Another Martin Logan price increase coming August 1st.

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Robert D

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Doggonit, I shoulda bought a pair of Neoliths an hour ago when they were $20,000 less!
Subwoofers seem to have gone up the least overall of anything with a price increase. The cheaper stuff is mostly the same price as before.

The Focus C18 went up over 27%, which seems to be an excessively large increase to me for this particular speaker. Not sure why this would go up so much unless ML wants to limit the amount of orders and sell less expensive center speakers. I thought what I paid was well justified for how the speaker sounds, but the new price is a bit of a shock.
Yeah, I think I paid about $1700 less for mine. I bought before the two most recent price increases. I agree, $4900 is darn steep for that. New prices are fast becoming something only the wealthy should afford. I will spend $60,000 on a new car but I refuse to spend almost $30,000 on a single pair of speakers.

The illusion center channel is nearly $10,000 now. 🥲
 

Big Dog RJ

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Attn: ttocs:

I can certainly understand the miss-out on the Neoliths if that was going to be your ultimate / final speaker...
I've had the pleasure of auditioning these at my good mates place in Spore with top end CJ, Lamm, Dan's Relentless monoblocks and the top of the line VAC (dual chassis monoblocks). Although it was an awe-inspiring experience, I'm always in awe whenever I get the chance to listen to his Statements Evo-II's. Those were made by ML to be a no cost object project and they were made to reproduce the live even as close as possible, and they certainly do!

Both the Neoliths and Statements require very large rooms, otherwise it's always going to be a half-baked cake! I always emphasize this point across to those who lust over much larger speakers, the room plays a huge role in these for them to perform optimally. It's not just the space behind the speakers but also fronts, sides, and ceilings, and there must be plenty of space behind the listener as well, not just a few feet and then slap bang wall, it simply won't work. This chap also has the original Infinity IRS-V's and now owns the Genesis Prime's and also Alsyvox Botichelli-X. So whenever I get to visit in early Feb, I usually get a chance to listen to one of those systems set up, and fully operational with some very awesome gear.

If on any certain occasion his tech team cannot set up one of the systems properly then it doesn't get used for that particular occasion. In order to demo for potential customers, his team always makes sure that every angle is covered, not just speaker placement, listening position, distances on all sides, ceiling treatments, acoustic reverb etc., once they get that right, oh man, is it spectacular!

I haven't had the chance to audition the Alsyvox Botichelli-X as yet, the X is fitted with out-board crossovers, and is supposed to be a step above the standard Botichelli version. Hopefully if all goes to plan, I'll get to listen in Feb next year. For every type of system and set up, those room parameters play such a crucial role, such that it can make a system blossom or strangle it. I guess this is what happens at most hi-fi shows, their rooms are just plain awful.

Now, I've auditioned at length the entire Masterpiece series line, and some were truly amazing, given the rooms they were demoed in. The private dealers have gone to great lengths to get the sound at optimal levels, and when I experienced these, in particular the Ren15A, and 13A, there's nothing you would really require more of... unless you had a very large room to fill. So, my point is, the current hybrids you already have are superb! They just need to be set up right in order for them to sound at optimal levels, and they need to be given the very best of gear to drive them, only then the majority of people go "aaah..."
Most of the places I visited were either using CH Precision, Dartzeel, and Momentums as SS gear. On tubes it was mostly CJ, VAC and VTL.

I'm sure your gear is upto par with your hybrids...? If not then this is where your investment should be, not the Neoliths... again, unless you had a very large room to fill. I've had the fortunate opportunity of having CLX's playing here beautifully and very good space to allow them to breathe, thanks to our open plan design. However, the measurements and room parameters are just about right and I've managed to get away with it pretty close!
Anything less by a few feet, I wouldn't have done any justice to the CLX's, not even the Neoliths for that matter. The Ren15A would be fine in my present living room but certainly not the Neoliths, simply because of the sheer size of the Neoliths, my fairly large room would still be strangling them... so why bother. The Neoliths also have very large bass drivers, and these require full grip and control, apart from the huge stat panel, to sound properly balanced. If not well controlled and balanced, the sound presentation can be all over the joint, as was demoed at most shows in the past. Then place any of those smaller hybrids in there and things snap into place, simply due to the room acoustics.

So, for me the latest isn't always the greatest. It's a matter of getting all the elements into synergy, that's the most important aspect for me, regardless of speaker size or price.

I sincerely believe what you have there is quite outstanding. There's always room for improvement, and you don't realize the improvements until you start comparing gear... just my 50cts worth. Thought I'd mention this.
Cheers, and enjoy those fine tunes!
RJ
 
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msimanyi

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Yeah, I think I paid about $1700 less for mine. I bought before the two most recent price increases. I agree, $4900 is darn steep for that. New prices are fast becoming something only the wealthy should afford. I will spend $60,000 on a new car but I refuse to spend almost $30,000 on a single pair of speakers.

The illusion center channel is nearly $10,000 now. 🥲
Whoa! Glad I ordered that from Shawn before the *prior* price increase. It was... dare I say "a steal" comparatively?
 

Robert D

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Whoa! Glad I ordered that from Shawn before the *prior* price increase. It was... dare I say "a steal" comparatively?
Shawn offers really good pricing too, much lower than my local store. I bought the center channel from my local store before I knew much about Shawn's DaVinci media. I ordered my BF 210 from Shawn and was very happy with his pricing and service.
 

ttocs

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Attn: ttocs:

I can certainly understand the miss-out on the Neoliths if that was going to be your ultimate / final speaker...
I've had the pleasure of auditioning these at my good mates place in Spore with top end CJ, Lamm, Dan's Relentless monoblocks and the top of the line VAC (dual chassis monoblocks). Although it was an awe-inspiring experience, I'm always in awe whenever I get the chance to listen to his Statements Evo-II's. Those were made by ML to be a no cost object project and they were made to reproduce the live even as close as possible, and they certainly do!

I'm sure your gear is upto par with your hybrids...?

So, for me the latest isn't always the greatest. It's a matter of getting all the elements into synergy, that's the most important aspect for me, regardless of speaker size or price.

I sincerely believe what you have there is quite outstanding. There's always room for improvement, and you don't realize the improvements until you start comparing gear... just my 50cts worth. Thought I'd mention this.
Cheers, and enjoy those fine tunes!
RJ
Sorry, but this was an attempt at humor. But as always, I enjoy your detailed, experience laden viewpoints on the many components you've been fortunate to have auditioned!

I'm very happy with my system these days, and have been for quite a while now. And yes, while there can always be some room for improvement, I'm very content. As I used to say when I was about 4 years old, "I happy what I got".

I'd like to hear opinions on why the C18 is the one with the highest price increase! I just don't get it. The C18 increased by over 27%, and the C34A increased by over 23%. This seems backwards to me. To me it looks like the C34A is more labor intensive to build partially due to having a larger stat panel, heavier and bulkier to ship, so I would think the price increase would be based more on parameters such as these.

Thanks again,
Scott
 

Stefan_DR3

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We're not talking about warranty or guarantees (or "support" even). I thought I made that clear.
You're right, that part of my comment was more for the car analogies that others were trying to make. Even Audi will sell you parts for their oldest car (just don't expect them to pay for it) but prices get higher as supply runs lower and the car model gets rarer. At some point it becomes unfeasible, and eventually impossible. By that logic, ML could start dropping support (parts) for their oldest models first.
 
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Stefan_DR3

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All I can say is that when I bought my Prodigy speakers they were about 15 years old and I had to set my receiver's gain setting to the max in order to get them to a proper level. I think that was +15, cant remember. Russ here in Ohio tested them and they were down about 15 db if I remember right. He was going to refurbish them but advised he not try because there was too much double sided tape in there to separate the panels. The panels also lost a lot of their topend frequencies and sounded very muffled. They did not sound good unless I ran Audyssey on them, it took off a bunch of bass and then they sounded ok. Once I replaced them they sounded great. The gain is only set at +2 now and the treble is all back. Since the treble is back, the woofers are now able to put out their sound to the best of their abilities without having to cut them off using Audyssey. Huge difference.

So having to replace panels when they get old is a very real thing. Its not some paranoia. My panels werent even 20 years old yet.

I believe you, so there does seem to be serious issues with some of the older models, but it could be just an unfortunate defect rather than something systemic. It happens with other electronics and people with problems are drawn to the Internet more than those that are happy, which tends to amplify issues.
 

amey01

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You're right, that part of my comment was more for the car analogies that others were trying to make. Even Audi will sell you parts for their oldest car (just don't expect them to pay for it) but prices get higher as supply runs lower and the car model gets rarer. At some point it becomes unfeasible, and eventually impossible. By that logic, ML could start dropping support (parts) for their oldest models first.

Agree. I just don't think that (for speakers nudging $100,000) (and in some cases over), that time is now - for any of the line.

Conflate that with what a panel is - a piece of thin plastic wedged between two pieces of metal. Hardly complex! (in fact, the simplicity of the structure and operating principle has been part of electrostatic marketing material for years on end!)

And finally - conflate all that with the fact that the panels are made in large quantities all day, every day. The only difference for older panels is the dimensions (oh, and the size of the holes in the metal if you want to get really picky - but if you can drill 2mm holes in metal, you can drill 3mm holes in metal too - I didn't come down in the last shower!).

Disclaimer: I made those measurements up - I don't know what the size of the holes actually are.

I don't know what the failure rate / yield of panel manufacturing is - that would be interesting to know. Because that's the only thing I can think of that might impact the cost. (Certainly not the fact that only one or two people are skilled to do it - that is a business management practice - and not something that customers should have to worry about).
 
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Robert D

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I just hope that the new panels I bought recently last longer than about 15 years. If I can get a good 20 years out of them then I will be happy.
 

Robert D

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With cars, Ive come to a conclusion that they all suck. Ive owned quite a few different brands and they all had trouble. Funny thing, the brands that I had with the least trouble were Dodge and Cadillac. Both of those are American. The worst ive ever owned was Audi, and I owned two A6s. Never again. One of them my transmission literally exploded. Junk.

My Acura had the transmission blow up too. It was junk. WIth that, Honda had a design problem with the transmissions and had to have a recall for it. That was something like a 1998 TL. Cant remember the year for sure. It was an automatic transmission they used on a lot of their cars, even the Odyssey minivan. The problem only happened on the 6 cylinder engine because it generated enough torque to break off the teeth of one or more gears. The gears were sourced from somewhere that made junk. Their fix was to run a small oil line into the transmission that sprayed oil on the gears to keep them cool. It seemed to work. We owned two of those cars and one was a lease. I got rid of the lease when it was over, but my wife's car we owned and they did that fix on it. Last Honda we bought. It took them about 3 to 6 months to fix my blown transmission. Apparently thousands of cars all over the US were blowing their transmissions and Honda didnt know what to do about it. They didnt have enough replacement parts either. I had to complain to Honda that I was paying high $$ to lease the TL and the dealer gave me an old beat up Chevy Lumina to drive in its place. Luckily Honda refunded me part or all of the payments I made during that time.

My Porsche 911 turbo had significant issues too, but I have held onto that because it is such a pleasure to drive.
 

Big Dog RJ

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Nice story Robert D, and yes cars are a nuisance. All in all, the CRV is running beautifully! Talk about not liking or trusting cars too much, hence why the wifey uses an electric bike! She doesn't believe in those petrol guzzling motors nor does she dig the ride... The E-bike is German made, fitted with a Bosch battery and is quite heavy. She loves the damn thing, and even takes it for a special service, where they give her hot chocolate plus assorted croissants. They provide her a drop off & pick up from her work place, whiles the bike is being serviced. That's what I call service! If I was in that coomfy situation, I wouldn't even bother going to work. I'd just sit at the service center and look after those croissants! and a few kilos incoming...!
Cheers, RJ
 

Robert D

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Nice story Robert D, and yes cars are a nuisance. All in all, the CRV is running beautifully! Talk about not liking or trusting cars too much, hence why the wifey uses an electric bike! She doesn't believe in those petrol guzzling motors nor does she dig the ride... The E-bike is German made, fitted with a Bosch battery and is quite heavy. She loves the damn thing, and even takes it for a special service, where they give her hot chocolate plus assorted croissants. They provide her a drop off & pick up from her work place, whiles the bike is being serviced. That's what I call service! If I was in that coomfy situation, I wouldn't even bother going to work. I'd just sit at the service center and look after those croissants! and a few kilos incoming...!
Cheers, RJ
Does she also have a car for when the weather is bad? Australia has snow and ice doesnt it? I dont know much about your climate. I just think that the timing of the seasons is much different than ours because it is in the southern hemisphere.

In Italy it seemed like 1/4 of the vehicles on the road were motor bikes. Here in the US it is not nearly as common.
 

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With cars, Ive come to a conclusion that they all suck. Ive owned quite a few different brands and they all had trouble. Funny thing, the brands that I had with the least trouble were Dodge and Cadillac. Both of those are American. The worst ive ever owned was Audi, and I owned two A6s. Never again. One of them my transmission literally exploded. Junk.

My experience was the opposite with respect to Chrysler and Acura products. I bought a brand new RAM 3500 dually about 10 years ago. It developed a major electrical issue after 4 months. Wouldn't even start. Un-driveable. Had to be towed away on a flatbed. Spent 22 days in the shop being repaired. It was never right after that, and continued to develop several other wacky electrical and computer issues, along with several unrelated recalls for design/manufacturing defects. One that caused front alignment issues that chewed up a set of front tires prematurely. I finally got tired of something new acting up every time I drove it, and eventually traded it in on a Tahoe since I wasn't towing my RV anymore. By the time I got rid of it, it had probably been in the shop close to 30 days over the course of 4 years. That was my first and last Chrysler product. Which is too bad. I think RAM has the best looking pickup out there, and the best diesel engine, but I will never ever buy another product from them. Total garbage.

I've since owned two different Acuras and have not had a lick of trouble with either of them. Solid vehicles. And I have to say, my first Tahoe was a solid vehicle, too. No issues there. But the '21 Tahoe I have now is a disappointment. Definite decrease in quality from the first one I had. Had to go in the shop within the first 6 months because the front bumper sensors and camera malfunctioned, so park assist and cruise control stopped working. In addition to that, I have never owned a vehicle with so many random rattles inside the cabin, and for being all new and redesigned, they have made some really dumb decisions about layout of controls. You sometimes have to wonder who's testing and evaluating this stuff. Sure doesn't seem like anybody who spends any amount of time in the vehicle actually using the controls.
 

Robert D

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My experience was the opposite with respect to Chrysler and Acura products. I bought a brand new RAM 3500 dually about 10 years ago. It developed a major electrical issue after 4 months. Wouldn't even start. Un-driveable. Had to be towed away on a flatbed. Spent 22 days in the shop being repaired. It was never right after that, and continued to develop several other wacky electrical and computer issues, along with several unrelated recalls for design/manufacturing defects. One that caused front alignment issues that chewed up a set of front tires prematurely. I finally got tired of something new acting up every time I drove it, and eventually traded it in on a Tahoe since I wasn't towing my RV anymore. By the time I got rid of it, it had probably been in the shop close to 30 days over the course of 4 years. That was my first and last Chrysler product. Which is too bad. I think RAM has the best looking pickup out there, and the best diesel engine, but I will never ever buy another product from them. Total garbage.

I've since owned two different Acuras and have not had a lick of trouble with either of them. Solid vehicles. And I have to say, my first Tahoe was a solid vehicle, too. No issues there. But the '21 Tahoe I have now is a disappointment. Definite decrease in quality from the first one I had. Had to go in the shop within the first 6 months because the front bumper sensors and camera malfunctioned, so park assist and cruise control stopped working. In addition to that, I have never owned a vehicle with so many random rattles inside the cabin, and for being all new and redesigned, they have made some really dumb decisions about layout of controls. You sometimes have to wonder who's testing and evaluating this stuff. Sure doesn't seem like anybody who spends any amount of time in the vehicle actually using the controls.
I think my next car will be another Cadillac. The new Lyric looks nice. I'd like the dual engine version with high hp. I was thinking I'd get the Ford Mustang Mach E GT, but it's had a lot of big problems including the battery. Ford has had a terrible record recently with multiple models.

The Dodge Shadow ES I owned was the most reliable car I ever owned. That was a 1993 model.

The two Acuras I owned both blew out their transmissions. The first was my Legend, and then the TL.
 

msimanyi

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@MisterB Huh. Must’ve been a Monday build…

I have a 2012 Ram (Cummins) 3500 dually bought new in November 2012, and it’s been nothing but fantastic.

Edit: to be clear, mine is the last year of not needing the separate diesel exhaust fluid. Perhaps the emissions change threw a wrench in their design and build processes.

But I am taking this OT. Back to ML rising prices!
 

Robert D

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Hopefully prices come down a bit in the next year or two or at least stop rising. If they keep selling speakers and making a profit then that won't happen, in that case prices will continue to rise.
 

DaVinci Media

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I'm not so sure I understand.

Simple, because the 100 different panels you speak of are all produced in exactly the same way. It is just a matter of different size. The only exception to that I can think of is the CLX bass panel.

Of course - good business practice would have seen these panels produced with common parts and backward compatability and sizes over the years. I'm not sure how we get to over 100 different panels (that's nigh on a different panel for every different model produced - madness!) - but so be it. As I said earlier, they're all exactly the same thing. I'm really not seeing how this is a complex thing.
Maybe you can start making them!
 

Big Dog RJ

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Does she also have a car for when the weather is bad? Australia has snow and ice doesnt it? I dont know much about your climate. I just think that the timing of the seasons is much different than ours because it is in the southern hemisphere.

In Italy it seemed like 1/4 of the vehicles on the road were motor bikes. Here in the US it is not nearly as common.
G'day mate! Nah, during bad weather she just rides... through rain, ice / hail, thunder storms, etc., then calls me to complain... yet keeps riding like the Batman!
I bought her a small Kia but now kiddo drives that. She's at Uni & work, and doesn't believe in bikes... all the way home. She's also pimped it up, with this awful fragrance and large pink dice. Whenever I get into her car, it's as if the mummy returns! I'm under a spell of paaarfoooms!
Cheers mate, RJ
 

MisterB

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@MisterB Huh. Must’ve been a Monday build…

I have a 2012 Ram (Cummins) 3500 dually bought new in November 2012, and it’s been nothing but fantastic.

Edit: to be clear, mine is the last year of not needing the separate diesel exhaust fluid. Perhaps the emissions change threw a wrench in their design and build processes.

But I am taking this OT. Back to ML rising prices!
Yup, that certainly could be. Mine was a 2013 and was the first year that required DEF. It was a beautiful truck. It's just too bad it had the issues it had. Otherwise I'd likely still have it.

But yes, back to the topic of ML prices. I was drawn to ML stats because I honestly felt the performance way outpaced the price. Value for the dollar is subjective, but I always felt ML stats delivered performance over and above their price. But now with two price increases in less than 1 year, with some of them a little mind-boggling (C18, C34A...) I'm not sure I can consider ML's to be the high end "bargain" they used to be. Especially when you consider the Masterpiece line is going on 6 years old. One would think they'd have gotten cheaper to produce over time. The whole "economies of scale" thing...
 

msimanyi

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Well, there's not a lot of "development" expense on this product line, and there aren't any new breakthroughs in related areas that can really improve them. The ESL tech seems quite stable, the line includes on-board amps for the bass range that by all accounts are outstanding and even include highly effective DSP room correction tech for the bass. I don't see any obvious path for "new" and truly improved speakers in the Masterpiece line, other than for marketing purposes.

So.... price. If it's not R&D costs for new speakers, then "costs" are driving the pricing. We all know that labor isn't getting cheaper, raw materials aren't getting cheaper, rent (land/office) isn't getting any cheaper, and in fact, the strength of the US dollar may be working against it, as the parent company is Canadian.

Yeah, the value component is diminishing, but it's still there. I just bought 15As, but I could've easily had a significant upgrade over my Aerius speakers with an 11A, and if I was willing to forego ARC even the Classic 9 likely would've been a material improvement for me.

And it's not just at ML that we're seeing this. Arguably one of their bigger competitors is Magnepan. I was strongly considering 1.7s. 3.7s and 20.7s, all of which have been unchanged/unimproved for years and all of which might represent "better value." They, too, have gone through considerable price increases (though only one during the pandemic), and when you have their speakers you don't have to plan for replacing panels in ~20 years.

The reasons I opted to stay with ML? DSP on the bass, self-powered bass and form factor. The 20.7s are visually HUGE in the room vs 15As. Even at the new prices, my decision would remain the same, though I'll add I'm quite happy I bought them at the lower price.
 
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