To Jeff Fritz,
What is your opinion of the loudspeakers from Magnepan?
In my opinion, they are one of the true standouts in all of audiophiledom. Their ability to create a large soundstage that reveals every minute detail with precision without adding any of their own character to the music is second to none. It is true that there are specific setup stipulations that the user must apply to get that result (clean, high-power amplifier; [correct] placement in the room; good source material, etc.), but this is true of every loudspeaker that is a contender at this level.
The thing that bothers me is that every time Magnepan is discussed, it is always with the inclusion “. . . for the price.” It seems to me that a loudspeaker ought to be judged purely on its ability with its price having nothing to do with it -- be it super high, super low, or average price.
When the ultra-high-end loudspeakers are being judged, it is always with the disclaimer “cost no consideration” because they are so high dollar. Why isn’t the same applied to the other end of the spectrum, where it's “cost no consideration” even though they are so affordable?
I would love to get your two cents on this. Maybe I hold too high of an opinion of Magnepan to justify this argument. My ears don’t think so. Loved your article on the Devialet Expert 1000 Pro. Well done.
Your observations are quite astute. It is true that reviewers of ultra-high-priced gear oftentimes minimize what can be accomplished at lower price points. The truth is that high price doesn’t automatically equate to high performance. There are just too many examples I could name where a lower-priced product outperforms a more expensive model. Yet some reviewers have fallen into the trap of either being biased by price, or, worse, protecting more expensive gear, possibly because they have some side deal with the manufacturer that they benefit from. Either way, it doesn’t sound like you’ve fallen for that. Good for you.
As for Magnepan, you very well may be right. I know lots of audiophiles who love them. They don’t send us review samples, though, so I can’t comment first hand. That’s the only reason you don’t see them on this or our other sites. If you really like their sound, then that’s what’s important. Enjoy. . . . Jeff Fritz