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Martin Logan Motion as Proxy to Audition Chane 'Arx' Speakers

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  • Martin Logan Motion as Proxy to Audition Chane 'Arx' Speakers

    Are any of the Martin Logan Motion series a reasonable proxy to see it I would like the sonic characteristics of the Chane A1rx-c, A2rx-c or A3rx-c models? Thanks

    Leon

  • #2
    There may not be too many real proxies: The Chane series use licensed SplitGap motors, which at full output can cut distortion by well over half. Other components are also top drawer, and add to the quiet, clear, low distortion sound. They're also designed with both classic theory and minimalist technique, and tuned heavily for most neutral sonic characteristics.

    I'm not often in the commercial field these days, but even so I'd be hard-pressed to recommend a close competitor. I suppose it's these qualities that allow the Chane to do to rise above other brands and models as often as they do.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by LeonO View Post
      Are any of the Martin Logan Motion series a reasonable proxy to see it I would like the sonic characteristics of the Chane A1rx-c, A2rx-c or A3rx-c models? Thanks

      Leon
      Not using the AMT tweeter, they aren't a reasonable proxy in my opinion. You would need to listen to one of MartinLogans with a planar tweeter, but ML has retired using the planar (they discontinued I believe due to cost) for the mass produced AMT which, everyone now uses, even a cheapy Parts Express speaker.

      http://www.parts-express.com/dayton-...eeter--300-651

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      • #4
        Just a related story: I recently bought A1s and after they broke in, I went into a Best Buy Magnolia center to see what they had that was comparable. I started at the bookshelf speakers that are the same price as the A1 and moved up in price until I heard something that was in the same area as the A1s. The first speakers I heard that had anywhere near the same clarity, from low through high, were the Martin Logan Motion 35XTs. Frankly, I was amazed that the A1s performs around the level of a $600 speaker. I have not had a chance to do a side-by-side comparison, and I cannot say whether it is a reasonable proxy. But the A1s are a quarter the price of the MLs.

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        • #5
          +1, The Chane A team outshines them for a fraction of the cost. That said, if you like the Motion series, you will love these!

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          • #6
            The current ML Motion series with the AMT style tweeter is a decent analog for the Chane rx-c series at lower to moderate volumes. The AMT style tweeters (all of them, from cheap to expensive) experience some pronounced modulation when transitioning to higher output levels. This creates response irregularities (peaks and valleys) that simply don't exist at lower volume levels. These irregularities occur at relatively modest volume levels (read: like 90dB).

            The SplitGap/XBL2 motors in the Chane/Arx midwoofer and the high-temp planar tweeter is capable of far more naked output, and much more clean output. However, as I stated, at lower to moderate volumes, the MLs can be a decent proxy.

            The Chanes seem to image slightly better (wider and deeper, with better separation between instruments), have more "air" and delicacy in the tweeter without any harshness, and have tighter/better damped (often described as "faster") bass once broken-in. But, in a non-critical listening environment, they are similar.

            The Chanes run away and hide from the MLs as output increases toward reference, with the Chanes remaining cleaner, without any signs of stress, and rock solid imaging at far higher spls.

            Even the A3rx-c bests the Motion 60XT in maintaining composure at higher volumes in my listening experience (the Motion 60XT has solid bass, comparable to the A5, though slightly muddier...but the tweeter falls apart). The weak link of the Motion series is the AMT tweeter. To prevent beaming, the tweeter is restricted in dimension (like ribbons and magnetic planars). But the AMT tweeter needs a lot more surface area than it has for higher output levels.

            Depending on one's listening material, listening space, and listening preferences, this AMT breakup can be experienced anywhere from noticeable harmonic distortion to simply the early on-set of listener fatigue.

            Rising harmonic distortion with rising output below 3khz is even evident in true ribbons (RAAL, Fountek, et al).\ In fact, it's one of their weak links. It's why they must be crossed-over so high (often approaching 4khz...long after a std cone driver is out of its element).

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            • #7
              This is interesting. I listened to some (admittedly unfamiliar) cuts on the Motion 40 and 60XT at fairly high volumes few months ago. I thought I would like this speaker and wanted to like this speaker, but I found that, while they were detailed, they also sounded a little bright and harsh on the top end. I had never heard this about the AMT drivers, but if what you say is true, it now makes sense.

              Everyone talks about how the AMT has so much more surface area than a dome and therefore less distortion, and how they sound so sweet and clean because of that. I assumed that on the ML Motion they just had them tuned a little lean and bright and that was the reason for my experience. But maybe it's more than that?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by bkeeler10 View Post
                This is interesting. I listened to some (admittedly unfamiliar) cuts on the Motion 40 and 60XT at fairly high volumes few months ago. I thought I would like this speaker and wanted to like this speaker, but I found that, while they were detailed, they also sounded a little bright and harsh on the top end. I had never heard this about the AMT drivers, but if what you say is true, it now makes sense.

                Everyone talks about how the AMT has so much more surface area than a dome and therefore less distortion, and how they sound so sweet and clean because of that. I assumed that on the ML Motion they just had them tuned a little lean and bright and that was the reason for my experience. But maybe it's more than that?
                The way the AMT stores and releases energy in the time domain is completely different (and inferior) to the Chane magnetic planar's leaf membrane. The AMT has some undamped resonance issues at higher output levels and has some ringing issues as well. This isn't always obvious on its face and can result in the early onset of listener fatigue.

                It doesn't mean they're bad speakers, but it IS a byproduct of the AMT style driver....none of these weaknesses are present in the Chane Magnetic Planar driver.

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                • #9
                  As I stated a few posts up, You cannot use an AMT to compare what a planar sounds like...2 different animals. I have ML planar speakers and they are absolute heaven to listen to. My Chane planars are quickly (darn close) to heaven now, in the year (or so) I've had them.

                  The planars are the lowest distortion, highest output and most clean sounding tweeter available, in my personal opinion. And is the reason I went with the Chane line, because no one else had planars. But EVERYONE uses the inferior AMT and (of course) sing the AMT praise. In my own opinion, I think the AMT is inferior to the planar.

                  Back on topic, while you could use ML as a proxy, I wouldn't put too much stock in your results. The AMT and the planar have different sound characteristics, and as such, will sound differently. The AMT (in my experience) gets to fatiguing levels very early on while I have yet to get listening fatigue when listening to my planars.

                  I highly recommend the Chane line if you want quality thru and thru. :cool:

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Squirrel! View Post
                    EVERYONE uses the inferior AMT and (of course) sing the AMT praise.
                    I suspect at least part of the reason is that companies are always looking for something new(ish) to entice people to buy the latest and greatest. The AMT looks vastly different, and it has a different, distinctive sound that I think attracts people initially. The question is whether that sound stays attractive over the long haul. For me the jury's still out, as I've only had significant experience with an AMT in the ML Motion line. Gotta listen to a few other implementations before coming to a general conclusion about the thing for myself.

                    Back on topic, while you could use ML as a proxy, I wouldn't put too much stock in your results. The AMT and the planar have different sound characteristics, and as such, will sound differently. The AMT (in my experience) gets to fatiguing levels very early on while I have yet to get listening fatigue when listening to my planars.
                    Thanks for your input on both tweeters. I am planning on moving to a new house hopefully later this year, and when I do my audio system will be completely revamped. I won't be buying anything without first having a listen to a Chane model (the A5 or, hopefully the L7! :D )

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