Quantcast

CLS II identification and upgrade

MartinLogan Owners (MLO)

Help Support MartinLogan Owners (MLO):

kirkawall

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Hi all,

Glad I found this place -- I have the option to purchase a pair of CLS IIs from my dealer here in Canada. The panels have been upgraded within the past month but the 'speaker has the serial number CEDF008Z. I'm wondering which of the CLS versions this is, whether it might be worth the 2800.00 CAD the dealer wants for it and whether it can be upgraded to "Z" status. I've got it at home this weekend and am using it with a Quad CDP-2 and 909 power amp and Chord Signature cables. I am amazed by what these can do despite the panels not being broken in yet, but have read on various forums/reviews that the CLS IIz seem to have been the pick of the bunch in terms of ease of drive and overall sonics. Any advice, experiences much appreciated.

best,


k
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
The serial number you are referencing is from June of 1992 and is for the electronics from what I have. I too have CLS but they are the CLSiiZ's.

I would email Jim Power at ML on Monday and he can tell you if they can be upgraded. He is the sevice manager for ML and his email is jpower@martinlogan.com. At this point if they are really new panels all the has to be upgraded is the electronics. He can tell you if they still do it and what is the cost.

Persoanlly I would keep them either way :D

Good Luck

Jeff :cool:
 

kirkawall

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Jeff Zaret said:
The serial number you are referencing is from June of 1992 and is for the electronics from what I have. I too have CLS but they are the CLSiiZ's.

I would email Jim Power at ML on Monday and he can tell you if they can be upgraded. He is the sevice manager for ML and his email is jpower@martinlogan.com. At this point if they are really new panels all the has to be upgraded is the electronics. He can tell you if they still do it and what is the cost.

Persoanlly I would keep them either way :D

Good Luck

Jeff :cool:

Many thanks Jeff -- I've been listening to these for a few hours tonight and they are amazing speakers. The speed and precision and emotion they are able to manage even with my smallish room. I am finding them far easier to drive and position than I thought -- why do the CLS series speakers have such a fearsome reputation? I'll contact ML as you say and yes, I think I'll hang onto these...

thanks and best,

k
 

roberto

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
3,224
Reaction score
54
Location
San Jose, Costa Rica
kirkawall said:
Many thanks Jeff -- I've been listening to these for a few hours tonight and they are amazing speakers. The speed and precision and emotion they are able to manage even with my smallish room. I am finding them far easier to drive and position than I thought -- why do the CLS series speakers have such a fearsome reputation? I'll contact ML as you say and yes, I think I'll hang onto these...

thanks and best,

k
Hola K. Welcome again. I´m another very happy owner and user. The reputation of the CLS with the fear is because they, with a little change in position, the sound changes dramatically. The soundstage, the size of the instruments, vocals, are affected, but these does not means that the results are bad...no, no. Only they provided many different kinds of scenario a musical instruments presentation, and it is very hard to choose the one that you like most!!! I also have the latest model, but I started with the CLS in 87. What I did with their position in my room, I have marked with masking tape, the ones that I liked for particular music. As an example, for classical guitar, I use a different position than when I´m playing combo jazz and another for big orchestra. They are a truly high-end speakers and they never stop to amused me. At the tweak section, there is another CLS user, his name is Dan, and he shows us how to get more from the CLS. Enjoy your new sound, happy listening,
Pura vida,
Roberto.
 

kirkawall

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Thanks Roberto -- have been in touch with Martin Logan and apparently the "z" at the end of the serial number denotes the CLSIIz, even though this is too early a version to have the AC sensing board. Hopefully I can have that installed by my dealer here. I do love these though -- prefer them even to the Vantages I demo'd recently...

best,

k
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
kirkawall,
If you at all handy you could replace the board yourself. It does not look that difficult at all to do. THis may save you a little bit of money.

Just a thought

Jeff :cool:
 

kirkawall

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Jeff Zaret said:
kirkawall,
If you at all handy you could replace the board yourself. It does not look that difficult at all to do. THis may save you a little bit of money.

Just a thought

Jeff :cool:
Jeff,

Thanks for the tip. I've had a look at the board and I should be able to manage it assuming it's a straight swap. For some reason my main board seems to be the ML XQ-21 and not the later ML XQ-22 version but I'm hoping this doesn't complicate matters. I'm also thinking of trying the speaker wire tweak posted elsewhere on the board.

thanks again,

k
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
kirkawall,

I spoke with Jim Power at length about the "wire" change. He said it was not a bad idea and also possible a change to the connectors on the back of the "electronics box". I have locking banana plugs on mine but some other versions do not. I think it is a matter of choice.

I personally believe it will be a subtle change at best but it may be worthwhile.

Jeff :cool:
 

nirvanaseeker

Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2006
Messages
13
Reaction score
0
imaging

You know, you guys talk about the imaging on these stats and put a lot of effort into positioning and the like,..but I'd like to put in my 2 cents worth. I've been doing some amp development and I'm finding that the sound is coming together image and soundstage-wise on it's own, without playing the positioning game. As a matter of fact, the better the amp gets, the more rock solid the imaging becomes and seems to be less sensitive to at least the position that I sit in. Has anyone else noticed that the better the amp, the less the problem of imaging and positioning? Just curious.
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
nirvanaseeker,

Yes, I did "realize" a better soundstage/image when I upgraded my amp and preamp. I would agree with your preliminary findings as well. I do not recall what speakers you do have, sorry, but the CLS's are difficult to set up.

IMHO, they are a bit more difficult to setup than ML's "hybrid" products. There is finding the "sweet-spot" which takes a bit of trial and error, toe-in, and placement from the rear walls and side walls to find it and it is small compared to typical box speakers. Also, there is not a "large" vertical dispersion of sound, i.e. when you stand up the sound may change a bit and they are a bit bass shy. There are many tweaks to get around these peculiarities and the results are more than worth it.

Just a another 2 cents worth

Jeff :cool:
 

nirvanaseeker

Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2006
Messages
13
Reaction score
0
Thanks for the reply Jeff. Yes, there is a limited vertical dispersion, but big surprise given the fact that they are rather short compared to most people's height. I tend to sit in one place to enjoy anyway so the moving around aspect doesn't mean much to me. I suppose leaning the speaker back more would counter this problem to a degree.

I do have the CLSs and I have not encountered a whole lot of difficulty in setting the things up. It has worked out well for me from the start, maybe I was just holding my tongue right. I dunno, I think it's all pretty simple, which probably goes against most people's grain based on their own experience. But mine is just eyeballing the vertical at about 6 degrees (roughly, thereabouts) and as for toe-in,..you got three options: pointing the speakers directly at you, or before you, or on either side. Mine are pointing right at me now with pretty good success. Most of my time is spent with the amp up on the bench with intermittant listening, so I get to the toe-in when I can get to it but I don't make a big deal of it. Maybe I should...lol.

But this solid state amps' development has gone hand in hand with the way my work on the Acoustat servos has gone: stock = wandering imaging with much work left to be done. Improving the amp solidified the imaging in both and made them much more immune to speaker placement, not to mention the more clear and natural sound. It never really dawned on me before that so much of what we hear just seems to be built into the signal itself and that amps seem to play a key role in this given their role of inherent signal boost. But no, that is not discounting everything else,..so relax....:)
 

DTB300

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
2,146
Reaction score
0
Location
Fallout 3 Land
nirvanaseeker said:
But mine is just eyeballing the vertical at about 6 degrees (roughly, thereabouts) and as for toe-in,..you got three options: pointing the speakers directly at you, or before you, or on either side. Mine are pointing right at me now with pretty good success.
I totally agree with you here. I do not use measurements (tape measure for distances from wall, or angle guide) for setting up the speaker. I have tried all the variations of tilt and toe-in, using the resulting sound to determine the final setup for myself. Note that each type of setup will result in a slightly different sound - none being wrong.

Dan
 

Peter Hogan

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 31, 2004
Messages
295
Reaction score
1
Location
Fitchburg, MA
nirvanaseeker said:
Thanks for the reply Jeff. Yes, there is a limited vertical dispersion, but big surprise given the fact that they are rather short compared to most people's height. I tend to sit in one place to enjoy anyway so the moving around aspect doesn't mean much to me. I suppose leaning the speaker back more would counter this problem to a degree.
Hi,
Another thing you might try is to elevate the CLS's about a foot off the floor. They do make stands just for this, but you can prop them up on blocks just to try it out, temporarily. I found this made a BIG change for the better in how they sound, and the sound now changes very little between sitting and standing.

Peter
 

kirkawall

Well-known member
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
0
Hi,

I'm learning a lot from this thread... I wonder if anyone here can tell me the difference between the ML XQ-21 and XQ-22 boards in the CLS IIz. Mine are the "Z" version but lack the auto-sensing AC circuit. I'd like to know whether this is the only difference between the two versions. Based on the info here I've been spending some time repositioning these and it has really paid off. This model seems to have a purity and smoothness that even the more expensive older hybrids don't.

thanks again,


k
 

DTB300

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
2,146
Reaction score
0
Location
Fallout 3 Land
Peter Hogan said:
Another thing you might try is to elevate the CLS's about a foot off the floor. They do make stands just for this, but you can prop them up on blocks just to try it out, temporarily. I found this made a BIG change for the better in how they sound, and the sound now changes very little between sitting and standing.
I made my own stands so I could raise the speakers so the center spar was located right at my ear height. Like you the change was very nice and the stands cost me under $20 to make for both.

Like you I tested out some height changes with whatever I had sitting around. A set of cinder blocks happened to be almost the right height I needed, and showed me what the change would give me.

Dan
 

Jeff Zaret

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
1
Location
Lancaster,Ca
I believe that the other change to the "Z" was when a signal was sensed not only it they panels energize and turn on, but the music would come up slowly and not blast the panels immediately. This slow delay is only about 1 second.

Jeff :cool:
 

nirvanaseeker

Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2006
Messages
13
Reaction score
0
Another thing you might try is to elevate the CLS's about a foot off the floor

What exactly is it you think about the speaker elevation that improves the sound? Nothing apparant strikes me in the face about what could be happening, although something in the back of my mind tells me I should know this, just is long forgotten. Mass loading? Wave reflection? Not sure what relation is happening here. Gravity??.....LOL!!! Sorry, this stuff just flashes through my mind,..can't be responsible..

Perhaps the floor is acting like just another reflective surface much like a wall would, despite the fact the speaker is oriented the way it is. Seems to me I recall something to that effect and some company in MA even designed around such at one time.

I guess if I went Googling I might find out, but feeding this thread is kinda fun and constructive.
 

mdl

Member
Joined
May 18, 2005
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
CLS Stands

I have CLS IIz's on Sound Anchor stands. My understanding is the stands lessen the presence of the floor, meaning they reduce bass extension but also open up the panel at the higher frequencies. This also tends to put the md-point of the panel mid-ear, which changes the tonal balance (I would say, for the better). It is easy to try to see if you prefer it.

In general, I find stands improve what I love about these speakers, but also make the need for something to fill in the bottom end more critical. I actually cross mine over to dual subs at 125hz. This may seem fairly high, but I think it helps my older panels play. I also have a lot of control over the subs (digital eq, levels, etc.) that make it possible to bring the panel and the cone together very well. I far prefer the 125hz crossover to the 40hz and 80hz crossovers I previously tried. I m not tempted to go higher as I think I am at the limit for my woofers.
 

DTB300

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
2,146
Reaction score
0
Location
Fallout 3 Land
mdl said:
My understanding is the stands lessen the presence of the floor, meaning they reduce bass extension but also open up the panel at the higher frequencies.
This is my experience with the stands I made. The only bass presence I think the floor makes is the resonating of the panel/frame with the floor, not the output wave itself.

In general, I find stands improve what I love about these speakers, but also make the need for something to fill in the bottom end more critical. I actually cross mine over to dual subs at 125hz. This may seem fairly high, but I think it helps my older panels play. I also have a lot of control over the subs (digital eq, levels, etc.) that make it possible to bring the panel and the cone together very well. I far prefer the 125hz crossover to the 40hz and 80hz crossovers I previously tried. I m not tempted to go higher as I think I am at the limit for my woofers.
For those of us with Subs and CLS speakers we all find our Xover points and volume that we like or prefer. I know with my SMS-1 Bass EQ, that having the remote volume and being able to change Xover points for source needing a higher or lower point has been invaluable.

Question about your subs. You say you have dual subs and use Digital EQ, etc. Can you tell us more about your low end setup (make, model, sub placements, etc.) and what you noticed between a single sub and dual subs?

Dan
 

mvhendel

New member
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
I also have CLS (II I think) with the Arcicci stands. I found elevating the speakers made a huge difference. From my point of view because my ear was level with the middle of the speakers. I could be wrong but I love them.
Yes, Amp makes huge difference but having some tubes in there also makes a big difference (I have a tube pre-amp)

Michael
 
Top