Yup, just saw it too yesterday. It will be interesting, can't wait..
Yup, just saw it too yesterday. It will be interesting, can't wait..
Yay, another speaker design from Magico that I suppose few will be able to afford.
I guess we just get to look at pictures and drool for now. Not much info on the site, kind of like walkig into a fancy Soho boutique with 5 items on display....you know that they will carry a hefty price tag.. Oh, and the nav on the site is very clunky and user un-friendly.
BTW I think Magicos sound great, but I am not a boutique kind of guy in general.
Having listened with and enjoyed the 5's its good to know they have what looks like a full range model in a lower price category. Looking forward to hearing the Q at CES.
Regarding retail cost, everyone has a different opinion regarding value and what represents a reasonable price model. Most often these values are intertwined with one's own budget, system and what each of us thinks is "acceptable" based on limited experience. A short course with the fixed costs, small economy and overhead required to maintain any boutique business in HE Audio would send most looking for other job opportunities. There are extremely few people in high end business circles that make anything more than a simple living and even fewer brands that can get away with over-pricing goods. That happens far more with mass-market brands than small to medium sized high-end companies..
Definitely, there are uber-expensive products that will likely only appeal to a few retail customers but I seriously doubt they are over-priced or inflated beyond what they have to sell for. They are likely priced to stay in line with the revenues the company needs to grow its brand or at least keep pace in what is probably the most competitive market segment in all of H.E Audio--speaker systems.
From what I see there are very few products or companies left that get away with grossly over-pricing their products. Some few cable-based and off-commercial market brands still do as a means of buying dealer loyalty or balancing the US vs. Overseas retail pricing. That is the rare exception these days however and not the rule.
Grant, I agree with you for the most part about pricing with high end audio. I always look at the value of a product, and I believe there are some very expensive pieces that remain very good values. However, I also believe Magico has pushed the price envelope beyond what I would consider to be reasonable. Having heard the V3 for example, I think the price they ask is obscene. The V2 is 32k, and the M5 is 90k. Sorry, it just doesn't add up.
Some may disagree with my assessment, and others may think that my speakers cost too much money. I'm just contributing to the discussion because I believe Magico brings criticism upon itself by the pricing they employ.
Beware telling a Magico dealer that you like what you hear. I've had the experience of a dealer attempting to ridicule me for questioning the value. They sounded good to me so I should be willing to write my check for over $30000 immediately, a 50% price increase from the year before, else I am a fool, right? Wrong. They were not that good! I can select from many very fine speakers that also sound fantastic for that kind of change, some at a fraction of the cost. There are many nice fish in the sea!
I don't know about pricing as I have never heard magicos... but there are a lot of brands that are in the same price range (Kharma and Tidel to name a few) and there are not mass threads wining about there prices. Then there are other brand that spend far less time engineering and just use off the shelf drives that charge sky high prices... you know who they are...
Also what are the current prices of the V2 and V3? Some one above stated that the V2 was $32k (did you mean V3)? I thought they were $18,000 in the US.
"Sorry, it just doesn't add up."
Actually, it probably does.
Magico's appeal is its no compromise focus on quality. That does carry a price in terms of R&D and associated overhead costs. ANd their products do deliver sterling sound.
All I'm saying is that does not assure value nor does it mean that others cannot do similarly well for lower cost.
"Sorry, it just doesn't add up."
"Actually, it probably does.
Magico's appeal is its no compromise focus on quality...."
And 'there's the rub' - the price is more linked to marketing than it is to either cost of manufacture (surely a fraction of their price) or value for sound (purely subjective but to this day the Magico V3's stand out as the most disappointing 'high-end' speaker I've ever heard (and you can add the Minis to this viewpoint).
Magico find themslves in a circumstance where their speakers have received massive reviews and they need to 'make hay while he sun shines'. Release a new model at 30K less than the awesomely reviewed M5 and there's an instant market from those that couldn't quite reach the stratospheric price levels of the M5. I say good for them - if there are buyers, then they're satisfying a demand and the loss is to those (other companies) that couldn't meet that demand.
Bottom line is that I'm probably not qualified to comment on the sound of speakers priced at such levels, my system being as humble as it is. Nevertheless, I have spent several hours auditionong the Magicos (V3) at the same time as Avalon (Indra) and Wilson Watt Puppy 8's and the Avalons were in an entirely different league. All very personal, of course, but the Avalon Indra's put it all together - one of the best integrated and most persuasive speakers I've heard. The magicos were fine, but didn't seem to present anywhere near the musical landscape that the Indras put forward. To be fair, the Wilsons were also well behind the Indras. All in my subjective and humble opinion of course!
So, if Magico keep finding purchasers with deep enough pockets, then all to the good for them. As far as the advancement of speaker technology goes or the pursuit of the 'live sound', you can relax; it hasn't been found yet. I'm yet to be convinced that Magico are actually ven looking for it!
Apologies to those fans of Magico - ours is a hobby that is inseperable from personal tastes and listening preferences - mine just don't happen to favour the Magico. At least, not at their asking prices.
Speaker systems and their pricing will always be a topic of hot debate because more than any other component they are open to subjective assessment within a limitless array of contexts. Full range speaker systems are not inexpensive to produce and the competition for sales in that limited high-$ market is fierce.
If there are brands that grossly over charge for what is delivered I do not believe they will have long term success. European and Asian markets can sort out the wheat from the chaff even more quickly than the US and without strong markets overseas there is little chance for prolonged success.
That Magico is bringing a new model into the market in this economy is a sign of health and growth. That does not come by accident or slick marketing campaigns. They have some good dealers supporting them in the US and Europe and those are hard to come by these days.
I've heard Magico speakers sound great in Europe M5's with Spectral in Munich and at Goodwins with Boulder-- and not so great at a past show (mini 2's). Like other brands they are probably sensitive to rooms and ancillaries.
People may knock them or love them, but I doubt their pricing is inflated based on their obvious build quality and normal import margins.
I wonder what marketing are you talking about? Any supported data you like to share? All I have seen so far from Magico, and I have been a big fan for many years now, is a monthly single ad page in TAS. It dwarfs in comparison it to the massive multiple pages ad campaigns of companies like Wilson or YG. Yet, all over the world Magico is being recognize as one of the best, if not the best, loudspeakers brand around. It surpasses YG dealer and distributor dealers network by 10 folds. Are you suggesting that the majority of audiophiles community, all over the world, are all wrong?
One thing which never cease to amuse is that whenever the name Magico popped, there's bound to be controversies and many will start ridiculing their prices. Wonder why this seldom happen with the many other exotic brands commanding similar or even higher pricing (categorically). Question is, are these other brands' asking price then more commensurate with the quality offered? Or perhaps market profile simply not 'tall' enough to be targeted as yet?
Very good question. I believe that Magico is challenging the typical audiophile modus operandi. Some people find it threatening since it puts their reasoning for buying products that they desire. Take for example Rtn1, which seamlessly criticizing Magico value while owning, what is objectively truly a very poor value, the Avalon Isis. Just because it is big, it does not mean it is worthy. I am truly amazed at the levels of reality banding that is going on, just to protect some vulnerable ego.
I've heard the Magico V2 and Mini II. I was not impressed by the Mini, but maybe the rest of the system was not well matched. At the same dealership in a different room and with completely different equipment, the V2 was simply stunning. I think $18K is a lot for a pair of speakers, but relative to a good analog front end plus phono stage, $18K seems reasonable for that level of quality. My point is that value is relative and enjoyment is subjective. And Magico has arrived in the marketplace with a bang. They are certainly doing something right.
Roypan, you misunderstand me, I think. I'm not talking 'marketing' in the traditional sense of media advertising. I don't know anyone that buys hi-fi based on glossy advertisements. I'm actually talking about the Company's marketing strategy - how they position products in the market and how to use their brand reputation established through the audio reviewing community.
The bottom line is that this audio reviewing community pretty well determines for the industry what is a fair price for a product. A pair of speakers lists at 100k, the magazines and on-line audio reviewers rave about it and declare it worth every cent, and the market credibility of the speakers at 100k is established. Companies then need to use the reputation thus established, to generate their profit. I think Magico have an ideal strategy in this regard.
I'm not criticising Magico for their marketing strategy in releasing a speaker 30k below their top model, and then being able to 'market' them as superb value with the claim that 'trickle-down' technology delivers 95% of the sound of the M5. (This is purely an example, by the way - I don't know how Magico are positioning the Q5 in the market.)
I have clearly offended you and I therefore assume you are a Magico owner. As I said, my opinions regarding the sound of two modeels of the Magico are purely subjective. I'm not commenting in any way way about "the majority of audiophiles community, all over the world" as you ask. I can only be sure of my own impressions based on my listening compared to some other similarly priced speakers. They didn't do it for me regardless of the fact that "the majority of audiophiles community all over the world" suggest they should have. My loss? ....Perhaps...
I think that you are giving Wolf and company to much "marketing" clout. Magico is/was a boot strapping company. Do you really think that Wolf was sitting in his shop thinking it will be a good idea to charge $30K for two way? The products Wolf built was sought-after, not the other way around. You completely miss the value proposition of a Magico speakers. I have tried , in many prior posts, to point out that a 300LBS + machined aluminum plates, do cost more than 1000LBS of MDF (Or Material X or M or whatever). Same for the woofers XO parts and even stacks birch ply. But why confuse people with facts?
Roypan, you are correct - I do completely miss the value proposition of the Magico. I listened, I didn't like. End of story for me. If that's how 300lbs+ of machined aluminium sounds, then I'm happy to miss the value proposition. And I think you are underestimating Magico in terms of their market strategy and their business savvy. Like their speakers or not, one cannot argue that Magico have made some very smart business decisions in terms of where they want their products to be positioned.
The only fact that matters to me is that I didn't like the sound of the V3's or the Minis. I hope that this fact doesn't confuse you or anyone else that might happen accross this thread!
I wanted only to express my subjective opinion in terms of these speakers. I hadn't realised such offence would be taken, so apologies for that. I hope you continue to enjoy them.
I like MAgico minis but I also like PSB, OHM, Dynaudio, Triangle and others that cost much less. I know I could live with these others, not sure about Magico, I would have to listen some more.
After all, overbuilding is fine but there is only so much more new teechnology can squeeze out of box X, drivers and crossover no matter how well built. MAgico isn't the only one and they are not for everyone either despite the cost.
To me at least mbl is takes a radical and unique direction that helps differentiate their gear from the pack for better or for worse.
But yes, there is a place for Magico and I give them credit for apparently being as successful as they are. CIty dwellers in tight quarters with money to spend will find them attractive.
Hens, very well spoken!!
I too sometimes feel some people feel almost offended if for instance the speaker they own isn't to the taste of someone else. I've seen Roypan uses/used the V3 and is a very happy and proud Magico owner, but in my opinion sometimes give me the impression to be insulted if something is said about Magico which he doesn't like.
Luckily everyone has there own taste. Otherwise everyone would have the same speaker, same car, house etc.
I like the looks of Magico a lot, but have my own opinion about the sound. Nevertheless I am open to opinions from others and not stating "this is good, this is bad". I'm just giving my own personal view.
If someone has a system with Magico speakers and loves the sound, well great, I'm happy for him.
I've recently heard the Magico M5 and have to say it wasn't as good as I hoped for. The sound was ok, but I would never pay that amount of money for them. Was it the room, the electronics????? Maybe, maybe even a combination of all but it could also be that the sound just isn't my thing. Probably need to listen to them again as first impression might be wrong, but from the limited experience I've had with the Magico M5 so far, they wouldn't be on my wish list.
Just my opinion.
No marketing hype ... yeah, riiiight.
Minis were marketed from the start as the most expensive two-way in the world. That was their way of getting attention. Sure, they used some high quality parts (x-over), birch ply, Scan-Speak ring radiator tweeter, ATD midwoofer etc, but nothing out of ordinary, that haven't been used before. And for what they were, they were grossly overpriced.
I still remember the stories they told about supposedly 'their' midwoofer design ('the only one in the world to combine Titanium skins with a bonded foam layer for self-damping. There's only one man on the planet willing and capable of making it' blah, blah, blah) that made laugh anyone who knows anything about drive units and the italian company ATD that used to manufacture those.
And no not even get me started about those monster 'reference' horns ...
To my ears, Magicos are one of the most overhyped products on the market right now. Time will tell how long they will be able to sustain interest in their products.
Sure, and Area 51 is landing aliens daily. When you say they who are you referring to? A guy in his garage building speakers? Hundreds if not thousands have done the same. So just because "they" said their monitor is the most expansive one they have risen to the top? BTW, It is complete BS since I have never heard "them" saying that, not to mention, that it is not true.
Please define "real" and "value." Do you refer to intrinsic, inherent or instrumental value? Do you refer to social reality or to some objective reality as Searle distinguishes? Is raw material cost the defining characteristic of any product? What about design costs? What about R&D? What about inefficient R&D and production costs? What about lack of statistical quality control that leads to manufacturing inefficiencies and waste that lead to higher prices for the end user? Input side is a part but intermediary steps very much affect outcomes as does the cost of living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area.
I do believe you tread into philosophical depths beyond your erudition when you castigate others who confound valuation with preference. Perhaps some time understanding the philosophical foundations of perception or the vast and growing neuroscientific research into consciousness, emotion, cognition and valuation/valencing will enable you realize that value and the stuff between ones ears are quite intertwined.
In what way has Magico risen to the top? Of what? Is there a hierarchy of loudspeakers that towers above us into the sky, that is there for anyone in the world to apprehend?
a new thread about new speaker Avalon Time also quite expensive ... a couple of months later 6 responses
a new thread about Magico Q 5 ... immediate and many reactions
is Magico better than Avalon ?
I know quite well the Indra, the Sentinell, the V3 and the minis 2 , I think no one from these 2 companies make compromises about quality ... then it's a question of taste. Avalon properly set up works beautifully for classical music. The Sentinel is just marvelous. I was impressed by the minis 2 but have never heard until now a good set up of the V3 (with all top of Krell & MIT a claustrophobic disaster in my point of view, dry...) I wish I could compare the Sentinel with the M5 or Q5
so why is this hapening? all merit of Jonhatan Valin from TAS or ???
PS by the way the swiss company Piega is building since years all aluminium loudspeakers
You can rock the boat anyway you like, and use the words inefficiencies as many time as possible in one sentence but I wish you would give those of us who did buy the product some credit. Obviously, the competition to Magico products is quite fierce. I am sure, they would have fail miserably if it was built in such a wasteful way your post is implying, or sound as bad as other here are suggesting. And, yes, apparently there is a hierarchy of loudspeakers that towers above us into the sky, you obviously would not be commenting on the Magicos, if that was not the case.
To what extent have I disparaged your ownership of the Magico or any other product? My primary point is that we should limit our conclusions to those we derive from sound premises using consistent logic.
There are many things we may assume but not test: the fierceness of competition in the marketplace for highend audio speakers; the sociology of knowledge and information dissemination in discursive networks etc.
As for wasteful, you infer that I imply that Magico are wasteful. I did not make that claim. I merely provide an optic by which we might examine our frameworks of reasoning.
And even if Magico were inefficient, which is not the same as wasteful (one imagines a semantic difference in intent), at the price they sell for, if I like them, I would buy them, as I did the V3.
Indeed, many of the factors you allude to in the design and construction of Magico are appealing to me as a layperson who does not purport to know how they work together. However for aesthetic and intuited reasons, the use of materials like aluminum or void-free Baltic Birch is something I can grasp. Indeed, knowledge of similar design and construction components in my Boulder, MBL and Goldmund gear returns the same satisfaction.
On the other hand, although I might have been unfair to single your post out, in truth, as you mention, there are many posts here and in all the Magico and Wilson Audio threads that suffer worse cases of opinion masquerading as fact.
To this extent, I would proffer that an argument can be made for Magico quite well using precisely the aspects of manufacture you refer to without resorting to ad hominem attacks. In fact, I know that you have done exactly this in many other threads across this vapid cyberspace. So ironically, I am with you.
You say this thread was about the was about the new Q5 and its "real" value proposition. When I look at the OP it mentions nothing about "real value"
Audiogon is ALL about personal opinions - we all have them and clearly yours and mine differs and I agree let's not continue the argument about my views.
I will finish with the comment that you cannot ascribe "real value" in the case of speakers without considering the end user and their listening impressions. You appear to equate real-world value only to build cost and R&D and the such like. If they cost 40k to build and I think they sound ordinary (an example, as I haven't heard the Q5), then to me, they are of little value. I'm quite certain that you also wouldn't purchase a pair of speakers based on their science, materials and cost to build if you didn't like the sound! The "real value" of speakers is different for every listener out there.
If anyone has specific information about production costs and margins, I would appreciate being educated. For example, the Isis uses tweeters that retail for $9000. The mid-range retails for $1100 and the woofers are over $2000 before any modifications. Avalon may not pay quite that much, but that provides a ballpark for just a few material costs. How much is it for aluminum and cones made out of the same material as helicopter blades?
Of course, cost is different from value. Does it make sense to use diamonds in a speaker? What is the price:performance? I feel they are sublime; other would also be correct to regard them as silly. High cost material should be used as a means to an end, not as a means in and of itself. You could build a speaker out of gold and carved ivory, but why?
Magico is definitely a polarizing brand, as this and other threads clearly demonstrate. There are other polarizing companies in audio. My opinion is that the etiology of the strong feeling is partly based upon cost. I feel that Magico is over-priced by about 1/3. I heard the V3, and it did not make a sound commensurate with the price. That statement is subjective. Couple that to the marketing of extreme-fi speakers. Alon Wolf proclaims himself a musical genius, and he not only went into speaker design because a passion, but because the audio industry needed him. His interviwes spew of self-promotional and condescending non-sense. Excuse me while I tighten the loose screws on my wooden speakers... I am sure that aluminum speakers will become the norm in 10 years because 'MDF is the worst possible material for use in a speaker'. Perhaps the violin should also be made of aluminum, so we can really hear the energy from those strings? Finally, all the proclamations of 'the best', even though we all know there is no such thing. Mr. Wolf speaks with vanity, disrespect, and lacks humility. After all, he designs speakers 20 hours a day because he cannot live with anyone else's speaker.
All audio companies seek positive press, good interviews, and hyped-up websites/brochures. There are many examples, and Magico is far from unique. It really does not bother me, since we have free will to tune-in to that which we choose. If Magico is successful in selling speakers, then more power to them. After all, we vote with our pocket books. A company is free to price a product at the margin they desire, and there are plenty of choices in this competitive market. Well-informed and passionate audiophiles may find the sound they desire, and feel the value is there. I totally respect their reasoning. My past threads have even suggested that people looking for a quality speaker should have a listen. If it were not for the Isis, the M5 would be on my short-list to consider. However, I will admit the $90k price is extremely difficult with life's other priorities.
Why does Roypan have an intense desire for everyone to regard his speakers as the best? I personally do not care whether others like my speaker. A speaker is a personal thing, and a designer deals with a set of trade-offs, limitations, and realities. I looked carefully for criticisms before purchasing, and respect well-informed opinions. At these prices, you have to be critical. Many have commented on their distaste of the Avalon sound, and that is perfectly legitimate. I have never told anyone that my speaker is the best, that they should buy the same speaker as I, or put them down for not having the same opinion. There are many Magico owners who are reading this thread, laugh, think "who cares", and go enjoy their music. Please let us not talk about big egos and thin skins here, as that is just nonsense.
Although I chose not to purchase Magico, I appreciate a speaker which takes a new approach and has a definite philosophy. I am always open to hearing new things, and purchase speakers not based upon the strong personality of a designer, but based upon the sound. In the end, we all work hard for our money, appreciate good things, and buy items that bring enjoyment. As an audiophile, I would love the opportunity to listen to a well set-up M5 or Q5. If the Q5 is a true full-range speaker, which can convey the sense of scale and proportion of orchestral music, then I may even be interested. In that regard, I honestly hope that the Q5 is a breakthough speaker, and if so, wish it all the luck.
"Please define "real" and "value." Do you refer to intrinsic, inherent or instrumental value? Do you refer to social reality or to some objective reality as Searle distinguishes?"
This is pretty deep, but do we really need Searle to have a discussion about whether the speakers are good value relative to plausible competitors? John
What is the sonic advantage of using aluminum for the box?
Doesn't using metal of any kind rather than wood have an effect on the resulting sound? I would think it would impart a unique tone. Not necessarily better, but unique, which is not a bad thing. At these price points, you want a speaker to distinguish itself clearly from the competition.
When I heard Magicos, the upper midrange and top end is what I remember as having a distinct good sound. Just not sure if it was better, but definitely unique.
Avalons have a unique sound too when I heard them.
So do mbls.
It makes sense to me that speakers in this price range will seek to distinguish themselves sonically from teh pack somehow. That usually means no one will be everyones cup of tea. What's wrong with that? As long as people like them and have the $$$s to buy them, they will do fine I suppose.
I will not lose much sleep about not being able to afford any of them (at least until my kids are out of college perhaps) in any case.
Now we are getting somewhere. Reading your reply, I can't help buy noticing a deep personal resentment to "Mr. Wolf" AKA Magico. I assume you do not know him personally, so I wonder, what has he done to upset you so deeply? Perhaps pointing out to "real" issues loudspeaker, like the one you own, may have? Some that will question your judgment? You obviously did not like that. So what are the chances you would like a product he makes? Does sound has anything to do with it? I doubt it.
" let us not talk about big egos and thin skins".
Did you read your post before you posted it? If it is not about egos, what is it about?
BTW, you may want to read again, some of the material you are referring to. If you still do not understand the difference between a musical instrument enclosures and a loudspeaker one.
"What is the sonic advantage of using aluminum for the box?"
Mapman to answer your question...and I'm in agreement with you on the
Avalons and other speakers.
Cabinet panel resonances are a significant cause of sound coloration, if using
aluminum enclosure there is better elements of stiffness, mass, and
dampness compared to MDF enclosures with heavy bracing and the special
resin dampening glues. Accordingly, this allows the drivers to operate with
clarity and dynamics. Yeah but what does that mean when I'm listening to my
main man Steve Jordan playing his custom maple snare drum. Magico does
not use MDF, the V3 and mini II enclosures are one-inch layers of extremely
stiff, laminated, 17-ply Baltic birch plywood.
I do like the approach for enclosure system design but can you tell the sonic
difference when AB. Which is Aluminum and which is MDF? I think it is more
about the unique tone.
Metal snares and wood snares have two totally different resonance I don't
think one is better...it just depends on the style of the recording and type of
music that fits.
In the end, I'm pretty darn sure Magicos, Avalons, Tidals, Wilsons, etc. could be well-tuned into a listening environment and enjoyed.
Would we still be listening to the equipment ?
Would the performance sound close enough to give more than a vague illusion of the real thing ?
Would we come away impressed without fatigue ?
These are the questions I've been asking myself over the years of listening experience.
I guess it would be boring as hell if everyone here had the same
set-up, even if the sound was stellar ?
Happy Holidays !