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KEF LS50 and Magnepan MMG Super Speakers

 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3042
Registered: Oct-07
Just came back from this years THE show in Newport Beach....
It is just up the road and I parked at a friends house, so parking woes were a memory from my last attendence, a few years ago.

This year?

I heard a couple of REAL showstoppers...and for what amounts to not a lot of coin

First up? The KEF LS50. This is an amazing little speaker. Good, deep and real bass along with very nice highs without stridency or grain. Indeed, a violin solo had that live quality and 'texture' of the real instrument. And while Bach's tocatta and fuege in D minor lacked the full bass implact I know it has, at least the woofer didn't 'double' and produce harmonic problems. I give this a ++ rating. For 1500$ list, I'm told they are selling many times the planned number.

Second....and you know I'm a panel fan....was the Magnepan MMG'super'. This is a reworked but apparently all-new MMG size speaker which is ONLY sold with the DWM mid-bass module. Very few specifics are available from Magnepan but the ARE 'quasi ribbon' mid/tweet and a bass panel they say is related to the top of the line 20 series. BUT, that's nonsense as the 20 series is push/pull of 'double sided'. All that is meaningless however, once they simply TURN THEM ON with some music. Seamless? Expansive image? Layered? Detailed? YES to all and more. These guys go out for about 1200$ or 1750$ with 2 DWM modules. The last? For LARGE rooms. I'll bet 100 Pesos they have a series crossover.
The Magnepan room was a near-jungle of real (fake?) green stuff as diffusion. NO electronics was in evidence and the 'show' was run from a computer interface.
The Magnepan room was the ONLY stop on my tour today which requrired RESERVATIONS! Wendell D. was in attendence and his usual congenial self. Nice guy and accessible.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 16305
Registered: Feb-05
Thw KEF's are on my short list. Don't care if I ever hear another Magnepan. The LS50 is an excellent speaker. Couple of others in that price raneg that are special are Sonus Faber Venere 1.5 and Dynaudio Excite X14. Lots of good stuff out there for different tastes and styles.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3044
Registered: Oct-07
Met Bruno P. , the 'inventor' of Hypex, and a MAJOR force in 'd' amp design and execution.
At that time I listened briefly to the New N-Core 1200, a monster 'd' amp of great refinement.
I spoke w/Bruno, who is not only knowledgable but patient as well. Great guy and I learned at lot and had a few suspicions confirmed. Of the last? Well, 'd' amps are TIME LIMITED at max power. For some, mainly those who listen to Sine Waves, this is a problem. But given that REAL music is very dynamic, you'll NEVER tap into max power/time limits. ever.
The N-Core 400 is therefore back on my short list. A PAIR of stereo amps would bi-amp my panels and take care of ANY conceivable power problem....far into the future. I would build 'em to be able to eventually add an active, line level crossover and delete the speakers current caps and coil.

Art, the KEF and Maggies share quite a bit. Now, I may or may NOT be as discriminating as yourself, BUT, they do have some commonality. Both image like crazy. Both are dynamic in the sense of responding quickly to input. Both have good balance. Both disappear quite well.
Now, this was in a HOTEL room. Real people in a real room may have or note differences. The Maggie will 'scale' to a larger space with the simple addition of another bass module....while someone MIGHT be tempted to add a sub to the KEF?

I would add that an audition of both of 'em is in order.

I did my hospitality room duties today and met a fine YOUNG couple. They were just starting out in audio and the young fellow very curious about stuff...though they both seemed to have opinions...the girl noting that if she didn't like it, she listened for a few seconds and LEFT. Good on her. Now to figure out the commonalities and figure out the direction to move.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 16308
Registered: Feb-05
A lot of good speakers share those common characteristics including my Dynaudio's. It's much of the rest of what Magnepan's do that I'm not fond of. I do understand their allure as I was once smitten by them myself. Certainly they are good speakers, just not for me. Those KEF's on the other hand are quite special.
 

Gold Member
Username: Gavdawg

Albany, New York

Post Number: 1671
Registered: Nov-06
Art, I still have my iQ3s... KEF makes a great pair of speakers. They have flaws, but I cannot bear to part with them... same as the Tekton SDFR.

Now if I could find a speaker that combines the best virtues of the two...

My MMG are back in storage FWIW.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 16385
Registered: Feb-05
Hey Gav I'm still listening to the Dynaudio's I bought about a year and a half ago. About to buy a new speaker for my little listening space. I have already owned and loved the Harbeth P3ESR so I may pick up a pair of Spendor S3/5r2's...still kind of shopping though.
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