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MartinLogan Motif X

Center channel speaker

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  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Front (Mounted on adjustable-angle stand)

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Angled back view (Mounted on adjustable-angle stand)

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Back (Mounted on adjustable-angle stand)

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Back panel detail

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Closeup detail of grille

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Folded Motion Tweeter

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Front (Mounted on adjustable-angle stand)

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Pictured in a living room setting

  • MartinLogan Motif X

    Side view (Mounted on adjustable-angle stand)

  • MartinLogan Motif X

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Our take on the MartinLogan Motif X

by Dave Bar
MartinLogan

Your home theater's most important speaker

The center channel speaker is the workhorse in a home theater system. It has to reproduce clear dialogue and special effects that keep your eyes and ears glued to the movie action. A high-quality center speaker is a great investment for any surround sound setup. Try to choose one that's as closely matched as possible to your front right and left speakers, so that as sound moves across the front stage, it stays seamlessly realistic.

High-performance center channel sound

Every great home theater experience starts with superior center channel sound, and for that you need a superior speaker — like the Motif X. It blends two of MartinLogan's most advanced technologies, the XStat™ electrostatic panel and the Folded Motion™ tweeter, into a single dynamic design. The result? Lightning-fast transient response for breathtaking clarity and nuanced movie dialogue. This speaker's low distortion and uniform sound dispersion make it a perfect center channel partner to MartinLogan's Theos floor-standing speakers.

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MartinLogan Motif X center chnnel speaker

The secret to transparency

Unlike speakers that use domes and cones to reproduce treble and midrange, the Motif X features an XStat electrostatic panel. This gossamer-thin polymer film, or diaphragm, is suspended between two electrically charged, perforated steel plates. The diaphragm's ultra-low mass allows it to move very efficiently back and forth between the plates creating enticingly transparent, low-distortion sound with a lifelike sense of immediacy and greater intelligibility for your movie soundtracks.

Throwing a curve into the equation

Controlling a speaker's sound dispersion in a room is crucial to creating realistic sound. MartinLogan's signature 30º curved electrostatic panels allow for ideal dispersion in your home listening environment and minimize reflected sound off of the side walls that can muddy detail and imaging. This design helps take the room out of the sonic equation.

Folded Motion tweeter

Embedded directly behind the electrostatic panel is MartinLogan's innovative Folded Motion tweeter. Its pleated diaphragm works similarly to an accordion by "squeezing" air to create sound. Because it requires almost 90% less excursion than the typical 1" dome tweeter, response time is drastically reduced along with distortion. The diaphragm's increased surface area also provides wide, yet controlled sound dispersion to create a realistic and highly accurate soundstage.

Don't forget the bass

The Motif X uses dual 5-1/4" aluminum cone woofers to supply tight, powerful bass with the speed and low distortion needed to blend properly with MartinLogan's electrostatic panels. A carefully hand-built crossover using only the finest polypropylene capacitors and air-core coils further ensures seamless driver integration.

Versatile design

This center channel speaker features versatile mounting options to ensure the right fit for your room and system. Wall-mount brackets and an adjustable-angle stand allow the Motif X to mount on- or off-wall. Plus, an "on-wall/off-wall" switch lets you tailor the speaker's acoustic equalization to either installation option for perfect tonal balance.

Highlights:

  • 15" x 5-3/8" CLS™ (Curvilinear Line Source) XSTAT™ electrostatic transducer for wide sound dispersion, excellent clarity, and low distortion
  • Folded Motion™ tweeter for high output levels and low distortion
  • two 5-1/4" aluminum-cone woofers with cast-aluminum baskets for dynamic bass
  • On-Wall/Off-Wall Acoustic Contour Switch provides proper tonal balance for either installation option
  • hand-built Vojtko™ crossover network with polypropylene capacitors and high-performance air-core coils
  • external low-voltage DC power supply (included) requires AC outlet connection to energize electrostatic panel
  • frequency response: 73-20,000 Hz (±3dB)
  • sensitivity: 89 dB
  • impedance: 6 ohms
  • recommended amplifier power: 20-300 watts
  • wall-mount brackets and adjustable-angle stand included
  • custom 5-way binding post speaker connectors
  • Black Ash wood veneer finish
  • 29-13/16"W x 7-7/16"H (10"H w/ stand) x 7-3/4"D (9"D w/ stand)
  • weight: 22.5 lbs.
  • warranty: 5 years (with product registration)
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
Enclosure Acoustic Suspension
Tweeter Folded Motion Transducer
Midrange size (inches) 15 x 5.4
Woofer size (inches) 5-1/4
Connector Type Binding-post
Power Range 20-300
Sensitivity 89 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 6
Frequency Response 73-20k Hz
Height (inches) 7-7/16
Width (inches) 29-13/16
Depth (inches) 7-3/4
Weight 22.5 lbs
Parts Warranty 5 Yrs w/ Registration
Labor Warranty 5 Yrs w/ Registration
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Electrostatic on-wall speaker
  • AC power adapter (attached 9' DC cord)
  • 6' AC power cord
  • Pedestal stand
  • 2 Rubber feet
  • 2 Wall-brackets
  • 2 Shoulder bolts
  • Six 1" screws
  • 6 Wall anchors
  • 2 Push-pins
  • 5 Washers
  • User's Manual (En/Fr)
  • Product Registration Card
  • Installation template

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features

Hybrid Electrostatic Loudspeaker: The MartinLogan Motif X is a hybrid electrostatic loudspeaker that uses a CLS XStat electrostatic transducer panel to handle midrange frequencies, a Folded Motion tweeter for high frequencies, and two 5.25" woofer for low frequencies.  As a result, this speaker offers a dynamic full-range sound with a wide soundstage.

  • Curvilinear Line Source Electrostatic Panel: Advanced MicroPerf stator technology dramatically increases the sound-producing area of MartinLogan's latest-generation 15" x 5.4" CLS XStat electrostatic transducer. This increase in effective radiating area translates to higher efficiency and an even more effortless, unlimited dynamic presentation. Motif X firmly anchors the transducer's working elements (stators and diaphragm), while ClearSpar spacers stiffen the assembly further across its width. ClearSpars enable precise, consistent tensioning of the Vacuum Bonded diaphragm without obstructing the floating, see-through look that is the visual hallmark of MartinLogan electrostats.
  • Folded Motion Tweeter: An innovative 1" x 1.4" Folded Motion tweeter is embedded directly behind the XStat electrostatic panel in a unique housing that gives the visual look of a seamless electrostatic panel. By eliminating the need for a bulky tweeter-housing mounted in front of the ESL panel, the Motif X all but eliminates high-frequency diffraction. This unique mounting system also increases mid-range/high-frequency phase coherence and time alignment while offering superior dispersion characteristics. Folded Motion tweeter technology proves an ideal match for the electrostatic transducers, providing lightning fast transient response combined with a large surface area (8x that of a typical 1" dome tweeter) to create clear, dynamic, and precise sound.
  • Low Distortion Aluminum-Cone Woofers: By eliminated cone flexure, the two 5.25" aluminum cone woofers housed in a non-resonant asymmetrical chamber achieve the very low distortion necessary for proper blending with MartinLogan electrostatic panel.
Note: When you first begin to play the speaker, it will sound a bit bass shy. This is due to the high-quality, long-life components used in the woofers. The custom-made woofers require approximately 80 hours of break-in at 90 dB (moderate listening levels) before any critical listening. The break-in requirements of the crossover components (and, to a lesser degree, the stator) are equivalent.

Electrostatic Technology (How it Works): Where traditional loudspeaker technology incorporate cones, domes, diaphragms, and ribbons that are moved with magnetism, electrostatic loudspeakers employ charged electrons attracting and repelling each other. An electrostatic transducer consists of three pieces; stators, the diaphragm, and spacers. The diaphragm is what actually moves to excite the air and create music. The stator's job is to remain stationary and to provide a reference point for the moving diaphragm. The spacers provide the diaphragm with a fixed distance in which to move between the stators. As your amplifier sends music signals to an electrostatic speaker, these signals are changed into two high-voltage signals that are equal in strength but opposite in polarity. These high voltage signals are then applied to the stators. The resulting electrostatic field, created by the opposing high voltage on the stators, works simultaneously with and against the diaphragm, consequently moving it back and forth, producing music. This technique is known as push-pull operation and is a major contributor to the sonic purity of the electrostatic concept due to its exceptional linearity and low distortion.

Advanced Vojtko Filtering: Carefully hand-built using only the finest polypropylene capacitors and air-core coils, the crossovers (460/4000Hz) employs MartinLogan's proprietary Vojtko topology for vanishingly low distortion and seamless driver integration. This precision-tuned network preserves even the most microscopic sonic nuances while handling the full dynamics of any source.

Low-Voltage DC Power Supply w/ Toroidal Transformer: The Motif X speaker uses an external low-voltage power supply to energize its electrostatic panel. The included power supply firmly inserts into the "DC Power In" receptacle on the rear-panel of the speaker and then to an AC wall outlet. MartinLogan's state-of-the-art toroidal transformer and electrical interface engineering ensure an absolutely transparent link from AC power adapter to electrostatic panel. The result is sound of unparalleled purity, precision, clarity, and openness.

  • Input: AC 100-240V~50/60Hz, 0.8A
  • Output: DC 15V, 1A
Note: The Motif X loudspeaker features a signal sensing circuit which will switch the Motif X off after a few minutes of no music signal, and requires less than two seconds to recharge the panels when a music signal is present.

Binding Posts: MartinLogan's proprietary tool-less binding posts simplify cable connection and management. The binding posts will accept bare wire (16- to 10-gauge), pin-connectors, spade-connectors, and banana plugs (single only).

Applications: The MartinLogan Motif X hybrid electrostatic loudspeaker can be used as a center-channel speaker or paired with another Motif X speaker for a stereo or home theater front/rear application.

Mounting Options: The MartinLogan X loudspeaker includes a pedestal-stand that enables easy installation on a table-top, shelf, stand, or floor. Additionally, the Motif X can be horizontally or vertically mounted on a wall (under or beside a flat-screen TV for example).

  • Table Top: If your table-top, stand, or shelf provides a wide, level, and stable platform, the Motif X speaker can be placed (with or without the included stand) horizontally on top of the flat-surface. If using the Motif X without its stand, the stand's removable grip arms should be used beneath the Motif X to provide traction.
  • On The Floor: Placing the Motif X loudspeaker horizontally on the floor might position it too low to blend with other speakers in your room. If placing the Motif X on the floor is the best placement option for your system, the included adjustable stand will allow you to tilt the Motif X towards the listening position.
  • On The Wall: The included brackets allow you to mount the Motif X speaker on your wall (horizontally or vertically).
Note: The Motif X speaker features a unique "on-wall/off-wall" switch that tailors acoustic equalization to either installation option. Simply set this switch to On-Wall if mounting to a surface. Set the switch to Off-Wall if the Motif is more than four inches from a wall. Setting this switch ensures that you will achieve total system matching in even the most diverse setups (such as systems mixing on-wall and off-wall installations).

Dimensions:

  • With Pedestal Stand: 29.8125" (w), 10.0" (h) x 9.0" (d)
  • With Non-Skid Feet: 29.8125" (w) x 7.625" (h) x 9.0" (d)
  • With Wall-Brackets: 29.8125" (w) x 7.3125" (h) x 7.9375" (d)
 
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