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Monolith III -VS- Prodigy?

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Cherian

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What are peoples thoughts in here regarding the Martin Logan Monolith III. I have not found many threads regarding this speaker. I have looked for reviews on line with very little luck. In about a year I will be moving to the burbs and a bigger home. I want to build a dedicated 2 channel listening system. Should I go with a used set of Prodigy or the Monolith III? Thoughts? I will be using a Carver Lightstar Reference to drive whatever speakers I get.

Thanks

Cherian
 
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TomDac

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You mean you'll be using MY Carver lightstar reference.... :)


Monoliths are old school MLs... If money wasn't a huge object, I wouldn't start building a new system up around them just because ML's newer ESL technology is so much better and much easier to drive.

If I were to come across a pair of Monolith IIIs and were going to keep them, I'd contact Jim Power and see about replacing the panels as well as the power supplies and internal stuff to make them brand new again.
 
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kwr

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TomDac said:
Monoliths are old school MLs... If money wasn't a huge object, I wouldn't start building a new system up around them just because ML's newer ESL technology is so much better and much easier to drive.
I think I'm one of the few Monolith III owners here. Tom has hit the nail on the head. The Monoliths require lots of quality power to perform. I think this is why they are so under rated - many people have not heard them with enough grunt.

That said I was never impressed enough by the Prodigy to even get the slightest urge to replace the Monoliths. The Monoliths are now getting fairly old and may need the screens replacing. For what it is worth mine are ten years old and I still think they are sounding good - they live in a smoke free, pet free environment, been regularly vacuumed and have not been thrashed.

See what you can find secondhand. The Prodigy is a safer bet secondary to age considerations but if a good set of Monoliths falls in your lap you may discover the virtues of a crossover at 125 Hz - so much more of the information is presented by the screen. Be warned - to make them work well you need a lot of high quality power.

Kevin
 

Cherian

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I just love stat panel size of the monolith. I even like the aesthetics of the monolith. The Carver Lightstar can put out 300 watts per channel into 8 ohm and go down to 1 ohm and put out 2400 watts. I have the amp to drive this speaker. Just need to wait to get the space and money.
 

TomDac

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Hey Cherian,
Sounds like you're already set on the MIIIs... Not only are the MIII's panels HUGE, but I think the whole uniqueness factor of having a set of Monolith IIIs is WAY cool.

Your amp will definitely drive them without any problem at all.

Looks like there are a few sets of MIIIs on Audiogon...

Keep us posted!

Tom.
 
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kwr

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Cherian said:
I just love stat panel size of the monolith. I even like the aesthetics of the monolith. The Carver Lightstar can put out 300 watts per channel into 8 ohm and go down to 1 ohm and put out 2400 watts. I have the amp to drive this speaker. Just need to wait to get the space and money.
I'm with you - CLS and Monolith III are the best looking speakers that ML has produced. A very under appreciated fact on the Monolith is that the sealed bass enclosure is very "fast" albeit at the penalty of another 1 ohm loading as is the screen load at the high end. This matters a lot as it is responsible for the one note bass that some have described with the Monoliths. You simply have to feed current to it to make it work. This like Maggies can make the Monolith an expensive secondhand bargain as you need to have the right powerful amp to make it sing.

The Monoliths produce an enormous image that does not change as you stand up. We spend a lot of time standing at a kitchen bench while listening to them and this feature matters. They are not the last word in bass dynamic thump but are generally severely underated in this department. We are classical and jazz listeners so this is not a big deal anyway as we are not dealing with the synthetic bass of a PA system reproduction.

I am not for a second saying that the Monoliths are better than the Prodigy - life is not that simple but it is worth your consideration.

Kevin
 

JonFo

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I’ve had Monoliths for 6 years now, and when the prodigies came out I seriously considered them. However, I just did not hear enough of a difference to convince me they were worth the coin.
Instead, I spent effort in getting the most out of the Monoliths.

First step, as you note is to ensure sufficient power, therefore I used a pair of 400w channels from the Sunfire Cinema grand signature amp just for the panels and another 200w channels from a Sunfire stereo amp for the woofers. Each going through the respective half of the Crossover.

Next step was to replace passive x-over with an Active system. After some iteration, I wound up with the DBX DriveRack 260. This allowed incredible control of the speaker and associated environment and totally transformed the Monolith. With this, it was head and shoulders above a stock prodigy.

Somewhere in there, I also found that the Woofer in my III’s were a bit flabby, so in went a new woofer. Currently recommend either of these two as the upgrade:
The Peerless 830669 12". Ideal for 3 cu.ft., Dead flat out to 1.7K, 91+ db/watt (really) +/- 8mm xmax and a Faraday ring. A bargin at $75.00.

http://www.madisound.com/cgi-bin/index.cgi?cart_id=1916198.29527&pid=1946

Also recommended is the Flexunits 12 B 77 25 10

With the woofer tightened up, the active Crossover and enough juice, these speakers can really rock. High SPL is no problem for these now. I even had to upgrade the Sub to keep up. :cool:
 

kach22i

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If I were going by looks alone, I like the Monoliths. :)


Monolith






Prodigy
 

Cherian

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Yes, I love the Monoliths. When I move to the burbs they are mine. Oh Yes, Oh yes!
 

kwr

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The guy who heads Rives has Monoliths actively biamped with a Bryston crossover. He replaced his woofers with Focal drivers. As far as I can recall the bottom was run with Krell KSA 150.

One day I hope to do something similar but use a DEQZ crossover/room correction. DEQZ is mad only a few suburbs from me so really would like to try the digital crossover approach.
Kevin
 

JonFo

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kwr said:
The guy who heads Rives has Monoliths actively biamped with a Bryston crossover. He replaced his woofers with Focal drivers. As far as I can recall the bottom was run with Krell KSA 150.

One day I hope to do something similar but use a DEQZ crossover/room correction. DEQZ is mad only a few suburbs from me so really would like to try the digital crossover approach.
Kevin
Yep a DEQZ or a TacT system would allow both the active crossover and EQ/Room correction.

I can do about 80% of what those systems do with the DriveRack and my ETF measurement system. If was really extreme, I'd get a bunch of TacT units to replace my EQ/Crossovers. But that would be another 8 to $10K.

I'm hoping to update the Meridian 568 to a G68 and close that last 20% with it's built-in Room Correction features.
 
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