evolution acoustics mm2 - review after 600 hours

Category: Speakers

I have overhauled my system considerably in the last 18 months. I sold my lamm 2.2 and wilson wp7 and now have the dartzeel amplifier and evolution acoustic mm2 speaker.

There are quite a few glowing reviews of the evolution acoustic mm3 speakers on the 'gon but very little has been said about its little brother the mm2. They are the exact same speaker but for the mm3 has an extra powered woofer that sits on top. The difference in price is $28,000 for the mm2 versus $38,000 for the mm3. The nice thing about the mm2 is that you can just order an extra woofer and install it on top of the existing mm2 and it will then be a mm3. So for a lot of people who have a smaller room or a smaller budget, the mm2 represents a great option.

I was reluctant to sell my wilson wp7 because I had heard other speakers in the 150k - 50k price range and had found little that was significantly better. I liked the Vandersteen 5A better in some respects but I liked the wilson wp7 better in other ways. I considered upgrading to the wilson maxx2 and heard them with both the vtl s-400 tube amp and the krell monoblocks in different listening rooms but found the maxx2 to be only slighly better than the wp7 and quite a lot more expensive. I could have bought the maxx2 new for $30,000 and felt it was still too expensive relative to my wp7 that I bought used for for $16,000. I had also heard the usher berellium speakers and the magico minis and felt that neither was much if at all better than the wilson wp7. The wp8 also seemed to be at best a slight improvement over the wp7.

I had trusted jonathan tinn over at chambers audio regarding the purchase of the dartzeel amplifier and he swore by the dartzeel amp with the new evolution speakers. The dartzeel were as he advertised the most real sounding amplifier I had ever heard. If you want the best of what tube and sold state sound like, the dartzeel sounds like the best of both worlds.

So I took a leap of faith and bought the evolution mm2 speakers not the mm3 because my budget could not take the bigger hit and besides jonathan assured me I could always upgrade to the mm3 with ease at a later date.

It was immediately obvious to me upon listening for the first hour on these speakers that the soundstage of these speakers blew the wilson speakers out of the water. The evolution mm2 has the advantage of a powered woofer and the ability to control the crossover, the treeter, the fullness of the bass, and the bass extension. While the wp7 and the maxx2 have impressive bass, it really feels like boys to men when compared to the bass of the mm2. It was also immediately apparent that the treble is much accurate on the mm2.

I now have a little over 600 hours on the mm2 speakers and the sound is now more seamless, the mid-range has blossomed, and the feeling of the recordings is so very "live"

I am not a wilson basher by any stretch of the imagination but I would analogize that the difference between the wp7/wp8 and the mm2 is similar to the difference between regular television and high definition.

I would also like to point out the mm2 were set up personally for my living room by evolution acoustics and jonathan tinn (thanks kevin especially). Speaker placement and room acoustic calculation is terribly important even in a dedicated listening room like mine which was designed and treated by a sound engineer.

I am aware that this speaker won't even be fully broken in until about 1000 hours and am looking forward to even greater listening enjoyment. I am planning to buy the evolution acoustic speaker cables to further enhance the experience. I highly recommend these speakers as well as the dartzeel amplifier to anyone who wants an incredible live soundstage for jazz and rock recordings.
Karmapolice - Curious to know what speaker cables you are using. I'm running the MM2's and dartzeel amp/pre-amp. I was without the EA speaker cables for 3 months because I gave my pair to a customer. I finally got another pair of EA speaker cables for myself, broke them in for 2 weeks playing 24/7 on another system (336 hours) and inserted into the my main system. It was like a rebirth of the system. I had forgotten how AMAZING these cables really are. All this and the cables are not even broken in yet. I was using the Jena Valkyrie speaker cables which were the finest cables I heard but the EA's are far superior in every way.
Anyway, wishing you countless hours of joyous listening.
Disclosure - EA / dartzeel dealer.
Great review!
I have now altered my system to gain better advantage of the dartzeel amplifier. I purchased the dartzeel preamplifier to connect to the dartzeel amplifier via the bnc cables.

The transparancy and mid-range detail of this combination is simply stunning. vocals sound so eerily real that you could be listening to a remote feed from a studio somewhere down the hall.

I had to sell the emmlabs dac and transport stack to pay for the pricey preamp (thanks chamber audio and jtinn for the very fair trade-in) and purchased the moderately priced used marantz reference sa7s1. It is difficult to compare directly the emmlabs and the marantz since i did run them through different preamps but the combination of dartzeel preamp and amp with evolution speakers and marantz cd player is much better than the same system with the emm labs. I think this is more about the greatness of the dartzeel and not about the emmlabs dac/transport. while the emmlabs preamp is very good, the synergy between the dartzeels is amazing.

the evolution speaker are made with great love and attention and I believe were designed to be optimally used with the dartzeel amplifier. while there is a great improvement with the addition of the remarkable dart preamp, the evolution mm2 is a epic achievment in of itself. it really puts the wilson models to shame. it is expensive but great value relative to other speakers.
anyone else enjoying these speakers in 2011 ? More impressions ?

I can't stop thinking about them. Current Wilson W/P 8 owner...
They are by far the best speakers I have heard. I have them for about a year and still have excitement every time I listen to them. The review by Karmapolice is spot on. I have a large room{25x25} and the bass was always missing with every other speaker. Not so with the MM2. Best looking finish also.
Agree with the above. I have had my MMtwos for about 6 weeks now and they are fantastic sounding speakers.
These speaker are interesting but can't believe a mfg requires you to register on their website just to view their products....
Oops my mistake, am able to see their speakers now, not sure why it was trying to get me to register. Very nice looking speakers, would love to give them a listen!
hi all - any idea how i can listen to the mm2 or mm3 in singapore or hk or does one need to make the trip to shanghai ? i am singapore based... Any idea if anyone in singapore owns these speakers and i could listen to it at his/her place ? thanks
Still loving my MM2's after a year. Can't see buying anything else but the extra woofers someday to convert to MM3's. I was a Wilson owner for years and find these more coherent top to bottom. Kevin Malgrem is a superb designer.
Likewise. I am so happy with the MMtwos. Not even sure I will get the additional woofers to move to MMthrees. Running them with Audiopax 100w SET mono blocks and they are sounding great.
I have been using Discover power cords on the mm2s.
Any optimum cords for these speakers other than the ea cords