Revel Salon 2’s (used) or new Magico A-3 (new) ??

Have recently heard the Salon 2’s and think they are incredible. (I owned the Salon 1’s previously
and now own Golden Ear Triton Reference)
i love the Refs, and they can be considered keepers for sure, but think I may like the Salon 2’s
more, but of coarse did not hear them in my house. 
I have heard them twice now, and was super impressed (as was my wife the last time) and think
i May make the plunge.

My budget for this last speaker purchase will be ~$11k ish, give or take. So having said that, the other speaker on my radar is the new to be released Magico A-3, but don’t think I can have a pair in my hands for another 3-4 months.

Has anyone heard the new Magico at Axpona, that has experience with he Salon 2’s?

I’m solid on Salon 2 if I can find the right deal (have seen them going for $9k now) I may grab
a pair. I have a local pair lined up for $11k. 

So, wanted to take a brief poll and see if anyone has the experience with the two pair in question.

Thanks in advance!

Yeah, Salon 2 is a fantastic bargain if you can get a nice set at the prices you mention.  I heard the A3 at AXPONA, but the room was so crowded that I couldn't get to a nice seated position.  Some people raved about them and others thought they were good, but not better than some of the other new options at the $10K price point, such as the new Revel 228Be and Focal Kanta No. 2. 

If you can make it to Dallas, the Magico A3 is going to be at the Lone Star Audio Fest(free admission) on May 4-6 at the Embassy Suites Dallas Park Central.
I thought the Revel F228be was superior to the A3, and the Salon2 should be a step up from the F228be.  

If you can get a nice pair of Salon2s for $9,000 I’d jump on that all day long, provided you have a big enough room for them.  
I’d be surprised if the new Performa3 BE series didn’t measure better than the Ultima2 series. The ceramic mids are a major step up from those older Ultima2 titanium mids which were ported over from the old JBL PT series.

The Salon2/Studio2 Stereophile measurements all had some noticeable midrange hash from the spectral decay measurements that you don’t usually see in new flagship speakers today. 
At Axpona the A3 were in a different league then the Revel F228be, but if you are used to the hash of the Ravel, you might find the clarity of the A3 boring.    
Thanks for the reply’s so far! Why don’t we throw the B&W 803 D3’s into the mix. I have not really heard a pair except for background music playing. But did think
on one audition of the 804 D3’s, they were very nice. 

Sciencecop, how can you make such a ridiculous claim that the Magico A3 are in a different league then the Revels?

Different hotel rooms, different gear, and I am sure there are a ton of other differences between the two demo setups.

The only way to know would be to demo both speakers under the same circumstances.

And currently there are quite a number of really mindblowing speakers both new and used at that price point, We sell the Paradigm Personas and the 3F when driven by great equipment are pretty amazing. The Legacy Signature and Foucs are awesome speakers at $7k and $10k and the Legacy's sound really big with really deep tight bass and a warm midrange. 

The Golden Ear Ref are interesting speakers, in the two demos we heard them in they were nice but didn't blow us away, the Golden Ears tend to sound a bit dark and bass heavy, we would still carry them as they are perfect for some listners, I do agree that that some of these other speakers you may find to dramatically outperform the Golden Ears in terms of imaging and overall resoltion and clarity.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
Hi Dave & Troy,

Thanks! Yes, I like the T-Refs quite a bit, but when I heard a pair of Salon 2’s, my wife & I were pretty stunned with their excellent dynamics and did prefer the top end (more alive) to the T-Refs.
The GE’s are very good, and excellent for HT, but thinking of getting a speaker
that will do HT justice, but have higher resolution & slam for music if you will, than the overall mostly laid back presentation of the T-Refs. 

I did own a pair of the Legacy Focus SE (version before the currrent version) and may look into those as well depending on their current price. I did like them as well.

Audio Doctor, I remember you, from way back then (I was a client of Sound By Singer).
The fact that AG lets you run your ad campaign here, for free, is unfortunate. I am not going to debate any audio matters with you, your credibility is questionable in my mind.
OMG, for once I find myself agreeing with audiodoctor. 

What's that? A green pig flying past the window?

I would highly recommend that in the future, you start such comments with "In My Opinion"....
Mine agrees with audiotroy, yes they are dealers and I’ve called them out in the past myself, but I believe there has been a real effort in the past several months to answer questions and being helpful over the selling techniques that I’ve seen in the past.
Sorry, didn’t realize some people will get confused if I didn’t say "In My Opinion....” {:-

@sciencecop. I understood and must agree. Some schilling has been observed. 
I listened to the Magico's at Axpona- def would be on my list if I was in the market. Highly resolved, dynamic sound.....if you're into that kind of stuff :)
Thanks Mark! 

I will probably choose by the end of the week, and Magico’s are to far out yet so they are out for now. Cant seem to find much anything else to choose from and not enough dealers to visit to hear. 

If anyone can offer another great option new or used for up to ~$11k feel free to post and I will look into them.

At ~$11K, you may as well look at Focal Sopra No. 2.  There is a set for sale here for just under $10K. 

Another nice option might be Sonus Faber Olympica III, a set of which is posted here for $7500. 
Sciencecop, unfortunatly you have me at a disadvantage I don't know who you are? 

As per lack of credibility lets see who is more credible?

Me 30 plus years industry experience, top salesman at Sound by Singer for 10 plus years, Top salesman Innovative Audio for 3 years.

Owner of Audio Doctor 15 years, did several major audio shows in NYC, including Chester Audio's shows, as well as a Amex Technology and Lifestyle expo.   

Our company Audio Doctor was featured on Rev Runs Rennovation, where we built a Home Theater from scratch for Rev Run. 

Over those years have owned and sold most of the major audio brands on the market and setup 100's of systems and sold 1,000's of components.

Our store has one of the largest collections of high end audio in the New York Metro area with some of the best brands of audio on display

Check out our store video, that was 2 years ago, since that time, we added Paradigm Personas, T+A, Elac, Mytek, Rethem, Quad, Anthem STR, Micromega, NAD Masters, Legacy, Naim Reference, Light Harmonic, Aqua Hifi, Baetis, Innous, Aurender, Lumin and a few others.

Please explain how we are not credible and you are?

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
Someone mentioned Focal Kanta 2 and those were among the most impressive speakers I heard at a show in Stockholm. The Wilson Sabrina also sounded good although only played at a low volume and might be found 2nd hand within your price range.

If you want something unique you could try Lukase, they had the best midrange I've heard that day. Sadly only available in Sweden as far as I know and their bass did overload the small show room but I'm hoping I get to hear them in a bigger room someday.
A pristine set of Salon 2’s would put a big smile on your face(op) and serve you well for many years. Be wary of the packing as it is the only weak element. 
In my opinion, (and not to be disrespectful) asking a dealer his opinion, will usually be limited to his products. And that's fine, it just should be disclosed. Similar to CNBC stock market recommendations when a guest discloses whether or not they own the stock. 
I for one, can appreciate someone like Audio Doctor giving advise even if they are a dealer. It’s kind of what I want & need (as I’m sure many people asking questions like mine would also appreciate) as I am kinda flying blind in that I cannot possible see everything out there. They did not try to sell me anything and only giving advise on what they like & hear. Just like me talking to all my friends about Audio.
But, just to be fair, and make everyone feel better, I am going to put Audio Doctor in a big “time out” with there noses on the chalkboard until they realize what they did wrong!
The only way I will let them out early is if they redeem themselves and sell me a pair of Revel, Paradigm’s or Legacys at their cost! 😉😜

audiotroy wrote:

the Golden Ears tend to sound a bit dark and bass heavy,

That agrees with my encounters as well.

I'm very sensitive to tone/timbre and I get why many people think Golden Ear is a terrific bargain.  The sound is big, pretty transparent, spacious, rich - a lot of sound for the money.  But it's always been a bit off, tonally to my ears, a bit dark and boring. 
@telescope_trade If I had 10K to spend on speakers on A'gon today, the clear choice--to me--would be the Vienna Acoustics The Music.  But then, that's just me.

Yea thanks! They are local so good there, just got to be careful transporting
them. No original boxes unfortunately, but may be able to finagle them into my T-Ref boxes just for transport. 


yea, I somewhat agree with both of you. This is like my 10th pair of GE’s (Second T-Refs) They fit a perfect place n the market, I would say from experience they are the perfect 50/50 speaker for music & HT. They offer a big sound like you said
and have subs for HT. So a lot of speaker wrapped into one pkg. 
But after hearing the Salon 2’s, they are much more live, vibrant & dynamic for music, and being a big full range speaker, will still double as a killer HT speaker with much higher resolution.

Just thought since I had a few days, I would do some quick last minute shopping LOL. But in reading everything I can find, and looking at everything I can afford, it seems the Salon 2 remains the best bang for the buck I can find, without being able to hear everything talked about of coarse. 
I did own the previous Legacy Focus SE, and think the are a great great speaker for the price as well. Almost willing to get a new pair for maybe even less than
the used Salons. 

Would love to run those two off!

Two left ears,

Will look em up thanks!


Those look pretty awesome!  Can they be had BN for $10k, or are you saying used? 
I owned the Beethoven’s long ago. I remember them being warm & musical
with deep bass.

Never mind, I see they are $27k new, and see the pair here on the Gon for $10k.
Wish I could hear them! Will do a little research.

Just my opinion (and maybe some others), but before I would put all my eggs in Audio Doctor's basket, I would check out John Rutan of Audio Connection. He can give you the best advice in the business. IMHO. His system advice has few peers.....
Pardon me Mr M have you worked with us before? How do you know that we dont have as good or better advice then Audio Connection?

Eggs in our backet we told the poster not to listen to a ridiculous claim of sonic superiority made by a member who heard a Revel on a Levinson setup vs Magico on what Solution or other really expensive gear in a different room with different music?

We have over 30 years of experience and a much wider selection of audio products then many dealers. 

How many dealers do you know that have five different servers on display, we have Aurender, Baetis, Naim,Innuous, and Lumin. 

Or speakers from Quad, Elac, Kef Paradigm, ATC, Dali, Rethem, Legacy, and a few others.

The point we are trying to make is dont make statements without knowing all the facts.

Mr Rutan is very knowledable  about what he sells and we are very knowledable about what we sell the difference is we have sold and experienced a lot more different brands due to 15 years at SBS and Innovative before 15 years at Audio Doctor.

Come in for a demo and see for yourself,

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ
Audio Troy,

This is fact: Awhile back I discussed with you a question regarding Loudspeakers. You pretty much dissed what I had for speakers and said they were no match for the Paradigm Persona line. If you don't remember or worse, if you believe it didn't ever happened, well, that doesn't mean that it didn't happen. You went on one of your rants about how much experience you have in the field of audio and what a great salesman you are. Pretty much what you have done here in this thread.

This is fact:  John Rutan has helped and given me good advice with my system and never pushed any of his products onto me. If anything, he complimented me on the gear I have and advised me how to get the best out of it.

John Rutan exudes knowledge without beating someone over the head with it. I believe I have my FACTS straight....
One last thing Audio Troy, I have neither the time nor the desire to get in a pissing match with you. You called me out about the FACTS, and I responded. For me, end of discussion.
Mr M. that is not FACTS you don’t reference anything other then conjucture. You have not copied and pasted anything from any thread which proves we "dissed" your speakers.

If we said your speakers sound a particular way, and that is not inlign with your opinion that is just that an OPINION and as you know OPINIONS differ. One audiophiles "musical" is another audiophiles "dull and boring."

If you actually read any of our posts we never said that any of our products destroy or are better, we might say you may prefer them or they might be better in these areas such as imaging or resolution, or we might have said that this model challenges or you may prefer this model at half the price.

We would be willing to bring our $7k Legacy Signatures and compare them to a well loved $14k set of speakers here that have built in amps, no problem bring on the challange.

In fact if you reference Ricred1 thread about the Pesonas we told him we didn’t think that the Personas would "destroy" however Contuzzi did,  his Monitor 500 but pointed out the difference between the two and we advised him to seek even better electronics than his Rowland and keep his Monitors.

We dd tell him that if he was seeking a more exciting sound then he may like the Personas, that is hardly saying they will destroy the Monitors

As per consulting with us and advice, unless you have worked one on one with us you have 0 idea about us. If we came into your home and made a few changes and made your system sound a lot better in the ways you like that my friend is working and consulting with someone. Making specific recommendations about things you can add or exchange to bring out what you desire in your system that is consulting.

That is the difference between having a discussion in a forum and having actual experience.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor

I've had many conversations with Audiotroy. He has never recommended that I sell my speakers,  but instead has suggested several ways to get the best sound our of my Monitor Audio PL 500's. I hope to visit his store in June. I don't agree with everything he said,  but based on our conversations he has earned my trust/respect. Audio is really personal preferences, not absolutes. 

Audiotroy is spot on regarding his past comments on the Dali Epicon 6 speaker. This is another speaker that should be considered. In many ways it is the perfect speaker for those of us that have our listening space in a shared living room. They are not too big, gorgeous looking and the sound quality is simply top notch. 
My preference would be for the Sonus Faber Amati Homage used under $9k would be my first choice.  Second choice would be the Revel's.  Next down would be the much cheaper Magnepans if I had the room for them.  Im still very happy with my innersound electrostats.  
Telescope for $10k those viennas may be your ticket. The Vienna sound is very liquid big soundstage.

The build quality of that speaker is impressive and the tonality is on the more rich side of neutral so if you like the overall Golden Ear sound but want more that may be your ticket.,

If you like the added clarity of the Salons then that is a good direction.

The Salons have better overall clarity then the Golden Ears but are a bit more midrange and treble prominent.

You should also hear the Sopra 2 which is a warmer yet detailed presention then what you have.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ

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Hello I was so blown away by the overall coherence of the salon 2 that I sold my Alexandria x2-2 imho few speakers at any price point match the overall match the clarity and the midrange is close to elctrostats bear in mind not very efficient the need power.To me these were the best value gem in my audio world

Bought the pair we heard last night. Love them!  What amp are you using? 

Amazing speakers! 
The poster asked the Question

Revel Salon 2's or Magico A3's

In my book it would be the Salon 2's--one would soon tire I feel of the over detailed upper Mid/Treble etched presentation of the Magicos.

Other than that Magicos are OK.

hmm, Magicos lower lines are really anything but etched sounding in my experience. 
Golden Ears tend to sound a bit dark and bass heavy

Weird. Golden Ear's Triton speakers are some of the brightest, most fatiguing I've encountered, even when driven by McIntosh amps. Ironically, in the same room where I auditioned the Triton 1s, I auditioned some Salon 2s. The Revels were far more tolerable and balanced, and I wouldn't call any Revel speaker warm.
Congrats on a fine purchase telescope.  You'll love them.  What electronics are you using?

Thanks! Funny you ask right now as I am thinking about trying something and was going to start a thread on it.

As of right now, I am using a pair of PS Audio Stellar M700 monos, and GCD preamp. Sounds great, but wondering if class D is truly the way to go, so thinking about that long term.

Also have a low powered tube integrated (MastersounD DueVenti) that is BNIB And has been up for sale, but no takers. I stopped and bought a cheap $19.95 DAC at Altex just to try it. 😳

It is supposed to be a super fine amp, But is very low power 10 W/PC Triode, 20 W/PC Pentode. I asked Revel, and they simply said “try it” LOL! SO...i think
i may as well since no one seems to want it.

Drinking a few brews first to syke myself out to even open it LOL!

Stay tuned!

Of the speakers that have been listed here and at the price point you are looking to be at I would buy the Legacy Focus SE..These are store demo units (listed here). You could have a great speaker and keep $4k in your pocket. On another site I saw a pair of Aeris with an asking price of real close to your desired budget...With all that being said I'm so glad that I've found my "for life speaker". I really am sold on the Legacy sound, and my Focus SE's keep me in total musical bliss...  
Thanks cb5300,

I bought the Revel Salon 2’s already, and trying them with different amps. I agree with you on Legacy having owned the Focus SE previously, and just sold an original pair of Focus last week. Thought about buying a current version (My ribbon SE’s were the model before the latest ones now).
But when we heard the Revels at a local shop, we had to have them. So, that
is where I am at now.
Been running the new PS Audio stellar series on them and they sound great, but last night, I unboxed a Mastersound DueVenti Integrated amp that I have for sale, and it sounds fab! Only 10 W/pc pure class A (20 In Pentode) and seeing if I can live with the power long term. So far, I can’t believe what it’s doing on the “power hungry” Salons!

And only using a $19 DAC bought from an electronics store. 😳 So a good DAC is next on the list ASAP.

Congrats! I was shopping in the $10k price range for a 26x18x7 room and as much as I liked the Kanta2 I thought they were too small to hold together at Rockin' spl's. I also listened to the contour 60 and while it was a brief demo they were very nice, flippin' huge tho! I had a pair of beethovens and really wanted that sound so I bid on "the music" here but stopped at $10k because shipping would have added another $1400! The f228be sounds great also but I still think the f208 is the best bargain in hifi...a pair of salon2's came up locally and I went to listen, I own the Salon1 and the first time I heard the salon2 was in a dry room (1 wall solid windows!)  they had no midrange so I walked, my 2nd demo was in a treated room with ML 536 mono's driving them and I couldn't believe they were the same speakers! I made an offer and currently enjoy them. That doesn't take away from all the speakers I didn't buy, and I may sell these down the road and try something else, but i'm really enjoying these now!
Thanks Steve,

Yes they are great speakers for sure! Have you tried spiking them? I have not yet, but hear it’s pretty essential!? May do it today.
I also still own (just bought less than two weeks ago) a pair of Golden Ear Triton Refs. Tempted to try them with the MastersounD amp as they are 93.5db, but don’t feel like dragging them back in. I currently have them For sale, but no takers yet. I can’t keep both! 😳
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Even though the S3mkII lack the drama in scale and dynamics compared to the Salons, the Magicos have great tone. I find the Revels more threadbare. I don't know the A3 but don't see how it is not more restricted than the S3. Thanks for the LSAF reminder!
The spikes that come with Salon 2s are OK but putting Star Sound Apprentice XL stands under mine made a substantial positive difference.  I have them under my amps as well, but they make the biggest difference with the Revels.