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post #1 of 35 Old 03-05-2006, 08:45 AM - Thread Starter
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I am interested in getting listening impressions on this speaker by people who either own it or heard it at a showroom. My nearest dealer is two hours away so any first hand impressions, good or bad, would be appreciated, since I hopefully will have some things to look out for. Music or movies heard while making impression would be helpful.
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post #2 of 35 Old 03-06-2006, 05:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Anyone hear them yet?
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post #3 of 35 Old 03-06-2006, 06:07 AM
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I listened to the Summit. It's very similar.

If you've never heard ESL, then you're in for a treat. This is the most detailed, highest resolution speaker I've heard. There are things in my test tracks I had never heard before. In Michael Ruff's Wishing Well, about 2 min in, he opens his mouth and pauses for an instant as he's early for the note. He then slides into the word. I'd never noticed that before. The speed and clarity are breathtaking.

On the other hand, this only works if you're sitting in the very narrow sweet spot. These speakers show that kind of detail when you're perfectly centered and you have them pointing at you. They also lack mid-bass. From 500-600hz up they sound good but they give it up down low. Sure, these are hybrids that are supposed to compensate for the ESL's inability to play low notes, but I don't think they got it right. For true lows (40-100hz) it was only OK. Kinda blah.

I passed.
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post #4 of 35 Old 03-06-2006, 06:23 AM
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I grew up with my father owning a pair of huge Magneplanar speakers that he eventually traded for Goldmund Dialogue's, but I always remember the Magnapans sounding fantastic. Anybody have any experience with these electrostatic speakers?

Pioneer VSX-1021
Samsung UN55D7000
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post #5 of 35 Old 03-06-2006, 12:44 PM - Thread Starter
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There are plenty of threads on Magnepans so look them up on the search engine and please do not hijack this thread on Martin Logans.

Ben, I was intrigued by your impression of the bass capabilities of the Summits. I would think that the dual powered woofers would result in better bass, esp since they also include a 12 db bass EQ to increase or decrease response centered at 35 hz. The 500-600 range is definitely within the panels' range so I wonder if this was a placement issue? Thanks for your input.
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post #6 of 35 Old 03-06-2006, 05:23 PM
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We just became a full-line Martin Logan dealer. So once I receive our demo pair of Vantages I will give you a thorough write up on the product using Arcam and Parasound Halo gear.
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post #7 of 35 Old 03-09-2006, 11:57 AM
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We have just recently received our first pair of Vantage from ML. I have been very impressed so far. They have a presence and sound stage like the Ascent's (If not a little larger than) but with a much smaller and attractive form factor. Also with the powered 8" woofer, these speakers play the lower frequencies relatively well.

We are using both a Sunfire Tube preamplifier with a Sunfire 300-2 power amp, & The Anthem Statement D1 pre-amp with an Anthem Statement p2 amp.

So far.......All smiles
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post #8 of 35 Old 03-14-2006, 07:04 AM
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The room I heard these in was small and non-symetrical. It definitely effected the imaging but I don't think the lack of mid-bass could be attributed to the room.

I'd love to hear anyone else's comments on these speakers. If it turns out my audition was an anomoly and others disagree with my assesment, I'm going to go back and revisit them. I don't know how I would ever overcome the narrow sweet spot or how I could get my cats to stay off of them, but I'd sure try if I had reason to believe what I heard was not normal for them.

-Ben
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post #9 of 35 Old 03-14-2006, 10:54 AM
 
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Hybrid planar/dynamic speakers cannot sound as good as full-range planar speakers, but those are way expensive and typically require tons of power as well.
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post #10 of 35 Old 03-14-2006, 02:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PULLIAMM View Post

Hybrid planar/dynamic speakers cannot sound as good as full-range planar speakers, but those are way expensive and typically require tons of power as well.

ML has been doing hybrid speakers for years, so lots of people do not agree with your opinion regarding hybrid v. full range planars, which have plenty of problems all their own. As for power, the Vantage is rated at 92 db efficiency and has a powered woofer, so the amount of power should not be critical, although quality of the power is a must I would suspect.
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post #11 of 35 Old 03-14-2006, 05:22 PM
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Martin Logans are a "current-driven" speaker not a voltage-driven speaker. Therefore wattage is not important but current is very Very important with these speakers. They can dip down into 1 ohm at the high frequencies. Placement such as distance from back wall and toe-in is critical with these speakers as can effect the soundstage drastically. They are amazing speakers and I have nothing but good things to say about them. We drive them on Parasound Halo amps and they sound great. We look forward to reviewing them on the new NuForce Reference9's next week. I would also look to martinloganowners.com forum.
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post #12 of 35 Old 03-15-2006, 06:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow 8 View Post

ML has been doing hybrid speakers for years, so lots of people do not agree with your opinion regarding hybrid v. full range planars, which have plenty of problems all their own. As for power, the Vantage is rated at 92 db efficiency and has a powered woofer, so the amount of power should not be critical, although quality of the power is a must I would suspect.

It was not my intent to put down the Vantage (or hybrids in general), but only to point out that the best planar sound is acheived by full-range units. This is because the bass from these has the same airy "boxless" quality as the other frequencies. Achieving this with good bass extension requires large panels that are expensive to build (and ship), and require much more power than hybrids.
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post #13 of 35 Old 03-15-2006, 03:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Agreed. I really liked the Maggy 2.7s a number of years ago but my wife said no way. They were almost as wide as my room.
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post #14 of 35 Old 03-17-2006, 04:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PULLIAMM View Post

It was not my intent to put down the Vantage (or hybrids in general), but only to point out that the best planar sound is acheived by full-range units. This is because the bass from these has the same airy "boxless" quality as the other frequencies. Achieving this with good bass extension requires large panels that are expensive to build (and ship), and require much more power than hybrids.

Sorry, I have the biggest ML panels in my Monolith III's and they still benefit from woofers and a good quality sub.

That being said, the most critical element in successful Electrostat deployments is the room. I custom designed my room around my all Martin Logan speakers setup (Monolith III's, Logos and Sequel II).

I replaced all passive crossovers with DBX DriveRak 260 speaker processors and used ETF to fine tune the crossovers, the EQ and the delays to with a fraction of a ms.

After that I added a big 4 x 15 driver Infinite Baffle sub (Flat down to 19Hz at 108db) to really give the bottom end the heft that is required to keep up with the wonderful, clear midrange and highs of the big electrostats.

A Vantage, or any other ML will benefit from a quality sub. But they all will benefit the most from good placement and room design.

Regarding amps, yes, these are current driven beasts. Get a quality amplifier with high rated amperage. Sunfires are quite good with ML's. I have 14 channels of Sunfire power in my rig and the results are awesome, no clipping, no fatigue, just music to any level you can stand to listen to.

Do audition the vantages in a good room with top notch gear.
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post #15 of 35 Old 04-30-2006, 05:31 PM
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The Vantage is an extra ordinary speaker that requires critical placment, good room treatment as appropriate and appropriate electronics. The impedence drops to near 1 ohm at 20K and probably is low well befre then. I am using Outlaw amps to drive them with a Lexicon DC-1 as the preamp. They might well beneft from class a in both pre amp and amp but this works very well fro me. After 100 hours of break in or so they really sing. All problems with bass and mid bass that were there at first are gone. Trick is to put on XM jazz channel at 80 dbs or soand close the door for 5 days. I used the 1/3 panel tow in technique and ahve a sweet spot of about 3-5 seats wide 10 feet from speakers that are 6.5 feet apart in a 12v x 14 foot room. The speakers are 50 inches form the fron wall and 26 inches from each side. As oyu can tell they are placed with the 12 feet wall being the front wall.

I have older B&W 801s in a different location in my house. The Vantages have better lower bass to about 35 hz. Both speakers image very well but the electrostatics truly make jazz and inimate vocals come alive. They are also great for Home theater use.

Joel
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post #16 of 35 Old 05-07-2006, 05:11 AM
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I'm waiting for the ESL Centre and then I'm going to try the Vantages for HT.

Is my Plinius Odeon going to work with them?

Darryl
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post #17 of 35 Old 05-07-2006, 06:22 AM
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I own full range logans... of a fairly recent vintage and swore up and down I would never sell... then I made the mistake of listening to the Summits... truely a landmark speaker for ML... stunning image and amazing bass integration... now If only I can come up with the money
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post #18 of 35 Old 06-03-2006, 11:25 AM
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I had a chance to listen to the ML Vantage loudspeaker yesterday evening. I was at a local Tweeter discussing audio/video upgrades and my advisor said "hey listen to these".

Actually we started with Focal Profile 918s. The room was (20 x 30 x 9), 10 foot seating distance (long wall) with a 8 foot spread, speakers 2.5 feet off the front wall, Krell KAV400xi integrated amp , Audioquest interconnects speaker wires, Sony CD player ES Digital Recorder RCD-W2000ES/B. Music was Donald Fagen's Morph the Cat CD.

The Focals sounded very nice, great sound stage, extended highs and great midrange, but lacked "bass" (Fagen's albums are famous for electric bass).

After a while I said said how about the ML Vantages since they're near the price of the Focals (never heard either of these speakers before). These were placed about 10 feet apart with the same sitting distance. It was immediately apparent when he switched to the ML Vantage that these were superior and something special.
I was first knocked out by the bass (bass contour set to "0"). I have transmission line speakers (IMF Professional Monitors) which are flat to 19 Hz and the Vantages sounded beautiful, well extended. The Vantages were well defined, had great tone, not tubby, clear pitch of the bass guiar was evident.

Sound staging was next, which was excellent. A casual stroll around the room shown that the sound stage extended 3-5 seats to the left and right of our seating position. Other locations revealed the front and back panel effect of the panel transducer (interesting!). This effect in some locations of the room was errie. There was a reduction in high frequency output if standing at the listening position, not offensive.
Timbral accuracy, tone, dynamics, and other properties I hold dear to sound repoduction were "right on".

At this point I can't say there were any negatives. I will have to go back and listen more with different music.

I have been auditioning loudspeakers ever since I got the IMFs but have not found one to replace it affordably. Some were excellent but expensive (i.e Avalon Acoustics Opus, Infinity Prelude).

I am concerned with front wall placement as I have a projector and an 8 foot screen on the front wall. Speaker spread and visual blockage of the screen from the seating position concerns me. distance into the room affecting the speaker to seating position is also a concern. Replacement of my other surround speakers (dynamic cones) with planar drivers is also a concern. Dual (duel, he he) subwoofers would be great for the home theater portion of my system.

Sincerely,
Martin
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post #19 of 35 Old 06-07-2006, 07:18 PM
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I gave the Vantage a listen again last night at Tweeter.

The speakers sounded fantastic with whatever I threw at them. They are airy but never bright and do not become offensive at high volume levels. Particularly interesting was grand piano (David Benoit?) and "Marches I Have Missed" (Frederick Fennel). The sound of both of these was something I have heard from a Hi-Fi system only three times in my life. Quite incredible sound stage.

I was though slightly disappointed in the bass. I was hoping the Vantage would extend as low as my current loudspeakers. I did perform adjustments to the 35 Hz boost/cut control and settled eventually at +2.0. This added a fundamental tone to the low end but, not boomy. Extension though I felt after investigating all portions of the room was not as low as my IMFs. Bass guitar was weak.

I will write Martin Logan on this.

Sincerely,
Martin
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post #20 of 35 Old 06-23-2006, 07:23 AM
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Hi all,
I had a chance to listen to the Summits in comparison the Vantages last week.
The Summits go considerably lower in response than the Vantages. Adjustability was good. Without an immediate A/B I cannot say if they match my IMFs

The Summits were also demonstrated with the Descent. This combination is unbelieveable. In rertrospect, I should have partnered a Depth with the Vantages (my mistake).

Sincerely,
Martin
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post #21 of 35 Old 07-20-2006, 12:06 AM
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Is the only real world performance difference between the vantage and summit the bass response? I can buy some nice subs for less than the 5k price difference.
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post #22 of 35 Old 07-20-2006, 05:17 AM
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I'm also looking to purchase these speakers and pairing them up with the stage for center, passage for sur. sound, and descent for sub. Sounds were detailed and bass was OK at the store. Of course this is at the store and hope to sound as good in my room. If bass is low I was going to look into adding an additional sub. By adding an additional sub, would that take care of low bass issues? (if there is a big issue).
If adding a sub would not improve low bass issue, is there any other suggesting?

I do not know allot about pre/ pro or amps. Would like any advice to what equipment to look into to make these speakers sound great. My budget for equipment is 5- 8,000. Will be using the room for 80% HT and also would like HDMI 1080p switching.

One dealer suggested:
Anthem AVM-50 pre/pro
Anthem A5 amp
Anthem A2 amp

Another suggested:
Denon 4806CI receiver
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post #23 of 35 Old 07-20-2006, 07:38 AM
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I was very interested in the vantages at one point. I ended up crossing them of the list because I just couldn't see paying 3500$ for such a small sweet spot , and then you add in the picky placement issues . Plus I had some concerns about HT and the rears . The sound is really good , but I think there are better options out there for the money ....

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post #24 of 35 Old 07-20-2006, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow 8 View Post


Ben, I was intrigued by your impression of the bass capabilities of the Summits. I would think that the dual powered woofers would result in better bass, esp since they also include a 12 db bass EQ to increase or decrease response centered at 35 hz. The 500-600 range is definitely within the panels' range so I wonder if this was a placement issue? Thanks for your input.

Bass duties in the Summits are shared differently between the two ten inch woofers. The forward facing driver is light weight (for speed to better blend with the electrostatic panel) and crossed over at a fairly high 270 Hz. The second driver faces downward, employers a higher mass cone to create a lower resonant frequency and is crossed over at 100 Hz. Each is driven by its own 200 watt amp.

Dennis

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post #25 of 35 Old 07-23-2006, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattburk View Post

Is the only real world performance difference between the vantage and summit the bass response? I can buy some nice subs for less than the 5k price difference.

Hi mattburk,
Going into the audition process I thought the Vantage was a excellent deal (two subs). Listening to the Summit was an extension of the audition process for me. Both speakers in my opinion are some of the best currently available. They sound similar from ~200 Hz and up.

Unfortunately both loudspeakers benefit from a true subwoofer but, I could live with that for home theater as I have one. The Summits in a home installation probably would not need a sub woofer (smaller rooms).

Two channel stereo though through just two speakers is my passion. I can not currently integrate the sub into the two channel only system (surround LFE only).

I had the Martin Logan Depth (subwoofer) for a while. At ~$1800 added on to the price of the Vantages is not too bad. I would bet the match would be great!, if run through a receiver that allows bass management that could do it.

Another AVSforum subscriber noted a narrow sweet spot for this series. I did not hear that with the Vantage (three seats wide). The Summit though was set up with only a couple of head width for the sweet spot.

Sincerely,
Martin
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post #26 of 35 Old 08-25-2006, 09:55 AM
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My stereo system measure fairly flat (PAA3) down to 33 hz and past 15 khz (+/- 3db and with minor adjustement gets better than that (lots of room tweaking with Auralex) with just the 2 Vantage speakers.

You would need a sub woofer to get down to 20 hz but not much music is below 40 hz although lots of DVDs are.

I do use a sub woofer for HT with the vantages for the left and right-but I do not use the sub for listening to music.

Joel
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post #27 of 35 Old 09-20-2006, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmschnur View Post

I do use a sub woofer for HT with the vantages for the left and right-but I do not use the sub for listening to music.

Joel

Hi jmschnur:
Was that two subs? What kind?

I found that even though my front stereo pair goes low enough, movie effects are so loud I can't provide enough power. I have on my short list two 500 watt mono-blocks but...it's only money.

My current sub works well but the Martin Logan Depth is better. Maybe after tax time.

Thanks,
Leg One
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post #28 of 35 Old 01-10-2007, 12:37 PM
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What about the Vista? It looks like the same speaker as the Vantage except it's not ported and has an internal amp to drive the woofer.

How does the crossover work on the Vantage? Are you suppose to set your speakers to small and user a subwoofer pre-out? If not what happens to the power your amp uses to amplify the low frequency signal? Does the ML throw out the low frequency amplification from your receiver and then re-use its internal amp to drive the low frequency? That seems wasteful and of little extra value.

What if a bigger amp was used to drive the Vistas? Could they sound as good or better than the Vantage? I'm just not sure what the extra $1500 + dedicated woofer amp really buys you. I listened to both side by side and preferred the Vista on some music and the Vantage on others. The Vantage seemed louder in general, and had less of an eletrostatic sound.

 

 

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post #29 of 35 Old 08-07-2009, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabident View Post

What about the Vista? It looks like the same speaker as the Vantage except it's not ported and has an internal amp to drive the woofer.

How does the crossover work on the Vantage? Are you suppose to set your speakers to small and user a subwoofer pre-out? If not what happens to the power your amp uses to amplify the low frequency signal? Does the ML throw out the low frequency amplification from your receiver and then re-use its internal amp to drive the low frequency? That seems wasteful and of little extra value.

What if a bigger amp was used to drive the Vistas? Could they sound as good or better than the Vantage? I'm just not sure what the extra $1500 + dedicated woofer amp really buys you. I listened to both side by side and preferred the Vista on some music and the Vantage on others. The Vantage seemed louder in general, and had less of an eletrostatic sound.

Hello,
I realize I am bringing this thread back from the dead, but I keep on seeing this link on Google searches.

The primary reason the Vantage seemed louder when compared side by side to the Vista is because of the increased sensitivity of the Vantage. Almost all of this is due to the active woofer making for a less demanding speaker load.

Regardless, as with all Electrostatic Speakers, the most demanding part of the frequency load is at the very top where, in the case of the Vantage/Vista , is right at 1 ohm. Thankfully, very few recordings have information in this range. However, unlike most conventional speaker where the bass section is the most difficult, stats are the inverse. Opera fans, use the most stable amplifier funds permit.
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post #30 of 35 Old 04-19-2011, 08:49 AM
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I just set up XT 32 with descent i and jl Fathom 112 with my vantages using an Integra dhc 80.2.

calibration was done with Audessey pro kit.

The two good subs are crossed over at 70 hz.

The better resolution of xt 32 has really cleared up any issues in mid bass with the Vantage speakers and the dual sub set up that Audyssey lets me do really rocks!!

I am now re listening to my music collection.

The Vantage speakers really shine with XT 32 and good subs!

Joel
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