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Carver Audio Platinum Edition Amazing Loudspeaker
15 Reviews
rating  4.73 of 5
MSRP 
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Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by donald d a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: February 28, 2003

Bottom Line:   
Let me first say right up front when I purchased these speakers 13 years ago, they were one of the best buys in audio. Today, in my opinion, they still surpass anything in the under $12,000 range. I am perplexed when I read a post about how uneven the frequency response is. Many magazine reviews have documented with very sophisticated testing equipment the ruler flat frequency response of these speakers. I suggest whoever does not have a flat frequency response check upstream for any equipment or room acoustics issues. (The room can play havoc on speaker response without the proper sound treatment) My set up consists of powering these speakers with a Carver TFM 75 which delivers 750 watts of clean power. These are very hungry and need plenty of power to make them sing.
The reproduction of the human voice by these speakers is uncanny. Check out the DVD James Taylor “Live at the Beacon Theatre” or Sara K on a Chesky CD. It doesn’t get much better unless you are willing to jump into the 5 figure range. Have I mentioned the sound of strings reproduced through this speakers? Pop in Yanni “Tribute” track 3 and look to the heavens at the sound of the solo violinist. They need lots of room to breathe to create the type of sound I am describing. My speaker placement consists of placing the far edge 5 ft. and the near edge 46 inches from the rear wall. I am also set in 42 inches from the side walls with a distance of 6 feet between the inside edge of the speakers. The ribbons are approx. 11 ft. apart and 13 ft. from my listening position. For separation purposes, I have the ribbons on the outside edge rather than on the inside edge. In my room, the flattest response is achieved with the bass control in the 3pm, mid-range in 3pm and high in 5 pm position.
No need for a subwoofer here. Check out the Eagles “Hell Freezes Over” opening cut for gut wrenching bass. I had to re-caulk my glass transom over the entry door to stop it from rattling. The soundstage has to be heard to be believed. It paints the artists like on a canvas. Placement is exact and the ambience created by the dipole design is remarkable. These speakers never tend to shout the way a dynamic speaker will when played loudly. Therefore, it is very easy to get in the mid 95db range and not realize it. (Watch that hearing loss) No listener fatigue here.
I find I always listen to Audio DVD’s in stereo because I have not found a center channel that reproduces the vocals as well as the Carvers. Can’t justify spending the same amount of money for just a center channel that I spent for the pair of Carvers. Because of the shear size of these “Barn Doors”, one must have a dedicated listening room. Otherwise, the WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) becomes a serious issue. Fortunately, when we built our house years ago, a dedicated media room was a must.
In closing, since these are no longer produced the only way to acquire this audio bargain of a lifetime is to search the used market. I cannot speak for the earlier renditions since my pair was the last series produced. (Platinum Amazing Mk IV) However, it is well worth the time and effort to pursue. Be forewarned-Need lots of power, plenty of space, room treatments, and if married, a dedicated listening room. Once this criteria is met, you will be in audiophile heaven for very little money. Don’t forget to re-caulk the transoms!!!

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Hi-Fi Shop



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by errivera a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: December 27, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I am the original owner of the Carver Amazing Platinum, Mark IV version of these speakers. As far as I know, these were the last Platinums to be produced by Carver.

The sound of these speakers is incredible, you really have to hear it to believe it. Because of my wide taste in music, I wanted a speaker that would sound warm and delicate with classical music and reproduce the dynamics without flaw, that would also give that live experience with rock and would be able to have bass necessary with Jazz. In other words, I wanted the perfect speaker. I looked long and hard and finally ended-up with the Carver Amazing Platinum Mark IV speakers. These speakers, in my opinion, are the best speakers ever made. I know that there are $100,000+ speakers out there, but lets be realistic, how many of us can acually afford to purchase them. I have even looked at the new Magnaplanars (the top of their line, at about $11,000) and would not part with my Carvers.

The Carvers are truely a full range speaker. I don't understand why they were ever discontinued, but I hope that Bob Carver's new company, Sunfire, eventually reproduces these again.

If you ever have the opportunity to purchase these speakers, buy them. You will not regret it.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1995

Price Paid:    $2200.00



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by John Humphries a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: December 17, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I purchased the Mark IV Carver Amazing Platinum speaker new in about 1994. Since then I have made some upgrades and changes. I added Harmonic technology resonance control devides to the body of the speaker near each woofer and small Marigo dots on the 12" woofers themselves. About 5 years ago I removed the Mark IV crossover and replaced it with an outboard Clearview crossover modified with improved transistors. I did this to better power the speakers by biamping and to ameliorate a dip in output (at least in my room) from about 230Hz to 550 Hz. I had very good success with this as it much improved the frequency response in that lower midrange area. The only negative result was a diminution in bass response. I was able to use my Parasound 2200 stereo amps in regular stereo mode instead of bridged which resulted in a more natural relaxed sound. The ribbon is the thing and is very clear and nuanced. I am able to immediately hear any improvement in the resolution of my source components. The speakers are positioned about 7' in front of a wall covered in Sonex 3" panels. This tweak quieted some distortion caused by hard reflected signals from the back wall. I also added a Musical Fidelity equalizer to boost the lower bass and upper treble. With these improvements the speaker is even less colored and has a smoother frequency response and better dynamics. Any audiophile who has had a speaker for 8 years has a bit of a bug to make an upgrade or change. I would like to figure out a way to give this speaker which begins to roll off at about 7kHz a top end and I would like to tighten and extend the bass. However with mods I have over 4k in these speakers and I would have to spend about double or more to achieve a significant improvement. Overall this speaker is just to good to replace easily. The combination of clarity, dynamics, ability to play loud or soft with good resolution and the top to bottom coherence of the ribbon are hard to beat. The Martin Logan Prodigy has more impactful bass and better integration of woofer and membrane but costs nearly 3x as much as my modified version. I can't be anything by happy though because people usually like the sound of my speakers very much and are impressed with the way the dipoles fill the room with sound equally loud right in front of the ribbon or off to the side or 15' away. I probably will try to further improve the sound of my speakers by upgrading my amps and figuring out some way to add a tweeter. I have continually upgraded my source components and cabling over the years but have never changed speakers so this may be the best recommendation a component can achieve. My source components are as follows Musical Fidelity Nu-Vista 3D CD player, Audible Illusion preamp, VPI Mark IV turntable, Eminent Technology ET-2 arm with Grado Sonata cartridge, HMS Gran Finale Top Match Box interconnect on CD player, Marigo interconnect on turntable, Cello Strings and Tara Decade interconnect to connect preamp to crossover and amps, Tara The One speaker cable on ribbon and welding cable on bass run.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $2400.00

Purchased At:   Hi Fi store



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bhirskyj a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 30, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I heard these speakers at a hi-fi show when they were launched in the UK. The Silver seems to be much less of a good deal than the Platignum.

When looking to upgrade about three years ago and saw these in a hi-fi shop second hand. After a bit of haggling I got them for GBP 500 (about $800).

They needed a lot of tweaking and effort to get them to sing, but once done, they are fabulous.

The trouble was that they were so good they showed up the parts of my system that needed attention. The Krell KSA50Mk2 I was using at the time was just not up to driving them with enough authority. I was a bit surprised, but when I upgraded to a Krell KSA200B with new speaker cables there was a massive difference.

This speaker really does lover POWER and the ability to drive very low impedence with ease. The KSA200B puts out 350W/8 Ohm, 700W/4 Ohm, 1400W/2 Ohm etc..

They are a bit polite for out and out rock and I have found that I now appreciate a more varied musical diet.

I use them with a Rel sub, as I find that in my room the bass rolls off at about 30Hz when they are positioned to sound best. The Rel sub takes it down to 18Hz almost flat by my ears.

The rest of my system is:

Meridian 508 24 bit CD
Rock Reference/Exhalibre/AT-OC9 turntable
DNM 3A pre-amp (twin power supply version)
Krell KSA200B
Rel Stadium 2 Sub-woofer
Cable Talk interconnects
QED silver speaker cables

They need to be used in a large room, I am lucky enough to have a 35' by 19' room with 9' ceilings and this is only just big enough for them.

I don't think anybody who has listened to the system that has not liked the sound or even been indifferent. These speakers are worth the effort and are a bargain if you can find them.

They do dominate the room visually, but they look so good this is not a problem in my eyes. I have a separate music room, so I don't get any issues.

I have looked around at more expensive speakers, but I have not found the same quality, dynamics and clarity at anything like the price. The Apogee Diva may be better at some things like integration, the Wilson Maxx has more dynamics, but has a sting at the top end and is very costly. The new Quad 989 is great, but can not go loud.

This is the problem, where do you go from here without spending the price of a nice car or a house?

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1995

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   UK hi-fi store



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dale Jadus a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: December 27, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Purchased 1987 OR '88, they stand about 5 1/2 feet high, are black, and have no realistic comparison at 2-3 times the price. I drive them with a NAD7600 which should be able to put out over 600 watts/ channel into the 2 ohm impedance, according to the documentation. Thus I am able to apply about half of the power some reviewers have found possible; the sound level is quite sufficient. At the higher levels, most music causes various objects in the room to start making annoying sounds. Appreciating these speakers probably depends on the owners hearing; personally I have tested in the 99 percentile.
I cannot hear or see any problem with the ribbon element.
Certainly these speakers dominate a room. Far from being an appearance problem, these speakers draw awed comments from all visitors, and more so when something is played.
The only annoying aspect of my set-up is the NAD7600 which when turned on defaults to a low power setting. It was designed this way so that pedestrian speakers would not be destroyed. The NAD7600 was $1500 new at teh same time and is a real bargain for the power capability. I guess they are also out of business.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $1600.00

Purchased At:   Audiophile store now defunct




Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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