Brand new Masterpiece ESL 9 level difference in left right channel

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Ishaansuri

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We also noticed this strange salty residue on both bias board components which I'm unsure if it is moisture or intended as some coating. It is like a battery leak which may have dried up. But it's consistently there on both bias boards on the exact same component. Anyone seen this before ?
 

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StimpyWan

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While I own EM ESL's, I have a bias board that I need to replace too. I'll check it over, once home, to see if it shows any similar 'saltiness' to yours.
 
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Robert D

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Have some updates for you. Doesn't sound very good. So dealer visited with tech team. ML support has been in touch with them, asked them to swap bias boards from each speaker see if the problem follows. It didn't. Swapped boards and crossover. Sound representation on the suspect speaker still stays the same.

So now the issue is the panel. I would assume this requires a replacement of the entire speaker and not a replacement of the panel. The speakers are 3 months old and barely maybe 100 hours of run time.
If I were you ,I'd press for a new speaker. Hopefully they offer to do that. I would be surprised if they don't offer that right away.
 

Ishaansuri

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If I were you ,I'd press for a new speaker. Hopefully they offer to do that. I would be surprised if they don't offer that right away.
Hi Robert. They are not, they are offering a absurd deal. They have told me verbally that they intend to ship them back across the country to the distributor HQ and they intend to replace both stat panels and bias boards on both speakers. This means they are defective.

These are 3 month old brand new speakers purchased with full documents and bills. I am shocked at their policy. They want to repair my brand new purchase speakers and lug them by road to service. These speakers are 5 feet tall and heavy and we all know cosmetically how risky that may be.

Request anyone in this forum to raise this to any contact they have in Martin Logan. I am a new customer to their brand and this is a set of speakers that are literally instruments of music. They should last many many years. This is not the way. ML service refuses to say more to me on email other than your local distributor will be in touch with you.

Very disappointed.
 

StimpyWan

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Hi Robert. They are not, they are offering a absurd deal. They have told me verbally that they intend to ship them back across the country to the distributor HQ and they intend to replace both stat panels and bias boards on both speakers. This means they are defective.
Document the speakers before they are repackaged and shipped. Make sure to take many pictures of both speakers. There's not much else you can do, to ensure the ML's are returned in the same shape, as before the journey. And while your experiences are unfortunate and disappointing up to this point, if the speakers sound like new afterwards, that's what matters. Enjoy them, and forget the negative.

Good luck.
 
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Ishaansuri

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Document the speakers before they are repackaged and shipped. Make sure to take many pictures of both speakers. There's not much else you can do, to ensure the ML's returned in the same shape, as before the journey. And while your experiences are unfortunate and disappointing up to this point, if the speakers sound like new afterwards, that's what matters. Enjoy them, and forget the negative.

Good luck.
Thank you. Yes hoping to be positive. I hope they find better solution and sense in this. But let's see what they want to do and will ensure will limit liability and risk by taking pictures and precautions if it comes to this.
 

Robert D

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Hi Robert. They are not, they are offering a absurd deal. They have told me verbally that they intend to ship them back across the country to the distributor HQ and they intend to replace both stat panels and bias boards on both speakers. This means they are defective.

These are 3 month old brand new speakers purchased with full documents and bills. I am shocked at their policy. They want to repair my brand new purchase speakers and lug them by road to service. These speakers are 5 feet tall and heavy and we all know cosmetically how risky that may be.

Request anyone in this forum to raise this to any contact they have in Martin Logan. I am a new customer to their brand and this is a set of speakers that are literally instruments of music. They should last many many years. This is not the way. ML service refuses to say more to me on email other than your local distributor will be in touch with you.

Very disappointed.
Wow. Gotta say I'm shocked. Maybe your dealer can get something done about it. I expect the speakers to be shipped back to them so they can be refurbished and resold as such, but you should get new speakers.
I'm disappointed. Like I said, they gave me a new Focus center channel shipped to me. They sent it to the dealer and then I went there and swapped out my speaker for a new one. Mine had a lose positive speaker terminal right out of the box. They handled mine nicely.

I hope you get properly taken care of.
 

ttocs

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This is disappointing for sure. Seems very odd to me, and very unlike the customer service I'm used to hearing about.
 

Ishaansuri

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Final update is that the only option I have is to send the speakers for replacement of the complete panel and bias board. Should take about 14-20 days round trip. No idea why this problem has come up in 3 months. They will let me know once they send the old components back to ML. They are going to handle the logistics and intend to return the speakers as is. They claim a new panel and new bias board shall be equivalent to a new speaker so I'm hoping for the best.

No response from ML on the matter in anything other than this. They chose to order and replace the panels in a flash without any other discussion.

I have written to ML however I doubt I should get an optional response.
 

barjohn

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Those are leaking electrolytic capacitors that have gone bad. If they weren't new I would suggest buying replacements and unsoldering the old and soldering in the new ones and it would probably fix the problem. However, being new units under warranty I would let them do the repairs.
 

Robert D

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Those are leaking electrolytic capacitors that have gone bad. If they weren't new I would suggest buying replacements and unsoldering the old and soldering in the new ones and it would probably fix the problem. However, being new units under warranty I would let them do the repairs.
Weird thing is though that he said they swapped the boards back and forth and the sound problem did not follow the board that was messed up looking. It stayed with the speaker. So its as if the board had nothing to do with it and its the panel.
 

StimpyWan

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Yea, I think the OP has 2 issues. One speaker with a bad panel, and both speakers have suspect power supply boards. If like my EM-ESL's internally, the power supply boards are in the bottom of the cabinet, and the leaky capacitors won't harm the crossover boards or the woofers.
 

thepogue

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Two quick thoughts....if I bought w/ a credit card I'd contact them and dispute the charges. Second, I'd try to get replacement speakers (for loaners until they returned what I bought) that are more costly than what I purchased....that way the dealer has some "skin in the game" to finalize the repairs. At this point they have zero risk....they have the funds and the bad speakers and only risk a single customer. Really piss-poor deal when it's obvious they were defective from the start. They should give you brand-new 100% running speakers and deal w/ML to figure out how they ended up being sold and how they failed QC. sorry to hear but I feel both the dealer and ML are turning a blind eye.
 

Ishaansuri

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Dealer is known well to me as I have purchased a lot from him over time. I will definitely push for a pair of standby speakers for the time they are not here.

As far as ML is concerned. Still no definitive answer what is the cause. It is definitely a leaking capacitor and the panel is defective due to the damage capacitor they claim.

Although both boards are bad and one panel sounds off, they will change both panels as they need to change panels as a matched pair. Will wait to hear from ML what is the reason for this development in the first place.
 

barjohn

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Weird thing is though that he said they swapped the boards back and forth and the sound problem did not follow the board that was messed up looking. It stayed with the speaker. So its as if the board had nothing to do with it and its the panel.
One boards electrolytics may have failed and the other is on the verge of failure and the failed set could have been caused by a defective panel. Something is causing the electrolytics to fail but they appear to have leaked electrolyte that has now dried leaving a residue.
 

Ishaansuri

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One boards electrolytics may have failed and the other is on the verge of failure and the failed set could have been caused by a defective panel. Something is causing the electrolytics to fail but they appear to have leaked electrolyte that has now dried leaving a residue.
Hi so is the panel responsible for the board failure or the other way? They suspect it's board first panel later. They also have been questioning power surge amplification quality. My setup has been driving another pair of speakers and amps for years at the same spot. The emotiva driving these had a power surge and fried s board which was repaired recently when it was on another set of JBLs. That's been driving these but that amp is mostly stable for many months now no particular trouble showing.

I also suspect shipping via sea. I'm in India these speakers make the journey via ocean cargo here and may have a moisture concern but that is minimal in my mind. The speakers are sealed tight when they ship and there is no humidity where I live. They had opened these speakers before selling them to me for a single day for a display and then I picked them up. They even allowed a slight discount due to that but they were assured to be brand new and papers and everything confirmed that. Sealed packaging and speakers were untouched new.

Seeing both capacitors on both boards displaying the exact same putting like it's salt residue on galvanized steel, tells me it's something external that has induced this. It looks like the internals of the capacitors has boiled or bubbled out. Both boards display the exact same visuals. So consistently like it's were intended coating which it isn't.
 

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barjohn

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Unless there is a short or arcing occurring in a panel, I'm not sure how a panel can cause this. I am attaching ML's panel replacement instructions. Essentially, the audio signal is fed through a step up transformer and connected to each stator (one on each side) and they are separated by spacers that also support the mylar transducer. A bad/shorted transformer or stators could blow out the caps causing them to overheat and boil out the electrolyte contained inside. Without a schematic of the board I can't tell what other components could fail to cause the issue but because we see it on both speakers and it is highly unlikely they both suffer from the same defect, I would suspect something in the input over driving the boards such as heavy clipping or a very sharp transient spike. The speakers are rated to 400W but a transient can easily cause a 400W amplifier to produce spike many times greater. Of course, if they somehow got wet with salt water that is our hell on electronics, even those designed for the marine environment.
 

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Ishaansuri

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Unless there is a short or arcing occurring in a panel, I'm not sure how a panel can cause this. I am attaching ML's panel replacement instructions. Essentially, the audio signal is fed through a step up transformer and connected to each stator (one on each side) and they are separated by spacers that also support the mylar transducer. A bad/shorted transformer or stators could blow out the caps causing them to overheat and boil out the electrolyte contained inside. Without a schematic of the board I can't tell what other components could fail to cause the issue but because we see it on both speakers and it is highly unlikely they both suffer from the same defect, I would suspect something in the input over driving the boards such as heavy clipping or a very sharp transient spike. The speakers are rated to 400W but a transient can easily cause a 400W amplifier to produce spike many times greater. Of course, if they somehow got wet with salt water that is our hell on electronics, even those designed for the marine environment.
Makes sense. I am driving these on a emotiva a300 power amp that does 300w per channel @4ohm so it's not getting some crazy overload. However much is on suspect since the issue has been escalated. The distributor offered to change panels and bias boards eyes shut within hours of my email without me even asking. I asked for a replacement pair as you all know.

Why such a quick easy decision ? Unsure. I found out today that this pair was in storage for about a year during civid lock downs. Sealed but in a seaside town and high humidity city. Maybe this ? Maybe just a QC issue ? Maybe more ? Unsure

I have told them to ask ML what is the cause of this. Or identify or isolate a few possible causes. If my amp is doing it I will change it. But if it was a problem with my preamp and amp would they just decide to swap things out with no questions asked. They need to answer clearly what caused this issue on the boards. The sound and imaging problem is forgotten. Once the speakers were opened the boards told a different story.
 
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