Stereophile claims about Magico

Stereophile claims Magico has revolutionized loudspeaker design. All I see is standard design. Only 1 thing is slightly new, carbon nano tubes the carbon fiber cones already been done, aluminum cabinets been done. The driver array 1 tweeter 1 mid 2 woofers been done to death. The way magico attaches drivers old as the hills Ive got 50 year old loudspeakers that mount simlar. The way he designs crossovers is fairly standard. So whats the revolution the nano carbon tubes? Or just another bold claim on mag cover to sell issues.
They use "magic" - that is what is revolutionary. LOL. Stereophile continues to count on the gullability and lack of technical knowledge of people with high disposable income who like to believe they own "revolutionary" products. So what is new - my PC is revolutionary, my car is revolutionary, my cellphone is revolutionary. The orange juice I drink in the morning is revolutionary - it contains calcium. The milk in my coffee is revolutionary as it contains Vitamin C. ROFLMAO. It is called hype marketing and it is universal!

Magico are great speakers but revolutionary is just standard stereophile hype.

In a world with me too speaker boxes built in China and me too drivers cheaply built and mass produced in Northern Europe perhaps Magico is actually REVOLUTIONARY.
I thought the TAS review was better. Stereophile spends 1/3 of the space discussing their policy on # of dealers required to qualify for their reviewing a product. TAS has more meat. Of course all reviews have the same purpose.
Feb 08 issue Stereophile vol 31 no 2 cover claims a New fullrange loudspeaker referance. But its not Magico? So in 2 issues the new fullrange referance has been replaced by a revolution in loudspeaker design;) Whats next? If sp thinks it needs attention getting headlines on front page to sell mags maybe they forget how many mag vendors dont stock sterophile. I cant find it anywhere except borders.
Mileage sure varies. I think TAS has very little meat these days. They've gone in the direction of the lame Fi magazine that many of them were part of, and it's sad.
And that, Avguygeorge, is to ENTERTAIN. If useful info pops out accidentally, great all the better.
I don't read it the way that you do. The full quote is "Revolutinizing speaker design. Alon Wolf's Magico V3." I don't take it to mean that the V3 is revolutionary; I take it to mean that the process of designing speakers that Wolf uses is revolutionary. That design aspect is covered rather thoroughly in the article on Wolf. In fact, if you look at the genesis of his horn speakers, it certainly seems like a different design process, more heavily dependent on computer modeling than is typical and the result seems unusual as well. I will leave it to others as to what consitutes a "revolution". And yes, these tag lines are meant to sell magazines.
Or just another bold claim on mag cover to sell issues.

Now you're getting warmer. :)

Stereophile is just like any other enthusiast magazine, it's purpose is to move product. Take it for what it's porn. I subscribe to see photos and read physical descriptions of gear that I've never seen before, and/or cannot audition in person. I give very little weight to their sonic descriptions or their 'used car salesman' approach.
Let your own ears be the judge.

As I took it the designer thinks that using something besides MDF as the cabinet material is revolutionary.

I found it interesting how unenthusiastic JA was in the measurements section. Also, JA's statement about the PSB Synchrony One at $4500/pr is telling.
The review is revolutionary compared your's regarding the Avantgarde 2.1.(They actually said something of interest).
I also felt that Absolute Sound's article was much better. Infact, actually correct if you read between the lines. "The V3's top two octaves were brighter than the Salon2's, resulting in a more open and airy presentation, but one that lacked the Salon2's silky smoothness." Absolute sounds negative opinions are more significant because harder to come by in most reviews. I personally thought that the tweeter was harsh and edgy.

"The Salon2 packed a wallop in the midbass; the V3 Base was less dramatic,". "TheV3's bottom end seemed to pressurize the room at the lowest frequencies." I found that music with a lot of base suffered the most. It sounded boxed in and lost the multiple frequencies surrounding the deepest sounds. Too sharp as if it's low frequencies were cut off too steeply. It did not just have a lack of base extention but more a disturbing lacked symmetry between the bass and the rest of speaker.
i have not heard the magico. I am all for paying a "premium" for north american or european products (non china) ut does anyone else find the prices charged by magico simply insane? I say this in light of this thread as a non technical layman who has seen his fair share of speakers over 20 years, i dont believe magico is anything revolutionary.

rather then been impressed by reviews of magico as audio porn, ive been disgusted and not been able to realy concentratew on the reivews because i the pricing just seems so outrageous.

For the record, i do enjoy reading about expensive equip. (ala levinson) just something about the magico line and the "raves" that irks me.....see kharma as well
I am not too concerned with Stereophiles hype. I did have the opportunity to audition the Magicos at Sound by Singer and they are great speakers. Very clean detailed and not too forward. and they are not too big. I loved them.
$ 25,000.00 a pair seems a little high to me. I would buy them second hand.
When will Stereophile & TAS introduce their "swimsuit" issue :-)
Just curious after reading the article if anybody browsed previous loudspeaker articles about methods used in dampening or stiffing the MDF box?

My short review found:

nothing very innovative in cabinet dampening or stiffing
extensively bracing of the cabinet
ply hardwood layers sandwiched together
combination of resin, glue, or gel to strengthen cabinet
super plywood Birch or some exotic wood I never heard of

So...if I'm a designer where are the technological advances in acoustic construction of MDF design cabinets? More bracing.
Shadorne: In a world with me too speaker boxes built in China and me too drivers cheaply built and mass produced in Northern Europe perhaps Magico is actually REVOLUTIONARY.

Perhaps Magico was designed in the USA in 1776. :)
It's clear from the review that the speakers were not the be all and end all, Magico was welcomed in to the field as a new player.

I think it's interesting to watch reviewers move through the various price levels over the years. They get more and more expensive gear as time goes by, and they get less relevant over time due, mainly, to the fact that they're reviewing stuff most of us consider "ridiculously priced", either because we really do feel that way or because we can never afford it.

Reading JV in TAS talk about his latest "this is the greatest thing since sliced bread" speaker is comical at this point. JS used to be this way, but thankfully found another career to veer into. And then you get his review on the V2 version of the same speaker and it, not surprisingly, goes to whole new levels and costs another several thousand bucks. What!?!?! How is this an experience any of us can leverage?

Whatever. Good entertainment, but for the most part pretty useless for really identifying "revolutionary".
I tend to drink the Kook-Aid at these things, but I have been to two Magico demos featuring Alon Wolff and left both times feeling that the price of the Minis is not out of line given the engineering and parts in them. The crossovers alone are something to behold, He's a very impressive guy. Plus I like the speakers.
I am a subscriber of Stereophile but to be honest I never read it outside "The Library". I'm sure you know what I mean. Sometimes there are some interesting articles like the Oppo etc. which I purchased one to see what the hoopla was all about. But somehow I think there is something better in the entry level CD Player category. We just haven't found it yet. As for the Magico the article was in fact interesting but not enough for me to buy a pair at $45 grand. There is nothing new in speaker design as there is nothing new with tube circuits, or solid state circuits,etc. And for sure there is nothing "Revolutionary" about the Magico. They do look nice!
I think the V3 is a very solid, and musical speaker.

However, it seems their has been a lot of press coverage, for such an esoteric product, it almost seems peculiar.
TAS, dedicated almost the whole issue to them, then Stereophile.... I mean it is a GREAT product but not revolutionary. I actually think Magico speakers have more sonic peers than my restored Garrard 301.

I am happy though that they are at least "pushing" something that most would agree is a very fine proudct unlike much of the average gear they recommend
Sorry if this is to obvious but the perfect speaker doesn't exist so I guess any claim is just that,a claim.
Having been here at the site, for long-time; I know so many love to trash the mags.---However just from having read their constant trashing; I think the writers have more integrity. ( in that) I never read in the rags re. dumb philes that post as if they were experts ??--(This in part referring to that long Michael Fremer bash- post, a year or so back.)
My friend has had the new version Magico Minis for over six months.It is a fine speaker,and really a beauty to behold.It also fills up space,far more-so than one would think a speaker like this could.

As to the is very slightly less open in the upper mid than my Avalon Ascent MK-II(another "way overbuilt" product,from a while ago,but holds up incredibly well).The rest of the spectrum is actually very similar.My friend agrees,as we have identical equipment.

I LOVE the Minis,and preferred it slightly more than the V-3.Yet,I DO think the asking price is getting a bit too much,and when TAD comes out with their own mini version of the Ref(soon to come),the Mini will have some real competition,and I hope TAD does price their product a bit better.Competition is a good thing!

I definitely think some reviewers "over hype" certain favored mfgrs!!..This has seemed obvious for a long time.

The more responsible mfgrs don't use this to increase prices(regularly),but there are some who take advantage of this.

I'm not insinuating Magico does this,but they have gone up a few too many times,and to a "great extent" regardless of superior construction,IMO. When JV goes non stop about the product,over and over again,and admitted that Alon Wolf is a friend,one has to think about it...NO?
From all that has been said here, one may think that there were different articles people read. “Useless hype” vs. “not the be all and end all”, TAS review was better vs. worst, some would not buy it because it is $45K, and one actually took RH V3 bass compliments so out of context that you really wonder about simple things like reading comprehension. Even when compliments are given, one will immediately add that his $5K 20 years old speakers is actually better. It is obvious, to me, from this and many posts here, that opinions have nothing to very little to do with merits. Even so called “preferences” that we all have, get tainted with egos here so fast that hardly any intelligent discussion can actually take place. As a V3 owner, I was waiting to see an SP review for long time. I can only imagine, and it was confirm, IMO, in the long “missing the scoop excuse” as to how difficult it must have been for SP to “agree” with TAS. Nevertheless, by now, the 2 main US magazines, 2-3 US on-line magazine, and many publications all over the world (Including 2 Japanese Grand prix award), agreeing that there is some merit to the brand. Such a consensus is unusual. But I guess to most of the commenters here it means nothing. Even when somewhat deeper than usual explanation is given to the unusual (Revolutionary?) methods MAGICO uses to build its products, one will claim here that his 50 year old loudspeakers is built similar... I guess the word entertainment comes to mind.
So here are a few revolutionary facts for you all: An acoustic suspension design (Sealed), 12” X 15” foot print, 88db sensitivity with in-room bass responses down to 20 Hz!. These speakers have more usable anechoic output at 20Hz then just about any other speakers SP has EVER measured. That includes some big behemoth like the Wilson MAXX2. Now add a -/+ 3 db flat anechoic from 40 Hz to 40K. No resonant box modes to be found. A 4 ohm nominal around the entire power region, superbly clean spectral-decay plot and IMD at single digits. All that at a price tag of $25K (I know it is expensive but so is Ferraris or Porches, if you have problem with these prices, why trash them? Simply do not buy them.) If that is not “revolutionary” enough for you guys, I would like to know what is.
Dhann,I have to give you credit.You are correct on quite a few points....But unlike the "gas crunch",consumers(on forums like this) have the ability to affect things,though to a small extent and maybe only sometimes.
I,myself, absolutely would consider a purchase of the Minis,if leaving my current dwelling(where I have a dedicated room).Yes,the speaker should be auditioned in a home environment to be fully appreciated.I personally love them,and am "not" rationalizing my comparison to what I own.

Also,the Magico cabinetry is "fabulous" and incredibly well constructed,but I don't believe the Magico way is necessarily the only way to achieve low/almost non existant cabinet noise.This is a subject that is open to debate,but there are more ways than some would know,to dampen a cabinet(effectively) and NOT store energy...Magico does a fabulous job(in marketing too),but they are not alone,and even some MDF/HDF boxes can be "made absolutely quiet" if skillfully attended to.

Ex:...Much of the TAD Ref is MDF,and is absolutely dead quiet,and loses NO musical information,through stored energy....I've enjoyed them on numerous occassions!!
Regarding the wonderful Magico Mini,in my friend's room,the low freq cut off is somewhat higher in his room than you may think(I cannot possibly see meaningful/useful output down to "anything" in the 20's,and he uses a fabulous/expensive SS amp),and all rooms will affect this.In my friend's room,the cut-off is 31 hz(I don't know how much of "that" is really useable bass).I know it satisfies me,but the "weight" cannot match some other designs(it's still great,btw).I repeat...I personally LOVE them "just the way they are"!
Yet,some of my other "bass obsessed" friends(actually very experienced audiophile/music lovers) think the actual weight/power of the bass is not that good...I disagree!!
This has caused quite a stir,in my little group of friends!And YES,the speaker is VERY well set up,and driven with top flight stuff!

To me,the speaker is fabulous!!....BUT, is "approaching" silly expensive,and there are those who will draw a line and seek out alternatives(think Ridge Street Audio Sason).

BTW,your V-3 is also a wonderful speaker,like many other fine designs,both new and somewhat less new.....Enjoy!!
I suspect that many of us hear so much hype regarding various stereo components that it is just easier to pass it off unless you could actually afford to own them / it. And since most of us here can't afford to own them, revolutionary is nice but in reality doesn't make much difference until we receive the trickle down technology. But is is nice to read about when in the library just like the exotic cars.
I for one could never consider spending 25k on speakers no matter how revolutionary they were unless they also did my laundry, cooked my breakfast, and kept me warm at night.
Sirspeedy - TAD is actually a great example how a similar design losses it’s magic once cabinet material is changed. The M1, which was constructed like the Mini, was a fabulous speaker. Unfortunately Pioneer, could not control the cracking on these cabinets. They also, I am sure, realized they priced them way too low. The replacement, the R1 are more expensive, built to a much lesser standards, and, unfortunately, IMO, a pale shadow sonically to the M1. It is not possible to build a world class speaker from MDF. Mainly due to low modulus of elasticity (MOE). MDF is simply not stiff enough, and therefore over damped for a proper bass enclosure. Even the most “talented engineer” cannot change MDF low MOE. There are good reasons why airplane wings are made of Aluminum and not MDF.
"There are good reasons why airplane wings are made of Aluminum and not MDF."
And none of them relates to sound!
Everything relates to sound (vibrations)!

So typical, in audio, everyone is an expert...
Roypan...."Respectfully",I could not disagree with you more!The new TADs are the superior of the old one,from my own set of tastes,and those I know who heard them.
Yes,I know all about the difficulty of making the orig cabinets,and the orig cost being too low,but the new design really "shines".If it sounds good to me,it sounds good.Period!-:)
Also,the business of the "cracking in cabinets"....This I never heard about(in ANY speaker,over my forty years in the hobby).Are you speaking from experience,where you know "many" of the cabinets have suffered from this(through production,not shipping)?A fact regarding "many",or a rumor?
BTW,I am not trying to be condescending,just stating my own views.
The TAD-M1 had issues with the finish. The cabinets were fine. It was the laminations that would expand differently with humidity giving an uneven appearance. This was an aesthetic issue but an important one given their price.
i think the term 'revolutionary' is a poor choice of words. 'unique' or 'different' would have been more accurate, but doesn't sound as 'revolutionary'.
wondering if any one here has ever compared the B&W 800d's to the Magico V3's? or has anyone here listen to and/or seen the magico 6's? considering a move at some point from the 800d's nothing deff but thinking about it.
Shadorne - A bit more then just the finish I am afraid. I had 2 pairs…
I listened to these and was underwhelmed--poor price to performance. I like the new floorstanding KEF and Pioneer speakers--at a third the price. Don't know the production problems detailed above--demoed the TADs at the Pioneer store at South Coast Plaza mall in Orange County and was impressed at their smooth mid-range sound and crystal clear sonics. I listened to the new KEFs side by side next to the Magico and thought they ran rings around them. I would pocket cash in a minute.
Wow reading some of these responses makes me wonder. Is the Magico V3 the new Wilson WP? You know the speaker everyone "hates" but everyone want to build one like it? My point is if you don't like the speaker fine, buy something else. This is why there are tons of speaker companies. There isn't one speaker for everyone. I agree with Dhaan, trashing the speaker is crazy. We could go on and on trashing gear we don't like. But what will that solve? Do I think the Magico are revolutionary, I don't know because I have never heard them. I do like all the buzz they are getting because this is what this hobby needs. We need something to come along and stir all of us up. Now if we could just get "normal" people to have this kind of passion. But that is another thread.
You are right on the money. We need some excitement in this hobby ASAP . BTW, SP and TAS are not alone. I just came back from Germany where, to my surprise, a review of the V3 in May Stereoplay issue was available at the airport magazine shop. My German is a bit weak but I could tell few things. Unlike the US “politically correct” magazines the Germans actually grade products. The V3 score is the highs score they have ever given to any loudspeaker! The article, which includes measurements, declare the V3 as a new reference. One of the most interesting thing about the speakers was the constant low distortion ratio vs. freq. measurements at different volume level. The V3 maintained the same low distortion % level, without any change in freq. response all the way from 85 to 100 db SPL. To me that is probably the most telling measurements you can have on a loudspeaker (To bad SP does not perform it).
The floorstander is worth 10-12k tops IMO...

If the cabinet was constructed in the same manner as the mini then MAYBE the asking price would be justifiable???
DHaan-Would love to see that review. Will it be on line anywhere?
Have a look at It seems like they do post, eventually, some of their reviews online.
I think the review was very positive, but subdued in the usual JA way (one problem with multiple reviewers in one mag).

look at the positives:

Magico's vibration measurements were so low he didn't bother to publish (got other speakers to review after all).

The bass quality and quality were outstanding (compare 20hz response to the 2x more expensive Wilson Maxx)

As for revolutionary, I think the number of true high end manufacturers building their own drivers can be counted on one hand. And I know of no other manufacturers designing crossovers in a virtual environment. And nobody I know of is pursuing cost no object designs with an open slate resulting in products like the Ultimate.
Honestly I haven't heard any Magico loudspeakers, so what I write is purely hypothetical.Besides the drivers ( lots of new drivers come into existence annually) , everything else is normal loudspeaker technology taken to the ultimate execution possible at a given price point, with good aethetics and domestically acceptable size. Hence I would use the term evolutionary.
What I find painful is that companies like Overkill Audio, which take an end to end approach with meticulous execution, get no press coverage from large mainstream audio magazines. I guess advertisments decide the sound quality. Hence whenever I recommend anything on this forum, it is never mainstream, and it usually comes from a manufacturer who makes a damn good product.
V3 is a great speaker however mini 2 has better cabinet better parts in crossover and overall a more natural sound it also has custom edison music posts v3 does not. These are 2 of the best speaker out there regardless of the stereophile aricle mini 2 got to stereo sound awards in Japan.
I think we went about it already. Yes, the Mini has its pluses but, for my money, the V3 covers more ground and has the best bass money can buy. They are also more efficient, and IMO, more transparent. There is a lot to say for a dedicated pure midrange. BTW, the Mundorf posts on the V3 are much better than then Cardas posts on the Mini (Not sure where you got the Edison posts idea) . Having said all that, I would/am be happy with either one.
I have heard both the MINI and the fine V3.I like the V3,but believe the Mini does a better disappearing act.Less pretentious,is how I hear them.
They sound more coherent and the presentation seems to emanate from a more ideal sphere(point source).
The "BIG" deal about the Mini,to me,is that it can go "BIG",and from a fairly "SMALL" package.This is a great thing for many city dwellers,who still want real high end dynamics,and powerful sound,but have limited space.
Also,like me in the not too distant future,if you are going from a home with a good size dedicated room(with a fairly large floorstander,that you hate to give up)to a smaller condo,the MINI will give up very little!
"THAT" is a real benefit,and a strong selling point!

The V3 certainly does not have the gorgeous appearance that the Mini has,and it is not made to the same level,in cabinetry....The Mini does not seem to give up much in the low freq compared to the V3,"if" set up well!
I like the Mini "much" more,and think it "is", and "sounds more special" than the V3,but both are superb products.

Btw,I have heard(at length,and many times)the Mini at "EBM's" home....His previous speaker was a superb Kharma.The Mini is a far better match to both his room,and equipment....It really is an impressive set-up!!...By any standard!!

The funny thing is.....that there are a few local hobyists that have also heard EBM's system,but cannot accept the high level of sound such a "relatively small" speaker can produce.These guys have HUGE multi way speakers,that take up "GOBS" of space!....It seems the psychology of the situation has caused rather severe criticism of EBM's system,which is laughable to me,but not too funny to EBM!!The guy spent alot of money,and has superb stuff.
It's nice when credit is given,when well deserved. -:)

Do not know when and how you compared the two speakers. As usual, we rush to form an opinion. I would have to disagree with your conclusion. And I should know, I have them both (My original Mini was finally upgraded about 2 months ago). In the same environment, properly set up, you may feel differently as well. Again, both are wonderful but if I had to choose, it will be the V3. You give up some but you gain a lot. BTW, the V3 foot print is actually smaller then the Mini. You are right about two things though, the Mini BIG sound and their “spherical” imaging are a real shockers. These two loudspeakers, are in a league of their own. You will do fine with either one.
Be careful...Magico has the worst customer service and did not want to service an older model nor answer any questions regarding this model. Alon was arrogant, rude, and dismissive -- quite amazing actually. I am speaking from personal experience and I am not the only one.
Maybe I am not the only one who feels this way. In Critics corner on audioasylum is a long thread started by a respected audio designer.
It amazes me how some folks are SO affected by lots of press,and exposure to something new,as well as forum "talk",like here.!...HOW much experience does one need(in years in the hobby,or good sense)to be able to feel secure with a buying decision,regardless of what is to come?...."AND" something new surely "will" be around the corner!

My point being that although the Magico Minis are superb,in my friend's set-up/room(the room has a huge impact on this speaker),"he" is so insecure about the fabulous recent press of the newer V3,that he has gotten "absolutely" insecure with his decision about buying the Minis,and he is driving me nuts,because I cannot believ he cannot know this.
I happen to LOVE the speaker,as it sounds in his set-up,and so would you!!

Add a bit of criticism,from some of our local audio group(all usually carniverous towards anything new),about his bass performance(which sounds great to me,btw)and the recipe is set,for insecurity,and second guessing if "I bought the right speaker"!..Sheeeeesh!
Don't we actually know what we want from our own set-ups?Without having to read lots of praise,on a consistent basis,from reviews,and lots of nice "colored pics" in the latest issue of our favorite "gotta get it now,'cause your screws are loose if your speaker is over a year old"(more than figuratively) magazine?

My feelings are that the multitude of hobbyists who have spent years voicing a set-up,and may even prefer "quality vintage stuff"(much of "that" sounding amazing,if updated,and pampered,from what I have heard)have my greatest respect!...."These guys know" what they want from a music system,beyond the latest "great press" product!
Sid Marks is one of them."I could care less about anything except "how it sounds in my room"!!..His words!!...I don't have to say how amazing the guy's system actually "is"!And he knows it,and is secure to boot!
Unlike the "name brand" fan,friend of mine(a great guy),who just happens to have fabulous sound too,but "needs" others to remind him of this,regularly!...Two different hobbyists,from different eras in the hobby.Btw,Sid doesn't follow too many mags,or take everything to heart,from a reviewer....he "was" one!Ya gotta love the guy!
Both the Mini and V3 are fabulous speakers,but I'm amazed that I know someone who is clueless as to just how "great" his set-up is,and constantly "needs" reinforcement that "it is"!...I hope he reads this,and he'll probably miss my whole point,and get mad at me for the post.

Why?...because there are some folks who value "Branding" and "Names",over what is going on in their audio rooms!They don't stop to listen.
If it sounds good,shouldn't it "be" good?Do we need a certain number of hobbyists or press to tell us this is so?
Also,if it stinks,you should know it too,without someone telling you!

Most importantly,has the industry gotten "so" good at marketing, that some superb products can be "under-appreciated" in a "short period of time"(alot more common than we think),as the newer unit now supplants the older one?

"Yesterdays news"?...I would not be surprised to see the "wonderful" Mini go a little "South" once TAD introduces "their" own take on the Minimonitor(which should be superb),this fall/winter...from what I have been told.

It will take "nothing" away from the Mini,but watch the sudden shift,and remember how fickle some are,as to "if it's good,it's good"!....Check out Audiogon's used speaker dept at the time,for a "deal on used Minis"!
Especially when our most popular reviewers wax on about the latest "must buy product"(there's zillions of 'em)!!

Which is a "certainty"....more-so than Big Brown was!!


Hear hear, nicely said. We could probably all benefit by taking a moment to look at our audiophile reflection under the illumination of your post.
Nicely said, Sirspeedy.