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MGC-1 reviews


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Thanks for posting these interesting reviews from 1985.

It's noteworthy that Alvin Gold felt that AR's previous models had a "forward, colored, and rather smeared sound"; it's unclear if the provided explanation for this problem's cause is from AR itself, or some other source: "smeared, we are now told, because of poorly controlled directivity through the midband".

These are not characteristics of the AR-9 series of speakers, nor can they be applied to the AR-3/3a/11 variants whilst listening in the far-field.

My best guess is that Gold tranported his UK biases for the smaller, point-source type systems atop stands that had become the prevalent listening model in his homeland.

His take on the coincident arrival of direct & reflected sound in a circumstance with "relatively short reflected path lengths" is used to critique the un-named Bose 901, and to provide a grounding for the MGC-1, but does not address the success of full-range planar-magnetic or electrostatic panels that almost always produce the same sort of direct and reflected sound effect.

Anthony Cordesman's criticism of the MGC-1's deficient bass response as "a significant flaw" in so expensive a system is certainly of a time; never mind that there are currently a substantial number of audiophiles who question the necessity of a legitimate full-range loudspeaker, there are plenty who even question its desirability! ^_^

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No accounting for taste, it is certainly true. It is hard to imagine

giving up the extended bass my 3a speakers provide. On the

other hand, never having heard the MGC line, it is possible the mid-

range is so divine I would not notice the lack.

What standard does one go by in determining desirability, other

than demand?

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