Martin Logan Dyanamo Subwoofers

Dyanamo

User Reviews (10)

Showing 1-10 of 10  
DMB   Casual Listener [Dec 29, 2009]

I had my eye on this sub as the dynamo had been on sale at a few places and though I had heard it in a large showroom I really wanted to get one home and see what the difference would be between it and my current Velodyne DLS 3500R. Um, yeah so the Velodyne was listed on craigslist after the first day... Seriously. Of course a 10 will go lower and out perform an 8 in most cases, though this was an alarming difference in all areas, specifically articulation, and deep deep bass with no distortion. None. Other subs I considered and listened to were definitive supercube, Prosub, REL, Velodyne, Klipsch, used M&Ks... nothing comes close to touching the dynamo...

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
mittg   AudioPhile [Jun 05, 2009]

I am using the dynamo in my 2 channel system for the left channel only. The dynamo is musical,tight and fast. It is set up as a down firing sub. Although it can be set up as a front firing sub. On the right channel is an M & K kx-12 sub. Testing has been done with pipe organ music, Dagda, Pink Floyd and for some really synthesized very low sounds, lustmord "the place where the dark stars hang". The Dynamo is not boomy. It is precise with jazz bass notes. Very pleasing to the ear. The only negative is that there are no speaker outs. The sub is hooked to the preamp then power amp.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
victemizer   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 15, 2008]

I usually read these reviews and see a lot of 4's and 5's. I usually think "there is someone who wants to think they made a good purchase".

So here I go. When I was looking for a sub, I only wanted to spend around $500. I listened to all of the subs in that price range, but didn't like ANYTHING I heard. I started listening to subs in the $1000 range for comparison purposes. I was real close to buying a M&K when I first heard the Dynamo. Holly smokes was I impressed! Nice tight bass when listening to music, loud booming explosions when watching movies. What more could I want? Maybe a larger driver... While you get nice tight accurate response from this little unit, you don't get that "feeling" you get when there is big hit. Lets face it a larger driver pushes lot more air. Here is the catch. The subs with larger drivers in this price range tend to "rumble" after the note, or explosion should have been long over. So... We are back to a sub over $1000 to get that tightness.

I did find plenty of subs that I liked better, but none were under $1000. So I will qualify my rating by classifying it as the "under $1000" class. If you are looking for the BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK, this is it!!!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Will   AudioPhile [May 21, 2007]
Strength:

You want QUALITY LOW BASS??? You have it with this sub!!

Weakness:

heh... "It's too small for the male ego"
Such a small cube with such a HUGE SOUND!!

Weaknesses, NONE!

I've got to say, i've used many subwoofers. some large, some small, some highly rated, some not so highly rated. If you have $600 to invest in a sub, look no further. The Martin Logan Dynamo is small but EXTREMELY powerfull. It out performs a 600 watt 15" Wharfedale sub without breaking a sweat. It's super small so the wife factor is not an issue. And it sounds incredible with music and movies. Let it break in for the recommende 30 hours before you submise your final judgement. But, I have to tell you, even out of the box, not broken in, it sounds great, and just gets better and better. For the same price of a Klipsch RW-12 (or was it RSW? Don't remember) the ML Dynamo smokes the klipsch. I did a side by side. The Klipsch is easily twice as large, twice the power and contains a 12" woofer, and the ML just kills it. I highly recommend!

Similar Products Used: wharfedale, sony, JBL (JUNK), Athena, Klipsch, M&K (Great stuff if you can get your hands on it....)
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
wafflebird   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 31, 2007]
Strength:

This subs true strength is its phenomenal musical reproduction, it misses nothing and adds nothing, it is deadly accurate. A lot of subs in this price-range will take a good fast bassist material and just simply smear it together, with no specific note distinction. Not this little Dynamo, it catches EVERYTHING and belts it out with absolute precision. For movies it does equally well as long as you are not asking it to produce insane volume levels and sub 20 Hz material. Bear in mind that this sub is sealed, and it has only a 200 watt amp. Since it is not a ported design the driver must fight with the internal cabinet volume while it is moving in and out, there are no ports for the air to move freely in and out. Generally this makes the sub more accurate, but the sealed designs usually give up a little in sheer output. But this little Dynamo can still rock your world. This sub also made me have more appreciation for some bassist that I really never given that much credit to before. When a sub can point this out to you, you know it is great. This sub is extremely tight, when a drum is whacked, this sound is accurately reproduced with the same tightness. Bass guitars are accurately reproduced, you can hear the distinction when the bassist goes between open and closed notes as well as how tight he is gripping the strings!!!!! Now that is accurate.

What impressed me at the store was actually how stiff the driver is, since the driver cone is solid aluminum, with care one should take, I pushed in on the driver on the demo unit. I was astounded at how stiff the driver was. Not just the material of the cone but the stiffness of the surround as well. I knew this coupled with the name Martin Logan was a good thing.

I am not really sure what the issue was with the first poster and his issue he had, but by all means do not let that one vague post steer you away, as you would be missing out on one of the true little masterpiece subs out there today!!!!

Weakness:

The only real weakness in my opinion is the fact that you do not have a variable phase dial, only a selewctor switch for 0-90-180. Since this sub is so very good for music this would be a very nice additional feature. Other than that there is no weakness in my mind. I intend on having this little gem for a long time, I am simply in love with it.

This sub is the end of a progression for my bedroom system. I had recently progressed from a Kenwood receiver to a Pioneer. The Kenwood did not have an RCA sub out. In had recently purchased a Velodyne VX-10 sub which I had hooked up via speaker wires. Once I updated my new Pioneer receiver it was evident that the VX-10 just wasn't doing it for me. I did have it hooked up properly via the sub out, it just really did not have much output and I had to have the gain turned up almost all the way. So off on a quest I went. Took the VX-10 back to Sound Advice and looked earnestly at all of their small subs. I needed small due to the placement options in the bedroom. I nearly left because nothing really was doing it for me but was caught by one of the Salesmen I have known there for years and he asked "Have you looked at this yet" pointing to the Dynamo. Well no I hadn't. Now it is from Martin Logan which is like saying Mercedes Benz. I did not even really listen to the one they had hooked up because it was out in the wide open. I took a chance and took it home. It won't be going back or leaving my system. This sub is very, very refined. The ability to make it forward or down-firing is a very nice feature. This sub is so good for music after I placed it in my bedroom system I found myself listening to music more and more in my bedroom instead of my main HT room. The sub came packaged very well and was very protected. It is hefty for it’s' size. The quality of the control knobs and the equipment on the control panel is first rate to put it mildly. The resistance of the knobs you feel when you turn them defines quality, and the dials themselves are machined from metal, not plastic as the majority of subs these days, regardless of the manufacturer. Martin Logan includes carper spikes as well as rubber feet for the base plate of the sub. The base plate has 4 posts that the sub rests on. You can remove the base plate and rotate the sub 90 degrees and convert it from forward firing to downward firing. The posts then use the same holes that the grill uses when it is set up as forward firing. The manual tells you to give the sub 50 hours before doing any critical listening, but it sounds fantastic right out of the box. Although I do believe it did get even better after 50-100 hours. Let me tell you one thing, for music in this price-range there is not even a worthy competitor. This sub makes it as if the bass player is in your room with you. Every note is detailed to the point that if you close your eyes you can see the bass strings being played, it is simply that accurate. For movies it is great also, especially for a small to medium sized room. It is not however the end all HT subwoofer. It is only a 200 watt sub. It puts out plenty of clean tight well defined bass, it reproduces everything that is there (down to about 20Hz in my room) and adds nothing else to it. But it will not wallop you like the big 14" 1800 watt sub I have in my main room. But what it does with 200 watts is simply astounding. I originally had it behind a large armoire but it actually shook the backing panel loose and was causing a buzzing sound due to this piece vibrating, so I had to reposition it. If you are looking for a GREAT sub in this size and price-range I can tell you look no further. I have had this sub for over a year and I still smile every time I just look at it, it brings me that much joy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Similar Products Used: Velodyne DLs-3750R (initial main listening room sub) Velodyne VX-10
New sub in main room Def-Tech Supercube Reference.
If you can swing it check out Martin Logans' other subs as well, Descent, Grotto, and Depth. All of these are really great subs as well.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
audiomarc1   AudioPhile [Jun 02, 2006]
Strength:

Build quality. Deep, tight bass...no boom here. Blends seamlessly with every speaker I tried. Easy to set up. Great set up instructions furnished by ML. Price. And a product designed and supported by one of the best speaker builders in the world. Call ML anytime and they will answer any question and make suggestions on proper set up, etc.

5 stars for performance vs. price (Value)
5 stars for satisfaction (Overall)

Weakness:

I would have preferred that whether you choose front firing or down firing, the amp controls would be easily accessible. When in front firing position, the controls are on the bottom. However, once set up, this should not be a problem.

Very well built subwoofer with many parts and most of the technology taken from the upper line (Grotto, Depth, Descent) of ML subs. Has the same 10" aluminum driver found in all the upper subs. Designed and engineered in the US by ML and built in China to keep costs down. Audio products manufactured in China has become a brilliant move to keep costs down. If a product is engineered by the company and the parts are supplied by the company, there is no down side to being manufactured in China. BTW, China has some pretty good engioneers of there own...never look down on the "Asian Option". I compared the Dynamo ($600) head to head with the ML Grotto ($1200) and found that they both sounded great. The Grotto adds a servo circuit, a tad better cabinet and a little more power (250 wpc vs. 200 wpc) but in the long run, I could not justify the price difference ($600).

The Dynamo has deep, tight bass with no boom. It blends seamlessly with all speakers that I have tried. If set up correctly and this is easy to do, you cannot tell where the sub is located in your room. I ma using it for 2 channel audio but it can work well for home theater as well...although I think you would be wasting its potential here! it also has the option of front firing and down firing by just rotating it on its platform/stand. Either position sounded good and is a personal choice. I also did not miss the servo circuit. The servo would have been more important if the Dynamo had a larger driver (12" - 18") due to the inherent distortion issues with large drivers. An 8" - 10" driver does not have as many of these issues...hence the servo circuit not missed much.

I have it working in unison with a pair of the new Spendor S3/5 se monitors and the Dynamo disappears allowing the Spendors to image and soundstage like the champs they are along with the missing deep/tight bass. This pair lists for $2100 and rivals full range speakers costing much..much more!

You cannot go wrong with the Dynamo for some of the best quality bass at the best price available today.

Customer Service

ML is first rate.

Similar Products Used: ML Grotto, JM Labs, REL, Velodyne.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
TDWJr   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 08, 2006]
Strength:

Better than advertised extension; Variety/ease of inputs/controls; Size/looks

Weakness:

none at this price point and size

I picked up a ML Dynamo from Tweeter yesterday as a Christmas gift. It's absolutely awesome!!! My wife wanted less box in "her" family room, so I replaced my 5 year old Accoustic Research HO12 - which had been written up by Home Theater Magazine and Sound and Vision and others as a great $250 bargain 5 years ago - it's a 250 watt thumper with extension down to about 25Hz and very good SPL. The Dynamo abslolutely, positively blows it away - I expected a Martin Logan product to be much better than an AR in terms of clarity but I didn't know if a 200 watt, sealed 10 inch would match a 250 watt, slotted down-firing 12 inch. So, I was thinking that I might need the ML Grotto - similar dimensions, but better/bigger 250 (350 peak) amp and standing-wave management. Silly me. I popped in my reference DVD, U-571, and felt every spine-snaping depth charge in chapters 15 through 17 in my chest; I then popped in Batman Returns and I Robot for fun and was not disappointed. The Dynamo was turned up less than 50% power and was fed through the LFE input, but it made my floor and chair rumble (who needs transducers?) and it was clear, crisp and accurate. No muddiness, not overpowering, and no effect on the dialogue coming from the center channel and it's not even broken in yet. I run a 7.1 setup - Niles L/C/R HT in-walls up front and Niles HD 625 in-walls high on the sides and in the rear - driven by a Sony DA7ES receiver (at about 120 watts x 7); I let the Sony bass management drop everything below 120 into the Dynamo. My room is 10x22 - with seats about 11 feet from plasma/front speakers and sub, and a 6x6 opening along one side wall; so, I was not sure the Dynamo would give me good, deep bass without the bass leaking into the adjoining kitchen. I was surprised. My wife - who normally disregards fly over effects from the rear and surrounds and often complains about "too much bass" was shocked that such a small box was thumping so deeply, without being loud, and actually allowed her to hear the surround effects. She made me promise not to get anything "more powerful" - so, maybe during Tweeter's next sale, I'll just pick up another Dynamo and run dual subs! The HSU and the SVS models I considered will extend a bit lower, and thump just a bit more - which is good given these are all at just about the same price point as the ML. But, they won't disappear into a room like the ML and I, for one, must pay strict attention to the wife factor. The Dynamo which is just about a 12 inch cube does the trick.

Similar Products Used: AR HO12
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Meta   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 03, 2005]
Strength:

Excellent sound. Flexibility for both movie and music listening. High quality construction. Compact size.

Weakness:

Controls are on the bottom of the unit when it is configured for front firing. Inconvenient, but not a big deal. Relatively high price compared to similar subwoofers.

My criteria for a subwoofer included the following: Good sound Suitable for both music and movies Compact size Value for the money The Martin Logan Dynamo turned out to be the subwoofer that best met all of my criteria. I'm using it in a two channel setup with a pair of Axiom M22ti speakers and a Denon stereo receiver. I also have my TV audio routed through the receiver. The Dynamo is wonderful in this application. The tight, accurate base it puts out perfectly complements the crisp, clean sound of the Axiom speakers without either component overwhelming the other. The Dynamo has plenty of output to shake the room during movie special effects, but it is also very musical. It handled everything from Led Zeppelin at high volume to Bach's Toccata and Fugue without booming or buzzing. The extended deep bass notes from the pipe organ in Bach's composition were incredible. It felt like I was in the room with the organ rather than listening to a recording. The finish on the Dynamo is impeccable. It is a furniture grade matte finish that is much nicer than the painted plywood look of some of the other subs out there. Martin Logan provides plenty of connection options on the Dynamo so it is flexible enough to use with either a two channel or home theater receiver. The connections and controls are high quality and well labeled. The manual that comes with the unit is detailed and well written - there was plenty of information to make connecting and setup of the Dynamo a snap. The Dynamo has a removable base and can be configured for either down firing or front firing. You should be aware that when the subwoofer is configured for front firing, the connections and controls will be on the bottom of the unit. That makes it somewhat awkward for initial tweaking, but not much of a factor after that. ML does provide 90° RCA connectors to make it easier to hook up in the front firing configuration. At a list price of $600, the Dynamo is certainly not the cheapest unit. There are plenty of other quality subwoofers that are $100-$200 cheaper, so you should listen to as many as you can and decide what fits your needs best. The Dynamo was the clear winner for me. The combination of quality bass for movie special effects and its wonderful musicality put it over the top. I knew I'd chosen well when listening to it put a smile on the faces of both my wife AND my teenage son.

Similar Products Used: None
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
danielj   Audio Enthusiast [Aug 30, 2005]
Strength:

Tight, musical, thundering bass. Quality of construction. It's expensive, but it's a great value at its price.

Weakness:

None

This sub exceeded my budget, but I was sold on its value. At $570, it compares favorably to subs by Rel and Def Tech at over $1000, and compared to other options in the $300-400 range, the price was easily justified. This is a 10 inch unported sub at 200W. It has an aluminum coned woofer. I believe it is the same speaker found on Logan's $2600 sub, which has 3 of them. The quality of construction is outstanding. A simple feel of the speaker reveals this. But also the gold tipped connectors, the accuracy of the knobs, not to mention the option to turn the sub from downfiring to front firing. Logan has included the necessary 90 degree connectors to facilitate easy cabling as well as a front grill. Ridiculous carpet spikes are included as well. Most importantly, this sub sounds fantastic. The first thing I noticed about this sub was its tightness. No matter how loud I turned it, no matter how intense the bass (I started with Aphex Twin's Windowlicker) this sub never faultered. It shook the house, but never got sloppy. Ever bass line, ever drum hit, starts and stops on cue. I cannot induce a boomy sound out of this unit. After I got over the how tight the sound is, I noticed how musical this sub is. My old sub was on or off. Loud or silent. This sub brings base lines alive. Low frequencies are no longer lost but accurately reproduced, bringing previously unheard elements to my ear. This sub makes a raunchy house beat pulsates, Meg White's drums thunder, and movie explosions shake the house. In sum, this sub makes me grin ear to ear every time I hear it.

Similar Products Used: Rel, Boston, Cambridge Soundworks, Def Tech
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Screw Loose   AudioPhile [Jan 18, 2005]
Strength:

Superb bass, beautiful looking and sounding, includes top quality "spikes" for carpet if needed. Truly an outstanding value for the money.

Weakness:

You should have a good receiver/amp with bass managenent.If you use the LFE input, the Low Pass Filter won't function (it's designed this way). That is the only drawback since my receiver doesn't get as detailed in this area, even though it is a $400 reciever. When HDMI is built into all receiver's (soon) I will be upgrading anyway and correct this issue.

Boy did I ever have a difficult time settling on a subwoofer. I am not afraid to return something if I don't like it. I bought Boston's for my multi-channel setup, including the PV700 sub (I will review that too). At first, I wanted to keep everything Boston in order to have the same "voice". But then I realized that when it comes to a sub, that doesn't matter. After I returned the PV700, I decided to wait a couple week's and get my mind off sub's for a while to clear my head. One of the problem's I was running into was my budget. At first, I just couldn't imagine paying so much money for one speaker, especially since I had just dropped $4800 on speaker's and component's (not including my new plasma). I finally talked myself into spending $500 on a good sub (although many will say that is not possible-which made me wonder- $500 is a lot of money!) When I went out shopping again, the same salesman (I'm surprised he wanted to work with me after the 2 returns at his store already) said "I can show you the MartinLogan". Although I am not a true "audiophile", I knew enough to know that that MartinLogan is not cheap. "It's only $600" he said. So, off we went to the fancy "high end" listening room. At first look, this is a tiny, tiny looking sub. It's less than 1 foot all around. When I got down on my knees and we turned it over and started playing with it, I was blown away by the build quality. MartinLogan throw's around the word "excellence" in every desription of their product, and I was beginning to see why. "So it's down firing" I said. This has been one of my problem's-either the sub is down firing and poorly designed, or front firing and too small (in my price range)."Yes, and it's also front firing if you want". Say what? Then in about 10 seconds he pulls the base off, turns it over, put's the base back on, and it's front firing! With a grill you can attach! WOW I thought. The transducer itself is an all aluminum 10" monster, and when he played it I was very, very impressed. I had to go outside, walk around, and convince myself to pony up another $100 over my price point. Easy enough. The build quality on this thing is amazing. Most sub's in this price range don't have that much to offer in the look's department. I got the silver model, and it is just stunning. It doesn't take up a lot of space, but it sure fill's the house with bass. "Clean and tight" as they say. It play's bass notes/tones that I have never heard out of a sub before. My favorite music has never sounded like this before. And, according to the instruction's, it takes 30hrs to break in, before it can be "critically judged", or something like that. I can't wait! Oh yes, regarding instructions. Apparently, MartinLogan is big on instructions. I can't emphasize enough how helpful those instructions were. All the other sub's I bought, and the Boston's I bought, basically have a picture and a paragraph-if that. MartinLogan help's you understand what, when, where, why and how. They also emphasize this is a smaller version of their top line $3000 sub-same component's. And actually, the 3k sub simply has 3 woofer's-but it is THE SAME 10" woofer as is in this $600 model. I hate having to settle, and even though I "only spent $600", I don't feel wanting for more. I have also decided I will step up to MartinLogan for my front's, rear's and center in the next year or so. And when I do, I know that I won't have to upgrade my sub. "Far better than I imagined" as the rating say's. This Dynamo will do just fine, thanks!

Similar Products Used: Sony, Boston.
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
5
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