Magneplanar 1.6QR Review

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James Tanner

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Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« on: 4 Jul 2008, 10:38 pm »
Sorry this has taken so long - my apology to those who have been asking:


Magnepan MG1.6QR Speaker Review – James Tanner, Bryston:

Hi All

Below are my comments on the Magnepan MG-1.6QR loudspeakers in one of my demo rooms. There is a preamble I gave (room acoustics, my history and bias’s) with my review on the MG3.6’s and Thiel 3.7’s earlier this year which you can refer to if you wish.

Thoughts on the Magnepan MG-1.6QR speakers:
I have 3 different soundrooms but eventually chose the smallest of my rooms for final auditions. The room is 14x11x8. The speakers are on the LONG wall and are 3 feet from the front wall – angled in at about 30 degrees – tweeters on the outside.  They are 2.5 feet from the side wall and 9 feet apart center to center. I am sitting about 9 feet back. As I stated in my earlier posting the speaker/room interface has to be considered in totality when evaluating a specific speaker in a specific room and the Magneplanar 1.6QR is a very good example of why that is. The speaker is a Dipole so the radiation pattern looks like a figure ‘8’ pointing at the listener. As a result there is NOT a lot of reflected sound energy bouncing back from the ceiling, floor and side walls. The energy is concentrated to the front and rear of the speaker. With tons of reflected, though delayed, energy from the back wall.

The technical aspects of the speaker I will pass on as they are readily available in full at http://www.magnepan.com/model_MG_16



To start with I would also like to put to rest some myths about dipole panel type speakers:

They are hard to place --- Wrong!
In fact, given the dispersion characteristics, as detailed above, the only concern you have with a panel dipole is the reflective nature of the front wall behind the speakers. Typical monopole (point source) speakers radiate energy in an omni-directional pattern at certain frequencies and a highly directional pattern at other frequencies so the reflective characteristics and the standing wave patterns of the listening room dimensions play a very large part in the final outcome of sound quality. In fact, I would say getting the room speaker interface correct is going to do more to providing you with state of the art sound than any other aspect of your sound system. Expensive speakers placed incorrectly can sound much worse than medium priced speakers placed accurately.

So the advantage of a dipole panel is that the wave launch from the speaker is such that the floor and ceiling and sidewall reflections and room nodes are acoustically discriminated against. There is no energy in the ‘plane’ of the diaphragm with a dipole panel. What that means is that there are no early reflections coming from the floor, ceiling, or sidewalls. Early reflections produce what is called ‘comb-filtering’ which generates dips and peaks in the in-room frequency response. So contrary to popular belief the dipole is actually much easier to place than a more conventional omni or point source speaker. All you have to deal with is the front wall reflective issue. Many people have to use their basements or spare rooms for their audio/video systems and typically these rooms leave a lot to be desired acoustically. Well, take a dipole and place it properly and that lousy sound room can come to life- reason --- the dimensions and surfaces of the crappy basement room are much less instrumental in affecting the overall sound quality.

You need a big room for panel dipoles----Wrong!
Obviously the size of the speaker has an effect on the room size required (MG20.1 for example) but the MG1.6 is not exactly a small speaker physically. So on first look it would seem a larger room would be a necessary requirement. I tried the MG1.6’s in my three different soundrooms and they definitely provided the best sound in my smallest room (11x14x8). So don’t be afraid to experiment with medium sized panels in smaller rooms. It is true that larger diaphragms and multi-driver loudspeakers take some distance to integrate properly but usually if your back a few meters all will be well.

SEE BELOW:
« Last Edit: 2 Aug 2008, 01:35 pm by James Tanner »

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #1 on: 4 Jul 2008, 10:39 pm »
SEE ABOVE:

MG1.6QR Listening:
Let me say straight out that this is a great speaker to audition if you want to move from ‘OK Mid-Fi’ sound to ‘excellent High-End’ sound at an affordable price. In my small room and placed on the long wall it was one of those magical moments when the speaker just works. The soundstage was huge and the tonal balance was superb.  The speakers literally disappeared in the room and other listeners I had over for a test-listen asked. ‘Where the hells the sub hidden?' I measured the speaker using my ETF system (the one we use in setting up recording studios) and I was getting 35Hz at about 2dB down. That’s pretty good for a dipole this size, but remember that most of the bass integration and capability is very placement sensitive (for both the speaker and the listener). If you want to ring out the last little bit of performance from these speakers please experiment with placement and listening position – believe me it will be worth the effort.

One point I would like to make here is that over the many years I have been a prisoner of this great hobby I have literally measured hundreds of speakers using the state-of-the-art measuring apparatus of the time. Everytime I measure a Magnepan speaker from the early days of Tympani IV’s to the tiny SMG’s  they always measure superbly. The Magneplanars are, always have been and continue to be an extremely well engineered product which is not always the case with many of the more exotic and expensive speakers out there.  Anyway – I digress….

The integration I refer to above is an important point. Think of a dipole panel (or any speaker for that manner) in a room like a pair of headphones on your head. What you’re attempting to do is to place the panel in the room so that it “COUPLES ACOUSTICALLY”. By couple acoustically I mean the speaker is interfaced into the room in such a way that it makes the room and speaker behave as one. The speakers acoustically disappear in the room and allow you to hear only the recording itself. Using the headphone analogy --- put on a pair of headphones and while listening pull the headphones away from your ears about 2 inches on both sides of your head.  Sounds terrible – right? The reason is that you have ‘decoupled’ the headphones from your head/ears and the result is not very accurate acoustically (no bass or definition, etc.) to say the least. The same thing happens with a speaker in a room. If you can find that physical location in the room where the speaker ‘couples acoustically’ you will be rewarded with a full range and tonally accurate balance throughout the entire listening space.

By the way, a neat way to check and see if you have this coupling correct is to go outside the room and listen from down the hall. If everything still sounds well balanced and coherent you’ve got it right! In fact one trick we used at audio shows years ago (please don’t laugh – a smile is OK) was to take a long cord and a pair of quality headphones and go outside the demo room and listen in the hallway with the headphones off – then on – then off etc. The closer you got to the headphones sounding like the speakers in the room the closer you were to finding the magic spot in the room where the speaker coupled acoustically.

The MG1.6QR speaker is of medium efficiency (86 dB) so you should use a stable reasonably powered amplifier to drive them. The good thing about the Maggie’s though is that although the impedance drops fairly low the speaker is a very ‘resistive’ (4 ohm) load over most of the frequency range. Speakers like electrostatics (Quads), on the other hand, may have low impedance loads but they are also very ‘reactive’ loads. They tend to behave like a capacitor and store energy which can play havoc with some amplifier output stages. So you don’t need exotic amplifiers to adequately drive the MG1.6QR’s. In my small soundroom I was using the Bryston 2B SST (100watt @ 8 ohms) with great success. In a bigger room more horsepower may be required.

Sonically I have to say this speaker, within its dynamic capabilities, is absolutely blowing me away. Everything is just so coherent as if everything is coming at you in the same time and space.  Maybe it’s the simple 2 driver Mylar membrane crossed over at 600Hz but whatever it is it’s a strong argument for simpler is better sometimes. The soundstage is spacious and the instruments are very well positioned. It does not have the bloated image size of some of the larger panels out there so the point source crowd will not be too alienated with this Maggie. The midrange – especially voices – have a ‘you are there’ affect that I have truly only heard on the best systems out there.

The only area where I feel the MG1.6QR fails a little is unless you mate it with a good amplifier you may at times feel it sounds a little ‘plastically’. It seems like you are hearing the diaphragm material (Mylar) sometimes. It sounds a little zingy. One of the listeners I had over commented when using her own Class D amp that “anyone who likes ribbons will love these”. What she meant by that is that ribbon drivers have that ability to sound incredibly detailed but sometimes have a ‘ringing’ quality to them.

The other positive quality I found with the MG1.6QR’s is the ability to delineate very soft micro sounds. Small, and almost imperceptible sounds seem to materialize in space with much more definition than I am use to hearing. Not in the sense that they are calling attention to themselves but more in the sense that the sound was being hidden by other speakers I have used. I worry sometimes that this might be a diaphragm resonance which is exaggerating that particular frequency range but I don’t think so because it varies from recording to recording.

Also don’t be afraid to try some big amplifiers on these beauties. I tried a pair of our 28B SST Mono amplifiers (1000 watts) in my big room (23x16x8) and I have to say it was a match made in heaven. At a recent audio show Magnepan had a 3 channel STEREO system set up using three 7B’s and the result was just superb.  So if you get a chance to hear a 3-channel STEREO setup as done by Magnepan at some of their demos run do not walk to hear this demo. The ability to hold the center image in place is scary.  You can almost sit anywhere in the room and the damn vocalist is locked in the center ----really good!

Many people chose large traditional multi-driver dynamic speakers because the sound very dynamic, move a lot of air and provide a visceral impact to the listener at the expense of inner details and subtle rendering of micro dynamics. Others chose small point source nearfields because they provide a pinpoint image and expansive soundstage at the expense of limited output and no real low frequency capability. Others opt for electrostatic thin membrane planar type loudspeakers because they provide that last bit of detail and resolution in the sound but are restricted to a limited loudness and dynamic level. I think the Magnepan type of design (a planar dynamic) is a terrific compromise between these other types of loudspeakers. Here you have a planar dipole that gives you much of the speed and resolution of the best electrostatics but provides excellent dynamics as well.

One last point to be aware of is that the Mylar membrane used in all the Magneplanar’s are 'stretched' under incredible tension when the speaker is manufactured.  It takes about 6 months for this stretch to 'relax' and as it does the lower end of each driver’s frequency response improves. With that relaxation comes an improvement in transient attack and integration.  So the moral of this story is to not be too quick to judge the speaker in the first few months of use as things will change for the better as it matures.

So, all in all, I find the MG1.6QR speakers superb in a number of areas:

•Their ability to disappear and provide a huge soundstage with well- defined focused images floating in space is excellent.
•Their ability to respond to transient information is a major benefit in providing inner details and a ‘you are there’ presentation.
•Their ability to sound incredibly coherent and integrated, as if everything is happening in the same time and space.
•The ability to use them in smaller rooms.

So I am a bit surprised at how well these MG1.6’s performed. I mean these speakers were designed a number of years ago and in the past I really had not considered them – being into the bigger MG3.6 and MG20’s etc.

They truly are one of the best values in High-End audio


james

« Last Edit: 5 Jul 2008, 12:10 pm by James Tanner »

Phil A

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #2 on: 4 Jul 2008, 11:28 pm »
James, they certainly are a great speaker for the money as the most expensive part of a speaker to make is the cabinet and they don't have one.  The factory direct MMGs are a steal (and they also have I believe a trade-up program within a yr.).  If I had to do everything all over again it is quite possible I'd end up with a pair of (20.1) Maggies as mains vs. what I have now.  A big misconception is that many think they need to be out in the middle of the room.  They don't really need to be out further, they are naturally further out from the wall as they aren't very thick and there is more room behind them than with the avg. speaker.

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #3 on: 5 Jul 2008, 11:57 am »
Hi Phil,

Yes since I was doing the review I did a little research and the MG1.6 has a number of companies 'specializing' in modifying the basic units into a more sophisticated version. Better support frames, custom stands, modified crossovers etc. Some claim with these modes (not according to Magnepan though) that the MG1.6 will rival just about anything out there. 

I tried running them full range and augmenting them with 2 of the PMC-TLE's as well as 2 of the Thiel subs and they worked quite well.

As for the MG20.1, I have a pair now and you have to be real careful. They are capable of a lot of midbass output and in my room end up sounding a little bloated. I think a room 18x25 or larger would be a good match.

james
« Last Edit: 5 Jul 2008, 02:24 pm by James Tanner »

BMU (Bryston Maggie User)

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #4 on: 5 Jul 2008, 12:14 pm »
Thanks for the great review!
35Hz at -2dB!  Wow!

I am pleased that someone with your experience finds that the 1.6's perform and compare favourably to many other speakers.



I remember my first audition of my 1.6's - having read the reviews I still wasn't ready for the quality of the sonic performance for a very reasonable price - a great value indeed!


Question:  Are you using the stock stands that come with the speakers?  Users of aftermarket stands (eg. Mye stands from Vancouver) seem to all report improved bass performance and midrange clarity etc.

Thanks

Alex



Main System
MG 1.6's (stock stands, actively crossed at 80Hz)
Velodyne DD12 Sub
4 x Bryston 9B-ST channels (passive bi-amp of panels above 80Hz)
Bryston SP 1.7
Squeezebox 3

Office System
Paradigm Studio Ref's 20's v.2
Bryston B60
Computer Source






Phil A

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #5 on: 5 Jul 2008, 12:29 pm »
I helped a friend get a pair of used MMGs locally with upgraded stands.  The std. factory legs were flimsy.  My room is about 16x20 with a 19 ft. ceiling and opens into other spaces.  If I were to do everything all over again, I'd just have a 2-channel system upstairs, a multi-channel system in the bedroom (which is on the other side of the wall to the main system and is interconnected to a bit) and although I have a multi-channel system in the basement, I would have finished my basement in a bit different configuration.  It's a really nice room now with an 88 inch screen but if I were doing it for home theater alone it would be done differently with more emphasis on theater.  I kind of drifted back to 2-channe after upgrading things in the main system about 8 yrs. back and I've continued to upgrade.  Not that the system I have is horrible.  It works quite well in the room and looks good.

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #6 on: 5 Jul 2008, 12:56 pm »
Thanks for the great review!
35Hz at -2dB!  Wow!

I am pleased that someone with your experience finds that the 1.6's perform and compare favourably to many other speakers.



I remember my first audition of my 1.6's - having read the reviews I still wasn't ready for the quality of the sonic performance for a very reasonable price - a great value indeed!


Question:  Are you using the stock stands that come with the speakers?  Users of aftermarket stands (eg. Mye stands from Vancouver) seem to all report improved bass performance and midrange clarity etc.

Thanks

Alex



Main System
MG 1.6's (stock stands, actively crossed at 80Hz)
Velodyne DD12 Sub
4 x Bryston 9B-ST channels (passive bi-amp of panels above 80Hz)
Bryston SP 1.7
Squeezebox 3

Office System
Paradigm Studio Ref's 20's v.2
Bryston B60
Computer Source








Hi Alex,

I am using the Sound Anchor stands.

Magnepan feels that many of these add on stands and modifications do little to help the audio performance of the speakers. They may change the sound they agree but it is an unpredictable change. They have engineered the speaker in its entirety and the resonances of the panel, stands and the frame are all taken into account when designing the speaker.  So in other words if you alter any one of these conditions you do in fact change the sound but the outcome is arbitrary.  I think you have to make the decision based on your room and your system.

With Sound Anchor stands you can tilt the speakers forward and back.  Sound Anchor claims the sweet spot for the Maggies is dead center on the panel tilted slightly towards you. Sound Anchor also feels that the custom stand prevents the panel from twisting left to right as you look at it.

I would like to add that one of my Audio Rules is THE DEMO IS EVERYTHING.  By that I mean anyone can talk a good story and give you all the reasons for and against a particular method to do or not do things but when you sit down and listen does the system deliver?  If yes you now have credibility with me - I don't care if your using cardboard stands - the demo says it all.

james

niels

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #7 on: 6 Jul 2008, 12:11 am »
Havent heard them, but Stereophile also, in 1999, named the 1,6QR one of the greatest hifi bargains out there.
http://stereophile.com/floorloudspeakers/595/
Some Magneplanar reading :http://db.audioasylum.com/cgi/search.pl?forum=mug&searchtext=magneplanar
http://www.integracoustics.com/MUG/MUG/tweaks/s.hum/
http://www.integracoustics.com/MUG/MUG/tweaks/anonymous/panstands/

TONEPUB

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #8 on: 6 Jul 2008, 12:46 am »
The 1.6 has always been a great speaker, and the current model
is also very good.

However, as someone who has owned them on and off for a long
time, they always do better with more power than less.  I think the
reason that the smaller Magnepans have received a bad rap on occasion
is that the person in question was using somewhat inferior equipment
with them.

As James mentioned, this is definitely a speaker that can give you
a big helping of true high end sound.  But don't cheap out on the
amplifier and blame it on the speaker...

BMU (Bryston Maggie User)

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #9 on: 6 Jul 2008, 04:27 am »

Hi Alex,

I am using the Sound Anchor stands.

Magnepan feels that many of these add on stands and modifications do little to help the audio performance of the speakers. They may change the sound they agree but it is an unpredictable change. They have engineered the speaker in its entirety and the resonances of the panel, stands and the frame are all taken into account when designing the speaker.  So in other words if you alter any one of these conditions you do in fact change the sound but the outcome is arbitrary.  I think you have to make the decision based on your room and your system.

With Sound Anchor stands you can tilt the speakers forward and back.  Sound Anchor claims the sweet spot for the Maggies is dead center on the panel tilted slightly towards you. Sound Anchor also feels that the custom stand prevents the panel from twisting left to right as you look at it.

I would like to add that one of my Audio Rules is THE DEMO IS EVERYTHING.  By that I mean anyone can talk a good story and give you all the reasons for and against a particular method to do or not do things but when you sit down and listen does the system deliver?  If yes you now have credibility with me - I don't care if your using cardboard stands - the demo says it all.

james


It's good to hear that Magnepan feels that their speakers are engineered in its entirety but perhaps the stands, xover components etc. were selected to accommodate a price-point and hence help provide the value their line is famous for.

Don't get me wrong...  I'm a little skeptical of stands that cost new => 25% of my mg1.6QR  purchase price.  I may consider them off the used market but would respect your impressions more than those I may encounter surfing the 'net.

Yes, the DEMO should be key but demo conditions in stores etc. are seldom ideal let alone representative of one's own home environment.  Most of us have to go on a little faith from reviewers etc.  This has already been (well) discussed here wrt to "Bryston dealers" stocking only 1 or 2 items.

I do think your loudspeaker reviews are very informative and enjoyable to read (even the non-Maggie ones =)  ) and appropriately emphasize the importance of positioning and the room interface over other factors.



klao

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #10 on: 6 Jul 2008, 05:42 pm »
The room is 14x11x8. The speakers are on the LONG wall and are 3 feet from the front wall – angled in at about 30 degrees – tweeters on the outside.  They are 2.5 feet from the side wall and 9 feet apart center to center. I am sitting about 9 feet back.

With this set-up, is there any space between your listening chair and the back of the room? 

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #11 on: 6 Jul 2008, 06:02 pm »
The room is 14x11x8. The speakers are on the LONG wall and are 3 feet from the front wall – angled in at about 30 degrees – tweeters on the outside.  They are 2.5 feet from the side wall and 9 feet apart center to center. I am sitting about 9 feet back.

With this set-up, is there any space between your listening chair and the back of the room? 


Hi Klao,

Yes about 1 foot and I have an RPG Diffuser behind my head.

By the way John Dunlavy - a brilliant speaker designer was the fellow who tuned me on to sittng near a surface for a predictable response in most small rooms.

james



splittailz

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #12 on: 6 Jul 2008, 07:38 pm »
great review on the maggie 1.6's James. You pretty much said it all. in absolute sound this year, 3 of 5 reviewers picked the 1.6 as their choice under 2 grand. they have to be the best value in the hi-fi world, just like the 28's are with them. BTW, the crossover I use on mine is an actual Magnepan design, just not for the 1.6's, and with very upgraded parts. It appears this crossover gives about a 4-5 db increase in sensitivity. with the room correction yesterday, the center gain needed to come up 6db to match the mains, all with the same amp. I will see in a couple months as one of my CC3's is now being modded to match the mains. Install it when it gets back and remeasure with the room correction.

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #13 on: 6 Jul 2008, 07:55 pm »
great review on the maggie 1.6's James. You pretty much said it all. in absolute sound this year, 3 of 5 reviewers picked the 1.6 as their choice under 2 grand. they have to be the best value in the hi-fi world, just like the 28's are with them. BTW, the crossover I use on mine is an actual Magnepan design, just not for the 1.6's, and with very upgraded parts. It appears this crossover gives about a 4-5 db increase in sensitivity. with the room correction yesterday, the center gain needed to come up 6db to match the mains, all with the same amp. I will see in a couple months as one of my CC3's is now being modded to match the mains. Install it when it gets back and remeasure with the room correction.

Hi,

Did Magnepan do the crossover mode for you?  I assume not - how does the crossover differ from the standard unit other than parts? I am thinking of bypassing the crossover and trying our Active 10B crossover on them.

james

splittailz

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #14 on: 6 Jul 2008, 10:23 pm »
James, the crossover design is from the old smga/b model. series crossover. this thing electrically appears to be a dead short, but works. I can send you the design, but the socks need to come off and mylar panels need to be turned around. It would be a shame to loose that luscious 28B sound thru an electronic xover, unless you are going to bi-amp with 4 28's. then by all means go for it. the smga xover is suppose to be 90-95% efficient, with the good parts. not much difference between passive & active at that point. the xover makes the mylar panel and quasi tweeter operate as a 1 point source, not a seperate woofer and tweeter. you saw how flat they got with correction on the graphs. look at the before graphs too, not bad at all before correction.

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #15 on: 7 Jul 2008, 10:48 am »
James, the crossover design is from the old smga/b model. series crossover. this thing electrically appears to be a dead short, but works. I can send you the design, but the socks need to come off and mylar panels need to be turned around. It would be a shame to loose that luscious 28B sound thru an electronic xover, unless you are going to bi-amp with 4 28's. then by all means go for it. the smga xover is suppose to be 90-95% efficient, with the good parts. not much difference between passive & active at that point. the xover makes the mylar panel and quasi tweeter operate as a 1 point source, not a seperate woofer and tweeter. you saw how flat they got with correction on the graphs. look at the before graphs too, not bad at all before correction.

Hi splittailz,

The turning around of the panel diaphragm is an interesting one. I assume it is done because of other changes in the frame and crossover? I assume you are listening through the magnetic structure then.

In speaking with Jim Winey the designer of Magnepan he told me that there is a measurable and audible difference when listening from the diaphragm side as opposed to the magnetic side. The diaphragm side is a little smoother and extended on the very top end.  This is especially true when the conductor is foil (quasi ribbon) as opposed to round wire.

james
« Last Edit: 7 Jul 2008, 05:16 pm by James Tanner »

splittailz

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #16 on: 7 Jul 2008, 11:34 am »
Jim Winey admits that the best speaker they ever made is the 2.6. These are what I listened to for 15 years before, very cautiously I might add, agreed to the modded 1.6's. The 2.6 has the panel turned the same way as my 1.6's are now, from the factory. I think the mod is a combination of 3 things, panel turn, best crossover and parts, and the hardwood frames, not mfd. Magico's Alon Wolf speaks of the hardwood benefits as opposed to MFD. and all the big boy reviewers seem to have jumped on his train in the last couple years. I will tell you, at this point in my system, it would take another pair of 28's and a 10b for me to even consider a bi-amp. and I seriously doubt it would get much better, if any. the bi-amp advantage everyone speaks of is the 3db of efficiency by removing the crossover. You just saw 5 db on my charts against a stock maggie. Now to really get you going, this winter I am contemplating taking my old 2.6's and a new pair of 1.6's and making a small version of the 20.1. hmmmmmm 1.6 to 10,000 hz and then the ribbon the rest of the way. Bi-amped. 28b on the bottom, maybe power pak 300's on the top. we shall see

James Tanner

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Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #17 on: 7 Jul 2008, 12:10 pm »
Jim Winey admits that the best speaker they ever made is the 2.6. These are what I listened to for 15 years before, very cautiously I might add, agreed to the modded 1.6's. The 2.6 has the panel turned the same way as my 1.6's are now, from the factory. I think the mod is a combination of 3 things, panel turn, best crossover and parts, and the hardwood frames, not mfd. Magico's Alon Wolf speaks of the hardwood benefits as opposed to MFD. and all the big boy reviewers seem to have jumped on his train in the last couple years. I will tell you, at this point in my system, it would take another pair of 28's and a 10b for me to even consider a bi-amp. and I seriously doubt it would get much better, if any. the bi-amp advantage everyone speaks of is the 3db of efficiency by removing the crossover. You just saw 5 db on my charts against a stock maggie. Now to really get you going, this winter I am contemplating taking my old 2.6's and a new pair of 1.6's and making a small version of the 20.1. hmmmmmm 1.6 to 10,000 hz and then the ribbon the rest of the way. Bi-amped. 28b on the bottom, maybe power pak 300's on the top. we shall see


I love this hobby!
The other advantage of active biamping besides efficiency is the 'control' on the drivers. I did a waterfall plot of the MG3.6's with and without the 10B electronic crossover and you can definitely see there is less ringing of the drivers when driving them directly as opposed to through the passive network.

james

splittailz

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #18 on: 7 Jul 2008, 12:41 pm »
I fully agree with you, but the problem comparing stock crossovers to active, 10b, is that although the stock values are engineered by the manufacturer, the quality of the parts are chosen with selling price points in mind. example, the parts in my crossovers, 1.6's, are about 250-300 dollars for the 8 pieces, 2 inductors, 4 caps, 2 resistors. To construct a series passive xover for 3.6's or 20's, would probably require a box the size of a 48 quart igloo cooler and probably 1000-1500 dollars of parts per speaker. series xover the bass to mid quasi, let the quasi operate to 10000 hz, 10b there for the upper control, at that point you could probably use a 28B bottom amp, with a 2B on the ribbon or  maybe a power pak 120 or 300 mounted right on the speaker. My own mini 20.1. ahhhhhhhhh
I think I could be "dennis the menace" to "mr wilson" with this one.
and who says this hobby isnt great.

splittailz

Re: Magneplanar 1.6QR Review
« Reply #19 on: 7 Jul 2008, 01:33 pm »
BTW, my rear surrounds with the 14B really woke up with the room correction.