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Line Magnetic Audio LM 755i Field Coil Speaker Review

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Listening

There is no doubt, to borrow terminology from Harry Pearson, that the LM 755i are yin, tending toward dark, as compared to my Teresonic’s yang, sunlit to bright. I’m not suggesting that either speaker is the extreme of either of these descriptions. All audio components that aren’t perfectly neutral, and I don’t know of any that are, fall into one of these two camps. Still, the change took a little getting used to at first, but they are sounds that are going to appeal to different people or maybe weirdoes likes me who appreciate both sounds. Truth is, the longer I listened to the 755i, the more they seduced me into the yin camp. They simply are beautiful to listen to.

In their soul, and they have plenty of soul, the LM 755i are a beautiful, huge, warm, coherent-sounding speaker. It’s a sound that is just plain wonderful to listen to. The piano and the drums on Ray Charles’ Porgy and Bess album were both beautiful with exceptional layering and air within the instruments. They have that special combinations of transparency, warmth, and dynamics that you get from really good field coil drivers. While there is no doubt they are a more forgiving speaker than my Teresonic Silver Ingenium, it was interesting how revealing they were of all the changes I mentioned above. I notice this also at Matt Rotunda’s place. When we changed from the Shindo Vosne-Romanee preamp to the Giscours, it was easy to hear the difference just as it was with the change from the Well Tempered turntable to the Shindo 301 turntable, and when we finally stepped up to the Shindo Lafton GM70 20 watts SET monoblocks. By the way, if being more forgiving means you can enjoy more music, is that a bad thing? I’m not sure how I feel about this but it’s a question worth pondering.

The sound that comes out of a well broken-in, well set up pair of these speakers stirs my emotions and is very easy on the ears. The LM 755i speakers are very sweet, robust sounding speakers. They might not come across as being the fastest, most transparent speakers ever built, but after a few days of listening and with correct placement I didn’t find them lacking in either of these. They are oh-so-incredibly-coherent and have one of the most seductive midrange sounds I have ever heard. The original Western Electric 755 speakers were known as the voice speaker and LM Audio has not missed this. Vocals are just there in the room with you, with all their dynamics and unbelievable tonality. The bass is warm and organic, but at the same time dynamic and powerful. The top end is just beautiful like real music is. Most importantly, these speakers let you experience the emotions of the music. They are one of the few speakers that are dynamic enough for orchestral or big band music, but refined enough for a small jazz quartet or a string trio.

Like my Teresonic Ingenium XRs the bass is very satisfying and incredibly powerful for a single driver speaker. No, the bass does not go as deep as some full range speakers, but what little they lack in going really deep they make up in power, scales, and wonderful decay. As I said, the bass is beautifully organic and produces a very lifelike sound. Truth is, I have never heard a multi-driver speakers in this price range that provides this kind of musically satisfying bass.

The LM 755i have a very big soundstage sometimes, and a very small one at others; this is dependent on the recording. It’s not so much that it is wide and deep, though it is; it’s more about how big the soundstage sounds when it should be and how small it can be with other recordings. They produce one of the most satisfying (there’s that word again) soundstages I have experienced. If I was to pick a nit, I would say that on some recordings I wished the vertical soundstage was a little taller.

In almost every review I talk about scale. It is something very important to me in a system. By scale, I mean the ability of a speaker system to allow a performance to have a lifelike size as well as volume. This is an area where the LM 755i speakers excel. They do this better than most small and medium size single driver speakers because of their weight in the bass, their coherency, and without a doubt their ability to produce such a big sound.

Conclusion

I know some of you are wanting to know if these are a poor man’s, or maybe a not-quite-rich-man’s Shindo Latours. The answer is no, heck they aren’t even a poor man’s Shindo Lafite. The fact that they are imported by Tone Imports doesn’t make them sound like Shindo speakers. If there are any speakers that the LM Audio 755i remind me of, it would be the Quad 57s and the original LS3/5A British monitors. It’s not so much that they sound like either of those speakers, but rather, the way they play the midrange and voices in such a natural and musically detailed way. Also, like both of those speakers, the LM 755i do this without sacrificing an organic mid-bass that creates a realistic foundation like live music has. I feel their sound stands on its own and without a doubt, this is a speaker for those who love music more than audiophile effects.

Photos by (c) matthew Rotunda

4 Responses to Line Magnetic Audio LM 755i Field Coil Speaker Review


  1. Jackson says:

    Thanks for this review. It’s too bad you didn’t have some LM amps, like the AM2 (300B SET) to mate with these. I find it frustrating that speaker reviews don’t often enough lead discussions (or recommendations) into acceptable matching components. A sensitivity rating of 92 leads one to think that it may be comfortably powered by low-powered amps, but at what limit? That’s borderline efficiency, not like your Teresonics, and in a rating area where not all speakers are created alike. One 92db speaker may open up with a 1-2 watt amp, while another may require much, much more. Is the AM2 at only 6 watts enough? Inquisitive readers want to know more.
    You mention testing with a GM70 amp and a 300B amp. Which tubes did you prefer? Did you try any other amps, and if so what amp seems to be the best match?
    These are questions I like answered when I read a speaker review.
    Thanks again,
    J.B.

  2. Jack Roberts says:

    J.B. Thanks for reading the review. I did have a LM amp on hand, but not one more powerful. I also had Carver’s 20 watt tube amp. The Wavac EC 300B was the best by far and had plenty of power. I could drive them louder than I could listen with no clipping that I could hear. My Wavac EC300B has NOS Western Electrics for power and drive tubes. The GM 70 amp was a Shindo at Matts place and I’m not sure which tubes they use. I did not use the GM 70 for the review.

  3. Roger Hebert says:

    Hi Jack,

    Thanks for the informative review. I have a technical question about why the speaker is recessed into the cabinet, other than the obvious reason to insert the grill.

    It seems to me that many speaker companies would consider this a bad idea, since they proclaim to flush mount and round or cut the corners of the cabinet to stop diffraction.

    Do you have any thoughts on this in regard to this speaker ?

    Regards,
    Roger

  4. Sameer Kumar says:

    Hi Jack,

    A great review and it helped me a lot to get clarity on my future speaker choice. I have recently auditioned LM 755 at Bangalore, India and instantly ordered a pair. I concur with each and every view point expressed by you. I have auditioned LM 755 using LM 210 IA 300B and other LM amps. I am presuming that you have tested your LM 218 IA 845 22w amp on these LM 755s by now. I wish to know your opinion on this combination. I have the option to pick their higher version of 845 i.e LM 219 IA.

    Thanks DAGOGO…..Thank you, Jack.

    Regards,
    Sameer

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