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Am I the only one that thinks the Mark Levinson system in our car sucks?

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Old 02-12-13, 12:17 PM   #76
Blackraven
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This talk about in-car sound systems is quite interesting.

Hence, I want to bring up the current discussion that is going on with regards to Jaguar and how they're moving from Bower and Wilkins to Meridian.

This has been a major point of discussion in many Jaguar internet forums.

http://www.dougnewcomb.com/tag/bowers-wilkins/
http://www.dougnewcomb.com/2012/04/2...mate/#more-888
http://www.jaguarforum.co.uk/f97/wha...b-w-49130.html
http://www.jaguarforums.com/forum/xj...s-72738/page2/
http://m.jaguarforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=81829
http://m.jaguarforums.com/forum/atta...8&d=1350499784

Some have asked Jaguar and they said that the switch form B&W to Merdian was because:
1) Land Rover was already using Meridian so it was more cost-effective to do a transition (so that there would be only one sound provider for the entire TATA Jaguar Land Rover group)
2) Energy efficiency was not a strong forte of B&W.....and the amount of electricity needed for their sound system was putting a lot of pressure on that 12 volt electrical system.
3) B&W were becoming too greedy and were asking Jaguar to pay even more and way beyond what was originally stipulated

So the switch.

There are obviously trade-offs here. For instance, the highest B&W sound system for the Jaguar XJ had like 1200 watts of output.

The new Meridian top-end unit will only have 835 watts

HOWEVER

The positive side of this is that THD or TOTAL HARMONIC DISTORTION will be lower and thus clarity will increase compared to the B&W system.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_harmonic_distortion

Of course though, some are saying that the Meridian unit doesn't sound as nice as the B&W unit.........probably because they want more bass and more oomph (for headbanging on their pop songs and electronic dance music tunes).

However, the Meridian system means that Jaguar cars now have a "surround sound" setting (which was not possible in the Bower and Wilkins units)

Anyways:
We'll just have to wait-and-see............BUT by no means is Meridian a crappy audio company.

In fact, Meridian Audio knows what they're doing so I don't think people have to fear or face uncertainty regarding the brand

=)
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Old 02-12-13, 02:52 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackraven View Post
This talk about in-car sound systems is quite interesting.

Hence, I want to bring up the current discussion that is going on with regards to Jaguar and how they're moving from Bower and Wilkins to Meridian.

This has been a major point of discussion in many Jaguar internet forums.

http://www.dougnewcomb.com/tag/bowers-wilkins/
http://www.dougnewcomb.com/2012/04/2...mate/#more-888
http://www.jaguarforum.co.uk/f97/wha...b-w-49130.html
http://www.jaguarforums.com/forum/xj...s-72738/page2/
http://m.jaguarforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=81829
http://m.jaguarforums.com/forum/atta...8&d=1350499784

Some have asked Jaguar and they said that the switch form B&W to Merdian was because:
1) Land Rover was already using Meridian so it was more cost-effective to do a transition (so that there would be only one sound provider for the entire TATA Jaguar Land Rover group)
2) Energy efficiency was not a strong forte of B&W.....and the amount of electricity needed for their sound system was putting a lot of pressure on that 12 volt electrical system.
3) B&W were becoming too greedy and were asking Jaguar to pay even more and way beyond what was originally stipulated

So the switch.

There are obviously trade-offs here. For instance, the highest B&W sound system for the Jaguar XJ had like 1200 watts of output.

The new Meridian top-end unit will only have 835 watts

HOWEVER

The positive side of this is that THD or TOTAL HARMONIC DISTORTION will be lower and thus clarity will increase compared to the B&W system.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_harmonic_distortion

Of course though, some are saying that the Meridian unit doesn't sound as nice as the B&W unit.........probably because they want more bass and more oomph (for headbanging on their pop songs and electronic dance music tunes).

However, the Meridian system means that Jaguar cars now have a "surround sound" setting (which was not possible in the Bower and Wilkins units)

Anyways:
We'll just have to wait-and-see............BUT by no means is Meridian a crappy audio company.

In fact, Meridian Audio knows what they're doing so I don't think people have to fear or face uncertainty regarding the brand

=)
I've heard meridian in a xj and it sounds wonderful -for me. Interestingly I didn't care for they home setup even that I firmly believe in active speakers, about which meridian and B&o are promoters.
The amount of watts doesn't always say the whole story about power because the watts are directly related to the sensitivity of the speakers.
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Old 02-12-13, 07:37 PM   #78
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A little off the topic, but following on the previous two posts, Bowers & Wilkins specializes in speakers.
Therefore I suspect that the amplifier was supplied from either Japanese Rotel, or Canadian Classe; both amp companies are owned by Bowers & Wilkins.
With 1200 Watts, I suspect the old Jaguar Bowers & Wilkins amp may be supplied by Japanese Rotel, because now, Rotel's range comprises almost entirely of the latest technology Class D type amplifiers, which are compact, lightweight, lower power consumption, and run very cool, but enormously hi power outputs, and slightly colder fidelity.
Remember too that apparently, Bang & Olufsen hold some patents for the very latest Class D amplifier designs.
Canadian Classe on the otherhand, still specializes in traditional Class AB type amps, which are less powerful, bigger, heavier, run hotter, but better fidelity, and said to have a warmer sound.
All this is pure on-paper speculation, since it has been several years since I last heard a Jaguar XF or XJ hi-fi, and I don't know much details about their hi-fi systems.

Meridian is pretty good.
Its amp may only be 835 Watts, but it could be the traditional Class AB type amp with better fidelity and a warmer sound?
Back in 2009, I did own a home Rotel RMB-1095 traditional Class AB 5x 200W amplifier for the center & rear speakers, and the Rotel RMB-1092 Class D 2x 500W amplifier for the front speakers; the Class D amplifier was a little colder and harsher, but a fraction of the size, weight, and heat.

Theoretically, it is possible to have a "Surround Sound" button and electronic circuitry in the Bowers and Wilkins unit to artificially simulate surround sound, but I guess they just didn't feel like including such circuitry.
For example, my 1994 Camry V6 had a Bass Boost button, but my 1999 ES300 did NOT have a Bass Boost button and circuitry.
True audiophiles don't like to switch the Surround Sound electronic circuitry on, especially for classical music, but most pop music lovers often like the Surround Sound artificial 3-d simulation on.
Personally, I have my Mark Levinson Surround Sound simulation on all the time.

Like Leo has said twice, it depends on the speakers too.
At home, I have a British NAD M15HD pre-amp, and M25 power-amp, playing onto a set of German Elac 5.1 speakers - the Elac speakers are grossly inefficient, not giving out much volume/loudness at all....

Last edited by peteharvey; 02-12-13 at 10:07 PM..
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Old 03-13-13, 05:27 PM   #79
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so been really turning the system up, i really wish the doors would not rattle because it takes away from the sound.

the system can sound really good, just depends on the track. everything is listened via usb iphone 5.

some stuff sound amazing, other stuff sound subpar.
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Old 03-14-13, 12:15 PM   #80
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I think the car makers are in a "e *****" fight now with "wattage" since most of the public doesn't know **** about audio but we can count watts and of course "more is better" lol. Then they mark them up more and more for people to buy. We barely play the music above 30 let alone to its full peak.

To me the system is fine and worth the money over stock and better than most out there. No issues with it.
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Old 04-12-13, 11:38 PM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by modthispny View Post
so been really turning the system up, i really wish the doors would not rattle because it takes away from the sound.

the system can sound really good, just depends on the track. everything is listened via usb iphone 5.

some stuff sound amazing, other stuff sound subpar.
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Old 04-14-13, 11:11 PM   #82
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Just to update my thread, I never really did anything with the system. I've just kinda lived with it. I did some more adjusting to the wonderful (NOT) 3 band EQ and its OK but not great. Wish list for the system would be some directional tweeters and a 7 band EQ.
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Old 04-14-13, 11:13 PM   #83
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BTW does anyone know of a really good high end stereo shop in the LA area?
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Old 04-24-13, 10:50 PM   #84
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am not having any problem with the ML system , everything on and all the settings in the middle .. I listen to different types of musci , pop , jazz and rock lower the voice a little bet and you will be fine ..
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Old 05-12-13, 10:21 AM   #85
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ML is the best hands down...I have owned Mustangs with Mach, Corvette with Bose, Infinity with Bose, Hell I even have the Bose Acoustimas 10 in my living room ....and nothing beats it. Bose is clean, but like an earlier post revealed this system is designed for superior sounding clean music... don't know of too many Jay Z, or Ace Hood songs that qualify... Now what really sucks is the DVD playback only sitting with the park brake on. I have passengers that would like to watch a DVD going to the beach..
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Old 06-16-14, 10:34 PM   #86
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These images will be temporary and will probably disapear very soon since it's ebay stuff.

found these from ebay. Regular speakers. center speakers. made in China
Click the image to open in full size.
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center driver regular
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There are pics of ML on ebay too.
here's one of the front door ML. Made in mexico.
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Old 06-17-14, 11:53 PM   #87
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that makes sense.
It's a bad idea though. Disabling surround on the ML system takes the center channel out of the mix and breaks down the matrix. Sounds terrible to me. However, certain songs where it tries to impose surround (best guessing) where there is none and you get strange shifting of instrument and vocal positioning sounds odd.

You guys need to pick up at least one decent DVD-A disc (Amazon has them, local record shop might too) and see what true 5.1 surround sounds like on this system. It's night and day different with accurate positioning.

As for the guy mentioning the interior rattles...I'm about to take mine in for the 10k service and you bet I'm gonna have them apply a roll of foam tape to the door controls. That fixes the rattles from the front door subs. After that's done I won't have any complaints with the system...other than some quieter sources still max out at 55 or whatever and aren't loud enough in some circumstances. The head unit should be smart enough to measure input and adjust max output as a result, strictly in decibels, not an arbitrary number.
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Old 06-18-14, 08:56 AM   #88
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I also luv the ML; one of the best that is not a custom system. The sound one hears will depend on the the type and source of the sound. A high end system will not generally produce the booming bass wanted by some type of music or listeners. You are better off to get a custom woofer that suits your needs.
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Old 06-20-14, 12:11 PM   #89
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I also luv the ML; one of the best that is not a custom system. The sound one hears will depend on the the type and source of the sound. A high end system will not generally produce the booming bass wanted by some type of music or listeners. You are better off to get a custom woofer that suits your needs.
True. Despite having 3 subs, having a dedicated 12" in a trunk box will probably fill out any gaps people have when it comes to bass.
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Old 06-20-14, 03:18 PM   #90
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ML is an awesome system even by exotic car standards....kudos to Lexus....
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Old 06-20-14, 03:18 PM
 
 
 
 
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