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(also posted this in magnepan owner's thread)


hey everyone, I have roughly a million questions. any help would be greatly appreciated.


thinking of a magnepan 1.7 home theater in my living room for 50/50 music/movies.

1.7's for fronts and surrounds, and a megnepan center channel.


so:

how much power do I need to get the 1.7's seriously dynamic?

is that even possible?

I'm thinking of powering the fronts with emotiva xpa-2, and center + surrounds with xpa-3. good idea? enough power?

will they get loud enough for explosions, etc?


my room is 14 x 16 with sloped ceiling that averages 9ft


which center channel to match 1.7's?

thoughts on magnepan center channel's? great? ok? bad?


any consensus on subs to match 1.7's?

would like dual subs that can get below 20 hz but not be horrible with music. will crossover the 1.7's at 40hz.


pre-amp for home theater AND music that actually sounds good?

AND has dual subEQ? too much to ask?


sorry for the ridiculous number of questions.

help!
 

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I'm interested in very much the same thing.


I currently have a 2.1 Magnepan 1.7 setup (powered by an Odyssey Candela pre & Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono @ ~200W with a Velodyne DD-12 sub). I'm going to be adding another DD-12 in the future. I don't crossover the maggies at all. I run them full range and just let the natural frequency response dictate its rolloff. I send the full signal to the sub then just the built in EQ to only play 40Hz and down with EQ to taste.


If you side by side Magnepans with box speakers I don't think you're ever going to get the same slam. Its a tradeoff. I find that the increased resolution you get from the 1.7's (which cannot be matched anywhere near its price, IMO) lures you in to the point where the slam isn't as important. A stereo subwoofer setup may alleviate this a great deal but I don't have that yet. It might be nice to run the maggies full range then have the subs overlap to enhance certain frequencies with additional slam. I'm not sure how its going to turn out though as the the "taut" bass is part of why I love maggies.


If given room to breathe, they easily go up and beyond 100dB with my setup. I don't care to damage my hearing so I've never gone higher. If they are too close to the wall though, they will not be able to produce proper dynamics. I ran into an issue (due to room constraints) that forced them to be around 1 foot from the wall. This killed the dynamics. Now with them further from the wall they sound louder at 80dB than they did closer to the wall at 90dB, all due to the dynamics.


Every time I listen to a box speaker I'm left disappointed. I was just listening to the B&W CM's (same price as the 1.7's) and though they had a good amount of slam, they sounded gritty, gross, & just all around horrible (YMMV).


As far as a preamp, I had a Cary Cinema 11 which was fantastic. I sold it as I wanted to stick with 2.1 or 2.2 for a while and the surround technology is moving to fast for my tastes. I don't want to invest $3000+ to only have it become obsolete in a year or two.


I would love to hear that Emotiva surround processor as it gets rave reviews. However, people do love deals and feeling like they got way more for their money than they paid. This leads to them fooling themselves into thinking their $600 preamp is better than a $5000 preamp or competes with it. I'm skeptical because of this but who knows, I may be wrong.


Just my thoughts.
 

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Check out the Magnepan thread for a lot of good info. The quick answers:


1. The XPA-2/3 combo will sound great though is probably overkill for those speakers in that room. An XPA-5 would do great.


2. I have tried several centers and much prefer my CC3. It integrates much better with the Maggies. I was not a real believer in matching L/R/C, but after listening to a few systems and piddling with my own I have been turned around. Getting a seamless blend is important for movie dialog and effects. The curved Magnepan center panel helps provide a broad sweet spot for several viewers.


3. I have been a believer in active (servo-controlled) subs with Maggies for decades. I have a pair of Rythmik F12's in my system and they are fantastic. I did listen to Velodyne and Paradigm subs I felt were very good, but they cost 3x the price of the Rythmiks. The F15's are not much more $$$, but I did not have the space and felt a pair of 12" subs were more than enough for my room. I feel the same about yours, fwiwfm.


4. I love my Pioneer SC-27 (37 is the new model) but it does not EQ the sub. Fortunately, my room treatment is such that the single-band PEQ along with the level, crossover and phase controls of my F12's provided more than enough control. I would suggest looking at the Marantz AV7005 and Integra 70.2 or 80.2.


5. I will mention that speaker placement is tricky with dipoles and room treatment really helps. Properly set up, they will blow you away.


HTH, FWIWFM, my 0.000001 cents, etc. - Don
 

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I love Maggies for two channel listening. However, they generally aren't a great choice for HT. They aren't nearly dynamic enough. Near reference levels you start to hear compression and all kinds of other yucky stuff. You're much better off with a constant directivity type of speaker like the CHT SHO-10.
 

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Hmmm... I disagree with most of that, but will simply point out that in a 14' x 16' room with 9'-ish ceiling I think they'll be plenty loud enough.
 

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It doesn't matter whether you agree or not it's been measured. Maggie's start to compress approaching reference level and beyond. If you don't listen very close to reference it'll still sound pretty darn good. You just have to be aware of the dynamic range that movies have as opposed to music. If you are even listening at moderate levels, loud passages will occasionally hit reference levels. If your speaker can't handle reference levels then somethings got to give. Once again I absolutely love Maggies, they are just not the ideal choice for HT.
 

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I know you are asking about the maggies here but I found this quote interesting. Just thought I'd share since you are interestes in ht/stereo.


"One further note is that the Triton Two tends, for whatever reason, to cast an image that floats at or even a bit above the tops of the towers, which I found very realistic (true, it’s not quite the same as the floor-to-ceiling image presentation that you get with Magnepans, but it’s not too far off from that standard").


Here is the link to the full review. Going to try to go hear these next week.

http://www.avguide.com/blog/first-li...o-loudspeakers
 

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Considered a very similar setup but was fortunate enough to let my dealer demo the 1.7's at home before I purchased only two. Honestly, with the size room you have and the fact that the Maggie's need 2-3' from the walls, you'd be shrinking the listening area considerably, and positioning your couch would be awkward. You should consider smaller, more efficient speakers for the surrounds. I ended up choosing the Def Tech PM1000's and I'm extremely pleased with the result.


I have dual Velo 12" sub's and crossover at 60, plenty of punch and it really allows the the maggie's to breathe. At 40 I found some of sound staging flattened out. This piece is completely dependent on your room and personal preference, so you probably shouldn't worry about this until you have a few hours and lots of different listening material to sample.


As for power, The Emo's you're considering will do the trick. You can't go wrong with that setup and price performance is tough to beat! I'm using a B&K AVR-707 and was pleasantly surprised by how effortlessly it performs, yes the MG's love power, but nothing to be afraid of. As for the center, I do not use an MG, but understand they blend in well with the 1.7's up front, likely a safe bet.


All in all, your looking at a pretty serious setup that will provide you with years of listening enjoyment, movies and music alike! Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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@flyng_fool: Any speaker will distort if driven too hard, but how hard that is depends on the speaker, room size, and listening position. My quibble is not that they don't distort; it's with a blanket statement that they are not dynamic enough without knowing the rest of the parameters.


That said, I agree other speakers, including some I have had in my system (e.g. Infinity QLS-II and B&W 801), will play much loud/er. (Most panels, dynamic or electrostatic, have limited displacement due to the physics of the design.) I too prefer the sound of my Maggies, and in my room and system they will play louder than I can stand, music or movies.


No worries! - Don


p.s. FWIWFM, I am using MC1's for rears and surrounds in a roughly 13.5' by 17.5' room and they work well. I do not want another pair of larger Maggies in that size room -- too cramped. YMMV.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonH50 /forum/post/19742453


@flyng_fool: Any speaker will distort if driven too hard, but how hard that is depends on the speaker, room size, and listening position. My quibble is not that they don't distort; it's with a blanket statement that they are not dynamic enough without knowing the rest of the parameters.


That said, I agree other speakers, including some I have had in my system (e.g. Infinity QLS-II and B&W 801), will play much loud/er. (Most panels, dynamic or electrostatic, have limited displacement due to the physics of the design.) I too prefer the sound of my Maggies, and in my room and system they will play louder than I can stand, music or movies.


No worries! - Don


p.s. FWIWFM, I am using MC1's for rears and surrounds in a roughly 13.5' by 17.5' room and they work well. I do not want another pair of larger Maggies in that size room -- too cramped. YMMV.

Good post Don.


I use MMG's in a larger room then yours, driven by a Marantz 5003. I don't listen at reference. For me that's way to loud. I recognize that it's possible on some crazy peaks I may get some distortion/compression whatever. For enjoyment I get out of the Maggies, I'll take the few seconds a year that may happen. I have MMG/W's in the rear and no center.


Pairing them with a good sub provides all the punch I need.
 

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Thanks! I meant to also note that the Maggie's transient response, measured and heard, is on par with the very finest speakers available. Planers in general provide better impulse response than most (almost all) "regular" speakers. From that standpoint they are among the speakers with the cleanest dynamics possible.


I am NOT saying the comments above reflect this, but there seems to be entirely too many folk who equate "dynamic" with "loud". Sustained listening at high volume causes permanent ear damage. I have some, along with a bit of tinnitus, from years of listening too loud in my youth* and participation in various musical groups. Taking the volume down just a notch can actually improve the sound and increase the time you'll be able to enjoy it.


FWIWFM - Don


* My youth has extended into my 50's so far... And yeah I still play it too loud now and then.
 
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