Fail and succeed

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Fail and succeed
I was inundated with questions when I mentioned Martin Logan's lack of dynamics. To be clear, I am not picking on Martin Logan. I am picking on all panel types of speakers with limited dynamic range. Electrostats are simply the best example among many. Over the years I have owned multiple types of panel speakers: Quads, Acoustats, Martin Logans, Magneplanars. Every one of those speakers had their good points—great points in some cases—yet all had one chief drawback. They struggled to reproduce big dynamics. There was a reason I owned so many of these speakers. What they did right was amazing. Their speed and transparency in the midrange and treble regions was simply unbeatable. Nothing came close. But then as the frequency range lowered into the mid bass area below the midrange, the area of music where dynamics lurk, they fall flat on their faces. They fail because of why they succeed. Ribbons, planars, and electrostatic panels succeed because their ultra-thin membranes haven't much mass. In fact, for most ribbons and all electrostats, the mass of their moving diaphragm is less than the air they are pushing and pulling on. It's why they sound so quick and transparent. It's why I am addicted to their effortless sound. And, it's why they fail to move enough air to produce dynamics. The nature of thin-film technology excludes a lot of motion. They are quick but incapable of moving much air. Hence, at lower frequencies where we need to move great volumes of air to have dynamics, they are simply inadequate. So, my many purchases of the various panel speakers were all an attempt at somehow having it all: speed, transparency, dynamics, bass. Each one had great promise. Each one let me down. Tomorrow let's look at some solutions.
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Paul McGowan

Founder & CEO

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