To Jeff Fritz,
I am looking for a major speaker upgrade for my system and am considering a new pair of Magico Q3 speakers and a demo pair of Magico M5s. I read your review of the Q3 with great interest and it certainly piqued my interest. Wonderful writing and very honest. I'm ready! I wonder if you have any insight as to the relative differences in sound of the Q3 versus the M5, though. Strengths, weaknesses, overall thoughts, etc. Any insight you have would be greatly appreciated.
I've not heard the M5 in my room, but I'll take a general crack at it nonetheless. The M5 is a larger four-way speaker with more internal air volume and a completely different look that might suit some rooms better than others. I would expect it to play slightly deeper in the bass and have an excellent sense of dynamics -- I've heard this much from it at shows such as CES. On the other hand, the Q3 has a better tweeter that will be more extended in the highs and lower in distortion across the board. It is also more efficient, meaning you can use an amplifier with less power. The Q3 also has a more svelte all-aluminum cabinet that I would think is superior to the M5's aluminum-and-wood enclosure and will also disappear easier in a room. Even with all these differences, though, I would still expect the speakers to be more similar than different. Both are sealed boxes, both use Magico-made drivers, and both share the same type of crossover topology. Still, I'd personally go with the newer model -- the Q3 -- if only for the new tweeter. . . . Jeff Fritz