Magico V3 vs Magnepan 20.1

default -- Thu, 11/19/2009 - 08:29

I am a V3 user with ARC electronics...but i have had my mind on the maggies for a very long time...does anyone have any experience to share...I know Zeb will have..and JV will have but not with V3 but M5..may be robert harley might hip in his thoughts..

ARC 610ts
Ref 5
Ref 8
Ref Phono2
SMe 30/2 and transparent Opus MM2 cabling drives the V3 right now...what will a maggie 20.1 bring or take out from my system?

thanks in advance

Robert Harley -- Thu, 11/19/2009 - 11:15

The Magico V3 and Magnepan 20.1 are very different speakers. In my experience, the V3 is the closest thing to planar transparency and speed in a dynamic loudspeaker. The ARC 610t will drive either one, but you should listen carfully to the 20.1 before making a decision.

bvdiman1 (not verified) -- Thu, 11/19/2009 - 13:47

 I would just stay put where you are right now and just enjoy that great set-up. Would only seriously 'doi-it' if either I got damn bored with current sound or simply needed the money. A change yes, but definitely not an upgrade. Had the MG20.1 for around 2yrs---7 years ago (driven with FM611/ Jadis JA200/ ARC REF600mkIII, Ref 3, dCS stack, Siltech G6s and FMA cabling). Have since moved on to Strads, then Mini2 for a period of 2-3yrs each. Currently using a SS driven V3 and am very pleased. Will only consider moving up to one of the bigger Magico, Rockport and probably.. Tidal.

Jonathan Valin -- Thu, 11/19/2009 - 22:19

Good Lord, you have a helluva system. I'm not sure why you'd want to tear up this pea patch, but Maggie 201s (which I used for several years) are great loudspeakers if you have the space for them and the right amplification. They won't give you the deep bottom end you are currently getting from the V3s, but they will give you fantastic mid-to-upper bass. They will be bigger sounding in the midrange (and everywhere else) and somewhat airier, quicker, more detailed but also more discontinuous on the top. Magicos and Maggies share a similar tonal balance, IMO. Indeed, Magicos sound a bit like cone Maggies, with better octave-to-octave coherence than ribbon Maggies and better low bass, but somewhat less of the Maggie's magical presence (particularly on voice). Maggies can make some instruments sound "there in the room with you" in a way that few other speakers of any kind can.
You are talking about two of the better loudspeakers in the world. 

nazo (not verified) -- Fri, 11/20/2009 - 07:51

Thanks all for your kind replies and thoughts..
I had the chance to listen to maggie 3.6s yesterday at my dealers show room driven by Krell Evo 400 monoblocks and 202 pre with ARC Ref8 CD player..straight out of the box experiement..i was pleasantly suprised by how well they sounded..yes the upper highs didnt blended well with the rest , yes playing them loud seemed problematic but i think some of these issues will disappear with  the burn in of the speaker...some tell me it takes a long time for them to that so?
one thing turned me off big time...its the speaker connections.... it only takes banana plugs? how idiotic can that be in this age? in order to buy the speakers i need to change my transparent opus mm2 speaker cable connectors? its insane in this age to have only banana plugs..that can be a very valid reason for me not to consider the beatifull sounding maggies..

Cemil Gandur -- Fri, 11/20/2009 - 10:09

Maggies are absolutely superb speakers and the best deal in high-end hifi as far as I am concerned. JV's description of Maggies vs Magicos is spot-on. I went for the Mini 2s as the closest thing to a coned Maggie, but since you preferred the V3 due to its more ample bass, you might find the Maggie a bit lacking in the bass. Having said that, the 20.1s have much better bass than the 3.6 that you heard. You need the space to let them breathe and fill up the room with their glorious music.
I wouldn't get stuck on the connectors. If you love the Maggies, I am sure that Transparent will change the plug for you. Btw, the best way I've ever heard the big Maggies is in an actively bi-amped system: from Bill Evans to James Brown to Led Zeppelin, it was astonishing.
Finally, I used mine with tubes and they matched very well. I had tried some SS amps, but was not too satisfied with the sound. You should try them with the 610Ts :)

dafos -- Mon, 11/30/2009 - 06:58

  Nazo, for some reason i've had the same itch as you.  I'm a very satisfied Strad user powered by ARC HD 220, ref 5, CD 7 and Tom Evans Groove Phono.  However, the local Magnepan dealer has a 3.6 that i'm itching to home audition.  Unlike you, though, i'll probably keep the strads whether or not I end up with the maggies cuz they probably offer a different tonal flavor.  Pls update us on what your decision will be. 

majesticgiraffe -- Sun, 07/18/2010 - 21:21

How have the 20.1 's been for you?

Guyhaven -- Fri, 09/17/2010 - 19:43

Have owned MG20.1's for over two wonderful years, thanks to a very understanding wife.
They have survived  the trials of a home that is now down to 8 of our 15 children, along with hordes of visiting teenagers and friends' toddlers. We may have one of the only homes in America that listens to Dora the Explorer, and everything else, on a set of 20.1's. We feed them with Rotel's RB1092 stereo power amp and it's sister preamp (which combo pushs out up to 1000 watts, for the 4 ohm load, of clean pure magic.) It may by an audiophile sin, but they rest on opposite sides of a 73 inch projection TV. It is astounding how well the Maggies cope with the challenge. The down side is that the family loses track of how loud clean sound can be without realizing it (neighbors do tend to realize it.) The family just loves theater volume at audiophile grade.
I use the Maggies to listen from a variety of gendre off flac files (usually late at night when the kids are asleep, or at least suppose to be.) The Maggies spoon out the wide dymanic range flawlessly. True deep defined bass with all its edge and boundries in place; right up to the sizzle and pop of the recording's upper range limits. It is amusing to be able to hear the limits of the recording media rather than the speakers. They are brutal with giving you whatever is on the recording. Imaging is delightful. The sound stage is just plain wild. The speakers disappear. You pick up well defined instrumentaion from side walls. centerstage, the ceiling, all over. Pure bliss. Hard rockers may object to Maggies as not savage enough on hard edge bass, where they actually have a point, but all the other ear ripping nastiness is right there. Best investment I ever made.

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