Reference tech trickles down
Magico, the Canadian brand behind some of the world’s most expensive loudspeakers, has reengineered its much-loved S3 Mk II. The new and improved S3 three-way floorstanders boast some of the technical wizardry found on the company’s flagship M9 speakers, which tower over most people, at over 2m high, and cost a cool $1,515,000 a pair. The new S3 don’t do quite that much damage to a bank account, with a starting price of $78,000.
Magico relied on the state-of-the-art M9 to improve the S3’s drivers, so both now feature 28mm diamond-coated beryllium diaphragms in the tweeters. The S3’s tweeter is combined with a new neodymium-based motor system and complemented by a new “acoustically improved back chamber” that promises to declare war on distortion. Magico goes as far as saying that it registers “the lowest distortion measurements possible today from a high-frequency transducer” — a big claim.
Meanwhile, the five-inch midrange driver cone is formed of a honeycomb aluminium core sandwiched with layers of graphene and carbon fibre, and the nine-inch bass driver boasts the company’s latest-gen Graphene Nano-Tec cone. Graphene apparently has 50 times the tensile strength of high-carbon steel, giving it an impressively high stiness-to-weight ratio, which should further enhance the damping.
The S3 also introduce a newly engineered enclosure made from four separate aluminium panels up to two-inches thick.
Each panel is inspected using ultra-precise “3D laser interferometry system”, which allows it to tailor the internal damping to perfection by measuring the panels up to 1,000 points a side, calculating the aggregate SPL resonance of the entire enclosure, and applying internal bracing and damping techniques to optimize the overall sound accordingly. As a result, the new cabinet is supposedly 30% quieter than its predecessor.
To enable Magico to predict the in-room reflections and response of each S3 in a standard listening room environment, it uses Klippel’s Near-Field-Scanner (NFS) technology, which sees a single microphone rotate around a loudspeaker cabinet that is suspended in free air in order for 3D acoustic measurements (on and o axis) to be taken without the need for an anechoic chamber. Magico says the S3 greatly benefitted from this measurement technology investment, ensuring it could deliver "clear technical superiority".
Lastly, a thicker and more substantial baseplate incorporates a new outrigger system and foot design, too, lowering the centre of gravity of each 1.2m-tall, 100kg tower and increasing overall stability, resulting in a lower noise floor and increased dynamics.
The new Magico S3 speakers will arrive this year in two dierent finishes: an M-Cast textured powder coat finish at $78,000, and an M-Coat high-gloss paint finish that attracts a roughly 15% premium.