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MartinLogan Neolith Conclusion

By
Neolith Sand

Martin Logan Neolith in Desert Silver (Metalic)

Without question the Neolith ranks among the best full range speakers I’ve heard.

Selfishly speaking, I wish I had a chance to get these speakers in house for an extended review period.  While the listening environment wasn’t ideal, it was good enough to give me a real taste of what the Neoliths can deliver.  The Neoliths flexed their reference-level muscle—and it was impressive.

Over the years I have had the pleasure to audition many different loudspeaker technologies and systems from the best names in the business ranging in price from hundreds of dollars to tens of thousands of dollars.  Without question the Neolith ranks among the best full range speakers I’ve heard.  Pair the Neoliths with the right amplification, put them in the right sized room, and you’ll have a recipe for countless evenings of musical bliss.  

At $80,000/pair for the Neoliths plus $50,000-$120,000 for electronics and amplification, you are talking about a serious investment for a very select audience.  However, if you have the funds, love the magic of electrostatics, and want one of the best loudspeakers on the market today (not to mention serious bragging rights among your friends), then the MartinLogan Neolith deserves your urgent attention.

MartinLogan Neolith YouTube Overview and Review

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 QualityStarStarStarStarStar
AppearanceStarStarStarStarStar
Treble ExtensionStarStarStarStarStar
Treble SmoothnessStarStarStarStarStar
Midrange AccuracyStarStarStarStarStar
Bass ExtensionStarStarStarStarStar
Bass AccuracyStarStarStarStarStar
ImagingStarStarStarStarStar
SoundstageStarStarStarStarStar
Dynamic RangeStarStarStarStarStar
Fit and FinishStarStarStarStarStar
PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
ValueStarStarStarStar
About the author:
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Theo is a serious audiophile and home theater enthusiast—a passion he's enjoyed for over 20 years. He heads up many of our speaker system and receiver reviews as well as covering the latest in streaming technologies and Ultra HD video.

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Recent Forum Posts:

Kingnoob posts on October 14, 2019 17:47
JerryLove, post: 1300482, member: 35326
A partial list of speakers I have owned.
Ascend Acoustics CMB-170
B&W 801 Matrix III
B&W 801N1 (and the WMTMW matching center) (and surrounds)
B&W DS6
Energy Bookshelves(forget model)
Green Mountain Audio Europa
Infinity 362
Infinity 363
Infinity RSIIIb
Kef Q1
Klipsch KL-650-THX2
McIntosh 717
McIntosh XR5
Monitor Audio GLSCR
Ohm Walsh F
Paradigm Studio 60v3
Paradigm Studio 40v3 (and matching CC-470)
Paradigm Signature S2
Philharmonic 2
Pioneer (forget model)
Polk Audio (forget model)
PSB 400i
Salk SCSTs
Solid Sat(forget model)
Sony bookshelves (forget model)

Subs include but are not limited to:
B&W
KLH
Klipsch
Paradigm
Rythmik
SVS
A sub I would really have to go turn over to tell you; but sealed with this 18“ driver

There have been other things. Boom boxes and integrated stereos of days long gone, things I purcased to play with but got rid of quickly (Sanaui, A/S/L etc). Then there are the headphones and car systems.

None of which touches on ”other people's systems". I've been known to spend 10 hours in a stretch listening to other people's gear.

See. What would happen is that someone would make some claim, and I'd put it to the test to see if it was true. People started shouting about phase choerence and I picked up some GMAs. One builder got obsessed with super rigid cabinets, and I got the WMax speakers. Omnipolar was supposed to be all that: I got Walsh Ohm 2s. Line arrays are the bomb? 10 hours at the local vendor with the McIntosh XRT2ks. Bipolar is the way to go; time to hit my friend's house and listen to the Maggies.

Heck: I just picked up some high-efficiency horns.

I. Suprized could could part with any of those speakers wow , amazing ??
Did you have any preference of brand or speaker type ? for movies


Ultimate bass lover !! si ht15 dvc.
Free the reptile aliens
Epsonfan posts on October 11, 2019 13:53
The more expensive the speakers get the more drooling the reviewer gets.
JerryLove posts on February 21, 2019 22:19
Are those the only loudspeaker companies you know, own products from, or sell?
A partial list of speakers I have owned.
Ascend Acoustics CMB-170
B&W 801 Matrix III
B&W 801N1 (and the WMTMW matching center) (and surrounds)
B&W DS6
Energy Bookshelves(forget model)
Green Mountain Audio Europa
Infinity 362
Infinity 363
Infinity RSIIIb
Kef Q1
Klipsch KL-650-THX2
McIntosh 717
McIntosh XR5
Monitor Audio GLSCR
Ohm Walsh F
Paradigm Studio 60v3
Paradigm Studio 40v3 (and matching CC-470)
Paradigm Signature S2
Philharmonic 2
Pioneer (forget model)
Polk Audio (forget model)
PSB 400i
Salk SCSTs
Solid Sat(forget model)
Sony bookshelves (forget model)

Subs include but are not limited to:
B&W
KLH
Klipsch
Paradigm
Rythmik
SVS
A sub I would really have to go turn over to tell you; but sealed with this 18“ driver

There have been other things. Boom boxes and integrated stereos of days long gone, things I purcased to play with but got rid of quickly (Sanaui, A/S/L etc). Then there are the headphones and car systems.

None of which touches on ”other people's systems". I've been known to spend 10 hours in a stretch listening to other people's gear.

See. What would happen is that someone would make some claim, and I'd put it to the test to see if it was true. People started shouting about phase choerence and I picked up some GMAs. One builder got obsessed with super rigid cabinets, and I got the WMax speakers. Omnipolar was supposed to be all that: I got Walsh Ohm 2s. Line arrays are the bomb? 10 hours at the local vendor with the McIntosh XRT2ks. Bipolar is the way to go; time to hit my friend's house and listen to the Maggies.

Heck: I just picked up some high-efficiency horns.
JerryLove posts on February 21, 2019 18:22
GrimSurfer, post: 1299826, member: 87433
What I'm interested in is a discussion that resolves a complex issue through the application of rational and structured thinking… going from the general to specific, agreeing broadly on terms and concepts before resolving definitions, then testing criteria against real world examples to see where the irreconcilable inconsistencies are, modifying and retesting. Not jumping frames back and forth to achieve a predetermined outcome of any kind.
As I understand your earlier claim, and understanding that I have honestly tried to get clarity on (resulting in the “but you have to be somewhere on the ADD spectrum ”, which I presume was intended to be “autism” rather than any added clarity)…

As I understand your claim: To design and build good speakers requires that the company doing it have an anechocic chamber, a lab, either a domestic manufacture or the staffing to go overseas to maintain quality control. As I understand your claim, they must have researchers who must have a pedigree (which apparently 2 years as a hobbyist satisfies based on the Salk example). As I understand your claim, while it's not true that 100% of these criteria must be met 100% of the time; it's generally accurate.

I disagree with your claim, as I understand it. I've seen too many good speakers from hobbyists and too many bad speakers from large manufacturers to agree to any claim that designates one as good and the other as bad.

And if that's not your claim: Why haven't you said so? Why does a request for clarification have you commenting on your beliefs about the cell-to-synapse ratio in my brain.
GrimSurfer posts on February 20, 2019 09:44
When manufacturers with excellent pedigree design, produce, and Market something ludicrous, I'm left wondering about what they're trying to achieve.

Designating a product as a “statement” in today's world is as good as saying that it is another piece of hi-fi esoterica. Saying that a product is a demonstration of expensive tech and manufacturing methodologies that will eventually trickle down to other lines installs a little more confidence. Better still is when a company is specific about exactly what tech they're talking about, and why it currently costs so much.

It's hard to make such a case when there's less “tech” than “clever assembly” of other manufacturers' components (Wadia) or refaceplating (Lexicon's saga with Oppo inside).

The loudspeaker industry is an interesting one. Loudspeakers are complex and the last link in the hi-fi chain that hasn't been able to overcome single-digit noise. There are a relatively small number of driver designer/developer/manufacturers seupplying the market. Cabinet making skills are in decline. So it's unclear where things are heading… and even less clear where this will,leave consumers.

I'm certain that consumers' need for cheap products will be satisfied. Cheap is easy, expectations are low.

I'm quite confident that consumers' need for adequate products will be satisfied.

I'm moderately confident that consumers' need for excellent products will be satisfied.

I've lost confidence in the industry's ability to develop and enforce standards that help the consumer distinguish between poor, adequate and excellent performance.

Price doesn't appear to be a good discriminator of performance. Or at least that's how it seems to me when manufacturers and reviewers tip-toe around using clear and unambiguous language to describe how a loudspeaker measures AND sounds.
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