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REVIEW: Magnepan MMG-W Speakers

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Model: MMG-W
Category: Speakers
Suggested Retail Price: $299
Description: wall-hinged single (100Hz-16kHz) magneplanar driver
Manufacturer URL: Magnepan
Model Picture: View

Review by slbenz ( A ) on March 25, 2004 at 14:14:38
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for the MMG-W

Had a chance to audition this speaker at a relative's house. The speakers were attached to the wall by the supplies hinge mounts that came with the speakers. Very slick and innovative idea having the speakers swing into and out of position like a door. Brought out classical and jazz CDs to determine the sound quality of these speakers. Listening to Natalie Cole's Unforgettable CD, her voice had an open, forward presence that only box speakers costly much more can duplicate. Cymbals, piano and horn instruments were rendered with some realism at the same time, positioning and depth of each instrument can be perceived in space. Going to a CD like B.B. King Live, his voice did not sound chesty or hollow. Listening to soundtracks that simulate a concert hall, the ambient echo sounds can be heard. These speakers lack the highest octave and lowest octave which means you will need a subwoofer that can crossover at or above 100Hz and an accessory tweeter to capture that feeling of "air" in the highest octave. These speakers cannot stand alone in a 2-channel stereo system. You will need to bring additional components to complete the picture. But for home theater, these speakers are more than adequate in a 5.1 home system. Dialog is clear and present, sounds from the movie is very involving and dynamic impact is surprisingly there as well. For $300, they compare equally in terms of soundstaging, detail, positioning and life-like reproduction to box speakers in the $1000 range. Just be prepared to purchase two pairs of wire nuts to splice your speaker cables to these speakers. There are no binding posts attached to these speakers, only two wires that are bare at their ends. For a budget home theater, I would definitely audition this speaker. For two-channel stereo, you will need a subwoofer and probably an external tweeter to extend the highs. Sounds like a normal Magnepan tweek in the making.

Product Weakness: Missing the lowest and highest octave of the musical range.
Product Strengths: Forward soundstaging, life-like sound reproduction for voice, strings, piano and brass.

Associated Equipment for this Review:
Amplifier: Yamaha RX-495 Receiver
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): None
Sources (CDP/Turntable): Panasonic
Speakers: Magnepan MMG-W
Cables/Interconnects: Radio Shack
Music Used (Genre/Selections): Classical and Jazz
Room Size (LxWxH): 20 x 14 x 10
Room Comments/Treatments: None
Time Period/Length of Audition: Two Hours
Type of Audition/Review: Friend's System

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Topic - REVIEW: Magnepan MMG-W Speakers - slbenz 14:14:38 03/25/04 ( 4)