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Eminent Tech Lft B or Magnepan 1.7

24.143.60.66

Posted on February 15, 2012 at 02:47:04
jazzbeat
Audiophile

Posts: 235
Location: Kansas city,MO
Joined: February 18, 2004
Hi I am curious as to the opinions of how these compare. Have owned the
Maggie 1.6 and the ET Lft 8A and both are nice. Just haven't heard the 1.7
or B version of ET yet.

Any input would be great...

Thanks

 

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I am probably in the minority here, posted on February 16, 2012 at 20:30:32
Stale
Audiophile

Posts: 2922
Location: Illinois
Joined: August 3, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
April 12, 2006
I own VIIIA, not B, and I preferred it to 1.6 for several reasons that you can read in my review, but I could live with either of them. B version it seems bring better top end.

Now, I had chance to hear 1.7 and for me it is step back, I would rather have 1.6. I found 1.7 uneven, non-coherent and uninvolving. So, since you have 1.6 already, I do not believe that 1.7 is the way to go.

What are your priorities should determine what is better. If you enjoy playing at low levels, if you love microdynamics and crave midrange coherence, go VIIIB-s, if not go Maggies.




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"One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane."

 

RE: I am probably in the minority here, posted on February 16, 2012 at 20:52:57
JBen
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Posts: 2430
Joined: May 18, 2008
Contributor
  Since:
December 0, 0000
I would have to add that the 1.7s did give me that impression when they were new. Meaning, that they did not sound like an improvement. That totally changed after a few weeks.

What you comment about the 1.6s is the reason I mentioned it also. I think that those who developed a taste for the 1.6s have a harder time liking the 1.7s. I wish I could measure them or see good comparative measurements but I would expect to see the 1.7s show a more balanced lower end.

The good thing here is that none of these speakers are bad choices. I certainly could live with any of them...well, as long as I am allowed to tweak things, LOL!

 

I could live with either, posted on February 17, 2012 at 10:36:36
Stale
Audiophile

Posts: 2922
Location: Illinois
Joined: August 3, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
April 12, 2006
Just that my preferences are in the low level detail and coherence, so I chose VIIIAs


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane."

 

RE: I could live with either, posted on February 17, 2012 at 11:50:27
JBen
Audiophile

Posts: 2430
Joined: May 18, 2008
Contributor
  Since:
December 0, 0000
In my previous posting, I forgot to add something. The 8B do deliver good detail down at the bottom.

I usually listen to a set of very fine speakers costing 8x the 8B price at a friend's home. I can't tell him that the 8B beat these on the level of bottom detail. However, I think he could sense or perceive this. In fact, had his wife not "liked" the looks of the 8B, he would have bought a pair for his 2nd room. Saleperson error: he did not tell them that the 8B do have grill covers. Without them, they only appear sexy to audiophiles.

 

RE: I could live with either, posted on February 17, 2012 at 11:18:28
JBen
Audiophile

Posts: 2430
Joined: May 18, 2008
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  Since:
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LOL! We are going to have a kind argument, if you will. The 8B (to me) could not do that as well as the 1.7s. However, we may be looking at different aspects.

Perhaps the difference has to do with the 8B being able to go further down in frequency than the 1.7s. Also, almost needless to say, the 8B are more dynamic-sounding.

The 1.7s, down to the (less ample) frequency limit that they reach, delivered more detil at the bottom. In a crude oversimplification, the 8B is more impressive in range and dynamics at the bottom. Meanwhile, the 1.7 goes for detail and textures for as low as it can reach.

The 1.7 is no wimp on dynamics but the 8B brags from the get go that it can push some serious air. In fact, if it could do this at very loud levels it would have made a killing in the market, I suspect.

As it is, the 8Bs combination of fine planar sound and dynamic impact can't be had at this price point elsewhere. Which is why I always tell my friends about it. Most of them crave the dynamics more than I do...which may mean that I have loose gene or something.

 

RE: Eminent Tech Lft B or Magnepan 1.7, posted on February 15, 2012 at 18:46:11
JBen
Audiophile

Posts: 2430
Joined: May 18, 2008
Contributor
  Since:
December 0, 0000
The B model is really nicely done and sounds impressive within its power band. I think ET did a terrific job for a $2k planar with ribbons. I always mention it to friends who may prefer a more dynamic rendition than full planars typically offer. OTOH, on various sessions, the ribbon tweeter on the 8b never showed me "ribbon tweeter performance" like the 3.6 or 3.7s do.

The 1.7 is another bargain. However, I have never heard them and the 8b in the same room. I have used some of my same music on both but my exposure to the 1.7s has been much longer if only in a demo room. BTW, the 1.7s took their time to sound good. I visited the dealer along several weeks before I started liking them.

While I can endorse the 8B for some of my friends, if I had (myself) $2k I could go for 1.7s...but only on my way to get 3.7s. The 1.7's tweeter is not ribbon and it does not pretend. It just sounds great until one hears the same music in the 3.7s. So, it MAY be that it is closer to the 8b tweeter sound.

At the other extreme, the 8b are more bass dynamics (and extension) than the 1.7s. Where things get tricky is on the detail part. Down to its less dynamic low limits, the 1.7 keeps finding rich detail. The 8b's cone woofer is not shabby at all, just a good...cone. Not helping: it crosses so high that it trades detail for impulse response. Then again, I would not be unhappy if I had to live with the 8b. Indeed, a friend who owns good cone speakers gave them the edge on this count.

Midrange performance is one thing I've never found a problem with on either. They each have an integrated personality with their own totality. For example, the 8b nicely zings you with the lower notes of a guitar that fall in the woofer's range. Yet, as the same guitar goes up higher and into the panels range, there's no impression of breakdown or discontinuity. This surprised me and it suggests hard work on making that cone behave harmoniously with the panel. Still, the slightly less lower end zing in the 1.7 comes with a better leading-edge texture. The same guitar on the 1.7s is enchanting in what seems to be harmonics and perhaps decays. At first, I thought it could be the 1.7s room but later I heard the 8Bs in a 2nd setting and this still did not come across as with the 1.7. To me, it is just a matter of subjective preference; one on which I could switch back and forth depending on the day and mood.

Having spent the least time playing vocals all I can say is that neither of them ever sounded wrong to me. On the contrary, I was drawn to each in manners that suspended the ability to judge properly. They are not the same but I can't remember the differences.

If I had a reservation with the 8b, it could be imaging as compared to the Maggies, not just 1.7s. For some reason, the 8b -- in two quite different settings -- never impressed me to the extent Maggies can. Now, anyone who has never heard what planar imaging can do, would be delighted with what I've heard from the 8b. It was excellent imaging. The Maggies just seem to be a bit more eager to show off on this count and I have to admit that I am particularly partial to good imaging.

Since you had the 1.6, I should add that it seems like Magnepan made the 1.7s frequency response more flat than I remember the 1.6 having.

 

RE: Eminent Tech Lft B or Magnepan 1.7, posted on February 15, 2012 at 03:27:00
patmacav
Audiophile

Posts: 43
Location: Chicago
Joined: April 29, 2008
I'm curious also, but do share with us your opinion on what you have heard. How do the 1.6 and the ET Lft 8A compare in your opinion? Did you hear them in the same room, at the same time, with the same equipment?

I have the 8As and IIIAs, but it's been quite some time since I've compared them in the same room with the same equipment. IIRC, the 8As seemed tighter and more dynamic in how they handled bass.

I currently run the 8As in a two channel arrangement in my living room with entirely different equipment (and no TV or subwoofer) than I do my multiple pairs of IIIAs (with dual subs) that I use in my Home theatre. I enjoy listening to concert DVDs more in my home theatre, then I do in my living room, but that may be partly because of the visual stimulation I get from watching the concert while listening and it might also be because my home theatre listening position is more dialed in for a specific listening position than is my living room setup.

Just some of my thoughts in what I have heard, but I too am curious as I've never heard 1.6s, 1.7s, or the 8Bs.

Good day

 

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