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Well those magnepan speakers have been sitting across the room taunting me to hook them up to my DP.

I did try them but decided my too smart amp was adding too much delay in spite of what I thought was turning off all the fancy DSP stuff.

So I tried again today and perhaps because I was running through a different input on the amp but got pure dirt analog mode and no delay.

Crap, they do sound really nice. Really nice. So much for my clean setup..... not like I’ll be putting these on top of the DP.

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Those planar speakers sound so smooth and I always thought they would be fun with a digital piano. You avoid the crossovers, some driver issues, some alignment issues. They are huge so maybe have enough bass for your piano.

Do they change sound a lot when close or far from the back wall?

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Yes the wall influences sound like any speaker but more so with planars.


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Be careful! Those Magneplanars don't like to be over-driven (although they're fused). They never had much bass either. But for listening to music, especially classical, they can be divine.

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I’ve had them for over a decade now. The knock on them is they require more power since they are less efficient and are 4 ohm loads and can be more demanding of amps.

I’ve never heard they don’t like to be over driven. Usually the concern is having the amp shut down from what I have read.

But that is not the type of listening I like anyway.

Not a particularly strong bass but placement in a room and wall has a big influence on that.

But for listening to jazz, classical, and piano they are simply as you state divine.


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Cheers to you for owning such nice speakers! And double-cheers for deploying them with your digital piano. At a minimum, you are experimenting and that can only lead to education and understanding of the importance of sound reproduction in enjoying music reproduction and music production.

I've owned Magnepans on and off for thirty years. My first pair was a pair of 2.5R and then after other speakers, went all out and purchased the MG20 pair. The MG20 (now the 30?) are considered by many to be world-class speakers. Not the "best", but truly one of the world's finest speakers. For those unfamiliar, the MG20 is over six feet high!!! and very expensive. OK, so what does this all mean?

For use with a digital piano.... hmmm..... there are two issues that come to my mind:

1 - sound quality
2 - presentation

Regarding sound quality, a truly high-fidelity (aka high truth) speaker will reproduce whatever you put into it well. Assuming of course, appropriate amplification. If your piano has fabulous sounds, then they will be fabulous sounding. If the sounds are not, you will hear their flaws and therefore, your DP may actually sound worse through high fidelity speakers. Score one for the Magnepans here

Regarding presentation... full disclosure: I have not hooked up Magnepans to my DP... I don't think they would work for me at all. For the simple reason that I want my speakers to be forward, at me, and close. I want to feel the piano when I play it. Yes, I assume you could place the Magnepans in a way that worked... but in reality, this would be impracticable in a home environment.

Another issue is the challenge of reproducing the lowest registers with Magnepan speakers. They are notoriously difficult to get those low frequencies... this has to do with their dipole design (fires out equally from the rear) that creates cancelation waves in a room... super-careful room treatments and speaker placement can mitigate these negative issues.

But... to summarize a common theme from me.... quality sound reproduction for out pianos is just as important as the piano itself... reproduction is not just something you need to get the sound out... it is and integral part of how we emotionally connect with our playing.

Simply put, high quality sound reproduction is required to fully enjoy the playing experience. This is something that I don't think most players fully realize. They are just missing out.

Peace
Bruce in Philly

Last edited by Bruce In Philly; 09/07/21 12:51 PM.

Peace
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This is true:
Originally Posted by Bruce In Philly
High quality sound reproduction is required to fully enjoy the playing experience.

But this is not:
Originally Posted by Bruce In Philly
This is something that I don't think most players fully realize.
It's been frequently discussed here.
Digital pianos have actions that range from good to great ... but they have sound that does not measure up.

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Originally Posted by Bruce In Philly
I've owned Magnepans on and off for thirty years. My first pair was a pair of 2.5R and then after other speakers, went all out and purchased the MG20 pair. The MG20 (now the 30?) are considered by many to be world-class speakers. Not the "best", but truly one of the world's finest speakers. For those unfamiliar, the MG20 is over six feet high!!! and very expensive. OK, so what does this all mean?

I've been a huge fan of electrostatic and other dipolar planar speakers since the 70's. I've enjoyed Original Quad's, Dayton Wright's, Magnaplanar's (8-Panel Tympani IIIa's and the 1D's), and Martin Logan's over the years. My new house theater/music room currently has a full surround set of Martin Logans (6' tall front speakers with 12" woofers, and a separate 15" LFE sub), and for the first time my digital piano is in the same room. So when we moved in a few months ago I finally had an opportunity to try my VST's live with the large electrostatic panels.


Originally Posted by Bruce In Philly
Regarding sound quality, a truly high-fidelity (aka high truth) speaker will reproduce whatever you put into it well. Assuming of course, appropriate amplification. If your piano has fabulous sounds, then they will be fabulous sounding. If the sounds are not, you will hear their flaws and therefore, your DP may actually sound worse through high fidelity speakers. Score one for the Magnepans here

Regarding presentation... full disclosure: I have not hooked up Magnepans to my DP... I don't think they would work for me at all. For the simple reason that I want my speakers to be forward, at me, and close. I want to feel the piano when I play it. Yes, I assume you could place the Magnepans in a way that worked... but in reality, this would be impracticable in a home environment.

Another issue is the challenge of reproducing the lowest registers with Magnepan speakers. They are notoriously difficult to get those low frequencies... this has to do with their dipole design (fires out equally from the rear) that creates cancelation waves in a room... super-careful room treatments and speaker placement can mitigate these negative issues.

Yes, the piano sound quality in my theater was sweet. The clarity and transients were unprecedented, and with 12" woofers extending to about 25 Hz in my room the low frequency end was not a problem as it would be with the Magnepan's. But the speaker location didn't work. The two 6' tall front speakers (the only ones I used with the piano) were 13' and 15' behind me (piano off to one side of center), so there was roughly 12 mS and 13 mS of delay with sound coming from behind. It just wasn't natural to play live with those delays. A shame.

(I'll probably try again playing around with the closer to the piano, slightly smaller Martin Logan surround panels - 8" woofers and a sub. But unless I physically move them just for a piano experiment, I doubt the localization problem can be satisfactorily remedied. Another thing I could try is a piano mono mix with the single surround panel that is closer to my playing position.)


Macy

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Well I did move everything around and put the 65” planar speakers right up next to the keyboard.

Which is why the title of the thread is now I’ve done it because that is not a very practical setup at the moment.

And while the magnepan 1,7 is not famous for low end it is at least as good as the 4” and 5” monitors that people seem to like on this forum.

I’ve also come to appreciate that the piano has less bass than I thought.

Although I’ve also come to appreciate the vibrations that can be felt on the keyboard from built in speakers.

Thanks for sharing the magnepan stories. I know I too was discounting using my 1.7s because of delay but once i got them close, I’m rethinking that.

Might be worth an experiment on a rainy day.


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Originally Posted by Purdy
Might be worth an experiment on a rainy day.

YES!!! That is what we all should be doing. Pull that old stereo out of the basement and hook it up!

Peace
Bruce in Philly


Peace
Bruce in Philly

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