MartinLogan Spire Hybrid Electrostatic Loudspeaker Reviewed

By |

Page 1 Page 2

martinlogan-spire-loudspeaker.jpg

When it comes to electrostatic and hybrid electrostatic speakers, no one does them better than MartinLogan.  For decades, MartinLogan has been at the forefront of electrostatic technology, going head to head with formidable, yet now largely defunct, competition.  A few years back, MartinLogan introduced a new look and product design with their flagship Summit loudspeaker,which heralded the beginning of a new era at MartinLogan, featuring a more compact, less obtrusive cabinet with better bass response and seamless integration between the woofer(s) and ESL panel.  The Summit, for lack of a better description, was an amazing loudspeaker and quickly garnered rave reviews and sold hundreds of pairs.  

The Summit is no longer with us, replaced, sort of, with two models: the mighty CLX and the Spire.

I raved about the new CLX in an earlier post on Home Theater Review, yet found its large stature and somewhat obscure look a bit of a hard sell for the average home theater or audio enthusiast, despite wanting a pair for myself.  The Spire, like the Summit it replaces, is a more traditional MartinLogan design.  In fact, is looks almost identical to the Summit, give or take a few inches in overall size.  However, that is where the similarities stop.  With a retail price of $8,495 per pair, the Spire is less expensive than the Summit yet, with its new CLX-influenced panel, it sounds noticeably better.  The Spire is a hybrid design, unlike the CLX, with an ESL panel mated to a powered 200-watt 10-inch aluminum woofer, which gives the Spire a reported frequency response of 29-23,000 Hz. The Spire is also "tunable" via its 35Hz level control, which allows consumers to dial in the frequency responses that are most effected by room boundaries and acoustics for a more even, seamless bass response.  The Spire, unlike past MartinLogan designs, is shockingly efficient, with a sensitivity of 91dB into a rather stable four-ohm load.  This means you could power the Spire in a home theater-like setting with a high-powered, high-quality receiver, though separates are still recommended.  The Spire can be bi-wired and can accept either spade or banana speaker cable adapters.  Like MartinLogans of yore, the Spire must be plugged into a standard wall socket to power the woofer, as well as to charge the panel.  The Spire comes in a variety of finishes including, but not limited to, natural cherry, dark cherry, black ash and maple.  There are exotic wood options available at an extra cost, as well as custom finish options through MartinLogan's own custom shop.

Read The High Points, Low Points and Conclusion on Page 2


  • Comment on this article

Post a Comment
comments powered by Disqus

HTR Product Rating for MartinLogan Spire Hybrid Electrostatic Loudspeaker

Criteria Rating

Performance

4.5

Value

4.5

Overall

4.5

Disagree with our product rating? Email us and tell us why you think this product should receive a higher rating.


Latest Floorstanding Speaker Reviews

Mar 27
Paradigm Persona 5F Floorstanding Speaker Reviewed Lauded loudspeaker manufacturer Paradigm introduced its new Persona flagship speaker lineup back in 2017 as a replacement for the long-revered...
Paradigm Persona 5F Floorstanding Speaker Reviewed

Mar 25
Revel PerformaBe Series F228Be Floorstanding Speaker Reviewed Revel's newest speaker, the Performa F228Be, has been in the works for a few years, with a lot of excitement...
Revel PerformaBe Series F228Be Floorstanding Speaker Reviewed

Mar 11
JBL Synthesis L100 Classic Loudspeaker Reviewed It's no secret that as time and technology have progressed, things have gotten more complicated and less reliable as we...
JBL Synthesis L100 Classic Loudspeaker Reviewed

Feb 04
RBH R-55E Impression Series Elite Floorstanding Loudspeaker Reviewed Once dubbed the R55Ti from EMP Tek (an Internet direct offshoot of RBH), the R-55E reviewed here takes what was...
RBH R-55E Impression Series Elite Floorstanding Loudspeaker Reviewed

Jan 30
NSMT Loudspeakers Model 50/Jamaica Speaker Reviewed Whether you're rocking high-powered solid state amps or flea-watt SETs, the NSMT Loudspeakers Model 50/Jamaica absolutely excels, says Terry London.
NSMT Loudspeakers Model 50/Jamaica Speaker Reviewed