High Altitude ESL-Xs

MartinLogan Owners (MLO)

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Jan 30, 2021
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Greetings fro the Mile High City! Thats Denver for those that dont know...

In the process of finishing the basement with another bedroom, a studio/work space for my guitar stuff, a wet bar area and home theater area/listening room. Purchased a new set of Elecromotion ESL-X this month (Feb, 2021) for that purpose. Things have come together very nicely...Setup is as follows:

ML Electromotion ESL-X in front
Polk Audio in ceiling for rear surround (Dont know model number)
Tannoy TS10 subwoofer
Denon AVR-X3700 Receiver
Lexicon 312 (Bryston 5B-ST equivalent) amp to power the ESL-Xs
Optoma UHD65 4k Projector
Sony UBP-X700 4k Blu-Ray Player
Roku Ultra 4k for streaming
Netgear switch distributes wired internet to components

Room measures about 14 feet wide and is open to the wet bar behind. Couch is situated about 12 feet back from the speakers, 14 from the wall. We opted for the clean look as seen in the pics below. The sub is tucked under a table off to the side while the projector shines directly on the front wall and is a little bit bigger than a 160" TV screen. I did the framing myself and was able to run wires in the studs for speakers and projector on ceiling. There isnt a single wire running along a wall, anywhere. Just some short runs coming out of junction boxes. I only wish I had run multiple sets of wires...At any rate, loving the set up. I still have not done any optimizing of placement and probably wont get to that for sometime. Even as is, it sounds stellar. And as much as I love just listening, the home theater experience is so incredibly immersive, it just blows my mind still.

I also took the opportunity to build a small component room that is tucked away from the main room, where all the wires run into. Plenty of shelving there means my wife has room to set up all her family games and some of our DVDs; and there is plenty of expansion space for more amps and other components down the road.
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Well-known member
Mar 3, 2011
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Carlsbad, CA
That's a beautiful room. I'm not sure how much time you've had with your ML's, but the most important things to consider are:
1. Provide plenty of space behind the speakers. For the best possible sound you will want to pull them out in to the room about 4' from that front wall.
2. Take lots of time to find the best location of the speakers. Before you invest any money in expensive cables, or other improvements - take some time to ensure that both speakers are exactly the same distance from your listening chair (I mean +/- 1/8") and that the toe-in for both speakers is exactly the same. Also play with the distance between the speakers and see what that does to your sweet spot and the sound stage image.
3. Spend just a little money on acoustic treatments for the room - inexpensive and dramatic improvements include some absorption behind the speakers and something to reduce the first reflection on the side walls. You may also want to consider a rug for the hard floor.

Each of these steps can be taken on as an opportunity to improve the sound in the room, and you will have fun doing them. Enjoy!