MartinLogan Motion 40 Speaker System HT Labs Measures

HT Labs Measures
L/R Sensitivity: 91 dB from 500 Hz to 2 kHz
Center Sensitivity: 89 dB from 500 Hz to 2 kHz
Surround Sensitivity: 88 dB from 500 Hz to 2 kHz

This graph shows the quasi-anechoic (employing close-miking of all woofers) frequency response of the Motion 40 L/R (purple trace), Motion 30 center channel (green trace), Motion 15 surround (red trace), and Dynamo 1000 subwoofer (blue trace). All passive loudspeakers were measured with grilles at a distance of 1 meter with a 2.83-volt input and scaled for display purposes.

The Motion 40’s listening-window response (a five-point average of axial and +/–15-degree horizontal and vertical responses) measures +2.25/–4.34 decibels from 200 hertz to 10 kilohertz. The –3-dB point is at 48 Hz, and the –6-dB point is at 40 Hz. Impedance reaches a minimum of 3.48 ohms at 111 Hz and a phase angle of –44.04 degrees at 69 Hz.

The Motion 30’s listening-window response measures +2.70/–3.86 dB from 200 Hz to 10 kHz. An average of axial and +/–15-degree horizontal responses measures +2.68/–4.75 dB from 200 Hz to 10 kHz. The –3-dB point is at 86 Hz, and the –6-dB point is at 71 Hz. Impedance reaches a minimum of 3.94 ohms at 53 Hz and a phase angle of –33.69 degrees at 41 Hz.

The Motion 15’s listening-window response measures +1.54/–2.84 dB from 200 Hz to 10 kHz. The –3-dB point is at 83 Hz, and the –6-dB point is at 69 Hz. Impedance reaches a minimum of 3.78 ohms at 2.0 kHz and a phase angle of –61.05 degrees at 136 Hz.

The Dynamo 1000W’s close-miked response, normalized to the level at 80 Hz, indicates that the lower –3-dB point is at 23 Hz and the –6-dB point is at 20 Hz. The upper –3-dB point is at 131 Hz with the Crossover switch set to Bypass.—MJP

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COMMENTS's picture

I bought Renaissance on DVD before it became available on bluray enticed by a trailer for the movie, followed by the rental of the DVD, then the purchase of the movie. I found the movie much better than I anticipated, like you, and eventually bought the bluray for $5.99. For those who like action movies or the animation genre, this is a pretty decent movie.

Regarding the review of the Martin Logan speakers, the speakers sound like they perform well. Not sure about the price in general terms. $4,500 is a lot of money. If the speakers can be had for less than retail, they would be more enticing. For $4,500 I can buy a 60" Sharp Elite. I would prefer the Sharp Elite over these speakers, simply because I already own a 5.0 set up of good speakers. While a great TV makes for a memorable viewing experience, so do good speakers. Matching 5.0 speakers of high fidelity makes watching a movie much more enjoyable.

kent harrison's picture

Great review,Martin logans speaker would be 2nd choice for speakers,BW's speakers are my favorites,but you can't go wrong with this set up.

john hunter's picture

Excellent review which I read with great interest as having to consider downsizing from my exisiting elderly Aerius/Cinema to the M 40'S.
1.Did you have any problems positioning them. I'm having to change because in my new home, the speakers will need to go in the corner.
2. Why did you use the M15 as surround and not the aclaimed FX2? Personal preference?
Thanks again from a regular reader in the old fashioned print media.

JayhawkLaw's picture

As always, great review. I love this site/magazine.

Given that if a Goldenear Triton 2 setup with the inclusion of a ML Dynamo 1000 subwoofer is the same price as this Martin Logan set, and the two use the same (or at least very similar) Heil-type tweeter technology, the obvious question is , "which do you think is better?" If it's too close to call, how do they compare? I'd be particularly interested in how the center speakers compare since the Goldenear center has been described as a slightly (only slightly) weak link. I'd also be curious to know if the Martin Logans can fill a larger room than can the Goldenears.

Thanks for a consistently great read

ikarius's picture

My impression of the Goldenear Tritons- Awesome speakers if you have the right room and invest the effort in setting them up properly (placement, treatment, etc). The MartinLogans don't seem to reach the same point, but are more forgiving of setup/room- they tend to sound excellent without a lot of fuss. Also, last I knew, GoldenEar didn't have center/surround options, which nixed them for me.

ikarius's picture

I've got a 5.1 ML setup, though a few differences; Motion 15s (actually LX-16- same speaker, slightly different styling) for L/R, ElectroMotion C2 center, and FX surrounds. I'm using a PSA XS-15 subwoofer, which absolutely outperforms the Dynamo 1000, hands down.

Overall, the system is absolutely sublime, for both music and for Home Theater. This is a system that never feels like you're missing out or compromised on anything aurally.

First- The motion 40 towers are awesome. If you're planning on listening to stereo music content with just two speakers running, you want the motion 40s. I've listened to them in person.

If, however you like multi-channel stereo when listening to your music, for that "envelope" of sound, The Motion 15's will get the job done as L/R.

I bought the EM C2 center, as the Motion 30 center hadn't been released when I bought my system. I haven't heard the Motion 30, but their specs are very close, I'd be very surprised if the Motion 30 was anything but superlative.

As far as the surrounds go, the Motion 2/4s are good but not great to my ears. Depending on your room and the style of surround speakers you prefer, either the Motion 15s or FXs are excellent choices.

There are a lot of great choices at this price point, but the MartinLogan "Folded Motion" tweeters sound really sweet to my ears.

aagastya's picture

So, which receiver did you end up using? That adds in to the cost, and I'd like to know. It's very strange that this is the exact set up that I want to, except for the subwoofer. Maybe I'll get the next one down. Thank you for the great review!