merlin vsm owners , what is your room size ?

Hi, Merlin vsm lovers

I use my merlin VSM in a room size of 12W*23L*9H -Feet
I wish my room was smaller to enjoy my merlins.

How big are your rooms ?

What attribute of music reproduction is missing that is preventing you from enjoying your speakers? If it is the bass then perhaps a subwoofer might be beneficial. I do not own Merlin speakers but my listening room is similar in size to yours, if not perhaps a little larger. While I enjoy my system no matter where I am seated there is a listening position relatively close to my speakers that is the most special, where the system really shines. Perhaps you will be able to find such a location in your listening room.

Bobby P. will likely be able to provide you with some helpful suggestions on getting the most from your speakers, whether it is via this thread or if you contact him directly.
I have mine in a room that is 15L x 17W x 11H (typical "open plan" with several large openings). They play as loud as I could want (and louder than my wife wants!). What do you think you're missing? How far are you from the speakers and how is the room furnished?
I've used mine in many different rooms over the last decade+. Dimensions have varied from 10' x 12' (a spare bedroom in an apt) to 14' x 35' (combo dining room/living room in same apartment) to a pair of 14ish x 20ish dedicated listening rooms (one w/high ceilings, the other lower), as well a few others in between. The speakers will sound a bit different in each setting, but they always retain their fundamental strengths (remarkable midrange clarity and impact) so long as they're reasonably carefully placed and the room isn't a nightmare.

For me, the trade off has always been maximizing imaging vs octave to octave balance. Pulled out into a larger room, the imaging can be really fantastic, but the bass may lose some weight. Backing them up to the wall behind them will generally restore weight to the tonal balance with some diminution of that wonderful staging/imaging. IME, smaller rooms generally make the issue moot - you'll get the bottom end weight at some cost to the image. No choice involved.

I've managed to make the speakers sound very good in each setting, but the bottom line is that I got my best overall results in a room with dimensions nearly identical to yours.

One more data point for you.
please describe you set up, room positioning and reflective surfaces. what version do you have? what seems to be the issue? lets see if we can help.
bobby at merlin
and btw reynolds 53,
i thank you.

My pleasure, and I know you'll be able to help.

All the best,

Thank you all for your inputs

I use my Merlin vsm MMe, Master BAM & Master RC,
AA Prestige SACD,
ARS Fila SE or Pathos Logos or Exposure 3010S2 pre/power (tonal quality is same in all three amps , all equally good),
all Cardas GR,
Equi Tech 2rqe.

Ars Fila SE does not have enough power to excite this room.
Pathos Logos = better drive than ARS Fila SE, but not enough
Exposure 3010S2 is best of all the three,but wish i had a little more power

OR a smaller room :)

I used to enjoy Fila SE in a small room before (10 feet *13 feet)
It seems you have answered your question, the amp doesn't have enough "drive" to excite the room and engage you as it did in your previous room. I went through the same issue when I moved to a larger room when I was using a 25 watt OTL with the VSM. You just need more power to fulfill what it is you feel missing. This is really subjective from listener to listener but amplifier power seems very much the issue in your case.

thanx tubegroover

Merlin vsm is known to be driven easly (89db 8ohms)
I think my room is still small :)
Merlins may require SS 175 watts or tube 60 watts to be driven well.

many many years ago when i buy a speaker , i look at the maximum watts recommended for the speaker by the manufacturer,
And used to buy a matching amplifier with more watts than recommended , and it used to work, i think its the same with Merlins.

Less watts will drive ,but not with full potential.

Or do i need a speaker with bigger/more driver in this room ?

Thaluza, I think you have an ideal room size for merlins

I have positioned them

5 feet 9 inches apart, tweeter to tweeter,
2.5 feet from the side wall to side baffle,
52 inches from tweeter to the wall behind the speaker
and i listen from 9 feet

Any changes to be made ?


I used to use small speakers in my listening room but in order to build up a satisfying sound pressure level I would have to play the system louder than what I might prefer for a given listening session. By adding a sub I could develop a pleasing sound pressure level while keeping the overall volume lower. I described it as the system having a fullness of sound at lower volume. If this is the issue you are trying to rectify then I'd suggest a sub. On the other hand if it is overall loudness in the mid and higher frequencies that is the issue then I would consider more power.
Thanx Reynolds, this is the problem = system NOT having a fullness of sound at lower volume

I really have to play it loud to get fullness of sound.

i guess its difficult to integrate a sub with Merlin & BAM

I am certainly no expert in the functioning of the BAM module but from what I was reading on Bobby's website I don't know why it would pose any particular challenges for integrating a sub into your system, and it may make it easier for all I know.

Here's how I used to integrate a Canton Ergo sub (now called the Sub 650 in the Canton line) into my system, and it's all done by ear. There are three knobs you'll fiddle with: (1) phase, (2) crossover point, and (3) volume.

1. Play some music that has some bass in it and adjust the phase until it provides the strongest bass.

2. Adjust the crossover point until you like where the sub kicks in. If the crossover point is too high, for example around 50Hz was too high for me, then the sub will kick in at too high a frequency, at least for my liking.

3. Once you start to home in on the crossover frequency that you like then increase or decrease the volume according to your tastes.

The Ergo sub had 45Hz as its lowest crossover point I believe, which was enough for me. I auditioned a smaller sub that had a 50Hz minimum crossover point but that was too high. The 45Hz minimum crossover point was always adequate for my needs though.

By adjusting the sub crossover point and the volume I was able to get the sub to provide a fullness of sound at lower volume but without calling undue attention to itself. I also liked the Canton sub because it was fast, certainly faster than the sub on our home theater system.

I don't know why the BAM module would alter that procedure, but if it did I'm sure Bobby P. would let us know and I would certainly heed his advice.

I had a REL storm 3 sub before in the same room. Some how did not like it.

Problem with bam is BAM will cut off frequencies below 30HZ. so what is going to SUB from amp speaker end is cut off below 30HZ.

Another option is i can use the Second OUT from CD player directly to SUB.Then i will get frequencies below 30HZ

I am open to try a new sub which is fast as merlin and has no port.
Just one idea for you to consider:

Per my post above, the VSM's low end response is IME quite sensitive to boundary reinforcement. You have the speaker about 4 1/2 feet out from the wall behind them - great for imaging, not so great for fullness in the mid-bass. I'd try halving the distance between the speakers and that wall. Ignore any imaging issues for a moment and just get a feel for the change in tonal balance in the lower registers at the new room position.

It may lead you to a better listening experience via a simple change of room positioning, it may lead you to consider the addition of a subwoofer (notwithstanding the BAM related issues you mention), or it may lead you to conclude that you'd prefer a different speaker in that room. In any event, it's probably a worthwhile experiment - simple, free and (for better and/or worse) probably educational.


i have tried your idea before. 1 or 2 inches can be taken back. more than that will give a compressed sound. And the low bass increases and not the mid bass, i felt so.

i feel the ARS sonum GRAN filarmonia may give what i am looking for. because the Fila SE gives a better bass punch than many other amps. So GRAN fila may fill the room better

Your idea about using the second out loop on your CD player would seem to be on the right track as your goal is to connect the sub in such a way that it operates independently from the BAM. Other options are to drive the sub either from your preamp, say a "record" loop, or a pre-out tap if you are using an integrated amp that provides that function.