Well, I have heard the S1 Mk2 for over an hour at the Magico showroom, let me know if you'd like my input.
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Not an owner but I have done the same as @erik_squires. I spent some time with them at a dealer.
My experience was the speakers disappeared. They were standing next to Scansonics and Kaisers and I had to ask which speaker was playing. No localization at all. Soundstage had wonderful height and width. Detail is incredible and it is one of the Beryllium tweeter implementations I really like. They were very, very good. I did not ultimately buy them because they don't fit my taste perfectly, but they were very, very good
I wouldn’t call them lean so much as chesty, and cool, and kind of an odd speaker to fit to a room.
The treble is very smooth, and very wide. You get an amazingly wide sweet spot but only if you have the right room and can place them far away from side and rear walls.
What I mean by chesty is the lower ranges of the female voice, to piano seem accentuated in all the Magico’s I’ve listened to. This is a point many other listeners dispute and disagree with me on. Listen to Diana Krall and see how she does for you.
The treble is absolutely glass smooth, one of the best I’ve heard, but it is also a little elevated and will sound better at low volumes, so if you feel you have hearing loss, this may do very well for you.
They are also terribly insensitive and need a big sturdy amplifier to sound their best. And here’s the rub, IMHO. These are small, limited output speakers that are very demanding on amp and room. I mean, for a small speaker, you’d like it to be more forgiving, and let you take less space, but really the opposite is true. They’ll take as much floor space as a larger speaker would due to their ultra wide dispersion. Also, why get a small speaker you want to listen to at low volumes that's going to demand really big beefy amps? This kind of balance really leaves me scratching my head overall.
If you have the room for them, a speaker from the Magico A line is probably going to be much more speaker for the money. More dynamic range, more bass, and similar mid-treble voicing.
It's not about the cabinet resonating. You can see the answer in the measurements of the S1, it peaks around 100 Hz. But again, this is something you should hear for yourself. If you love how Diana Krall and piano sounds, you are free to come back and say so, I won't mind because it is after all your money.
Can't say I have heard anything "chesty" in them. That being said, lean is not a word I would use but they were being driven by 450w amps. A buddy of mine has s5 mkiis and he is convinced that Magicos can't have too much headroom and the more power you give them, the more alive and open they become. If you can give them 1000w, go for it.
Lean might also come from the fact that the soundstage is tall and wide, but to me lacked depth. That could be an unfair comparison because in that same demo I was comparing to Scansonic MB6s and Kaiser Chiaras which have incredibly wide and deep soundstages. I am somewhat soundstage obsessed in terms of wanting an immersive experience. With the S1 MKiis it seemed like music was being presented too me rather than enveloping me which was a stark contract to the Scansonics and Kaisers.
I will say that in terms of placement, I have not played with them in a room myself and when I did hear them, they were a good 7-10 ft off the back wall and 4-5 feet from each sidewall. Placement could be an issue, I can't answer that though.
Talk about price disparity. The S1 mk1 used can be had around $5000 whereas the Mk 2 lists for 18k. I haven’t seen any Mk 2’s on the used market. There were several upgrades for the. Mk 2’s but surely the Mk 1 will share a similar sound. I would think that the newer tweeter on the mk2 would be a meaningful improvement but i don’t know this. FWIW
1) I don’t think you need to have perfect hearing to enjoy music and to be able to discriminate between different stereo systems. Your brain can fill in missing cues - training/attention is more important.
2) I have the Magico S1 mk1 and don’t feel the need to go to mk2s. Mk1s can be had for around $4-5k. I put the difference in $$$ into a pair of subs and better amps. I think that made more dramatic a difference than going to mk2s.
3) What I’ve noticed is that off axis imaging is excellent. I like lounging around and not plastered to a seat. Even when lounging around away from the sweet spot the imaging is really good.
4) I think I is more important that the speakers fit your room and lifestyle. The sound can be voiced to your liking via amps etc.
5) The S1 is particularly tube friendly because it dips below 4 ohms only above 6k Hz where there is less energy. I am satisfied with a 50W Jadis integrated.