Dpmolino, call John at Audio Connection in Verona NJ. He sells both the cable and the speakers. He was demoing them for us a couple of weeks ago and he did a few things that made them sound so much better. I didn't even like them at first. Hated them in the high end and the sound just floated. He then changed some resistor, the electronics and the cables and all of a sudden the music took shape and snapped into place. It's not my cup of tea, but the everything he did made them sound that much better. Seriously, he's loved on this board and is willing to help anyone. Even small little things will help those speakers and he's great like that. I pay him to do my set ups and I've been doing this stuff for over 45 years now and know how to do set ups. He just gets it and knows his products better than most anyone I know if the business. Let us know when you get in touch.
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"He then changed some resistor, the electronics and the cables and all of a sudden the music took shape and snapped into place. It's not my cup of tea, but the everything he did made them sound that much better."
That's really not a cable issue. Magnepan is known for having bright/harsh sounding highs. They give you the resistors so you have the option of backing off on the highs.
It shouldn't matter which way you run the jumpers (at least with your cables). The direction is for break in. If for some reason, you unhooked your cables and put them back going the opposite way, you would need to fully break in the cables again.
Dpmolino, I also made some jumpers for my 3.7s out of Anticable wire. They were really pretty good, and were certainly better than those things Magnepan supplies. I had some Audio Magic Liquid Air jumpers custom made, and they were another step up from the anti cables. I also use Liquid Air speaker cables with my 3.7s.
I'm not a fan of AQ type 4. Moved away from them years ago. Way too much grain for my ears.
Cardas makes some jumpers specifically for the Magnepan speakers. I use a full set of these from crossovers to the speakers and all of the jumper points.
Best I have ever used. Expensive, but IMHO, worth every penny.
You can buy the complete set or just the jumpers. They all use the special "Maggie Pin" for the connections and fit perfectly.
"Magnepan does NOT have 'bright harsh highs'. If you experience this with your Maggie ribbons, I suggest your electronics suck, and not the Maggies."
Then why does Magnepan give you the jumpers to begin with? The jumpers are not a 3rd party solution. This is how Magnepan deals with the problem. Call them and they'll tell you. You may not have to use them in your system because when you link active preamps, using them both at the same time, the result will very likely roll the top end off.
As far as my electronics goes, what pieces suck?
Personally, I don't like them. I agree about the highs and also the soundstage seems to just float for me. I've heard them in a ton of stores and even some homes. I just am more sensitive to their highs, but we all hear differently. What Elizebeth loves, a couple of us hear as distortion. No biggie either way.
Elizabeth has a valid point, although I might suggest that the upstream components don't necessarily suck, they just don't synergize with the Maggies. And certainly, like most speakers, they won't work in every room. Environments with RFI/EMI issues can require attention to shielding or RFI cancelation. It is my guess that people who enjoy well implemented Maggies have given considerable attention to power treatment, power cords, ICs, speaker cables, etc, in order to avoid polluting the sweet ribbon sound with electronic noise. I think Elizabeth would agree with that statement. The Maggie ribbons are just delicious in the right rig and room. In my opinion, the crossover design in the 3.7s makes the top end even better than the .6 series.
I suspect we have all heard numerous examples of Maggies done wrong. They are not the most forgiving speakers by far. Thus it is not hard to understand why Maggies have a reputation of having bright treble. Also, and again, this is just my opinion, but in the .6 series, they could exhibit some harshness in the treble at the crossover if driven hard. But I have heard this same thing in several non planar designs, and it is a transient, not a persistent, problem. I would never, ever, consider using a resistor with Maggies.
For the OP, rather than mess with trying to make jumpers to match the AQ4, I'd do some experimenting with other speaker cables. I had much better results with Signal Cable silver, and even better, Anti-Cable, than with AQ 4. The audio magic liquid airs are better than them all, but the point here is that you won't have to spend much or look hard to find something better than the AQ 4, in my opinion.
Thanks for the input all. I think I'll hang with the Anticable solution, especially since it was nearly free. $200 and + options make little sense... to me. I suspect that like all things with cables, the sound is very much up to personal taste.
With that said, I have tried only a few brands of speaker cable. Looking for value, the AQs and Anticables do it for me so far.
I do not read what Elizabeth's comment regrading Maggies not having harsh highs is in response to. A poster did reference grain. So what did I miss? Like most, I haven't experienced harsh highs in either my 1.7s or 3.7s.
"I do not read what Elizabeth's comment regrading Maggies not having harsh highs is in response to. A poster did reference grain. So what did I miss? Like most, I haven't experienced harsh highs in either my 1.7s or 3.7s."
That was probably my doing. If you read the very first response by Ctsooner, he talks about John at Audio Connection installing the resistors on the Magnepan's and the result was better sound. I just mentioned that its probably not a cable issue, but a speaker issue since Magnepan knows about this and actually supplies the resistors with the speakers.
As for you not experiencing harsh highs with your Magnepan's, that's good. Don't let a post by me, or anyone else, stop you from enjoying your speakers. Its entirely possible you did a better job matching your electronics to the speakers and set them up properly. You're getting good results and that's all that matters.