From Marten Coltrane to Avalon Isis, Hansen King??

Hello all,

I am currently using a Marten Coltrane speaker in my fairly large living room and I do like the sound a lot. It is well known though that the bottom end isn't the Coltrane's strongest point especially in a big room.

I am curious if for instance the Avalon Isis and/or Hansen Emperor/King would be an improvement over my current speakers with respect to bass and overall sound?

Appreciate feedback from users that heard the Marten, Avalon and Hansen speakers.

Thanks a lot
I like all the speakers you mention. If I had to choose for my own system I would go with Avalon ISIS of the ones you list.

The ISIS uses some of the technology in midrange and/or tweeter as Marten Coltrane, Kharma Exquisite, Evolution Acoustics and Lumen White.

I like the high frequencies of the Kharma and ISIS the best of the group. The bass of the ISIS Is extraordinary, perhaps the best of the group. Dynamics of the Hansen is excellent but I think the top end is a bit rougher than Marten and certainly more so than Kharma or ISIS.

Hope I'm not confusing you, all these speakers have their own sound and it's difficult to sort out strengths and weaknesses without considering more than just bass performance.

Thanks for your extensive reply. Off course I am very interested in the the sound other then only bass performance. I did read some other comments as well with the Marten being more smooth at the highs compared to the Hansen speakers.

I do like the clarity of the Marten I've got and assume the the ceramic drivers of the Marten, Kharma and Avalon sound roughly the same. The large improvement in bass in the Isis does is very welcome.

Do you believe the Hansen and Isis will have a larger soundstage then the Marten? I do like the sound of my Marten at low volumes very very much but don't find the soundstage to be very large at higher volumes (might be the size of my room??).
Do you believe the Hansen and Isis will have a larger soundstage then the Marten?

Difficult to say, soundstage is a product of room, speaker placement and even the electronics. I'm one of those that's much more sensitive to tonal balance than imaging or sound stage, but if I had to rate these I would put ISIS on top for sound stage, pretty much matched by Hansen and then followed by Kharma and then Marten.

This last statement is sloppy logic :^), based on listening in various rooms at different times. Perhaps another member will have direct A+B with these, although I think that's a pretty tall order considering price and exclusivity of these lines.
Maxx1973, What amplifier are you using with the Marten? That seems to be an inefficient speaker (300w recommended, 89db, 2.7ohm min). Could that be contributing to the lack of bass?
The Avalon would be a improvement over what you have. The crossovers in the Avalons is what makes them so great. I went from Kharma Midi to Avalon Diamonds and it wasn't even close. The bass is also much cleaner with better definition. Avalon really make the best speakers in the world. Just look at how many pairs were used at CES this year.

Thanks for your info. Of of curiosity, why are you currently selling your Avalon Diamonds again? Which speaker are you going to replace it with?

I am using Vitus as amplification. I think it should provide enough power, but yes I agree, it's not an easy speaker to drive.
I am not sure about the power ratings for Vitus. However, I would not think twice about putting 600-900+ watts at 4 ohms onto the Marten.

For the Isis in a large room, with few exceptions, I would be looking at 400+ watts into 4 ohms as a minimum.

Other tricks to increase bass would be in the cables. The power cords on the source have the largest effect, followed by speaker cables and interconnects, followed by power cords on the amplifiers. Elrod power cords have a striking effect on the bass.

You have great speakers. All great systems take some time to build and refine.
Maxx, Rtn1 brings up a good point. Instead of spending a fortune on new speakers you may want to try something as simple as the new Elrod Statement or Signature power cords on your amp to increase bass. These cables are phenomenal.
Rtn1, Boston,

Thanks for your thoughts. I agree, I might experiment a bit more with cables since I do like the sound of the Coltrane a lot. My amplifier actually has "only" 100W in 8/4 Ohm, but it is pure class A. And I know that my speaker/amp combination has been used on shows in the past. Power ratings don't say it all. I've had the Mark Levinson 33H in the past and although it's power rating isn't that high, it can drive pretty much any speaker. Same goes for my current amp I think. But....... I might be wrong :) :)

At the same time, 2 of the interconnects I use are the Nordost Valkyrja and Valhalla, not the cables that are known to have the best bass and probably sound a bit lean on speakers with ceramic drivers. any suggestions for alternative interconnects?

What about including a Wilson Benesch Torus sub. Heard good things about that sub in combination with the Magico Mini's
Although I would not figure Nordost to necessarily have good synergy with ceramic and diamond drivers, I do not think that would necessarily limit your bass.

I would focus on the amplification. I personally feel that people vastly underpower their speakers. I'm sure the Vitus has a great 100 watts, but those woofers need real power to have them move air. If you can biamp, try to add-in something with muscle. I'm sure the Coltrane's are a special speaker, but looking at the specs, they are going to need some real experimentation to reach their full potential.
Coltrane 2 might be your new ideal speaker!?
Maxx1973, ""I've got and assume the the ceramic drivers of the Marten, Kharma and Avalon sound roughly the same""",

No, I just audit my friend's Coltrane today, is completely different from my Tidal Contriva Diacera SE, they both use same technology ceramic unit and diamond tweeter.
I think Maxx1973 found that out quite a while back ago. :)
Bvdiman, I just realized that, too, he is in Tidal camp now, right?