Magnepan Ribbons and Hearing Loss


Due to old age, my upper hearing is limited to only about 12-13 kHz, and of course the ribbon tweeters are capable of frequencies well beyond the human limit.

For me, are the 3.6 ribbons overkill? Or even a waste, like having a Ferrari and never driving over 45 mph?

Your thoughts?
mkh1099
Hearing tests do NOT reveal all there is to know about hearing.
The sine wave testing they use is really tough to listen to.
In the 'real' world the upper frequencies can be noted even by people with hearing loss. They may be down lower in strength, but ARE still hearable.
So the little clues one has about overtones etc still matter.
So IMO the idea of having a great speaker is not cut off due to some hearing loss. You WILL still be able to appreciate the Maggies treble.
So I say go for it.

I bought a Power conditioner from a guy who was bummed out over his hearing loss and was selling off all his high end stuff. Phooey! Keep it, use it. Be happy with what you have!! Glass half full is way better than NOTHING. So go for it. (Who cares if you significant others think it is a 'waste'... No way dude!) The Maggies will bringa smile on your face .. And that is what matters. Now what some test claims.

Even driving a Ferarri at 40mph can be LOTS of fun. And really enjoyable.
MKH, I agree with Elizabeth. And look at it this way, you won't need to use the resistors some people insist on using to tame the Maggie ribbons. That said, there is nothing like an audition to answer your question.
Maggie ribbons are everything that's right in the world. Enjoy them.
If you ever downshifted a Ferrari at 30 mph, and tweaked that gas pedal for even a second or 2 and feel the rush...you wouldn't ask that question.
That's actually pretty good hearing from a test of that type. There is no doubt you would hear the effects from that tweeter.
Measurements I have seen indicate Magnepan ribbon tweeters appear to have substantial output at frequencies well below 10-12 khz where a lot of music occurs, so no doubt in my mind that benefits could be heard clearly even by most older ears.
Elizabeth, You're like a sage with this thread.
Thanks all!

The consensus is that I probably CAN hear the Maggie ribbon. That is exactly what I wanted to hear, (no pun intended).

The Maggie is the best speaker that I have ever heard, and even with my hearing loss, I derive immense pleasure from them! I would consider everything else to be a downgrade.

Now, as for an upgrade, maybe the 20.x and a Ferrari someday...
"Hearing tests do NOT reveal all there is to know about hearing.
The sine wave testing they use is really tough to listen to.
In the 'real' world the upper frequencies can be noted even by people with hearing loss. They may be down lower in strength, but ARE still hearable."

Nothing reveals all there is to know, that's a pretty safe bet, but hearing test will most likely identify where certain limitations are, especially with older ears hearing high frequencies.

The good news is that most of what happens in music occurs in the range that even older ears are likely to still hear well.

Age almost acts as natures perfect low pass filter. I always found that most things that really annoyed me in home audio occurred at the highest frequencies I could hear when I was young.

When I was ~ 20 or so, I was able to hear quite well and "flat" out to 20khz, which is what most home audio is designed to cover well.

That's based on listening to test recordings (vinyl) at the time I had and still have that produced reference tones up to 20khz.

Now I am 54, and same tests detect little above 12khz or so.

But things still sound better than ever to me these days.

Its a scientific fact I am afraid that the ears sensors deteriorate with age, albeit to different extents case by case.

The good news is that our ears become better trained over time to do their job better, albeit within different limits/constraints.

Aging sucks though for the most part. I suppose the alternative is no better, but dunno and hope to not find out too soon! :-)
To Elizabeth and others who agree with her- Right On Right On.
I am impressed by the nature of everyone's response to this question. No disability, and loss of hearing high frequency sound is not a disability, anymore than baldness or wrinkles, but if it were a disability it shouldn't be a barrier to participating in life's activities.
Well put Liz, thanks it was uplifting to read.