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Reza C - It sounds like Zeus himself built me a stereo and dropped it into my room. These Ncore NC400 amps on your speakers are INCREDIBLE!! WOW WOW WOW WOW a million times over.
I thought I had it good with my Virtue on batteries, but I am SHOCKED to hear the full capabilities of your speakers. I can't thank you enough, the Magnestand MMG is perfect. And you are right, with 400 watts on them they pound like a subwoofer. It's absolutely crazy.
Jon F - After “warming up” the new Pans for several hours all I can say is I was captivated. Soundstage (as you suggested) is enormous (and accurate) with individual instrument placement. There was more information presented, more detail, a sense of performance space and ”musicality?” Bass was tighter and realistic rather than just plain Big.
The listening has been wonderful! I know there is a world of super-super-expensive gear out there that I never heard of. You know, $65,000 turntables and up.
What these speakers seem to do now and better than ever makes one want to call them “musical instruments.”I’m not joking…. Anyway - I cannot imagine (let’s say) a $300,000-system or five times that figure could sound more “musical” than your Pans.
Julian T - I've been enjoying my Magnestand MMGs very much over the last year and am very happy with the job you did. The big thing your mod does in sonic terms is decrease the coloration of the stock MMGs. Post-mod, there is more variety in the timbral palette. In the good recordings, I began to notice that the performers were playing every note and chord slightly differently, something which had been covered up by the distortion of the stock speakers. Along with that, I can hear much more detail than I did previously, something which all of your customers have commented on -- but for me it's the variety of sounds that's the biggest change. They also look just great. I love the speakers - I am planning on keeping them for the rest of my life. They are just outstanding.
Marc G - Quick note to say that the maggies arrived safe and sound last night, and took about 10 minutes to assemble. Just a quick listen shows that (at the least) 2 of your claims are true: the increased sensitivity, and the increased bass. Thanks.
Terrance T - Very beautiful, first rate craftsmanship and were strait forward to assemble. I gave them a listen...wide open dispersion, great soundstage, very detailed. I do not know all the nuances of audiophile, but the imaging is right, the music is very detailed and the soundstage is wide. I think I am finally at a point to do your work some justice! I am enjoying listening to vinyl and CD's alike, and am going to continue tweaking the system to squeeze every last detail out. I think they are one of a kind and am very proud to own them.
Richard P - OMG!! These things sound completely different and the bass is huge!! The sweet spot is enormous..the highs are so sweet and extended with no harshness or fatigue and the mids are just fanfreakintastic! Everything I imagined plus so much more and I find myself just staring at them they look so beautiful!
In all honesty...I'm sort of at a loss for words! Looks aside...which is out of this world...the sound is everything you describe on your website and more. I had no idea the panels could sound like this!!
I happen to like rockin out sometimes, and I find these babies can really rock hard! Not so much just volume… but the bass punch on well recorded rock music is amazing! You did say in the manual not to be afraid to play them loud….so I turned the knob a bit more than normal and they had no problem with it! I have a subwoofer and I tried to integrate it in for a few minutes over the weekend, but either it was too soft and not audible, or the opposite and it made the sound worse. I know how to set up a sub but it didn't live up to what the mains were doing so off it went and hasn't been on since. These speakers sound so damn good it's kinda scary.
I freakin LOVE these speakers dude…I just sit there and stare!! My wife came in the room the other day and says.."you know what's really cool about your speakers…the way I can run my hand over where the different woods are joined, and it feels like one single piece of wood". To say she is impressed with the workmanship would be huge understatement. She loves them as much as I do, It's all good baby!
Matt K - The magnestands have passed a milestone: They now officially sound better than my Sennheiser 595's :) It's as if they have a superior "decoding key" for 3-D information that was invisible before. The qualitative spatial separation is truly extraordinary.
Rick B - The workmanship is first class -- congrats to you. I like the two-tone panels (Zebrawood and Curly Maple); the darker wood in the center and the lighter wood on the sides makes the speakers look narrower from a distance (a good thing), and the two-tone creates a 3D effect from a distance.
As for sound, right away I noticed a much more open and natural sound. Not brighter
but clearer and more revealing, and the speakers are definitely much more efficient -- bigger, louder sound at the same old volume setting on the dial. Well recorded voices and saxophone, acoustic guitar, and cello pop out of the speakers, as well as background percussion. A lot more music is revealed so the same old songs don't sound the same -- they sound like re-mastered music. Also, the speakers need less careful placement so they fill the room with a big sound.
I'm very glad that I got the XO upgrade too -- worth every penny.
Rob S - I can only think of one word that would do justice to your work: ASTONISHING!!!
I've been listening since I got home at 4pm - its now 8:30. I'm assuming the cross-overs will need some break-in time, but its already in a completely different league than the stock speakers. And you were right about the bass, they are just so much more "meaty" and weighty; I have a Vandersteen sub I've owned for many years that I use to fill in the lowest frequencies with what ever speaker I happen to be using and I literally thought I still had the sub on - so needless to say I won't be needing them with these MMG's.
I also can't believe how much clearer and higher those tweeters can go - just amazing! I have other speakers that have ribbon tweeters and your mod obliterates those. And the midrange is just so natural now; its like everything gells to make the music so much more enjoyable as a whole.
Thanks for a job well done - and by the way they look absolutely beautiful in my room!
(Sent a few months later) The speakers are still amazing me daily; over all the improvements your mod makes, one thing that strikes me every time I listen is just how
much more natural and lifelike they sound. Nothing ever seems to be out of place. I will compose a review for you at Audio Asylum.
Mike C - With your new XO the bass not only sounds deeper, but it's got more texture and heft. It only takes a second to realize it as well, it's that apparent. Upright bass has a distinct texture from bass guitar or other stringed bass. Even though bass seems to have more heft, it doesn't seem "heavy", the decay doesn't seem overly long or bloated. It's still Maggie bass. Tight, fast, rhythmic but now it's liquidy as well. Just amazing.
Mids and highs are better as well and I think the detail in vocals is greater too. On Ray Charles's "Genius Loves Company" I can now hear Ray's voice straining in some of the songs. A slight quivering and waver in his voice I never heard when I've listened to the album before. I could now hear the 70 yr old Ray Charles straining in his singing, but in a way I found the frailty in his voice just added character to the album. Made it seem more real and authentic, less processed, less artificial and to me gave an additional emotional content to the album. The last great hurrah of a great musician and it was just so natural and enjoyable.
There also seems to be better imaging in the bass. I notice it most in a few rock albums, particularly Queen's Greatest Hits, where the drummer is playing across his drum set, you can hear the snap of the drums move from one side to another. It's very localized and I've never noticed it before, maybe the better definition of the drums brought it out. This upgrade is easily worth $500, even more. I can't stop listening.
Eric S - The speakers arrived today, everything was in perfect shape. Assembly was straightforward, your instructions were clear and easy to follow. It's very evident from the whole presentation that you know your craft.
Appearance wise, the woodwork is superb and the combination of Brazilian cherry and tiger maple works extremely well. The bases are well beyond what I expected--I love what you did there. The crossover boxes are really special, whatever that wood is it is gorgeous.
The sound -- well, count me impressed. I haven't had much time with them yet (obviously) but I all ready know that most of the things I didn't like about them stock are corrected. They don't beam, the top end sounds smoother, and in a word the presentation is more relaxed. Yet they seem to have more detail, they have more snap, and the
bass is punchier. Bold conclusions for a couple of albums worth of listening, I know, but they are now decidedly better speakers than they were. In fact I think they are friggin' AWESOME. If these are a typical example of your work, you must have a sh*tload of fans out there.
Very well done, sir, I'm most pleased.
Richard C - I just wanted to take a moment to let you know that, now that my speakers are getting broken in, the sound FAN-FREEKIN-TASTIC! I’m no audiophile, but they just sound so warm, natural, punchy…just phenomenal. They are finally sounding as good as they look, and I know they are going to give me years and years of pleasure. Thank you for your artistry!
Nate T - They are as good as I anything I have ever owned and that is saying a lot. Better than any in some ways.
Kevin C - WOW...OMG...but first I must say they look stunning. You are indeed a master craftsman. After I assembled them and placed them in the man cave I had to determine which receiver to hook them up to. I tried them with my NAD 7240 PE. Sounded pretty good. Next was my vintage Pioneer SX-850 which I had modded from 60 wpc to 100 wpc. Audiophile nirvana!!! I couldn't be happier with the results and I greatly appreciate all the effort and artistry you put into my maggies. And did I mention they look stunning? I highly recommend your upgrade process to anyone with magnepans. You are the man!
Mike B - I'm rarely speechless ( ask anyone who knows me) but this is absolutely far beyond what I envisioned! The wood is beautiful and the contrasts are eye catching to say the least. Everything went together perfect and the fit and finish are first class The square peg accents are attention getters. Reminds me of trips to Lancaster as a kid and seeing how the Amish built things.. Now the sound....MAGGIENIFICENT!!!!! Much different than what I had doing Mye stands with your crossover. As far as being out of your mind (the jury is still out but most great artisans are at least a little off : ) I don't quite know what else to say except thank you oh great nut buster!
Marc M - About that ship the whore has been waiting for at the docks, it has arrived :) I bought an Emotiva XPA-2 amp that arrived today, and now your creation has what it deserves, and WOW! what an amazing sound. Beautiful, natural! The best I've personally heard and to think it's going to get better with break-in!
Charles M - I was having a conversation with an artist friend of mine whose paintings are often sold in New York for big dollars and she said that in essence she thought you were one of those rare souls who was really an "old world craftsman". A man who truly embodies the concept of "care, excellence and passion for what they do". She proceeded to comment, that the world no longer understands and or truly appreciates the incredible discipline that it takes to accomplish what you do. I concur.
Jack M - It's hard to believe I've had these speakers for only about a year now (seems like forever) and it's hard to imagine life before them. Needless to say, I'm very happy. Presuming there is nothing to 'wear out' and I do nothing stupid to damage them, I anticipate passing these down to my Son once I'm dead and gone. In the meantime, I am enjoying the hell out of them.
Butch B - Just got back from auditioning the 1.7's. Paired with $4k Audio Research pre, $8k mono's of Bel Canto, and Wadia CD. They seemed to have a little more bass, softer highs, but not very engaging. Lack of air and flat depth of field. I was blaming the electronics until we put the 1.6's in place. With all their faults, much more magic happening. Came home and listened to same material on the Gunned maggies and didn't wish for anything else, just enjoyed the music. So the 1.7's had a little more bass than the 1.6's, but not as definitive through the full range of bass. The Gunned 1.6's have more bass and are better at everything.
Wayne S - The speakers are absolutely marvelous. I am so grateful and quite frankly blown away by your most excellent work, and they sound terrific! This was with no break in and ice cold electronics. I am not a person who likes to analyze but I hear a vastly improved soundstage, more bass, more detail and more clarity. I would recommend this modification to anyone. Instead of two big monolithic speakers with no style to them at all I have two extremely beautiful ones that are like works of art. They make my room look so much better and my son said "they're really cool."
John C - WOW!! I don't know even know what to say at this point. They are drop dead GORGEOUS!! And the muntins are obviously a SPECTACULAR and UNEXPECTED addition. Not only are they a beautiful and authentic A&C feature, the pattern you created reminded my wife and I immediately tonight of a high-end music stand -- a perfect metaphor for the music to be made by these speakers.
I have been particularly impressed by two things. First, they are much more efficient than I anticipated them to be. Second, not only is the bass they produce spectacular,
once again, there is much more of it than I anticipated.
Neil S - Between me, you and the wall, with your 1.6's and my sub system we can take on the world, wilson, magico, don't make no difference. I have in my possession now without a doubt the best sounding speakers out there. I will admit, your mod is about as perfect as maggies can get, visual and sound. What you have done is made a world class speaker affordable to the general public. A long time friend of mine has heard my PG 1.6's in my room. Considering he's the state rep for Mark Levinson, Lexicon, Revel, Bryston, Arcam, Genelec, Bohlender Graebener, Richard Grey, etc etc. I think his opinion may count somewhat, and his comment after 1/2 hour or so of listening was these can pretty much take on anything.
Dion C - Holy shit John, what have you done???!!! These things are georgeous! From the distinct grain to the crossover boxes. There is no comparison to seeing them in person. Where do you get the ideas for the crossover boxes? These guys are right they are masterpieces in their own right. Mine is so much different than the others I've seen. You my friend have hit the proverbial 'nail on the head' with this design. Just got them hooked up and singing, awesome!!! I can't wait to run them through their paces.
Asthetics were a very large part of why I undertook the upgrade. There isn't a speaker out there any where near the price point that compares in craftsmanship and pure beauty (if you are a wood afecionado). The tremendous increase in all aspects of performance is a huge bonus. These things have to sit in my living room and what they have added to the decor over the stock 1.6s is worth the price of admission for me. However when I hear them I just can't wipe that stupid grin off my face. Everyone that sees and hears them is blown away. I am forever indebted.....your attention to detail is extremely refreshing in this 'instant gratification' world we find ourselves in. Thank you so much and it was a pleasure to deal with you. Now I gotta go, Lucinda Williams and Diana Krall are calling my name!
Don W - I love what you've done with the Crossover boxes and the wood grain is beautiful. They look gorgeous and will be perfect in my movie room! Bravo! in terms of sound. You really got the crossover right. Thank you for your hard research work in revealing what this marvelous technology can really do. You've upped the MMG's considerably at modest cost and I'm sure that applies to all the Maggies you modify. These are perfect for the size of my dedicated room and I'm planning on driving them with some Bel Canto mono blocks so one day it will be quite a system. Again, Bravo! and many thanks!
Robert L - The grain pattern of the wood that you chose is beautiful. I was drooling just looking at the speaker bases! The amp stands and crossover boxes mate up quite nicely. I think that my girlfriend will approve......
After letting them warmup a bit I listened to some tracks. It took me a few minutes to realize that I didn't even have a sub hooked up - the bass was that much improved! I'm not even feeling the itch to hook the sub up yet. Last night I put on the newly re-mastered Sgt. Peppers and even though I was listening at low volume the realism of the vocals seemed "spooky." I know that I really need to give these speakers a lot more break-in time before coming up with a real assessment, but straight out of the box they
easily better the MMG's in stock form or the old Polk floorstanders that were on stand-by.
Barry R - I purchased new 1.6's yesterday and removed your modded MMG's for them. They sounded terrible at first, but after dialing in their position they started to make music. I really liked some of the things I heard. The lower bass was good and the size of some instruments (large drums) seemed realistic. The upper bass seemed slightly elevated and the overall sound was dark. On some songs I noticed little things I hadn't paid attention to before. I listened to a lot of music yesterday and this morning and enjoyed doing so. This morning I swapped my modded MMGs back into the system. They look tiny compared to the 1.6s. However I was amazed at how they destroy the stock 1.6s. The modded MMGs are definitely superior.
Yuong H - On an interesting note, I had dinner at a friend's house the other night. He's a die-hard audiophile who is really into his vinyl. His system consisted of a VPI turntable with Rotel separates driving B&W 802 diamonds. While it sounded great, at no stage did I feel like I was missing anything with my more moderately priced gear. The B&W's were impressive in size and certainly cranked out more bass, but I actually think your MMGs provide a better overall musical presentation and with a more seductive vocal midrange. I was surprised given that that was the first time I've heard a quality vinyl rig, but I guess that provides you with another affirmation on the quality of your mods - I thought it was worth sharing this.
Brent M - I have to say these speakers are incredible. (modded 3.6's) The soundstage, detail, presence and realism is beautiful. After several hours of adjusting positioning and tweaking the angle, I think I have them set perfectly. They seem to melt away and the music fills the space. What a sonic treat. They are amazing and keep getting better and better. If they continue this way, I will have to start paying union rates for the musicians. I have never heard anything like them anywhere. They produce the most natural, present, transparent, life like and emotionally engaging soundstage. They are beautiful to see and wonderful to hear. I will send another email with a few quick pic's. I will do a better job when I have more time. If you require referrals or testimonials for potential customers, please feel free to give them my email address.
Audio Asylum Review
Doug S - It's been a while since I have communicated with you, and I haven't given you any real feedback yet. I didn't exert myself breaking the speakers in, partly because of neighbors, so they have been only gradually coming in. I began to notice that I was enjoying just the sound of television, of all things, more and more, and began to realize that these babies are special.
But last night I listened to Live From Lincoln Center. Wow! And that was the usual compressed broadcast signal no less. It was a completely believable experience. Strings, when closely miked, had a resiny bite, flutes were breathy and sweet, oboes and clarinets sounded like themselves, brass were burnished and beautiful and completely unblatty. I could hear the articulation of air and vibrating lips on the mouth pieces, stuff I've associated with stats. The strike of drum heads on skin came flying in. Even soft taps on the snares or triangle I could hear through all the other sound. And the voice of Susan Graham stole my heart. At one point I was in tears. The orchestral tuttis were congealed, but I'm sure that was due to digital compression. The speakers are so good that I've decided to take them out of the home theater and move them upstairs to the two-channel system, whereupon I'll give you hopefully even truer feedback.
Steve S - My "Gunned" Maggie 1.6QRs are nothing less than acoustically amazing. As with any dedicated home based 2-chanel audio system, without the opportunity to A B with an alternative set-up, it is nearly impossible to quantitatively compare the differences, especially when the sonic signatures are of a high quality. Case in point, I just left the listening room of a "High End" audio store in Northeast Long Island, NY...The Audio Den on Middle Country Road in Lake Grove, NY. First, they are a standout as far as I am concerned...I told them when I walked in that I was from Tennessee and was only a salesmen traveling through the area and was not a potential customer...their response was, "that's fine, what can we show you and what would you like to hear? They gladly put on my favorite genre of music on a unquestionably "High End " system consisting of a pair of Ayre MX-R mono blocks connected to an Ayre K-XR preamp, Esoteric CD transport/DAC and separate Esoteric clock, all filtered by an Ayre L-5XE AC line filter, powered up via Shunyata power cables, connected by Nordost interconnects and Nordost Frey speaker cables terminating at a pair of $7,000 Dynaudio Confidence C1s on dedicated floor stands. They powered up the system, closed the door and left me to listen and enjoy as long as I desired. Impressive, of course it was, but...musically, emotionally, not even close to the "Gunned" Maggies powered by my gear, in my room, in my honest opinion. PG has taken an admittedly one of a kind speaker design and fine-tuned them to their max potential. Not only do they look just utterly gorgeous, they sound even better....they are indeed the "whole package"
Audio Asylum Review
Danielle H - I'm not horribly good with describing things... but I can tell you though that the differences before and after are not subtle and they are all positive.
Henry H - What I'm noticing most now is an almost uncanny level of timbral accuracy and transparency in the MMGs. I'm no longer hearing a recording of George Benson playing his Gibson, I'm hearing George Benson's Gibson in the room with me. I was only able to realize this because I've actually been in a room with a Gibson Les Paul before, played by an accomplished jazz guitarist through a Fender Super Reverb amp. Most enjoyable!
Duke D review on AA - Audio Asylum Review
Mike G - Speakers are here and set up. I have been able to listen to them for about an hour. Obviously, I am going to give it a little more time before I comment or review, however, I am already struck by how transparent these things are. What I have heard is really quite different from the original. Your mod has rectificied problems with the speaker that I did not even know existed! :) Seriously!
Greg Ewing - I am almost speechless. In one word: C L A R I T Y!!
I would never have believed that the 1.6 panels were capable of such utter transparency! I used to have the Martin Logan CLS. These now have all of that transparency with none of the drawbacks like beaming, inefficiency, etc.
I will have lots more to say and write about but I can tell you that everything on your web site it 100% true. All the maggie strengths with amazing clarity, transparency, improved bass. I am blown away happy. I also love the finish. You really are not charging enough for these. I can already see how labor intensive this whole project is.
They also passed the WAF with flying colors. Teenage boys say they look WAY SICK, they love them.
His review on Positive Feedback
Emerson B - The sound? Ah, the sound. Well, these aint the same speakers I sent you. My little girls went off to Gunn camp and came back women. Amazon women. The cross over boxes are jewels unto themselves. I have no idea what kind of wood that is and am afraid to even guess. They really look too good to be sitting in the rear of anything.
Should I bore you with accolades you've already received? A much fuller sound (from such a small footprint, I will call these my Pat Benatars). The bass is wonderful. There is a booze business term called "carry the flavor". It is what alcohol does to a beverage. All the other flavors pick up with the presence of alcohol, and so it is to me with the bass. The highs and mids just seem to be that much better. I've been inside all day today with the music on. What wonderful noise!
Audio Asylum Review
Dale M - These modded MG-12 speakers are everything I could want. I own a large amount of organ and brass classical so a whole bunch of that has been going through via CDs and records. I just got a copy of Music for Organ, Brass & Timpani on Sonoma Records and after listening to several times I decided to take it downstairs and give it a listen through my MG1.5s. Now I reallize it not a fair comparison. My two channel is mainly tubes and the downstairs is SS by California Audio Labs. There was no comparison. It sounded like all the life had been drained from it. It was very flat and cold. It only got better when I switched to a 5 channel matrix mode. Actually it sounded better from the rear channels which are my old MG1.0 imp that I bought back in 1982. They were my first Maggies. I will probably drag the Magnestands down there because I'm really curious but they sound so good upstairs that I can't get myself to tear them down and move them. This is the same reason I haven't done a AB with the stock MG12s. I guess you could say I'm a VERY satisfied customer. I have a feeling that in the future I may get my my MG1.5s gunned or I may just keep my MG12s and have you rework those for the HT system.
Follow up - It has been at least two weeks since I wrote and I've been listening to a lot of music and I really like everything that I'm hearing. I finally had a little AB time and while the stock 12's are not bad they are now not even in the same league with the Magnestands. I can't imagine what kind of improvement the 1.5's would yield. I hope you had a very good Holiday and that Santa was good to you. I know he was very good to me with the early delivery of these speakers.
Bill B - I keep being amazed by these things. The off axis listening is a quantum improvement.These speakers now sound like musical instruments, with weight and richness. What's amazing is it takes less power to make all this extra detail and musicality. I am still slack jawed and I can't wait to crow about them. Many thanks.
(The following comment is not approved for children)
Follow up - Dude, I just played a sick groove at escape velocity, and the fucking douche bag magnepans pulled their weight. I love these things, designed to be half fucked!
Gary N - In short they sound incredible..much better than my 1.6 in this room and much better than I anticipated. Well worth the wait. I have a big smile on my face and am very happy with my purchase, they are awesome!! Really!! My friend was blown away...we played james taylor copperline sacd version and all I can say is wow!!
follow up- An audio friend just brought over his gallo nucleus reference and to both our ears the maggies were much more resolving and much more enjoyeable to listen to. Another friend of mine brought over his Harbeth super hl-5 and we a/b with the smg's and once again the smg's smoked a much more expensive speaker. incredible!!