Awhile back had a chance to listen to the Q5's at Overture Audio as they were showcasing them. Can't speak to the comment as to the best audio system in the world, there is so very much gear I have not heard, but the Magico's speakers are fanstatic!
This was this biggest disappointment at CES; I had to leave the room on two occasions over,the three days at the show; the listener fatigue killed me. The most over rated speaker line I have ever listened to.
I`ve come to the conclusion that Magico speakers are very polarizing. I`ve heard various models on 3 different occasions(CES and RMAF) and I feel the same as you. I find them very amusical and unnatural yet others simply love their presentation. So it is a perfect example of "to each their own" which is as it should be.
Great speakers not over rated just OVER PRICED!!
As Magico Q7 ad says "Deeper Understanding"...
I will say though, in your defense, that Magico is the "anti-audiophile" loudspeaker. I am not surprise that a guy with a Wilson set up, and 30 records will not like them.
Now before you all jump on me here, remember how it all started. As a Magico fan and owner, I take lines like "The most over rated speaker line I have ever listened to" personally. So there you have it; if that is your opinion on my taste, you just heard mine on yours. Hope you don't mind (-;
More on the subject, and JF best work yet:
Read the " Amati Futura vs. Magico Q3" section
The most recent Absolute Sound had the same opinion of the Magicos on the first 2 days. With almost every reviewer too. Seems they were using some secret amplifier. On the third day they changed amps, and the sound improved considerably, befitting a speaker of its price and magnitude.
How does magico compare to wilson audio, Yg acoustics and B&W?
Usermanual, Wilsons have a similar response by audiophiles as mine about Magicos. I was harsh; overpriced is a better comment. I listen to this line any chance I can whether in stores, show, etc and they have yet to impress me. The Magico Model One in particular is very overpriced for the sound it produces! The Evolution One monitor with stands for $2500 is more impressive and musical to my ears. In fact, I dumped my Wilson MAXX 2's for the Evolution MM2 speaker; it betters the Wilson in every aspect except a hyped up bass! The tweeter is superior by being more musical, less etched and better integrated to the sound stage. In fact I have never listened to a cone speaker that is as seamless from top to bottom. I love Dave Wilson and his attention to build quality, but tip my hat to Kevin Malgrem and Jonathan Tinn for designing and building a speaker of equal build quality but much better musicality, sound stage and inner detail compared to any Wilson I have heard. I also think the EA speaker line is more attractive and more flexible in fine tuning to any room. To all reading this, please do yourselves a favor and listen to the Evolution line. If you are in AZ, email me and maybe we can work out a listen.
As for me...I couldn't live with Magico, Wilson, YG, or B&W.
Gee, I wish this was the experience I heard with the Magico Speaker! This describes something we all woudl want, but I unfotunately haven't heard when I have listened to this speaker: From the Ultra Audio Review
The Q3 does not in any way sound etched or bright -- in fact, its the antithesis of that. Transparency of the sort the Q3 is capable of draws one into the performance. By the same token, the Futura never sounded dull or congested, and never outwardly obscured information, even if it was not as ultimately resolving or as extended in the highs as the Q3. The Futura was eminently involving, particularly in that neutral midband. Bass extension was subjectively about the same from both models, with a rounder quality from the Futura, and greater articulation and speed from the Q3. The Q3 had more extension in the very uppermost registers, but the Futura never sounded terribly rolled off with any music I listened to. Both pairs of speakers could cast a magnificently large and precise soundstage, and both played cleanly, with no sense of strain at the higher volume levels I occasionally prefer.
Ultimately, the Magico Q3 is the higher-fidelity device in the truest sense of that term, but you have to be ready to accept the recorded reality its being more faithful to, and all that comes with it. The Sonus faber Amati Futura, on the other hand, will give you a healthy dose of high fidelity, but blends with it the voicing that Sonus would say comes from, among other things, the types of materials they have so carefully used in this speaker. I think each model successfully follows the path its designers have laid out. Which you choose to make your own will require careful examination of your musical and aesthetic priorities.
I heard the Q7s at Goodwin's gigantic room. They are (like all Magicos) a completely insane design and I'm glad they're out there, just like I'm glad somebody makes Bugattis. For my final opinion (on the Q7s) please have 6 people squeeze 'em into my listening room (after reinforcing the floor), hook up those large Boulder amps, and leave me alone for a couple of weeks. I mean nobody lives in Goodwin's large room...do they? I'll be waiting RIGHT HERE for that and meanwhile be perfectly happy with my carefully selected, wonderful sounding somewhat less extreme system.
Goodwins does not have the Q7.
MAGICO is a great sounding speaker eveybody does not like somthing.If you dont like MAGICO its ok just keep on trukin!!
I read Stringreen's comment and had a hunch.
It proved true when I saw his system.... Vandersteen speakers.
And I agree!
None of these lines, Magico/Wilson/YG/etc. can claim to be "anti-audiophile" speakers compared to the Vandersteens. All things being relative.
Were those the Q5s? Maybe they were...I'll check...if they were the Q5s, please apply everything I said to the Q5s, and not the Q7s if in fact that's what they were. If they were the Q5s, they were huger than I remembered, and if the Q7s are huger than that than I'm glad I didn't hear them as I doubt I could stand that much hugeness.
Vanderstein's are very musical and Richard is one of the absolute nicest guys I have ever met in the business; so humble and kind; like Jeff Rowland.
Vanderstein's are very musical and Richard is one of the absolute nicest guys I have ever met in the business; so humble and kind; like Jeff Rowland and especially Kevin Hayes at VAC!
Two posts, you would figure in the second one you MIGHT spell Vandersteen correctly....
clearly prdprez doesn't know what he's talking about and should just be disregarded
Interesting, whenever there is a Magico thread, opponents quickly change the subject to other speakers which they own. Very few people have heard the subject of this thread outside of show conditions.
As for me, Pete....I am well aquainted with all of the speakers in question....
Hmmm...well.. as I own Q3, I love my Magico and have not heard anything near its price range that I love better. For what's its worth, I heard Vandersteen 7 under show condition and in a dealer showroom (where I heard Magico V3 many times) and thought that V7 was nice but if I have the budget now, I would not replace Q3 with it. Recently, another friend auditioned Q3, Sonus Faber Amati Futura, Rockport Avior extensively in his home. I heard Futura there briefly and thought that it beautified everything and really put its sonic signature forward strongly. Some friends like that but I was not one of them. At the end, my friend also chose Q3. Unfortunately I did not hear Avior there but heard it in a different room later.
I never heard a system under show environment that let me hear the full potential and when I come home, I always feel very good listening to my system right after hearing those big Wilson, Avalon, Scaena, YG. So I would not judge Magico or anything for that matter under those condition.
Congratulations on your new speakers.
>> Gee, I wish this was the experience I heard with the Magico Speaker!
The fact that YOU did/do not have these experiences, does not mean they are not there. I think that any 'real' speaker designer or a cultivated listener will have much easier time making sense of a Magico product then any Wilson or Evolution one. If you believe that a 5" line source tweeter can "seamlessly bland" with two 7" point source midranges, that are at least 8" apart and doing not much more then canceling each other, and a 15" woofer running by a plate amp, most likely class D, then... Oh well. Both Wilson and Evolution are very impressive products, but both are heavily "voiced" and have very little to do with the "Fidelity" part of the phrase "High-Fidelity". If that is what you like, good for you.
Congratulation on your speakers. No need to apologies for Magico sound at shows. I have heard them many times, and so are many reviewer all over the world that constantly give them "Best Sound At Show". Those who so passionately hate them in shows, will most likely hate them anywhere else. The merits of these products have nothing to do with it.
I checked...they were the Q5s.
"Both Wilson and Evolution are very impressive products, but both are heavily "voiced" and have very little to do with the "Fidelity" part of the phrase "High-Fidelity"."
To be fair, so is Magico.
Just one example. Taking a beryllium tweeter and placing it in the center of a 10"-15" wide Aluminum baffle. (Width depending on Q5 or Q7) will absolutely have tons of hard diffraction distortion. This is a simple law of physics. And the gentle contour of said baffle is not nearly enough to compensate for this.
In other words, Magico is "voiced" as well, in order to compensate for this.
I have extensive experience with both Wilson and Magico and neither one is of greater "Fidelity" than the other across a large spectrum of music. Just different flavors.
For what it's worth, I usually prefer Magico between the major players. (heavy emphasis on usually.) But ultimately none of them are of any greater absolute Fidelity.
But as Stringreen said, what do I know? LOL.
Judging a speaker simply based on construction,driver array etc.. means very little . Ultimately what matters is how it sounds and reproduces music. We all know this is subjective, I`ve found the Evolution speakers to out perform the Magico by a wide margin in terms of realism and natural tone, you obviously feel otherwise,it`s no big deal. Both seem to be doing just fine in the marketplace.
strange, I have also a pair of evolution acoustics MM3... but I love Magico speakers. Nearly bought a pair before buying my MM3. I heard the Q7 at CES. I will buy a pair (waiting for my dedicated room to be built), and keep the MM3 for a different house. Both are great speaker, and it is true that MM2/MM3 is an excellent value for money.
Usermanual, I agree with your assessment. I own the Mini II and have heard the V2, M5 and Q3 sound extremely good in demonstrations. I liked the Q3 so much that I would trade them for my Minis if I could afford them and they could fit in my room. I did not care as much for the V3 and Q5, but those were in unfamiliar settings.
The Q7 just seems unattainable and very difficult to hear. It would be fun though.
I've heard some of the other speakers mentioned in this thread and they all have merits. I am sure their owners enjoy them.
How boring. One more "Best in Show":
When I've heard Magico speakers, they have been running off very high end 6 digit systems.
They sounded very good as they of course should at their price, especially with lighter classical and jazz music.
I'm not convinced they are that special though nor represent a great value though and that there are not more cost effective ways to get similarly good sound for much less, especially for more rock/pop types of music that present different challenges for good sound.
The build quality is top notch however. No doubts about that.
Magico bass is going to be one of those love it or hate it for most people I suppose. Generally with 200-300 watts amp, at least with Q3,Q5, you will get extremely clean and detail bass but you definitely not get the quantity of bass that ported speakers like Usher Be-20, Wilson, Rockport will put out. So it will not rock like those speakers mentioned above.
However, listening to piano music which can extend down to about 30Hz in fundamentals, or double bass or cellos, I found Magico to be most natural. It is not perfect but it came the closest to live piano sound that I hear almost on daily basis when I practice on my grand piano just about every day. Big Maggie and ML CLX comes close except that they lack a bit of weight and growl that a good size grand piano possesses.
However, if you throw enough good wattage at it like a friend of mine who uses Karan new 2000w monoblocks, Q5 can definitely rock and boogie with the best speakers out there
while not overly exaggerates the bass like some other speakers.
Taking a closer look at the entire Q line, a few things become obvious.
A) They all use the same tweeter/midrange
B) All of the drivers come from the same family of design
C) All cabinets are of the same rigid aluminum construction
D) Crossover parts are all the same
E) Aside from the Q1, they are all four way designs
So the only differences will be the size of the mid-bass driver and the size of the pair of the woofers.
What this means, practically speaking, is that the entire Q line should sound the same with the exception of total linearity in the bass. Bigger drivers = more efficient coupling with the room they are in = greater dynamic linearity = the ability to play louder without any sense of strain.
I would be very doubtful that, for instance, the Q5 and Q7 sound much different given a sound level that didn't push the Q5 to it's limits. (assuming the same associated equipment and room size) If they did sound much different, I would be either very wary of their design or vary wary of the validity of the listener's abilities.
Also, in the endless arguments over the various big time speakers, the most fundamental differences are so often overlooked!
Magico=Carbon Fiber drivers
Wilson=some sort of ridgid phenolic
THIS singular point is going to be THE overriding quality that dictates their sound. Not so much cabinet construction and what not. (They are all sufficiently herculean in that regard.)
To me, the EA sound great but with an obvious ceramic quality. The YG can sound pretty decent, but with an obvious aluminum quality, and so on and so forth.
Nothing more than design choices. Nothing more than flavors.
So the arguments over which is higher "Fidelity" is pointless.
(though the EA does have arguments in this area, but for different reasons and ones that are masked by the ceramic colorations. different topic, different thread)
the Q7 have completely different drivers (magnet)than rest of the range. They sound similar to a Q5, but more dynamic.
I believe that defining a speaker by the drivers material used is a bit simplistic. The EA sound quite different from a pair of Marten, Kharma, or tidal... and they are all ceramic.
On ported vs. closed bass enclosure: I have both a pair of EA MM3 (for stereo) and Usher BE-20 (for home theater and multi channel). The MM3 measures in my room at 18Hz flat. I find the MM3 bass much more natural than the Usher. I listen mainly to Jazz, for that the MM3 is better than a Usher (but I prefer Usher for modern music). I find the Magico Q3 even more transparent than the EA MM3, but it lacks bass response of EA MM3. the Q7 s for me the perfect solution. I am waiting to do one listening session in good conditions before buying one.
"Big Maggie and ML CLX comes close except that they lack a bit of weight and growl that a good size grand piano possesses. "
This is one reason I went with OHM Walsh speakers from Magnepans and having auditioned both ML and Magnepan . The sound has similarities to electrostat or planars but the Walsh driver is dynamic. Pianos, drums, etc. sound more like real drums. Plus the single Walsh driver covers everything up to 7-8 khz or so no driver integration issues with dynamic woofers or subs. The top end uses a more traditional soft dome tweeter.
Oh whow i didnt know that!!
"the Q7 have completely different drivers (magnet)than rest of the range"
Highly, HIGHLY doubt it. Looking closely at them, I have no reason to believe this.
Perhaps you can try to explain the differences. But I believe there to be none of any significance.
"I believe that defining a speaker by the drivers material used is a bit simplistic"
Not as it pertains to this discussion. The EA sounds different from all the rest of the ceramic based speakers because it at least makes some attempt to preserve the time domain. (Ie. 1st order slopes, time alignment) THIS is the reason for sounding different from other ceramic speakers. But it does not eliminate the ceramic flavor of the EA.
I am quite experienced with all of these speakers. Of them, the EA is by far my favorite (because, considering the time domain, it is of significantly higher fidelity than the rest. This is indisputable.) But, try as I might, I can't quite get past the ceramic flavor that influences the sound.
The relative similarities of the type of things that MOST impact the sound of a speaker between the rest does, pretty much, boil down to driver material. Not exclusively, obviously, but is of very high significance.
The carbon fiber cones tend to impact the sound less than ceramic or aluminum, which is probably why I would gravitate towards Magico as a close second to EA.
However, for my expectations, neither are worth owning long term.
Prdprez, you write "I would gravitate towards Magico as a close second to EA. However, for my expectations, neither are worth owning long term".
I would be interested to hear from you what are your preference, and what type of music you listen to (if you listen mainly to modern music, I wouldn't be surprised you don't like them, but for acoustic jazz for example, I have difficulty to find better speakers, and I heard most of the top speakers on the market).
On difference on the Q7 drivers, I suggest you read the good description of the Q7 technology on soundstageglobal. You cannot get driver with a 10dB higher efficiency than the Q5 without significant changes of design (in particular on the magnet).
I don[t disagree that driver material are important, but i personally find that enclosure and filter design play a much more significant role. If you have a look at the first Magico Mini, the second magico mini, the M5 and the Q5, they have different technologies of driver, but there is a very clear family sound....
I have to laugh about "how boring". They produced solo piano better than any other room. I think the MBLs would have edged out the Magicos in the same size room but then you would need a higher level Magico to properly compare. They really are good speakers.
Peter Breuninger, avshowrooms.com
>>I have no reason to believe this.
Perhaps you can try to explain the differences. But I believe there to be none of any significance.
How about 94db efficiency vs. 86db?
You should read Magico marketing material. None of these drivers are the same. The fact that all their midranges are 6 does not mean that they are all the same. You will not be able to use any of the 3 7 bass drivers in the Q3, as a midwoofer for the Q1. Having said that, you will not mistake any of these models to anything but a Magico, but as you go up in the line you do get more of the their virtues, not just bass and dynamics. For example, the Q5 is more transparent then the Q3 and I am sure the Q7 is more transparent then the Q5.
prdprez has a really good point - one look at the magico and you can tell very litlle attention has been paid to diffraction effects. Actually, if you look at yg, wilson and magico, there is not much attention paid to diffraction on any one of them. The only line paying real attention to it is Rockport - look at the large , radiused every changing dimension on the Altair.
From Positive Feedback Issue 59:
This year they introduced their all-out realization of that design paradigm, the $165,000 Q7. Every driver of this beautifully accomplished four-way, five-driver, loudspeaker has been designed from the ground up, resulting in a system with an efficiency of 94dB.
""""" 04-05-12: Stereotaipei
You cannot get driver with a 10dB higher efficiency than the Q5 without significant changes of design (in particular on the magnet).""""""""""
actualy you can not get driver with with 10db diferencies (assuming one is not 4inch midrange and other 18inch PA woofer) - its against law of acoustical physic. the spekakers,how ever can be easily made for diferent sensitivity maximum what is posible for same caliber driver 8-12inch) is 5db and it definatley will be in upper octaves (higher force means more midrange not all FR equally is gained) which is not important for low frequencies anyway.
I did not see Magico claiming a difference of 10db in drivers sensitivity. The newer Qs are, and that is a fact at least on the Q3 that was measured by PM in the UK, much more efficient than the older products, including the Q5.
not sure I understand your message. Just go on any speaker driver manufacturer website, you will find a very broad range of sensitivity of drivers from 80 to 98dB...
Q5 and Q7 use similar configurations, but different drivers, with different sensitivity.
Suggest you read the soundstageglobal article:
Specifically, according to Tammam, the Q5 utilizes N38- and N42-grade neodymium in its drivers' motor systems, whereas the Q7 uses the N48 and N52 grades. These magnets allow for "higher energy storage within the material," according to Tammam, and this has allowed Magico to build motor systems that are far more powerful than any the company had developed in the past. Tammam said the magnet structures of the 10" and 12" drivers in the Q7 are so powerful that handling them requires great care, as the attractive force between two of the drivers' magnets would literally crush someone's hand if it was unfortunate enough to come between them. The point here is that these new ultra-powerful magnets have allowed Magico to design and build drivers so efficient that the overall sensitivity of the Q7 is rated at 94dB, which is quite high for a sealed-box design.
Btw.. I wait to see if really they are 94dB, would be outstanding for a sealed box.
I stand partially corrected regarding the driver design. Stronger magnets will, indeed, increase the efficiency. But more than likely, it's just the woofers that make up that difference.
Tweeters that produce 94dB is easy, especially with neodymium. The same with midrange.
Woofers are little more difficult. More than likely, the original tweeters and midrange are now able to perform without being attenuated to match the woofers in the Q5.
This is a good thing, no matter how you look at it. Removing or reducing resistor value does help with dynamics.
Higher spl does usually equate with greater dynamics, all else being equal.
So I'll split the difference. I still think the tweets and midrange are the same. Bigger and badder woofer design now help in more ways than size alone.
As far as my musical tastes go, it is literally everything. Which is why none of these speakers find they way into my home on a permanent basis. It's difficult, but I require my speaker to perform well on all types of music.
Think ill jump on Q3 use my MAGICO MINI 2 for country home.How big a room do you need for Q3 or Q7 ? , Thanks.I do think the MAGICO MINI 2 is the best looking MAGICO sounds grest as well.
stereotaipei, could you provide to me at least two drivers of the similar size which eficiency(measured with 1w input, not 2.83v) varies more than 7db in 50-300hz range? I have measured more than 160 diferent drivers on identical conditions, so I think I know a litle bit what I am talking about.
You are right, 8dB
I see we are discusing in diferent worlds. I am speaking about main part of the speaker- speaker drivers(woofers)and there is no posibility more than 6db diferencies in low FR on same size woofers. You are talking about speakers eficienty where sensitivity can vary from arround 80db to 95db (in some cases like horns vs electrostats 75- 113db) because not speaker driver(s) determine speaker sensitivity but speaker designer -enginier. he can reduce (by changing BSC etc. ) or tilt up ( by adding more paraleled drivers, changing drivers interaction etc)
so we are both right. btw In your place,I would take manufacturer specified sensitivity values with salt and grain- unfortunately there very rarely tells truth.