OK guys, where to begin.... Bear with me it will be a long one and I hope its ok that I add some pics I took here as well. Today was the first time I ever had a good audition/experience at this location, seriously It was great. I walked in the door and as usual there is someone directly right there to pick up the customer, I stormed right by him without making eye contact and headed right to the Monitor Audio room which is about 20x15. I was pleasantly surprised that they had pretty much completed the room, as before everything was all over the place, but now it was somewhat organized, but there are speakers on every wall, and now there were now 2 chairs in the middle of the room, where there were none before. No room treatments, just berber carpeting. Upon stepping in I slid the big heavy door closed. There in front of my face were the PL300's in Rosewood and the PL100's in Ebony, both luscious in color and beautiful. A treat even to just look at, all powered by a full McIntosh, top to bottom. The best part of today was that I was not bothered by anyone of the sales guys for almost 1 hour, nobody even walked into the room... COOL !!! Very unusual, I ended up having to fetch someone when I finally had some questions.
More pictures further down...
Both Pre-Amps were fed by a shared McIntosh MDC201 CD Player.
Please bear with me here, I am not familiar with any McIntosh Equipment, and it took me a bit to figure out how to use it, but once I did I was well on my way.
MA PL300's (Santos Rosewood)
Amp MC402 (400x2)
MA PL100's (Ebony Veneer)
McIntosh Tube Equipment (PreAmp & Amp)
Amp MC2102 (100x2)
Once I figured out how to get the Mac stuff running it was a pleasure... I brought 2 Cd's with me Craig Chaquico - Acoustic Planet
and Daryl Stuermer - Waiting in the Wings
both are very dynamic albums that have some really amazing tracks. Daryl Steurmer was from the town where I grew up Whitefish Bay, just north of Milwaukee, and I have been to his house as a highschool kid, when he was still touring with Genesis, and now still plays around here locally quite a bit when he is not on tour. Amazing guitarist, as is Craig. There is some very intricate material on these albums that gave me the chance to hear the benefits of the range of the Platinums, bringing out the highs, mids and lows.
To start with, The Platinums are truly fantastic, the full range of the 300's truly shined, where the 100's were just a bit shy bringing out the midrange as delicately as the 3 way with the dedicated 4", and obviously short on the bass, But the Ribbons were extremely clear and precise. No sub was connected to these setup and both speakers were running full range. I went back and forth on the 2 speakers but quickly settled in on just running through the 300's, as that was my intent from the beginning. Not sure I really cared for the way the tubes sounded, kinda quashing the sound spectrum.
The Craig Chiquico runs heavy in the midrange area, and has some great precision with his incredibly articulate and fast guitar plucking, which I have found can stress out the tweeters with the steel of the strings, but the mids and ribbons really sounded great. This is one of the first speakers that I have heard ribbons and it was a pretty nice experience for me, not bright at all. I was really impressed so far...... One of my favorite songs on the Album is Center of Courage !!! Incredible speed, Craig just running through the strings hard !! This will stress out a speaker, I have heard tweets break up at higher volumes of this. The 300's handled it really well.... The whole album sounds fantastic, he does alot of harmonics off the guitar, which to me has always been a pleasure, seriously some hard jams on this album, and really great from beginning to end. It seemed to me that the bass was a bit lacking then what I am used to, but I am running the F112 with my setup at home, and its running hot but its tight, so I tend to keep it a bit higher then I should.
Then I put in the Dayrl Steurmer, Wow - There's the bass, full solid and heavy... they really put it out... To give credit here... The Craig Chiquico was recorded in 1994, and the Steurmer was recorded in 2001, and just sounded like a better more vibrant recording...
I won't get into it so hard with the Steurmer album, as its a more laid back album but has some very pleasant full range sounds. Highs were really refreshing and the tiny little tubular type bells (very delicate sound) they use on this album come through cleanly, and really stood out in my mind where before they never really did. They also can certainly put out bass, without being muddy or boomy at all to me.. Dual Rear ported, they were sitting about 18"s from the wall, and toed in just a bit to where I moved my chair and they were firing just off to the sides of my shoulders. Off axis was pretty good, but they tended to be somewhat focused, they started to lose it for me at about 30 degrees, but not bad. Vertical dispersion was fine when walking around the room standing up as opposed to sitting. The Leather front fascia was a really cool touch with the magnetic grill spectacular. Gloss Finish was spot on... even though they obviously don't clean them EVER...
In the end I would say they are super sweet speakers, obviously I can't put them up against the speakers I'm running now, and in my house seeing as they were priced at $4499.00.... I had to look around the room at the rest of the pricing structure to realize they were priced each... hheheh I really liked them... I couldn't justify the price of them for myself but on the second hand market I would have no problem. They are really sexy, and sounded great. More linear then my Sigs, less pronounced and more even in the mid range but a great tweet. The ribbons are smooth...
Opposite this wall gives you an idea of how weird they setup this room, I did not take pics of the other two walls completely packed to the gills with more and more speakers... you get the Idea... Speakers acsending on both sides...?