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AxiomAudio Blog

Sneak Peek into Axiom’s Current Research and Development

Axiom’s Newest Speaker: The In-Ceiling M3

Outdoor Speaker Placement

Experimental Atmos
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#407402 - 09/23/14 08:22 PM Re: M3 In-Ceiling Loudspeakers [Re: CV]
rprice54 Offline
old hand

Registered: 10/16/09
Posts: 87
Loc: North Georgia
My ceiling M3s finally showed up. Hoping to try them out tomorrow or the next. You can tell its a new product- no manual. Looks pretty straightforward though, once I figured out how to remove the grill. Feels very substantial for a plastic enclosed speaker. I bought these for an Atmos setup. I'm considering these for the surrounds as well.

Edited by rprice54 (09/23/14 08:22 PM)

#407403 - 09/23/14 11:19 PM Re: M3 In-Ceiling Loudspeakers [Re: CV]
brwsaw Offline

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1034
I really like the idea of using 34 of them in a Atmos layout.
Its growing on me.

#407486 - 09/29/14 02:38 PM Re: M3 In-Ceiling Loudspeakers [Re: CV]
rprice54 Offline
old hand

Registered: 10/16/09
Posts: 87
Loc: North Georgia
Okay, got a chance to compare these a bit to my outdoor M3s. This was the easiest/quickest way I could do a direct A/B comparison. This is not high end audio equip, this is my shop music system. Cheapo Sony AVR, two outdoor M3s (v4), and a cheap 10" sub. The M3s are the most expensive part of the setup. I'm NOT an audiophile, but I like my Axiom speakers (M60s/VP150/EP500 previously) and can appreciate how much better they sound compared to others I tried. I figured the plastic outdoor speakers would be a good comparison to the plastic ceiling speakers.

I have these on a shelf, about 6' up, about 8' apart, and I stood about 10' from the speakers in the center. I used some music from Fireflight, a Christian metal band, with a female (breathy) vocalist and some classical accompaniment, which gave me a wide range of sounds to compare in just a couple of songs. (this is way overkill for ceiling speakers isn't it?).

Trial 1- speakers set to large, sub off. Here the ported regular M3s obviously won with lower end punch. Vocals were still very clear and airy (listen to me [sarcasm]) and the imaging always amazes me. It's like she's singing directly in front of me, I'm looking there, and my eyes don't see a speaker, but my ears and brain tell me she's right in the middle. I was curious how the different tweeter would compare, and it was maybe just a hair less 'real' sounding compared to the regular M3s, but the difference in the vocals was very subtle. The tell, though, was the much more anemic low end- understandably so without a port. Not much punch at all. There was also a good deal of 'plastic' sounding tone with the lower end. I imagine this would go away once these were mounted in a ceiling. Admittedly these were not made to just sit on a bookshelf, so I really can't hold that against them.

Trial 2- set speakers to small, sub on, crossover about 80 (dial on the back of the sub goes from 40-240 without any other marks, so I do my best to get it around 80). Here it was nearly impossible to tell any difference between the two. The plastic tone was gone. The regular M3s still sounded a bit fuller, vocals were more 'real', but I could easily listen to the ceiling speakers in that setup on a regular basis sitting on a shelf. The sound was MUCH closer to the regular M3s with the sub.

So there you go, a very unprofessional review of the new speakers. I think they will do great for my use, overheads in an Atmos setup and will complement my other speakers well. I don't think anyone would use these for main speakers unless you just had to with WAF. Now I just need to decide if I use these for the surrounds as well or in-wall M3s or on wall M3s...

#407487 - 09/29/14 05:07 PM Re: M3 In-Ceiling Loudspeakers [Re: CV]
Serenity_Now Offline

Registered: 03/28/14
Posts: 191
Loc: PEI, Canada
Just to note, the frequency response on the low end will change significantly once they are ceiling mounted. The "plastic" tone could have been caused by vibration- again remedied by mounting. Its hard to do an apples to apples comparison if they are not on the same plane I know. blush

Great review and comparison for us! Thanks. cool

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