Recommendations on purchase - Older used Ethos or new Electromotion ELS X ?

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Rob Hyland

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Jun 16, 2021
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Im jumping back into the Martin Logan pool after years of not having space for decent system. My last great room housed the Quests, Depth and Logos.

Im considering and leaning towards purchasing a pair of Ethos vs going with new Electro motion ELS(X) panels. My concern is buying used speakers with this amount of age from a private party with no testing of the panels vs going with brand new panels for about the same money which would be the Electro motion ELS or ELSX. After listening to the ELS in Best Buy, immediately I felt like they were not going to meet my expectations so started to consider the ELSX, The classic 9's are just bigger footprint than we are comfortable with.

The Ethos sound perfect with the amp built in for sub and the larger panels, hoping to get some advice from this forum. Use will be both home theater and Listening using an old Sunfire amp, currently no Subwoofer or Center channel for system. We may choose to not use additional sub if going with the Ethos. The room is a combined area of living, kitchen and dining so overall dimensions of the space is 25 by 30 foot, although our listening area sitting is within 10 by 20 area inside of the larger open room with higher ceilings. Thanks for any recommendations you can share.


Well-known member
Dec 23, 2017
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Clearwater Florida USA
I like the fact that you are thinking of getting new speakers instead of old ones. If you want to rebuild speakers then old is fine. If you just want to enjoy music and movies then new is probably a good way to go. I would recommend a subwoofer though as any regular full range speaker (Meaning not a huge full range monster sized speaker) will have trouble with the deep bass tracks in movies. A sub will easily handle that and take that load off of your woofer cabinet on your ESLs. Plus I would cross the sub at 80 to 120hz. I think you will find that it will make both music and movies go to the next level. Subs have become a basic item in todays audio world. Movie soundtracks and music are mixed for subs nowadays. Good luck and let us know what you get!


Apr 10, 2021
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Sarasota Florida
I'm not sure why you are concerned about the difference in foot print between the Classic 9s and the ESLX. The former is 10.4"x25.4" =264"sq and the latter is 9.4"x20.7" = 195"sq. In other words an inch wider with the other 5" extending to the rear. In the worst case you would extend into the living room an additional 5" but I have found in practice (I have the Classic 9s and the ESLs) there really wasn't any difference, I placed them in almost the same position. Visually the 5" of dead space behind the ESLs is now filled but who cares? I first notices this when I went to listen to them in a high end show room where they had the Classic 9s almost touching the front wall. Yet, they sounded fantastic.