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MartinLogan Vision Suggestions & Conclusion

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Overall, I really like the Vision, but there are a few changes that would make me love it. The bass controls are definitely lacking. Sure, you can adjust the bass up or down by 10dB, but I would like a few more dB of control. I would also like the Vision to engage a higher HPF when a subwoofer is connected, or have the option to manually engage one. By decreasing the amount of bass the Vision has to produce, you keep the internal components cooler, have less distortion, a larger power reserve for dynamic swings, and in general simply have better performance. I understand that engineering a bass bump can sell a lot more units, and that most consumers will appreciate the added bass, but as someone who likes to tweak and refine their system, I would have liked to see more bass control.

An external AC/DC power adapter would also make on-wall installation much easier, as well as free up space in the enclosure for other purposes. Finally, the connectivity options are a little lacking. Many of the competitors have HDMI, Bluetooth, USB, and/or Airplay. It’s true that all of these features, with the exception of HDMI, can be added though an external device, but it’s nice to have the options built in. On one hand, it’s nice to see MartinLogan focus on sound quality over features. On the other hand, I really like having streaming options built in. For most people, adding an AppleTV, Sonos Connect, or the like, isn’t a big deal.

Vision Close up Display     Vision Bottom Profile

MartinLogan Vision Front Panel Close-up; Bottom Profile Shot

Conclusion

In my opinion, the Vision is a superb soundbar that gets many things right. It can go loud, sounds great, looks modern, and has a surprising amount of bass. It really shines when listening to music, but is no slacker when watching movies either. Still, I kept coming back to its musicality, which was far beyond any other soundbar I have heard. Some other soundbars can produce better surround effects (by "some", I actually just mean Yamaha), but the Vision can surprise you with convincing surround effects from time to time. If you are looking for a soundbar that can turn your non-believer friends into cult-like fanatics about soundbars, the Vision might be your answer. You no longer have to choose between great sound with a dedicated 2.1 system or great looks with a soundbar, the MartinLogan Motion Vision gives you the best of both worlds.

The Score Card

The scoring below is based on each piece of equipment doing the duty it is designed for. The numbers are weighed heavily with respect to the individual cost of each unit, thus giving a rating roughly equal to:

Performance × Price Factor/Value = Rating

Audioholics.com note: The ratings indicated below are based on subjective listening and objective testing of the product in question. The rating scale is based on performance/value ratio. If you notice better performing products in future reviews that have lower numbers in certain areas, be aware that the value factor is most likely the culprit. Other Audioholics reviewers may rate products solely based on performance, and each reviewer has his/her own system for ratings.

Audioholics Rating Scale

  • StarStarStarStarStar — Excellent
  • StarStarStarStar — Very Good
  • StarStarStar — Good
  • StarStar — Fair
  • Star — Poor
MetricRating
Build QualityStarStarStarStar
AppearanceStarStarStarStarStar
Treble ExtensionStarStarStarStar
Treble SmoothnessStarStarStar
Midrange AccuracyStarStarStarStar
Bass ExtensionStarStarStarStar
Bass AccuracyStarStarStar
ImagingStarStarStarStar
SoundstageStarStarStarStar
Dynamic RangeStarStarStarStar
Fit and FinishStarStarStarStarStar
PerformanceStarStarStarStar
ValueStarStarStarStar
About the author:
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Cliff, like many of us, has always loved home theater equipment. In high school he landed a job at Best Buy that started his path towards actual high quality audio. His first surround sound was a Klipsch 5.1 system. After that he was hooked, moving from Klipsch to Polk to Definitive Technology, and so on. Eventually, Cliff ended up doing custom installation work for Best Buy and then for a "Ma & Pa" shop in Mankato, MN.

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Recent Forum Posts:

Epsonfan posts on October 08, 2019 11:57
Don't understand why a SB review from 2013 is appearing Oct 8 2019
William Sommerwerck posts on May 09, 2018 14:03
A sound bar has two basic functions – to fit where conventional speakers won't fit, or to provide a center channel. So most of the criticism makes no sense.

By the way, the correct term is “switching amplifier”, not “digital amplifier”. All digital amplifiers are switching, but switching amplifiers can be either.
Mikado463 posts on February 17, 2018 09:31
Cygnus, post: 975781, member: 8777
Likewise, Hocky.

There's no way that a little bar will ever be able to replace some high quality bookshelves and a sub. Just ain't gonna happen.

I get the whole ‘bar thing’, but $1400 can easily buy you a better ‘separate scenario’ ……
Calvert posts on February 17, 2018 01:25
I am disappointed this seemingly great soundbar does not have neither HDMI inputs or an output. This, of course, limits the sound fields supported.
PcPopcorn posts on February 06, 2017 16:11
I need a center channel speaker the size of one of these soundbars.
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