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M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
#440662 01/13/21 09:24 PM
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Hello Everyone, I have recently modernized my 2.0 stereo system and am considering trading in my M50 V2 for the M5HP. With the advent of Hi Res streaming, the unbelievable amount of material available on these services and a few new pieces of equipment, (yea, I know, I'm way behind here) I find myself a much more critical listener than I was in the past. Not that I don't love my M50's, I do, but I'm finding myself sitting and listening now and I'm wondering what I could gain from this change not only in overall sound quality but also in terms of soundstage and the possibly more flexibility in placement.

Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440666 01/13/21 09:52 PM
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I love my M50v4. I was listening to them this morning in 2.0 with my cassette deck plugged directly into my ADA-1000. I was taking a break from my active LFR1100s with five sealed Axiom subs, and 12,000 peak Watts of Axiom amplification. I was taking a break from my M2OW, M5OW and EP125s too.

To sum up, I was taking a break from the higher spatial resolution and fidelity offered by the Axiom models that have (a) dedicated mid-range driver(s) and returning to the laid back standard definition of the M50v4.


ALFR 1000-8 1500-2
M5OW 1000-2x2
M2/M5 OW M2 3 5 50 80 100 VP160x2 VP150 QS8
125x2 500x4 600x2 800
Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
Mojo #440673 01/14/21 12:12 AM
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Although I'm pretty sure that you wrote this in some kind of code, I think I get it. smile

Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440674 01/14/21 12:23 AM
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smile Yeah...I've written extensively about the differences between M3 and M50 vs. all the other Axioms on these boards. The M3 and M50 are of different tonal character than all the rest but they offer similar imaging and soundstage. I love the M50 compared to the M3 because it's very linear. No bass boom.

Both are very nice for mellow listening but cannot reveal the level of detail the other Axioms do. That's the difference between a dedicated mid-woofer driver and a woofer that doubles as a mid-woofer.

I'd be curious to know your thoughts if you ever do get the M5s.


ALFR 1000-8 1500-2
M5OW 1000-2x2
M2/M5 OW M2 3 5 50 80 100 VP160x2 VP150 QS8
125x2 500x4 600x2 800
Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440676 01/14/21 12:46 AM
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Well, I keep telling myself that I'm not getting new speakers but I also know that once I start reading, asking questions and looking at pictures of anything I'm currently obsessing over the purchase is inevitable. I see me do it all the time. So I will let you know.

Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440682 01/14/21 01:49 AM
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Yeah, stop day-dreaming and get cracking. You are not likely to regret it.


ALFR 1000-8 1500-2
M5OW 1000-2x2
M2/M5 OW M2 3 5 50 80 100 VP160x2 VP150 QS8
125x2 500x4 600x2 800
Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440703 01/15/21 01:39 AM
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Interesting question - I hadn't thought about M50 to M5HP comparison before but it makes a lot of sense.

I have never heard M50's but still really enjoy my M40's. As Mojo hinted at, Axiom speakers have always been two "sound families" - M3/M40/M50 and M2/M22/M5HP/M60/80/100 - although I'm never sure if M50 really belongs in the first family since the frequency response spec suggests more of a 2-1/2 way than a 2-way.

In terms of overall frequency response it's going to be a toss-up between the M50's and the M5HP's, but the M5HPs really impressed me when it came to imaging/soundstage and ability to stay clear & tight when playing complex music at medium volumes (not super-quiet and not wall-of-sound either).

In my case I traded M60v4's in on the M5HPs and am very happy with the result. I had been alternating between the M60's and Ascend Sierra-1's, preferring some aspects of each, but once the M5HP's arrived I pretty much left them up all the time.

The next step in these plague-ridden times is probably giving Mojo a phone call and asking him to hold his phone up to the speakers while he switches between M50 and M5HP's.

Last edited by bridgman; 01/15/21 01:41 AM.

M60ti, VP180, QS8, M2ti, EP500, PC-Plus 20-39
M5HP, M40ti, Sierra-1
LFR1100 active, ADA1500-4 and -8
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Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
mikeR #440706 01/15/21 04:16 AM
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I recently setup my old pair of M50s in my parents house and they were blown away. Actually, I was too a little. They have a semi-perfect listening environment, at least much better than mine. It's funny, this whole time I had one of the best speakers from Axiom and didn't know it, imho. Full disclaimer i've heard the M5HP on walls, not the bookshelves and I'm now using the M100s. The 100's sound amazing, especially at higher levels.


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Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
bridgman #440708 01/15/21 04:41 AM
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John, I've never heard the M40s but the M50v4 sound like M3s with more linear bass at any level and more linear mids at higher levels. They can go a good 6-9 dB louder than the M3 before audible distortion sets in. I really like them. Maybe you ought to try a pair.


ALFR 1000-8 1500-2
M5OW 1000-2x2
M2/M5 OW M2 3 5 50 80 100 VP160x2 VP150 QS8
125x2 500x4 600x2 800
Re: M50 to M5HP upgrade expectations
Mojo #440710 01/15/21 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Mojo
John, I've never heard the M40s but the M50v4 sound like M3s with more linear bass at any level and more linear mids at higher levels. They can go a good 6-9 dB louder than the M3 before audible distortion sets in. I really like them. Maybe you ought to try a pair.

Interesting. The M40 has the "more linear bass" aspect (the bass response is extraordinarily deep and flat) but midrange is probably a bit less clear than the M3's. I haven't directly compared their ability to play loud but my impression is that my older M40's are probably less good in that regard than current M3's.

I'm still trying to clear out enough space and time to finish setting up the LFR's, maybe I can revisit M50s if/when that ever happens.

Last edited by bridgman; 01/15/21 05:38 PM.

M60ti, VP180, QS8, M2ti, EP500, PC-Plus 20-39
M5HP, M40ti, Sierra-1
LFR1100 active, ADA1500-4 and -8
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