Review: Merlin Music Systems TSM MMe Monitor
I posted this review on Audio Review. It was stated in simple terms by a simple man but I hope that I got my point across. It was my first review but feel free to blast away. I`m an old retired sea capt. and I can take it. (I think).lol...
This is a review of the new TSM MMe`s. First I`d like to give a little background history and what initially led me to purchase these incredible monitors. Sixteen years ago a buddy had me over to listen to his system. The system consisted of Merlin signature 4`s...Tandburg pre/amp and a Denon 1420 cdp. Up to that time I had never heard a system with that kind of resolution and portrayal of a realistic sound stage. It was literally a jaw dropping experience for me and I ended up a few months later buying his whole rig. I enjoyed this system for about a year before I ended up selling it and moving out of state. I knew that if I ever got back into the audio hobby I would buy Merlin speakers and build a system around them. Well it took a while, but now, 16 years later, I put together a system consisting of the Merlin TSM MMe`s...Audio Aero Prima mki int. amp and the old reliable Denon 1420 cdp.
Here`s the breakdown cost excluding speakers....
AA Prima int. amp....$590 purchased used on a`gon.
Denon 1420 cdp..... $61 purchased used.
Reality cables..... $450 purchased new. (speaker cables and ic`s)
Osiris stands.... $275 purchased used on a`gon.
Initial total gear cost excluding the TSM`s....$1376.00.
Pretty short money by audiophile standards I`d say.
Now let`s move on to what I heard with this initial rig. I thought that my old Merlin sig. 4`s were pretty special, and they were but these speakers performed beyond my wildest imagination. The clarity, naturalness, sound stage presentation, natural instrument timbre and just plain ol` toe tap`n musicality literally thrilled me. Vocals in particular were so realistic that if I were listening at night with my eyes closed I felt like I had to close my robe to keep Eva Cassidy from getting a big thrill. Well...ok... a medium thrill. :)... I wondered if it could get any better than this. Well it has....
A few weeks ago I upgraded my cdp to an Audio Aero Prima mkii, implemented isolation stands and various microphonic vibration control tweaks from Herbie`s Audio lab. I now feel that my audio journey is complete. My listening room is 14'x17' and the sound stage not only spans the 14' width but on some recordings seemingly expands beyond. Truly a wonder to me. The depth is also incredible. Herbie`s tweaks have damped out vibrations without affecting dynamics and I highly recommend them. The sound stage is now realistically layered (air between instruments) and gives an honest "you are there" feeling. There have been times that I literally had to kick out friends, neighbors and family so that I could get some sleep. That`s how appealing my system has become. I`m not really capable of audiophile or tech speak so I tried to portray my honest impressions in layman terms. IMHO these speakers are world class and will be my final speaker purchase.
In summation, I think what I`m trying to get across is that to really enjoy music through these "newest incarnation" Merlins you don`t have to spend a lot of money. They seem to have evolved into a very forgiving transducer. They are indeed wonderful and I`m honored to own them.
Lastly, I`d like to thank Bobby P. of Merlin fame for patiently answering all of my questions. He truly is a good guy and an asset to the audio community.
If you, the reader, feels that I have left anything out, just read all the positive reviews prior to this one. It seems that this newest model has earned all of the accolades of the older models and that they`ve become even more refined. Find a way to give them a listen, I think you`ll really like them. Got to go now, Eva calls. ;)
Absolutely clear and "you are there" presentation.
Non fatiguing (could listen to them for hours and then want more.)
Incredibly huge sound stage.
Sound great with inexpensive ancillary components. (very important to me).
Strong, fast, realistic bass for a monitor. (I feel no need for a sub).
Time seems to fly in my listening room. Other than that, none to my ears.
Similar Products Used:
Various dealer and friend`s systems auditioned.
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