EMM MTRX2 Monos Home Evaluation

Audire

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Sounds like you’re loving these amps! What difference out of interest do you notice from a soundstage perspective relative to the Pass amps and what so far impresses you the most from these amps relative to others you’ve heard?

The MTRX2’s are excellent. I’m going to play a lot more vinyl today. But so far with numerous hours of CDs and streaming they seem perfect (to me) for our setup. I have them for a total of two weeks before John McGurk of EMM Labs and Tony at Ellington HiFi in AL show up to retrieve them. So, the current plan is that I will be listening to them 12-16 hours a day. So, I’m nowhere near done testing and enjoying them.

So far the soundstage is larger and fuller. I remember when I had another home eval with the EMM Pre and compared it to the Pass XP-22 that I had a similar experience. This is that but on steroids. This is difficult to put into words, but I’ll try to give a brief example of what it’s like. All of us know about high and low tides:

High and low tides refer to the regular rise and fall of the ocean's waters. High tide is when water covers much of the shore after rising to its highest level. Low tide is when the water retreats to its lowest level, moving away from the shore.

The Pass amps are like high tide. You are hearing great synergy with the Magico M3s. The soundstage is full and rich. What you are seeing (hearing) is beautiful. The MTRXs are like low tide. The previously unknown veil has retreated to its lowest level and what is left is a shoreline of sound that is clear, pure and musical. In both cases the same shoreline of music is in play, but one allows you to see (hear) more.

There is more energy around the individual images. This is a reach out and touch me experience. Reversing the analogy above the EMMs are like high tide, as there are just waves and waves of layering that you can hear. The sound is so natural. Diana Krall is currently on tour, but I don’t need to go to the venue as she’s already here.

This said, my words don’t do them justice. IMO, you have to experience these amps in your own system to fully appreciate them.
 

gds7368

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Jan 9, 2015
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These amps are large and they play larger than life.

View attachment 89864
Beautiful system! Really enjoy hearing your listening impressions too.
Can you turn those blue lights off? They seem bright ... but maybe it's just how the picture looks.
 
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Audire

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Beautiful system! Really enjoy hearing your listening impressions too.
Can you turn those blue lights off? They seem bright ... but maybe it's just how the picture looks.
Yes as John T mentioned they may be turned off. All you do is hold in the front power button in for app 4 seconds and they disappear. The blue are just right for me. But when they are off they turn red. IMO the red is definitely too bright.
 
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Audire

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Here is a picture with them off. IMO at night the red lights are rather distracting. So, I’m shutting them off ….

C3DD88D0-161F-4D99-A5F4-2DD94FCEA158.jpeg

I switched to the Aurender N30SA in critical listening mode for a moment. The amps are on, but with no lights. Jennifer Warnes Famous Blue Raincoat is so good …


204C38ED-9AFC-47AC-B2C8-CBF531313C26.jpeg
 
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John T

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Feb 15, 2022
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Audire, I know first hand you are having fun with the MTRX2's! I got to play with them thanks to John McGurk, he's great guy, straight shooter. I ran them directly from the DV2, I'm a little sorry I didn't play them with the Preamp. But Circumstances didn't present themselves for the Pre to be involved. I'm using Joseph Audio Pearl 20/20's, the MTRX2's complemented them beautifully. Mephisto/Pandora came (unexpectedly) knocking and I couldn't pass them up. At this level its down right FUN listening. I would love to do a side by side MTRX2/Mephisto. Not to distinguish which presents itself "better". At this level its all very good! I know exactly what you are experiencing. Top tier listening! But to evaluate the sonic presentation between pure Class A and Class AB, between these two high echelon components. This would give one a first hand keen sense of sonic classification and understanding. Enjoy!
 
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Audire

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Audire, I know first hand you are having fun with the MTRX2's! I got to play with them thanks to John McGurk, he's great guy, straight shooter. I ran them directly from the DV2, I'm a little sorry I didn't play them with the Preamp. But Circumstances didn't present themselves for the Pre to be involved. I'm using Joseph Audio Pearl 20/20's, the MTRX2's complemented them beautifully. Mephisto/Pandora came (unexpectedly) knocking and I couldn't pass them up. At this level its down right FUN listening. I would love to do a side by side MTRX2/Mephisto. Not to distinguish which presents itself "better". At this level its all very good! I know exactly what you are experiencing. Top tier listening! But to evaluate the sonic presentation between pure Class A and Class AB, between these two high echelon components. This would give one a first hand keen sense of sonic classification and understanding. Enjoy!

John McGurk is a great guy. It was a pleasure to meet him. Joseph Audio are some great speakers too - congrats. I plan on trying the Mephisto Solos. However, I live in FL so I really don’t desire pure Class A. It will run me out of the house. My attic gets 140 degrees here in the summer, so it‘s already hot enough (I live near Destin Beach).

John is checking when the EMMs change from Class A to AB. They barely run warm - cooler than the Pass 260.8s. More like Class D in warmth. The Pass are Class A to 34 watts. The EMMs may be in that region as well - possibly higher, as they have a better design for dissipating any heat. No matter my Pass 260.8s stay in Class A - they are great amps. So I don’t run them that hard and they are plenty loud enough. My wife doesn’t like loud music at all. With the EMMs I can turn the Pre down to 8 or so and hear everything really well - the detail is still there. Of course they are louder when she’s gone - like right now. :cool: But pure Class A sounds so very good too.

I have a friend who own Soulution amps. But I’ll be hearing them at his home with his speakers (Vivid). I’m not sure how hot they get, but they are supposed to sound really good with Magicos. I’ve been advised by several people that the Boulder will be too analytical in my system. I enjoy more of a tube-like experience, which both the Pass and EMM give me (the EMM more so). I’m going to try to listen to the VAC 450 IQs as well. But again if I can find a set close by to listen to it probably won’t be in my own system. Unless they are overwhelmingly better in someone else’s system they probably aren’t on the table for purchase.

I agree that at this level it’s not about which is better, but one’s personal preference. Right now the synergy with the rest of my EMM gear is just perfect for me. I can’t imagine it can get any better. But I won’t really know until I try some other amps ... It’s a lot of fun!
 
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gleeds

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May 29, 2018
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Super fun post and an awesome system in a beautiful listening room. Keep enjoying the ride!
 
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John T

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When I played with the MTRX2's warm to touch at best, as expected the Mephisto does get a lot warmer. I never shut the gear down, with the Mephisto I just change it to low Bias when not listening , which is typically when I sleep. Come summer months that may change? Pretty hot here in NC. My room is massive, 30 X 26 X 26H. Log home, A frame gable. With an open loft, so lots of Cubic Feet. That helps with the heat aspect. I'm using two Rel Carbon specials with the JA Pearl 20/20's. They have elevated my system nicely. The pearls do everything right, extremely versatile speakers. Never have I had a bad thing to say about them, or short coming. For my listening the Mephisto rarely comes out of medium bias. Once and awhile, I get it up to high bias, usually wine is involved with that! Ed Meitner highly recommends leaving the gear on. John McGurk is a gentleman, he's a pleasure to deal with. At this level you attempt to find the combination that speaks to you. Easier said than done!! In my opinion the DAC one chooses has a direct correlation with amplification. With the Mephisto complete neutrality and transparent nature I think my DV2 is the perfect match. I'm using EMM's NS1 with a custom optilink cable, to DV2 and Roon Nucleus, with a M12 Gold Switch, and separate JCAT LPS (optimo 3 duo ), Signature Gold M12 Cables. I cannot imagine my streaming to be any better? However Taiko Extreme will be the next big addition and if it does what I think, more fun times! Enjoy!
 

Audire

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I love your choice in music for critical listening.

Many Thanks. My wife actually helps me select them. She has an excellent ear. Of course many of them are audiophile standards. But I love antiquing now (my wife’s joy), as we always get to acquire some new vinyl. And in the Blue Hair state we have plenty around...

As everyone else, we have our favorite music as well. That is always on our list, as if we don’t enjoy it there won’t be a change in equipment.
 
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J007B

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One of my top tracks for evaluation is The Ballad of Bill Hubbard on Roger Waters Amused To Death album. You need to listen to it slightly louder than you normally would. Very immersive.
 
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