“…It is the perfect choice for those who are not enthusiasts but still value a superior listening experience, as well as for experienced audiophiles who are searching for The Holy Grail. That makes it a “unicorn product” in our industry.”
“..With the Linkwitz 521.4, we have a speaker that can do imaging that’s unlike anything else I’ve ever heard, together with most of the other sound quality parameters we want and almost no drawbacks at a very reasonable price. As you can tell, I’m impressed. I think you should go hear these if you’re shopping in this price range, and really you should hear these if you’re shopping above this price range. I believe the Linkwitz 521.4 can be considered a breakthrough in the sort of historical terms of breakthrough that I opened with: a speaker that does something that you really haven’t heard other speakers do, while having that special thing be musically valuable, not just a party trick.”
Rich Isaacs has reached Audio Nirvana with LX521.4MG….read more..
“…I’ve used dipoles for years (Maggies, Martin Logan, Podium and Quad) and I thought I understood what an open baffle speaker sounded like. I was wrong, very wrong. Siegfried Linkwitz` term “phantom scene” is absolutely bang on. I’ve just emerged from 4 hours straight with a broad grin on my face, and am about to go in for more…..” (Craig, Oxford/UK, LX521 owner)
Jack Vad Producer, Engineer, San Francisco Symphony, GRAMMY-WINNER ”Best Classical Album”:
“I was lucky to be able to witness the development of both the Linkwitz LXmini & LX521 loudspeaker systems so my familiarity and education regarding their qualities was experienced in a slightly different way than most potential users traditionally experience.
I watched (and heard) Siegfried tackle each step of a brilliant development process and was able to see the designs finally cross his aspirational finish line spectacularly.When the time came to actually use the systems in my personal studio, I jumped at the opportunity as I didn’t have any other speakers that could reveal as accurate a sound stage, do so with tonal & timbral neutrality, and seemingly bypass the room.
As a result, both the LXmini and LX521 are used for the final production stage mix qualification of all San Francisco SymphonySACD download releases that I’ve produced during the last three years; they are an indispensable tool.”
“The speakers naturally disappear as soon as you start the music; you don’t even have to close your eyes. I would go even further—you have to make a slight mental effort to be aware that the speakers are actually there! It’s uncanny. The precise phantom images produce:d by the LX521 create the most solidly three-dimensional soundstage of any stereo system in my listening experience.” (TheAudioCritic.com, Peter Aczel)
Frank Doris (Copper Magazine) was visiting our LINKWITZ room at AXPONA 2022:
…I know I’m starting to sound like a gushing audio fanboy at this point, but I really did encounter some really enjoyable sounds at AXPONA. The Linkwitz LX521 loudspeakers feature an open-baffle design, where the midrange and tweeter drivers are mounted on an enclosure-less front baffle, in order to eliminate cabinet resonances and colorations…... The LX521 woofer fires into a uniquely-shaped enclosure. The dynamics of this speaker were utterly spectacular. I’ve heard the Hugh Masekela audiophile chestnut “Coal Train” more times than I want to recount – it’s one of those songs like Stevie Ray Vaughn’s “Tin Pan Alley” that have been played so many times at shows that your ears glaze over whenever someone demos it – but it sounded astounding on this system, with a dynamic realism that was startling, even a little scary.
A story of personal awakening , 11/28/2023
Here’s a story of personal awakening. My new Linkwitz LX521.4MG speakers offer me things I wanted and things I didn’t know I wanted. With a great piece of music preformed superbly, I can get absolute goose bumps listening even to a poor recording through a poor system; but I will still take the thrill of high-end sound any day, and have deeply enjoyed the wonderful Spendor S100 speakers, with Krell amplification, that I bought thirty years ago. That’s mainly because, for my taste, that system had (1) honesty and (2) detail that was great both for gentle vocal or chamber music and for dramatic, bombastic orchestral music. Also, by the way, I still love the little Rogers LS3/5a speakers I bought over 40 years ago. But a recent discovery started me searching for more: streaming from Tidal through some Focal Stellia headphones clarified that there are higher levels of sheer beauty of sound and detail, on so many recordings, that I hadn’t known existed. So I have been striving to get closer to that with speakers in a nice open space that I can share with friends.
Two particular things were never so important to me as they are to some audiophiles: deepest bass, and extreme stereo imaging (although it’s important to sense the ambiance of the space where the recording was made). Such things are sensational and lots of fun, but haven’t seemed essential. But those are particular Linkwitz virtues, and now you can’t drag me a way from these fringe benefits. Both the bottomless bass and the spectacular stereo information feed feasts to my appetite for detail, and the honesty and beauty are astounding. I especially notice how the bass is so wonderfully integrated with the midrange and higher frequencies so that timpani, or other big drums that produce beautiful ringing sounds along with the boom, sound like single sparkling objects. (Listen to the Kodo Heartbeat album.) I now have clearer windows into subtleties of the artistry in certain intimate vocal and chamber music performances, into the remarkable skills of certain jazz musicians, and into the radical drama that certain conductors have managed to express in orchestral music and opera.
My background is in physics, and I strongly appreciate two particular technical things about the Linkwitz LX521 speakers. Firstly, it makes great sense to skip all the expensive and not-always-successful efforts engineers make to get flat/deep bass response out of a box while trying to make it not sound like a box. Sure, if you abandon the box and then drive with conventional amplification, with the voltage representing the sound pressure you want, then you will have a serious decline of the radiated bass power. But that’s just fine: simply skip the conventional voltage-pressure analog and increase the amplification at lower frequencies to get the response you want. Secondly: A box speaker makes an expanding/contracting pressure sphere, in the bass frequencies, that radiates in all directions, exciting lots of resonant modes in the room. By skipping the box, we may still excite some longitudinal modes but not much of the lateral or vertical ones. This all matters in my room. Also, I’m pleased with the Class D amplifiers that came with my speakers. (They don’t heat the room like my Krell did, and they sound great. Class D has come of age.) But to me none of this tech stuff is reason for buying.
The reason is a much clearer window into great performances and recordings of great music. Today I finally fed to the Linkwitz speakers something I have long loved, Eric Leinsdorf’s old Walküre recording with the dream cast of London, Vickers and Nilsson.
I didn’t know until today that this recording could give me such perfect seats, near the stage, and reveal all the over-the-top drama with such intensity. I was riveted to my seat and couldn’t stop listening.
Peter L. Manzanita, Oregon
I’m not sure if I shared my audio history, but you may find it interesting. These are the speakers I’ve owned:B&W N805 (still have them)
- B&W N802 (still have them)
- McIntosh XRT1K
- MartinLogan CLX Art with JL f113 sub
- Raidho D1 with two JL f113 v2 subs
- MBL 111f (still have them, they are the best commercial speakers I’ve owned)
- PureAudioProject Quintet 15 with ESS AMT tweeter and Voxativ AC 1.6 plus numerous DIY variations (still have them)
- Cube Audio Neo F10 full range driver in various DIY configs (I’m working on a sealed translam cabinet combined with the LX521 subs)
- Linkwitz LX521 with your amp/crossovers and midrange
At this point, I would say that I prefer the LX521 system to any of the speakers I’ve owned (I currently have no desire to rotate the MBLs back into use and may sell them) and they rival or exceed the great speakers I’ve had the good fortune to experience.
I spoke with Don N. yesterday, and he and I were discussing how much your work on this revision has improved the sound on the LX521.
He is pretty much blown away, remarking that it’s pretty much the best sound he’s ever heard.
As you know, he had, up to now, actually favored his Orions. But this version simply ended that preference for good…..
Best , John S, Chicago. Don N, Healdsburg,CA LX521.4 system with PowerBox 6pro precision analog and LINKWITZ22MG drivers
“Lately, I heard the LX521.4 setup [in Stuttgart/Germany] and it totally blew my mind”. (Kim, Denmark) . Jan and Kim took a several hundred kilometers journey to audition LXsirius and LX521. Seems, they liked it.
(Mikael K, Sweden on new cascaded ASP with Linkwitz22MG drivers) “..a big difference in transparency and details, and this filter is completely silent if you listen close to the speaker elements. First impression of the new ASP filter was really good! The ASP change was a big upgrade, so I do not know exactly how much difference happened when I also switched to the new midrange L22MG. Can’t tell if ASP of midrange. But the sum is really good. Frank the magician 🙂”
“Just wanted to tell you that that a nephew recently payed me a visit. He had just bought an advanced surround system with B&W speakers and a NAD amplifier. Because of budget restrictions he had to go for the CM9, but during the selection process he listened (blindly) to the store’s best speakers and (unsurprisingly) selected B&W 800 Diamond as the best-sounding. On this background he was completely shocked by the performance of the LX521.
First of all he was impressed by the quality of the bass which was the best he ever heard, but also praised the transparent highs and the open midrange. Looking at the price, he declared that this had to be the bargain of the century. .. I am extremely satisfied with my system now,…..thank you (and Siegfried, of course) for the best speaker system I (and my nephew) have ever heard. Kind regards ” (Terje S. Norway, LX521-owner)
“The spatial impression is that the phantom sources become more decoupled from the speakers compared to anything else I have heard. Listening to a Schubert song for soprano with piano accompaniment the piano stays put in the sound stage no matter what register it is being played in while the singer is free to move around in subtle ways…..Can’t wait to hear some more. Excellent work Mr Linkwitz!” (Keith Taylor)
STEREOPHILEs “Reichert on Sunday” experienced the magic of LXmini and LX521 during RMAF (Denver): “The sound was so good that I am now a bout to go against my whole belief system and state: In the 4th and 5th Atrium floors that I covered, the best sound I heard was the in room with the lowest price system! The Linkwitzlab’s LXmini loudspeakers. But, the larger,.., quad-amplified LX521, shown above, provided even more satisfying results.”
The speakers sound absolutely wonderful. Thanks for building such sonically and esthetically beautiful creations for me. … I am a very fortunate and lucky man. Sincerely (John Field, USA LX521 & ASP)
….However I can say now that the craftsmanship is of furniture quality and beautiful to behold. It exceeds by far any result that might have come from my own efforts. Please feel free to quote me on this in any of your promotional efforts…I don’t view myself as having been an easy customer to work with. My uncertainties, my slow decision making, and my many questions – all this contributes to my respect and regard for the high level of your customer orientation. I have the double satisfaction of excellent goods and a “gemutlich” productive dialog. With my many “Thanks”, (Jim Clark, USA)
Dear Mr. Linkwitz, After learning a great deal from your website (and in the process unlearning what I thought I had previously known) I decided to build your LX521s. I went with Frank Brenner’s excellent Magic LX521 kit which was easy to build. I am new to dipole but suffice to say that my sons and I have been blown away by a quality of sound, particularly bass, that we have not heard before. Everything I have read about the wide sound stage and imaging is true, but coming from boxes it is the clarity and detail in the full spectrum of the audible frequency range of the LX521s which is revelatory. I also have quickly learnt that some of the albums I previously thought were pretty good are actually seriously compromised. These speakers are ruthless in exposing poor recordings and excessive compression. Thank you very much and please feel free to publish my remarks and photos if you wish. (Hylton Q, Australia , LX521kit)
I don’t usually write about speakers, there are so many of them and they kind of sound very similar to each other. I have multiple sets with Vienna Acoustics Beethoven driven by PP tube amp, Omega Aperiodic driven by SE tube map and B&W 803 driven by Emotiva SS amp (just for my HT set up ;), but when I visited 2013 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest and heard these speakers, I just couldn’t not write about them (here is a double negative for you. I didn’t even know that Linkwitz Lab made speakers, but I went to their room to check their stuff out – after all Siegfried Linkwitz is one of the creators of the Linkwitz-Riley crossover network which is used it billions of speakers.
The speakers looked very strange, but as soon as they started to play, all this was forgotten and my attention shifted to the sound they were producing. I’ve heard a lot of good speakers, but I have never heard what these speakers can do! I have to set my expectations for speakers – it’s simple… I close my eyes and I can recreate presence of a band in a room (visually and audibly). These speakers came very, very close (closer than any other speakers at the show) to that reality. (“tubemaze” on “Linkwitz Lab LX521 – Constant Directivity Monitor”)
“The combination of the new cascaded-topology ASP, full-XLR cabling now to the Hypex NCore amplifiers and the new low-mid drivers let the speakers play at a new, very high level. The bass, driver integration, the silence close to the drivers etc etc all very impressive…”( Eddie D, Netherlands)