared. Box speakers sounded distorted and harsh in comparison and came no where near when it came to out of the box sound and pin point accuracy. Vocals were like nothing I had heard before. Yes you did have to sit fairly still and the bass was not as tight as some PMCs I’d listened to but listening experience far outweighed any negatives. If I get back into a decent living room again it will be something like a 2nd hand pair of summits for me.
    Darren likes this.
  18. Darren

    Darren Doin' the Southern Freeeez

    Amen, The lack of a box singing along makes all the difference.
    mark.king likes this.
  19. Rug Doc

    Rug Doc pfm Member

    The only thing that concerns me is the very narrow sweetspot of the Logan’s, are Magnepans different?
  20. daytona600

    daytona600 Registered User

    love ambient, electronica, EDM and my listening desires are for a big stage, precise imaging and and fun.
    Me as well tried panels for years Went back to Horns then Active Studio monitors

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