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March Audio Sointuva AWG Bookshelf Speaker Review by ERIN's Audio Corner

Penelinfi

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I'm considering getting a pair of these seeing as they have a sale on at the moment; I quite like this finish. Not sure if I should go for a navy or darker front, or get the natural wood.

Matias' Blackwood ones look nice too. Not sure which wood the ones below are using.


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Matias

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I almost went black front with mine too, but finally decided to go all wood. This is so subjective.
 

Sokel

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I'm considering getting a pair of these seeing as they have a sale on at the moment; I quite like this finish. Not sure if I should go for a navy or darker front, or get the natural wood.

Matias' Blackwood ones look nice too. Not sure which wood the ones below are using.


View attachment 348412View attachment 348413
I don't know if it's the color that deceives,but their back look like they have the passive drivers fitted perfectly (visually) but the front ones look like they have a hollow ring around them.
It's probably only visual but it would be nice for all to fit perfectly like the back ones.
 

douede

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Sointuva AWG Review, by Erin
https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/loudspeakers/march_sointuva_awg/

" - Sounds incredible! No issues at all for me to complain of.
- With an F3 of 40Hz and F10 of 30Hz, you might not need a subwoofer if you don’t listen to music that has bass below 40Hz. Honestly, I was extremely impressed and grinning at just how low these can get and the bass capability they have... my personal opinion on these speakers is that the majority of people could probably get away with not needing a subwoofer unless you listen to music that has low bass (rap/hip-hop/edm).
- All-in-all, this is a fantastic speaker that should satisfy most audiophile and hifi enthusiasts."
 

Matias

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Yep, no subwoofers needed here. I could easily buy and add one, space and price would not be an issue. I just don't want to.

 

restorer-john

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I almost went black front with mine too, but finally decided to go all wood. This is so subjective.

The problem with offering too many choices is a well known mistake in sales. It results in decision paralysis and the most likely loss of the sale.

"finally decided" means you vacillated, considered and second guessed, delaying the purchase perhaps.

The classic "Do you want fries with that?" is a simple, but perfect two choice decision in the sales process. Do you want the wood or the paint finish? Not, do you want endless choices in wood, the entire RAL paint range and endless mixes of each combination.

Give the customer simple 2 option choices at each stage of the sales process, whether that is a multi million dollar property purchase or a pair of stereo loudspeakers.
 

smith007

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A little correspondence from Alan Marsh to Erin
:
Alan March



Hi Erin



Many Thanks for the review, it's an honest and very accurate description of the speakers.

I just wanted to comment and explain our philosophy regarding the directivity/dispersion of the speaker.



What I have found is that many speakers (far too many IMO) have too much sound power in the 2 to 8kHz region which tends to lead to a bright sound. People should understand that this effect happens even if the on-axis frequency response is flat. This becomes fatiguing, especially so when listening loud. I note your comments on inadvertently listening too loud with these speakers :) . You are not the first person to mention this.



The potential issue with wider directivity is that it pumps more high frequency sound power into the room. The sound power response will be flatter, and hence the in-room response will be flatter. It’s a fine line to where this becomes too flat and the speaker starts to sound bright and fatiguing.



So, it’s a compromise you have to choose. Our philosophy is to make the sound power and DI as smooth as possible and pay great attention to the slope of the In Room Response. At the end of the day it's a judgement call, there is no definitive right or wrong answer. Some will prefer the wider and more diffuse soundstage of wider dispersion speakers (at the potential risk of too bright and fatiguing sound), and some will prefer the more precise placement, less diffuse soundstage of a narrower directivity speaker.



At the various HiFi shows we exhibit at we get frequent responses from the public saying they could listen all day to the speakers. They are non-fatiguing but with all the clarity and detail you could ever wish for............along with questions of "where is the sub-woofer"? :)



Thanks again!



Alan March

March Audio.







Erin's Audio Corner

5

Understood and thank you for replying. I know some manufacturers (KEF and a couple Andrew Jones designs as well as one of the Ascend Acoustics) will purposely tilt the on-axis response to "make up" for the flat directivity in the HF. Always trade-offs.
 

Matias

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The problem with offering too many choices is a well known mistake in sales. It results in decision paralysis and the most likely loss of the sale.

"finally decided" means you vacillated, considered and second guessed, delaying the purchase perhaps.
Actually no. I was decided to buy the Sointuva AWG for sure, so I would not give up or delay the purchase because of the finish choice. I just changed my mind when finishing the order but that's it. Much like buying a new car: once we decide on the brand, model and accessories, we still have to choose a color, which is a burden but a good problem to have. Much worst if they were only black as Ford Model T :).

I know some manufacturers (KEF and a couple Andrew Jones designs as well as one of the Ascend Acoustics) will purposely tilt the on-axis response to "make up" for the flat directivity in the HF. Always trade-offs.
Yes, that is what I was thinking as I read this. Easy to do on a DSP speaker, not so much on a passive one. The first thing that came to my mind when I saw the Purifi tweeter is "bright". Unless Lars and the gang manage to make an on-axis FR down slope to compensate for the wide radiation. But still it would have the trade-off that Alan described above: wide and diffuse versus narrow and focused, no right or wrong here, just preference.
 
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thewas

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What I am always surprised at Erins reviews is that he often recommends placing them at distances from the front wall which introduce an SBIR in the problematic midbass region.

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monitorplacement_wall-distance.jpg


monitorplacement_wall-distance2.jpg

Source of above images: https://www.genelec.com/monitor-placement
 

Sokel

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What I am always surprised at Erins reviews is that he often recommends placing them at distances from the front wall which introduce an SBIR in the problematic midbass region.

View attachment 351233


monitorplacement_wall-distance.jpg


monitorplacement_wall-distance2.jpg

Source of above images: https://www.genelec.com/monitor-placement
I wonder what Genelec recommends for 8381A which is impossible to place like this (the very depth of the speaker itself is bigger,as are mine) .
My installers allow me to place them at 1.2 to 1.5 meters distance from the front wall (I have them at 1.3m) and no more or less.
 

thewas

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I wonder what Genelec recommends for 8381A which is impossible to place like this (the very depth of the speaker itself is bigger,as are mine) .
My installers allow me to place them at 1.2 to 1.5 meters distance from the front wall (I have them at 1.3m) and no more or less.
The 8381A have a multiple woofer system like the W371A which takes into consideration the nearby boundaries and tries to eliminate their influence:

"Double Low-Woofer (DLW) System
Recoil-compensated adaptive low-woofer solution that combines with our Point Source Continued Directivity (PCD) Technology to give complete freedom of monitor placement in the room – with no compromise in performance or imaging detail."
 

Matias

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I am surprised by the low EPDR: 1.5 ohm above 80 Hz, and must be around 1.5-2.0 from 60-80Hz. This is quite low where there is a lot of bass energy from kick drums and bass guitars etc. I am glad I am driving mine with 700W from the NCx500 modules!

March-Audio-Sointuva-AWG-Impedance.png
 

YSC

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What I am always surprised at Erins reviews is that he often recommends placing them at distances from the front wall which introduce an SBIR in the problematic midbass region.

View attachment 351233


monitorplacement_wall-distance.jpg


monitorplacement_wall-distance2.jpg

Source of above images: https://www.genelec.com/monitor-placement
well I believe Erin's suggestion is assuming that you don't have any EQ tools in place, using passives without extensive bass treatment in room pushing it that close to wall will have a huge bass boost, which can make it sound very boomy, Genelec on the other side have great dip switch presets which kind of mitigate the general bass boost trend, so both suggestions makes sense.

Personally I do agree that the March audio AWG is a budget end game speaker, pair it with a RME ADI or mini DSP and it can be so great to use in a normal room with minimal treatment. The only concerns if any is that the early batch connector air seal issue reported in a sample, and that the real wood construction vs wood movement in moisture swing, other than that I really can't think of any, really good job by Alan
 

phoenixdogfan

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They look very tasty. Have to wonder if that price includes all woods and all finishes, or if there is a price premium for some cabinet choices over others.
 

Guddu

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It looks really good, but I wonder if they have solved their QC issues. The way they handeled it in this thread here does not shine a good light on them: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...and-reinforcements-with-klippel-device.35255/

If I pay this much for speakers they have to be perfect.

I personally feel that Alan/March-Audio have come a long way now, they are not a big manufacturer (like Polk, Elac, etc.) (yet) and somewhere I read that their every piece is properly tested before sent to customer.
 

Chris Brunhaver

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Not really sure why you guys are complaining on price. This little thing is using SOTA drivers and a nice hardwood cabinet. The guy deserves to make some money and have a decent living. What more do you expect for the money?

Also, even if it didn't deliver those things, speakers are like cars. Even if a C8 corvette delivers the most "value" that doesn't mean that everyone should want one and there is still a place and reason why people might like other cars (that are even more expensive) and there's nothing wrong with that.
 
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Matias

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Further discussions here.
 

amadeuswus

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March Audio currently has a "Flash Sale" discount of 15% on all products ($603.03 on the Sointuvas AWG). So US buyers can have the Sointuva shipped for $3,723.36.
 
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