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Hello,
Maggies are Planar Speakers and use a true Ribbon or quasi Ribbon on the less expensive Models. Very difficult to drive, but do not need to be plugged into a Wall Socket like ESL Speakers.
Cheers,
JJ
 

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Agree 100%

For the record, many speakers have this zing at the top, not just the 602S3.
I totally agree with you on the zing. I've always called that sound the "hi-fi" sound. It doesn't sound real. It sounds like way too much "hi" to be real. Unfortunately many speakers with "clean clear" highs are popular. They make me want to cut off my ears and run away. I don't understand why so many want those icepick highs.

JJ:
Maggies are not difficult to drive. They have a very benign and relatively flat 4 Ohm load. They do like lots of current. Liking lots of current doesn't make them a difficult load just a hungry one..
 

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I totally agree with you on the zing. I've always called that sound the "hi-fi" sound. It doesn't sound real. It sounds like way too much "hi" to be real. Unfortunately many speakers with "clean clear" highs are popular. They make me want to cut off my ears and run away. I don't understand why so many want those icepick highs.

JJ:
Maggies are not difficult to drive. They have a very benign and relatively flat 4 Ohm load. They do like lots of current. Liking lots of current doesn't make them a difficult load just a hungry one..
From the 3.6 Stereophile Review "The Magnepan's estimated voltage sensitivity was on the low side, at 83.5dB(B)/2.83V/m. However, in a typical room the speaker's quasi-line-source vertical dispersion should make it sound a little louder than might otherwise be expected. (The in-room loudness of a true line source falls off in a linear manner with distance, rather than as the square of the distance, as is the case with a point source.) But it should be noted that BD did need a good beefy amplifier to drive the Maggies to useful levels.

The speaker's impedance (fig.1) approximates a resistive load of around 4 ohms over much of the audioband. However, there is a slight magnitude peak centered at 1.6kHz, due to the crossover between the ribbon and the midrange diaphragm. The minimum value is 3.3 ohms at 10kHz, which is not going to be problem for any good amplifier to drive, while the increasingly positive electrical phase angle at the top of the audioband is, I assume, due to the residual inductance of the ribbon driver. There is a small wrinkle in the trace between 50Hz and 60Hz, which is probably due to the tuning of the woofer diaphragm."

I suppose we all have different criteria for what is a difficult to drive Speaker, but an 83db Efficient, sub 4 Ohm is an awfully difficult load in my book. And if you read the 1.6 Review. even though it is a Quasi Ribbon, it is still highly inefficient and a fairly low impedance.
J
 

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Discussion Starter #104
Thanks JJ - is there a model of the Maggies you would suggest? The 3.7 and 20.7 are more than likely out of my price range for now as this is my first attempt at an HT, and I am thinking I should have the room going for a while before I consider spending that much for speakers - oh, and my wife would probably slay me with the daggers her eyes would shoot out. :scared:
 

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Thanks JJ - is there a model of the Maggies you would suggest? The 3.7 and 20.7 are more than likely out of my price range for now as this is my first attempt at an HT, and I am thinking I should have the room going for a while before I consider spending that much for speakers - oh, and my wife would probably slay me with the daggers her eyes would shoot out. :scared:
Hello,
The 1.7 has gotten fantastic Reviews. While not a true Ribbon like the 3.6 and 20.7, the Quasi Ribbon is still excellent. If open to used, the 1.6 can be had for less, but they tend to sell on Audiogon about as soon as they are listed. My brother sold his 3.6's in 30 Minutes to a local buyer no less. Maggies really have the best Resale Value of any Speaker I have come across.
Cheers,
JJ
 

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Discussion Starter #106
Hello,
The 1.7 has gotten fantastic Reviews. While not a true Ribbon like the 3.6 and 20.7, the Quasi Ribbon is still excellent. If open to used, the 1.6 can be had for less, but they tend to sell on Audiogon about as soon as they are listed. My brother sold his 3.6's in 30 Minutes to a local buyer no less. Maggies really have the best Resale Value of any Speaker I have come across.
Cheers,
JJ
Thanks JJ - after a quick check at Audiogon, it looks like the 1.7 (new) and the 3.6 (used) would fall into my price range. Added to my list - cheers!
 

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Hello,
Provided you have or can get a solid Power Amplifier, I can definitely vouch for the 3.6's. They are outstanding. The 1.7's have garnered rave reviews as well, but I would definitely go for the true Ribbon in the 3.6.
J
 

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Discussion Starter #108
Hello,
Provided you have or can get a solid Power Amplifier, I can definitely vouch for the 3.6's. They are outstanding. The 1.7's have garnered rave reviews as well, but I would definitely go for the true Ribbon in the 3.6.
J
Jack,

I do currently have 2 amps - a UPA-2 and an XPA-5. My plan was to use the XPA-5 to drive the L/C/R and the side surrounds and the 809 would drive the rears - the UPA-2 would be doing zone 2 duty.

Would the XPA-5 be ample enough to drive the 3.6?

Thanks for all the input!

Joe
 

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Hello,
The XPA-5 should be fine. While I think the XPA-1 or XPA-2 would be better, I do think the XPA-5 will get the job done.
J
 

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I was a little embarrassed to admit to my wife we were going to listen to Polk speakers but they went toe to toe with the CM9's as far as I am concerned
 

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Hello.
Polk's upper range still use the Ring Radiator Tweeter from Vifa that is also used in many ultra expensive Speakers so I can understand why anyone would be impressed with them. We really try not to be speaker snobs here and have recommended Polks many times.
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JJ
 

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I'm not a speaker snob... My wife is. Her 2ch setup is a pair of 802D's which she had to have after she bought a pair of Focal 1038BE. She was pretty humbled by the quality of sound coming out of the $3000 polks. I was also impressed as they did not have that Polk sound if you know what I mean. I think their Rti line sounded soggy (my wife calls it forgiving). The LSI-M sounded more like a B&W CM9 than a Polk-very detailed and easy to listen to and enough bass extension to make u walk over to the subs and feel for which one is on. Just thought I would explain my post as I don't want to labled a speaker snob.
 

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I for one, am a speaker snob. :innocent: I think those B&W CM9s are not speakers I would be interested in...



So for Polks to outperform them, isn't particularily exciting.

*runs away*
 

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Discussion Starter #116
I'm not a speaker snob... My wife is. Her 2ch setup is a pair of 802D's which she had to have after she bought a pair of Focal 1038BE. She was pretty humbled by the quality of sound coming out of the $3000 polks. I was also impressed as they did not have that Polk sound if you know what I mean. I think their Rti line sounded soggy (my wife calls it forgiving). The LSI-M sounded more like a B&W CM9 than a Polk-very detailed and easy to listen to and enough bass extension to make u walk over to the subs and feel for which one is on. Just thought I would explain my post as I don't want to labled a speaker snob.
No worries here Show - I must admit I did not spend a lot of time looking at Polks because of some of the comments I saw - glad you pointed those out and I will definitely plan on including them in my initial research on all speakers on my list.

I for one, am a speaker snob. :innocent: I think those B&W CM9s are not speakers I would be interested in...



So for Polks to outperform them, isn't particularily exciting.

*runs away*
Snob alert - snob alert! :bigsmile: I am not sure what I am looking at there - I readily admit my chart reading is severely lacking (which I hope to remedy someday....). Mind explaining just a tad please? :huh:
 

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What that is, is a very smoothed frequency response graph; here is the accompanying info:

Thomas J Norton said:
This graph shows the quasi-anechoic (employing close-miking of all woofers) frequency response of the CM9 L/R (purple trace), ASW 10CM subwoofer (blue trace), CM Centre 2 center channel (green trace), and CM5 surround (red trace). All passive loudspeakers were measured with grilles at a distance of 1 meter with a 2.83-volt input and scaled for display purposes.
Because of the smoothing used, it's not the most useful FR plot in the world overall - but it does tell me these speakers recess the upper mids and highs pretty notably. Now designers have reasons for doing things like this, which can vary from trying to hide speaker design issues to trying to sell speakers on the showroom floor.

However It's my opinion, that a speaker can

A)"seemingly measure well and sound inaccurate"
B)"measure well and sound accurate"
C)"seemingly measure poor and occasionally sound accurate enough"
D) "measure poor and sound inaccurate".

For reference, here is a(n unsmoothed in-room) graph of the EMP e55Tis that you picked up:



Now again, there's issues with in-room measurements, including that dip near 200hz caused by floor cancellations. The peaks at 650hz and 1300hz are tough to accurately judge for the same reason.

Ignoring that, you can see that these speakers have more balance in their voicing... they're very close to +/-2db frequency response and no region is prominent over another in a general sense. Also included are some off-axis plots at 15 and 30 degrees which closely track the on-axis plots (not always the case), although I prefer to have 45, 60, and ~70 degree off-axis plots as well because they will show a bit more of how the speaker plays with (or against) the room.

Of course auditions are important but there's some speakers I really wouldn't bother auditioning because they lack accuracy, even if people consider them pleasant. To me, a pleasant-but-inaccurate speaker lacks fidelity to the source (music..movies) and that's not acceptable. Call me a speaker snob if you like, and I'm not trying insult anyone else's choices, but speakers should be true-to-the-source, not true-to-the-person-buying's-feelings-of-what-they-want-the-source-to-be-like-even-if-that-sounds-nothing-like-the-source-but-at-least-it's-not-harsh. :)
 

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OK, this :ponder: is starting to happen! So, if I am reading the chart for the CM9 correctly, there is a +/- 6db in the L/R - correct?
No, it seems to go from 87db to 93db between around 55hz to 20khz...technically, it's +/- 3db (6db window) which is good enough to put on a spec sheet but not really good enough by my standards.

The problem is, these are VERY broad trends, not a tiny, quick dip here or there. If something spans 1/12th of an octave, it might be barely audible. If we're talking 1/3rd of an octave dips and peaks, they're normally recognizable too. Between the critical 100hz to 8khz range there's an ~6db dip that spans over two full octaves. I don't know why this was done (probably a mix of flawed off-axis response from the 4khz crossover to the tweeter and the tweeter's aluminum dome might have some audibly harsh ringing, and the desire to have a pleasing, "full-bodied/warm" sound character in the showrooms). I just know I have better things to do than audition that speaker.

I don't mean to discredit Polk, but a decently balanced, decently designed speaker really should outperform those CM9s. I've never really been impressed by what i've heard from Polk, but i'm not surprised at showcattleguy's experience.
 

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Hello,
When speaking of being a snob, I mean in terms of Brands. That is if Bose were ever to make a speaker faithful to the source material, I would support it. Unfortunately, this can cut both ways with brands like B&W and MartinLogan selling Speakers that are not faithful to the source, but due to their history and achievements getting the benefit of the doubt with more budget Models. The B&W Nautilus 801 is a classic and is a reference for many world famous Mastering Houses and Studios. And this is just two brands of many who do so. All the while it is possible to purchase more accurate and capable speakers than the CM Series or the ML Electromotion Series for the same money and for often less.

The Vifa Ring Radiator is an excellent Tweeter and I was honestly shocked when Polk started to offer it. It is quite expensive and in other applications I have listened to it in, truly excellent. Unless talking about cost no object Flagships, there are always going to be tradeoffs in Cabinet Construction, Driver Quality, Crossover Networks, and so forth. People like PSB Founder Paul Barton to me is one of the finest in mastering this balancing act. The work being done by Floyd Toole and others at Harman International is also quite noteworthy.
J
 
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