We connected up to different systems using an Auzentech HTHD 7.1 and an external Beresford TC-7520 DAC, using the latest Foobar audio player loaded with FLAC lossless media. We should note that while we did sit down for critical listening tests for the review itself, we connect speakers to the review system a couple of weeks prior to the review and use them for everything. This helps to give us a better picture of what these speakers have to offer. We found these speakers to be very musical overall but also offer a lot of truth to the playback without too much coloration or muddiness.
When adding a bit of power using these 100 Watt mono blocks, the speakers still maintain their clarity. We cranked them up looking for noticeable distortion and quite impressed to find none at the various tested listening levels. We tested the speakers on their own without bass reinforcement from a subwoofer and were pleasantly surprise at the amount of tight bass produce from these bookshelf speakers. Of course you bass heads will want a dedicated subwoofer or two!
Music production offered clean, clear audio with no mud or harness to speak of, offering an excellent sonic signature to everything we played, from classical and blues to hardcore heavy Metal. The M2's stepped up to the tasks in fine style, producing excellent audio at this price point.
The M2 speakers produced excellent spaciousness to the mix, insturments, vocals and other aspects had their own space within the audio image. The speakers do a great job of producing music and making it enjoyable, getting your head bobbing and your foot tapping.
We pulled out the obligatory Star Wars Episodes for our movies tests looking for anomalies in the sound stage, directional cues or dialog and all audio was as it should be. We pick high action scenes looking for any bluring of details or muddiness but all audio in the tests DVD was quite clear, impressive and immersive. Testing also give me an excellent reason to watch some Episodes yet again.
When used for gaming, the speakers produced a very accurate front sound stage offering a great deal of depth and clarity for dialog and in game effects. The in-games sounds such as explosions and weapons were produced with noticeable character and a layered sound. Even when testing at high volume levels the M2's speakers still produced explosions without bottoming out or mushing out the detail of the effect.
Overall the speakers sound quality is easily higher then their MSRP and we received quite a few positive impressions from visitors to our G3D Audio Lab. We really enjoyed testing these speakers and found it hard to pull away when listening to music, watching movies or playing or favorite shooters.
Note on testing: We are working on setting up a specialized chamber for measuring speaker systems in the Guru3D Audio Lab so keep your eyes out for these in future speaker reviews.
AXIOM M2 v3 Bookshelf Speaker Review Today in the Guru3D Audio Lab we have a new set of AXIOM M2 v3 bookshelf speakers to run through our lab. With the new flagship cards such as the Essence series, CL Titanium HD and the Auzentech offerings, putting out great sound, you also need great playback equipment for excellent sound. Your speakers are just as important as your sound source and as the saying goes; your chain is only as strong as your weakest link.