Review: Martin Logan CLS IIZ Speaker

Category: Speakers

Cls 2z is one of matin logans better old designs,They have a great midrange but are very weak in the frequincy extremes.The are very picky about amps, cables ,room placement so maybe not a good speaker for a beginer.But when set up right they will give you a great performance.relaxing sound .But not a lot of dynamics good for rock or simple music ,falls apart on classical .Has trouble.With busy music .Over all a good speaker for the cash used .My friend has 2 pair in a home theater set up .If you can deal with the size they work great in that aplication .Nice speaker but the new logans are a bit better .

Associated gear
Krell fbb 200c audio research ,vt100mk3,pass x2,pre.krell pre ,tara cables, ac filters .arragon 8008,more.

Similar products
Martin logan ,ascents ,odessy,prodgy,quest,questz ,magies ,sound labs
I owned the CLS IIZ's for 8 years and found them to be supremely musical on small-scale acoustic jazz. Placement is crucial (at least 4 feet from the back wall) as is amplification (I used ARC Classic 120's). Finally, I got a REL subwoofer which mated very well with the CLS's. After many, many hours tweaking, including the addition of Synergistic Research Master Couplers for the CLS power supply, I found that the sound was really superb. Imaging is state of the art. Two weaknesses eventually led me to sell the CLS's and search for audio nirvana elsewhere. First was the relatively light-weight sound through the midrange. Almost as if the instruments were a bit ghostly. Second, the subwoofer never compensated for the lack of impact in the upper bass. Still, I sometimes regret the decision to sell the CLS's and miss them often. They rank as one of the best speakers I have ever heard.
I've owned the cls for over 4 years and use them in an audio-home theater mix. I tend to agree with johnk when he says they lack the rock dynamism i want when its time to go loud and raucous. However, I feel norfish's sadness when he reflects on them. They have a clarity and detail that few speakers can duplicate and to replace them with anything else will constantly bring reminders of those features. I am curious as to how they sound as pairs in a home theater sound. I have sl3s in the rear and would move them to the sides and purchase antoher pair of cls for the rear channels. so, johnk, how do they perform in multiples?
I had CLSes of one incarnation or another for 16 years. I bought a pair of model 1s and followed the upgrade path to the IIZs. I loved them all for the breath of life they imparted to the music I loved. This may have something to do with a kind of microdynamic finesse that allowed them to not sound mechanical, and more like real music. They were, however, challenging. Changes in the weather deleteriously affected their sound. Optimal speaker placement and the choice of associated components could be problematic, and required much more care than with other speakers. Dynamic limitations rendered a less than convincing presentation of music that demanded power at the frequency extremes (rock, big band, orchestral, opera). Well matched subwoofers (I liked Kinergetics and Entec) ameliorated some of this, but could not totally banish the CLSes reticence. Despite these flaws, and having moved on to another means of musical communion, I still regard the CLS as one of the finest examples of the art of audio reproduction.
I agree with many of the writers. CLS ranks right up there with Quads in my opinion. Incredible transparency and beautiful to look at also. I found that larger tube amps really fill out the midgrange and just seemed to work the best. I did not like Krell or levinson with them at all. I agree that the Audio Resaerch 120's were a very good match. In fact many of the ARC amps work magic with Martin Logans.
Make sure whatever tube amp you hook up with them can drive low impedance loads though as these dip real low.
By the way I sell none of the above but have had all mentioned in differing combinations.
I owned the CLS IIZ's for 10 years i have 2 pair in a home theater set up he hase very smuth and suit sound with very deep and wide stage as olograf. I got a REL stentor subwoofer how matched very well with the CLS's. After many, many hours of test i bilive the cls play good only with big tube power amp is a very difical load 1,5 ohm in 20khz and need at least 100w of good tube development,my favorite amp is the Esoteric Audio Research 549 250w tim de paravicini. One of the best speakers I have ever heard