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Yes, I know- 'apples to oranges'; just wondering if anyone's ever been swooned over by the LS50's vs Maggie X's; or at least owned both.
Well I know how you planar guys feel about "monkey coffins" :) Replaced my modded MMGs for LS50s a few years ago, still very happy I did.
Its going to be a different sound, more micro details, less artificial "soundstage" (produced by the dipole effect). They are not the best at low level listening, but still an improvement over the Maggies. They have a wide dispersion, unlike the null at the sides of the Magnepans, it's best to listen to them slightly off axis, away from the walls, etc. Something you will have to play around with. Room treatments will go a long way.
The Kef's bass may not be enough for you, depends on the size of the room. I run mine with dual sealed subs.
But unlike the Maggies, I've never felt I needed to rip the speaker apart and mod it. :)
I own the KEF LS-50 which is a fine speaker and I reviewed it. I am not a Magnepan person but I would probably take the 1.7 over the KEF certainly for the stated reason above about scale. The KEF is best in a small room and with very good tube gear that can actually drive them. Kinda the way I feel about Magnepan as the best sound quality I have heard them with was with tubes.
I am not really about apples and oranges since sound reproduction is sound reproduction. I think the speakers I had for 13 years and just sold in December sound vastly better than any Magnepan or any KEF I have heard including my LS-50. I would try your best just to listen and ignore the design because we all have biases either because we read too much or built up over past experiences so we bring our past into the present.
Some people like the bigger KEF standmounts a lot better - R300 or something I forget the name of it. So it is perhaps worth giving that a whirl - it has more bass and scale. I find most panels to lack meat on the bones (they sound washed out) compared to the best dynamic speakers - and dynamics is the lifeblood of music to me. So on certain music even the tiny KEF LS-50 will do things a smaller Maggie won't deliver. It will depend on what you listen to, how loud and the room size.
thanks for the advice ; )
Q: what were the speakers you sold in December if I may ask?
Audio Note J/Spe. Managed to get 17% more for them than I bought them for in 2003. I bought the Audio Note AN E/Spx Alnico Hemp in December.
But to be fair there are something like 10 versions of the AN J topping out at over $30,000US and the least expensive current model is $2900. So I should expect it to be better than $1500 speakers!
Of course over the long run the AN J is actually cheaper than the KEF because in 10 years I would sell the J for what I paid and then some and the KEF after 10 years will be lucky to get me 1/3 of what I paid.
I had Maggie 1.6's and absolutely loved them. Then we moved and my audio room became a small bedroom and the Maggies overwhelmed them - I tried a few other speakers and got the LS50's. Although they were good, they did not leave a lasting impression like the Maggies did. In my minds eye, I can still remember playing "And so it goes", the version by Jennifer Warnes, for some friends and we all looked at each other and agreed the sound reproduction was magical(spine tingling) through the Maggies. Never could get that feeling from the LS 50's....
Thank you for your insights!
I listened to 1.7s next to LS50s last weekend. This was the maggies home turf, so huge Bryston monoblocks supplied the juice.
Accepting the fact that nothing will do certain things like Maggies can, the LS50s proved themselves worthy of the praise they receive. They disappear at least as well as maggies, are a little more dynamic through the midband and can image with pin point accuracy. The soundstage is not as as deep and wide as Maggies, but it is not far off. The ls50 is even more resolving than the 1.7s but you gotta be listening for it. Maggies win by a mile on scale, which to me is sorta crucial for realism. On rock, pop, and small scale jazz and vocals the ls50 are right there. Move to large scale music, especially orchestra and it is not even close to the same experience.
The Kefs are amazing, it is a great tweeter and a general balance that they just nailed. I really want to hear the new active versions.
Thank you for your assessment, I've been a Maggie owner for 20 years and don't plan on changing but I also have a pair of LS50s arriving this weekend and plan on giving them a whirl. I'll post impressions in the near future.
Not that it really matters, but it was the "1.7i"
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