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The best floor standers money can buy! Monitor Audio Platinum PL300 Floor Standing Speakers

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The best floor stander money can buy! Quite Possibily…

 

Monitor Audio Platinum PL300 Floor Standing Speakers (UK)

 

Tech Spec

 

Frequency Response: 28 Hz - 100 KHz

Sensitivity ([email protected]): 90 dB

Nominal Impedance: 4 Ohms

Maximum S.P.L (Per pair in room): 118.6 dBA

Power Handling (RMS): 300 W

Recommended Amplifier Requirements (RMS): 100 - 300 W

Bass Alignment: Twin Ported HiVe II Technology  

Sealed Mid-range TLE

Mid / H.F Crossover Frequency: 4000 Hz Bass Low Pass Crossover Frequency: 550 Hz Driver Unit Complement: 2 x 8" long throw RDT bass drivers
1 x 4" RDT mid-range driver
1 x C-CAM high frequency ribbon transducer

External Dimensions -
Including Fixed Plinth & Feet
(H x W x D): 1113 x 410 x 470 mm
(43 13/16 x 16 1/8 x 18 1/2) Weight (each) including Plinth:
43.8Kg (96.4lbs)

 

See more at: http://www.monitoraudio.co.uk/products/platinum/pl300/#/specification

 

post-142692-0-78349200-1399077856_thumb.

 

Special Mentions:

 

Ribbon Tweeter –

“Monitor Audio's proprietary ribbon tweeter design uses an ultra-thin sandwich of C-CAM alloy suspended in a powerful transverse magnetic field of high energy NeFeB rare earth magnets. The ribbon serves as both voice coil and radiating diaphragm, with every part of the ribbon driven directly and simultaneously without energy storage. Having a mass of just 18mg, its diaphragm is able to start and stop in an instant, producing a transient response capable of defining the leading edge and natural harmonic resonance of complex musical sounds. Specified to reach ultra-high frequencies up to an elusive 100 kHz, Platinum’s magical ribbon tweeter will reproduce with ease every last nuance and detail from vinyl, CD, DVD-A and SACD, together with the wider bandwidth of Blu-ray.â€

 

RDT C-CAM

“RDT is a unique technology developed specifically by Monitor Audio's engineers for the Platinum series of loudspeakers*. Designed to reduce mass and increase cone stiffness, RDT applies ultra-thin skins of C-CAM to a core of honeycomb Nomex®** material, creating a structure which is extremely light but incredibly rigid. At only 40 microns thick, the C-CAM skins are half the thickness of a human hair, yet when bonded to the Nomex core they form an RDT cone, which is 150 times more rigid than a single layer of 200 micron C-CAM alloy, but has a fraction of the overall mass. These properties allow the cone to operate as a lightning-fast piston for a clearer more natural sound. The RDT cone's concave geometry has been refined by FEA analysis to provide a smooth frequency response and to eradicate break-up. “

 

See more at: http://www.monitoraudio.co.uk/products/platinum/pl300/#/technology

 

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Background

 

Obsession can sometimes be destructive. A Buddhist may say the search for perfection equals suffering, and life is full of suffering as it equates to humanities preoccupation with material needs and wants. However, sometimes obsession can be a good thing. For without obsession, we would never have products like the PL300’s.

Over five years I had a mission, to explore strange new speakers, to seek out new tweeters and drivers, and to boldly audition like no one has auditioned before.

 

The mission took me to some serious testing sessions, some of which are now vague memories. Some others included an array of speakers from a host of manufactures including but not limited to following– B&W, Sonus Faber, Klipsch Palladium, Klipsch THX series, M&K, Monitor Audio, SGR, PMC, Linn, Dynaudio, Quad, Martin Logan, Krix, etc. etc.

 

Now all the speakers above were good, some were great. But dollar for dollar, pound for pound (and in my humble subjective opinion) the PL300’s are probably the best floor standers that you can buy for the money.

 

A friend of mine said, “Buy in haste and repent at leisure.†He’s not wrong. I took his advice and auditioned the hell out of all manner of speakers/amps before I bought the PL300’s, even taking the baby ones home to play with. The local dealer was extremely patient, and understanding, and let me listen on numerous occasions. I was going to buy the full gambit of speakers of another model, but persevered and bought the PL300’s instead.

 

Here is why…

 

post-142692-0-64688500-1399077860_thumb.

 

Sound

 

Having spent 2 years with the PL 300’s it’s been a very enjoyable and sublime relationship.

 

I have the speakers bi-amped with a NAD M25 amplifier. This gives a real and resounding 160 watts per channel designed in a mono block fashion. The NAD power-drive system means the power is doubled in those need to moments. The NAD has bags of authority and plenty of grip over the PL300’s. Like a giant hand clutching your nether regions they control every nuance squeezing as and when required, controlling speed, bass and high-end frequencies with pin point precision. The sound is typical NAD, a little dark and warm, which I enjoy. Having a sensitivity of 90DB the PL300’s are very efficient and easy to drive.

  
Listening to an eclectic catalogue of music in various formats, the Platinums bring out instruments in a three dimensional soundstage, revealing obvious differences and nuances that have not been heard before. The ribbon tweeter throws these variances with outstanding accuracy, never bright, never overbearing, but with pinpoint detail that envelops the listener. Clarinets, strings, flutes, cymbals, synthesizers, in fact any percussion ensemble resonates with tonality I rarely find in other speakers.

 

The frequency response of the bass is deep, sub territory, but never overblown or emphasised. It is fast, accurate and powerful. The duel 8-inch long throw RDT bass drivers perform exceptionally well in two-channel stereo and in any movie surround format, Dolby Digital, DTS etc. that you can throw at them. You may never want to listen to a bookshelf speaker again.

 

Midrange musicality is produced with a 4" RDT driver, balanced and mature, and is perfectly sandwiched between the bass and tweeter, never giving ground to either. This is a perfectly balanced full range speaker.   

Linn Records – Linn Selektions – (SACD) – Salvator Mundi – Voices sing out in cathedral like harmonics. The Platinums disappear completely leaving you suspended in the beautiful 40-voice Latin choir.

 

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (great soundtrack!)  - Space Oddity – David Bowie Feat. Kristen Wiig (Mitty Mix) (CD) – An excellent mix of the song with the Platinums showing precision imaging of vocals that transcend the drivers.

 

Pink Floyd (the Best Of) (DTS Master) – the recoding is smooth warm and velvet rich with a topping of fine detail. Imaging of instruments, vocals and sound effects is precise and the music fills the room.

 

Dire Straits – So Far Away CD - The synthesised beginning of this song resonates and slowly fills the room deeper, wider and taller. Likewise the atmospherics in Brothers in Arms is bought out in impressive fashion.

Angelique Kidjo CD – Voodoo Child from the album Oremi – is stunning. Little whispers are abounding, and you you hear them like never before. Bass is resoundingly powerful deep and fast.

Elbow - live (DTS) recording is detailed with an abundance of precisely imaged vocals, the soundstage –wide, deep and detailed.

A selection of
High-Res Audio tracks in 24 bit 192 consisting of Jazz, classical and pop. The timbre of drums and vibration of strings is lovely – but what is also remarkably impressive is the ambience of the sound – the presence of music that surrounds the listener. This is quite particular in tracks such as synthesised music, strings and film sound tracks. Sometimes it’s a hair standing ovation, especially on the back of your head.

 

The extra bit depth to some of the music recordings and mastering was clearly articulated by the Platinum’s range and scope of playback. 

 

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There is no doubt the Platinums are grand wizards of two channel. Imaging and soundstage are definitely its forte. Vocals are clear and give a fine sense of live presentation and clarity. This works with any kind of music from classical and jazz to hip-hop and dance.

 

I recently had the opportunity to try the system out with a Chord QBD76 HDSD. A brilliant piece of kit and to date one of the best DACs I have heard. The detail, bass, presence and scale of the Platinums was outstanding. I’ve never heard them sound so good, or realised that a CD or equivalent computer file could contain such an amount of information, or sound so incredible. 

Movies – every film played showed that the Platinums were clearly at home creating turmoil and uproar when needed, with subtlety in equal measures. The atmospherics in The Conjuring sound track added and extra layer of fear. Lord of The Rings – Fellowship, where Sauron gets his ring sliced off (literally
J) – the resounding deep bass response was beautiful, as if there was a sub present. In fact I had to double check that the visiting Sub (REL 528) was switched off, which it was.

 

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty – beautifully directed by Ben Stiller has a great soundtrack, which is equally presented by the PL300’s.

 

TV – Hannibal, the sound engineering in this show is excellent, from the opening title sequence and throughout with incidental music. The PL’s perform exceptionally well, conveying every emotion. The title sequences to Game of Thrones, Vikings, and Dexter are other great examples where the Platinums shine.

 

It’s not just in the big stakes where the drivers can slam and dunk. The subtle noises are important, whether it’s the intake of breath, a pen scrawling on paper, the distant sound of rain, a creak in a floorboard, the PL300’s perform exceptionally well, articulating what the sound engineers want you to hear. Listening for over 10 hours hindered zero ear fatigue.

 

With any partnering equipment there needs to be a degree of synergy. Not all components will work together in harmony, and personal tastes vary considerably. Therefore cable changes, and more importantly the amplifier and speaker combination must be right for the individual listener.

 

I find the whole Platinum range neutral in transparency which is excellent for tuning a system for greater flexibility. This is nice as they can be modified to suit personal tastes. As I said earlier, I love a slightly warmer sound and paired up with the NAD, the Platinums emulate this resoundingly.   

 

The build quality of the units is exceptional and far superior to speakers costing the same if not two or three times the price. Money has been no object in their presentation and construction. Even the metal grills are substantial and attach by strong magnets, providing a useful protective layer for the drivers. The acoustic plinth and machined aluminium spikes hold the speakers well, and isolate resonance effectively.

 

Looks are extremely personal and probably for me the least important factor. Having said that the speakers look exquisite, especially in Ebony real wood veneer with added leather to boot.

 

Matched with commensurate equipment the Monitor Audio Paltinums are one of the best floor standing speakers for two channel music and movies you can own. This ambidextrous duality is rare and exceptional. In summary massive detail, powerful bass, 3D soundstage with the ability to bring out everything on your chosen format with bags of transparency. They have the ability to fill a room with music, fully immersing and losing you in the experience of musical bliss. 

If you’re in the market for something quite special or thinking about an upgrade, put the Platinum PL300 on the top of your consideration list. For the money, you will be struggling to find something superior or even close.

 

What’s your best amp/speaker combination?

 

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PS

 

The actual measurements on the website are for the plinth, the speaker is smaller:

 

post-142692-0-20527200-1399077965_thumb.post-142692-0-02835000-1399077970_thumb.post-142692-0-22572600-1399077977_thumb.

 

 

 

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Have a soft spot for Monitor Audio having had a pair of MA3s for many years, however, haven't heard these beautiful speakers which you clearly love & suit your taste. Doubt you'll find too many in total agreement with " The Best you can buy!" Good to read that someone has found their audio nirvana, & was an enjoyable read.

Thanks.

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Great write and nice piccies. Having owing ma rs6, rs8 and gs20, I always liked the look of these or the smaller pl200.

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always liked monitor audio speakers. because share some characteristics in other speaker brands sound that I like. i.e. B&W, focal, pmc, UK made mission's and the like. its great to see monitor audio go all out to bring a speaker such as this. leaving nothing in the way of build quality, fit finish etc. top notch quite simply :)

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Tech Spec

 

Frequency Response: 28 Hz - 100 KHz

The frequency response of the bass is deep, sub territory, but never overblown or emphasised. It is fast, accurate and powerful.

 

 

 

Deep maybe, but 28Hz 'aint deep enough.

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Deep maybe, but 28Hz 'aint deep enough.

 

Unless you are a church organ freak, 28hz is plenty

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28Hz will rattle your bones - they look like great speakers. 

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keep in mind 28 kHz would be anechoic, in room there is room gain so will be rolling of lot lower. should be plenty of info down to 20hz for most music. yep I wouldn't see as a limitation :)

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I have heard the platinum series and found them quite amazing at first but very fatiguing and not something I can listen to for an extended period of time but great build quality.

The were also beaten quite easily by other floor standers so while they are good they are not the best floor standers :)

Edited by bwhitesox
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28hz is definitely low, but being an "organ freak", 16hz is even better LOL :-)

Cheers!

SS

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28Hz will rattle your bones - they look like great speakers. 

 

When the Tommies are depth charging the Nazi Krauts on U-571 I want the neighbors to be bone rattled :P

 

Plus I've recently acquired some Electronic Trance albums that I reckon are pushing below 20Hz, gives my Wilson's and SVS sub a good work out.

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When the Tommies are depth charging the Nazi Krauts on U-571 I want the neighbors to be bone rattled :P

 

~

 

well if your watching movies and want to drop to those depths then like most people you would use an av system and run a sub for all LFE sub duties… hehe

 

~

 

Plus I've recently acquired some Electronic Trance albums that I reckon are pushing below 20Hz, gives my Wilson's and SVS sub a good work out.

 

well then you would do something like what I have done and utilise your sub so have a smooth response 200hz down to 20 hz back at the listening position… :D

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Very nice speakers.But best floor standers. Hmmm.

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(my) best speakers ever?

I've actual always wanted to hear these - they review very well and I've always like MA

Methinks a GTG to substantiate claims is required.

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The tweeter looks identical to the rear firing one on my Aurum Cantus Grand Supremes, it's good you put the exclamation mark in the title.

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I loved my GS20's. Great all rounders. Fit and finish from MA is first class IMO.

The Platinum series look top shelf and I'm glad you think they sound as good as they look. In the end that's all that matters.

Enjoy.

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They look wonderful. I think any 'the best xxxxxx money can buy" has an invisible "for me personally, for what I was prepared to spend, at this point in time" attached. So long as the

OP is happy :)

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They look wonderful. I think any 'the best xxxxxx money can buy" has an invisible "for me personally, for what I was prepared to spend, at this point in time" attached. So long as the

OP is happy :)

Quite right I totally agree - it is quite subjective and a very personal opinion/journey, and half the fun of that journey is deciding what to buy.  

 

My only take away would be to Audition thrice – buy once.

 

Take the kit home (ideally) or bring in your kit to the dealer. If it’s a good dealership they should meet you at least halfway. Cheers

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thanks for the great read...    I'm glad to see you are happy and impressed with the speakers..

 

I have been contemplating replacing my Aslan's.  Anything that is close to bright I want to avoid though.  Have sent a PM with some questions.  I'm not looking for another set of 'hot' sounding speakers...   (should I replace my beloved Aslan's)............   some emotion in that upcoming decision...

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I have a pair of the little bros to the Platinum, the GX 300. They are so damn good, they are one audio item I would never consider selling.

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I loved my GS20's. Great all rounders. Fit and finish from MA is first class IMO.

The Platinum series look top shelf and I'm glad you think they sound as good as they look. In the end that's all that matters.

Enjoy.

 

 

I went and had a listen to PL300's at Quality Hi-Fi in York St. and came away very underwhelmed.

 

There was plenty of attention to room acoustics so they were probably being let down by the amp / source. I'm not really familiar with the Roksan products that those guys sell.   

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I had auditioned these PL300's at the Secher Audio in Camberwell and found them to be sublime. They were just too much out of my spending power and I bought Sonus Faber instead. No regrets at all, but anyone not having heard the PL300's should do so.

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Quality audio is not far from where I work.... hmmmmmmm (in home demo)

Though last time I was there I swore id never go back.. rude.

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Scuzzii, If it's too bright, stick to Proac, sonus faber,tannoy, dyn audio. I've auditoned the Pl300 and found them quite a good all rounder. I didn't find them

bright like the models below them. I found the higher end M/f, Denon, and Densen stuff work very well with them.

 

cheers Frank. 

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Quality audio is not far from where I work.... hmmmmmmm (in home demo)

Though last time I was there I swore id never go back.. rude.

 

They were extremely nice to me actually, although I did mention up-front that I already owned B&W 800 diamonds, and they happened to be the sales guy's fav all time speaker. 

 

Fwiw, the PL300's were nice but didn't give me the soundstage I was expecting, and the treble too seemed a tad artificial and grainy, as well as a bit too hot at times. Bass was good but not in the same league as 800 Di's, which is probably expected anyway, but bass aside the whole setup was obviously being limited by the amps and source, which was a pity. 

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