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ElectroMotion ESL Customer Reviews
by Thomas D., 3 months ago
I installed my pair of speakers last week after debating for weeks whether I should spend the dollars on them. From the moment I turned on the music I knew it was more than worth it. These are the best speakers I have ever owned, that goes back a long way. I listen mostly to opera and classical music and these speakers are the first I have ever owned and among the three models that I have tried that re-produced the music as clearly and authentically as the real thing. I have listened to "my type of music" on speakers that cost in the high five figure range. I would put my new Martin Logans up against the high dollar combinations any day.
I have a home theater in my home. This week I am replacing all the speakers with Martin Logan.
by deReuter, 3 months ago
2 weeks ago we bought a pair of Electromotions. We are really satisfied by the sound. We note that placing the EML's is a precision job! But once placed in the right position, perfect!
Not to close to a reflecting wall, also be aware of the wall behind you. Can be negative in sound behaviour. Also the angle is very nice to play with. Just do it, we recommend.
We still had a sub with we tested in the system. We do think it is a good additive to the set when place in a bigger room (in our case 4,5 x 7 m, and beside an open kitchen and diner room. Total open space up to 5 x 12 meter.
Combined with Cambridge Audio Amp 740, Hifidelio HD Hermstadt and REL QuakeII
by jabroyles, 3 months ago
It is hard to put into words the quality of sound that these two speakers emit! I used to listen to music by only headphones. I have own a set of Stax electrostatics and Grado RS1 headphones. I never found a set of speakers, that is until now, that were good enough to compete in sound quality with these headphones. Well my search has now ended, and surprisingly I did not have to drop $5,000 for them. These speakers blew away everything else in Best Buy Magnolia room except for another set of Martin Logan electrostatic speaker that run right at $5,000. I finally, have found what I would call an audiophile class speaker. Great work Martin Logan for building an exceptional product that does not require a king's ransom to purchase!!! You certainly are giving all the other manufacturers a serious run for their money! Job well done!!!
by James S., 6 months ago
by Steven Simpson, 9 months ago
When I was a college student in the late 70's, my roommate and I used to hang around Kief's, in Lawrence, KS. We loved to demo the systems, but neither of us had much money and we had to settle for buying a modest system for our room. We both proceeded to marriage and graduate school, families, and such. In my case, the spousal unit likes music but doesn't "get" high fidelity. Sadly, I've packed on enough years that it might be true that I no longer get it, either, albeit in the real physical sense of age-related hearing loss.
Anyway, with all the kids out of the house and a major home renovation underway, I managed to slip a new system in under the radar in a somewhat cost-conscious fashion. I began searching around for what might meet the spouse's need to not spend any money at all on stereo with my long-repressed impulse to fill a room with the best music I could manage. You can imagine my delight to find in my own back yard (I live in a Kansas City suburb) some of the finest loudspeakers that I, myself have ever heard. I purchased a pair of ElectroMotion ESLs and paired them with a Yamaha A-S2000 integrated amp and its accompanying CD-S1000 CD and SACD player.
A couple of months later, I can tell you that as I'm sitting and writing this Kelly Joe Phelps is in the room with me. Actually, the placement has worked out such that he sits just outside the French doors leading into my dining room and sounds as if he had pulled up a chair and is playing for me. The purity and clarity of sound is literally awesome. The sound image is as real as it gets. I've never owned anything like this system, although I tried through the years to edge up a little here and there, and I can say that the wait was very much worth it. I am SO pleased with these speakers and this set up, that I cannot speak more highly of it.
I don't know if I met Martin and/or Logan at Kief's back in the day, but there's a good chance that I did. And I also am cognizant of the full circle that I've traveled. I've lived in a number of places across the US, and to come home and find such excellent audio just up the road, made by guys who may have been among the first to introduce me to good audio, is a real treat!
by Dtown Boy, 9 months ago
I do love my new ESL's but I've been spoiled by my brothers upperscale ML's which inspired me to buy my outfit. ML's are truley unique and great sounding!!
It's nice to get out of the box!!!!
by saurabh, 9 months ago
I was on a lookout for good floor standers for over 2 months, auditioned right from polk audio TSI500, to Focal, Tannoy, Mordaunt Short, KEF & few more.
But today within 10 minutes of listening to these speakers, I knew these were the ones.. I would rate them better than reference series speakers from other manufacturers, because this gives audiophile quality without buring a large hole in your pocket.
As far as sound is concerned, this speaker gives by far the best possible mid range of all the speakers I heard. It also packs in lot of power in the lower range & high frequency response is just exemplary. In a nutshell, this works as well in a party when playing J Lo; and of course these are tailor made for classical music & unplugged music.
Lookwise they are amazing & with high gloss black finish, they look like nothing else any friend of your would have seen ever (with a sound to kill)
by LarsHP, 10 months ago
I have had my ElectroMotion ESL's for about 10 months now and feel as confident in writing a review as I probably will ever get.
First of all - these speakers are revealing. By that I mean transparent, highly resolving and controlled. This will be a blessing if the rest of your audio chain is of high end quality, but may be a curse if your source or amp isn't up to the task. That being said, I don't experience these speakers as analytical or cold sounding. They're just not introducing much or anything hiding what's upstream in your audio chain.
Bass is very tight and controlled, however not going as deep as I would have liked. The mids are INCREDIBLE. Voices are extremely lifelike. I feel like having real people of flesh and bone in front of me singing and playing. Treble is less smooth than I expected (coming from the high end planar headhone HiFiMan HE-6, which really is special in this department). The electrostatic panel of these speakers will tell you if you have any jitter!
I "had to" upgrade my transport after getting these speakers... That's where the "diva" part comes in - and also when considering placing the speakers and yourself in the room. They need very good distance to the front wall.
Finding the right LISTENING position showed up to be much more important than I thought. There is a 10dB dip around 40-50Hz at my usual listening position, which at first made me think that the bass was less than it actually is. This will of course be the same for all speakers at that spot, but since this is were these speakers roll of (-3dB at 42Hz), it sounded more apparent than with my old speakers, because those go deeper (-3dB at 32Hz) and generally has more output in the bass.
Soundstage is spectacular: Instruments or voices seems to be respectively closer and further away compared to my old speakers - and on some reference recordings instruments/sounds seems to come from either more left or right than the position of the speaker. Pin pointed sound sources sound pin pointed. A close mic'ed voice on reference recordings will sound big and broad, but still have a centre focus.
Sweetspot is actually quite broad when the panel is turned directly on the listening position. This gives me the best sound. Front wall reflection is not very apparent anyway compared to my old bi-polar speakers. When only slightly turned inward (as recommended in the manual) the sweetspot is relatively small and only for one person.
Speaker terminals / binding posts are not up to the quality level I would expect on a speaker like this, and is not a minor complaint. It is actually difficult to get a proper and sturdy connection - especially if you have a bi-wire cable and want to connect both cables to each binding post. I had to buy extra banana plugs (with double connections) to get my expensive bi-wire cables attacted.
In terms of power requirement, my 50W class A power amp does a very nice job at moderate-to-loud volumes. When turning up to loud levels it runs out of steam even though it has a huge power supply. I guess 50W is underpowering at these levels. When my new subwoofer is attached this problem is gone. Tight, powerful bass with high reslotion mids and clear treble - at loud volumes!
I am giving these speakers 4 out of 5 stars because they are extremely competent in the audio spectrum they perform in. However the output is limited in the low end (below about 45Hz). I decided to get a quality subwoofer to compensate for this (without pushing the budget too much).
My reference in terms of high end transducers is not speakers, but the above mentioned planar headphone, HiFiMan HE-6. My old speakers are the (bi-polar) Mirage M-1090i with highly upgraded crossover components. They are beaten by the ElectroMotion ESL in just about all aspects of sound reprodution.
The reviewed speakers are used with the following:
Squeezebox Touch (w/ Fideliy Audio digital mod)
Audio-gd Reference 7.1 DAC
Audio-gd Master-6 pre-amp
LC Audio ZAPsoulte Mk.4 power amp (50W class A)
MIT Terminator 2 bi-wire speaker cables
SVS SB12-NSD subwoofer
by Peter T., 2 years ago
I purchased the Electromotion ESLs a fortnight ago and while a little premature to review (still breaking in), frankly I'm shocked by the quality of these speakers. They really are incredibly transparent and having never owned electrostatics before I am a convert, particular on their seamless midrange.
However, what I am most surprised about is that they are running off my 300B single ended triode mono blocks. Okay, my amps are running BlackArt transformers (teflon, silver etc) tapped to 4ohms which handle the 1.6ohms @ 20khz, but really, this shouldn't be working....but it does - go figure! It a room that measures 6m by 12m they run loud enough , not AC/DC concert loud, but the full 8 watts of triode power delivers a very healthy level of DBs and only once have I had them at full volume.
I'm sure many people audiophiles, including myself, would have thought that an SET amp and electrostatics were a match made in hell. Like me, you may have expected performance similar to a 1920s gramophone. But if you would hear what I'm listening to now it's truly a match made in heaven, the combination of the incredible transparency and detail of the speakers and the smooth, natural and liquid nature of the 300Bs is extraordinary.
Well done Martin Logan, great product, amazing price and I've enjoyed challenging a paradigm (and I'm not referring to the speaker brand!).
by Luis Eduardo R., 2 years ago
Amazing Sound, Great Design, Sound Transparency, High Quality Finish = Pure Perfection.
From Heredia - Costa Rica, Central America 11/04/11
Luis Eduardo Rodríguez D.
by RonC, 2 years ago
I purchased my Electromotion speakers a few weeks ago. I probably should wait a bit before reviewing, but I do want to share my opinions so far. These speakers replace my Infinity Composition Prelude speakers, of 1995 vintage, that had built-in amps for the 12 inch subwoofers. The infinities were outstanding speakers for all types of music, but it was time for an upgrade. The Electromotions are considerably more transparent than the Infinities (both physically and aurally) even though the ESLs are not yet broken in.
There is a palpable realism and quickness in the ESL sound that includes a sense of "air" around the performers (golden-ear audiospeak - I am no longer a golden ear in that I prefer, nowadays, to listen to music and not just sound).
The imaging is very good, although it seems a little laid back at this early time after purchasing - the orchestra or performer is considerably behind the speakers. It doesn't have the imaging that extends wider than the speakers that I hear in some fine mini-monitors that act more as a point source. However, that statement has to be qualified. When I go to a classical concert or unamplified jazz club, the real-life image doesn't really spread out very far. So, the "wider than the speakers" image may very well be a sonic artifact of the small speakers.
With its 8-inch woofers-midrange, the ESLs extend surprisingly down in the nether reaches of the mid-bass, but don't reach down into the abyssal 20-35 hz zone. I played some old Telarc concert band CD's that have whumping bass drums and was happy with the ESL reproduction even without the visceral vibrations that go with really deep bass. The bass drum slap really gets my attention.
My next step is to get a subwoofer that complements the ESLs. The bass is good enough from the ESLs that I will cross over at about 60-70 hz to keep the 8" woofers from working too hard, but permitting the ESLs to reproduce the bulk of the frequency band. I do need some advice in choosing a mid-price woofer that will blend well with the ESLs.
Yes, folks, these are some fine speakers. I am VERY pleased with the purchase and suspect that the ESLs will even get better over time as they break in.
Thank you, Martin-Logan.