Bowers & Wilkins CM6 S2 ($2,000.00/pair reviewed here): I really enjoyed my time with these wonderful little speakers. They are as aesthetically pleasing as they are to listen to, and their non-fatiguing sound means you can listen to them all day. They play all types of music well but are a revelation with what they do with live and acoustic music. While they are hardly inexpensive as small speakers go, their quality of design and build, combined with their musical attributes makes them about as much of a bargain as anything available in high-end audio. The Bowers & Wilkins CM6 S2 is a true gentleman’s loudspeaker. It is attractive, articulate, well-built and very easy to listen to. No wonder my wife says they remind her of me. (Dave Thomas)
Caintuck Audio Betsy Open-Baffle Speakers ($450.00 as tested in Pomele hardwood): These unassuming single-driver, open-baffle speakers perform many levels above what their meager price would suggest. The single 8” driver with whizzer cone is very coherent with a beautiful midrange and because there are no crossover coils or capacitors to muck things up, they provide a wealth of inner detail and intimacy. They are a bit light in the bass, though very articulate. For those who require more bass, Caintuck makes very affordable open-baffle subwoofers. The Betsy’s are diamonds in the rough for sure. See my full review for more details and information. (Frank Alles)
Kharma International Elegance dB7S Loudspeakers ($31,250.00/pair): This particular speaker is relatively new in the Kharma International speaker lineup and despite its relatively modest size/footprint it will very likely surprise the listener with a sound that is immensely musical and compellingly good.
In a word I describe these speakers’ performance as "magical." Not that they simply present reproduced music as an illusion of the real thing but how they reveal music in its total sense including the subtleties and nuances embedded within the music. These speakers also remind me of the superb job done by monitor type speakers with the exception that the dBS7's can swing with all sorts of music and present it in a convincing full range manner. They also have an arresting quality in that they not only can disappear but even more so they have a unique ability to get out of the way and reveal the music coming forth as though the artist(s) is right before you and very much in the room. Their sound is neither forward, nor laid-back - they just do what they're supposed to do and allow all associated gear in my system to perform as they should. This issue of the speakers taking on the character of being very much like a chameleon enhances the speakers to quickly reveal differences in the overall sonic character of not only associated components but also the quality of the recording. Coupled with this wonderful attribute is bass that is quite solid, dynamic, tuneful and very articulate. The midrange is delivered with a gorgeous rich, organic quality and the highs are open, sweet and extended. Review in the works! (Bill Wells)
Lawrence Audio Double Bass Speakers ($28,500 reviewed here): This is one of the very best and most complete sounding loudspeakers I’ve heard in this price range. Its design is well thought out, construction is top-tier and finish is extraordinarily beautiful. Above all, the Double Bass is one of the most involving speakers I have had the pleasure of listening to. An epilogue to my review would have to be that each time I go by the home of my local Lawrence Audio dealer, and hear him playing the same speaker that I reviewed, that I am still captivated by their sound. The extra time spent breaking in the speakers, especially the woofers, has taken the low-end extension to another level. It sounds even more utterly satisfying. (Mike Wright)
Raidho D5.1 Speaker: A Masterpiece of Sound and Technology ($225,000.00 -$250,000.00 new/D5 to D5.1 upgrade cost: €29,500 Euros reviewed here): I have been extremely happy with my Raidho D5 loudspeakers during the past two years. All the positive characteristics in a great speaker that we audiophiles long for were there in full measure. That was until chief Raidho speaker designer, Michael Borresen, paid me a visit this past October to perform their significant upgrade to the D5.1 (Refer to his explanation of the new upgrade during its introduction at the 2016 Munich Audio Show). Just when I thought I heard it all, I was astonished with what the new, and very much improved, D5.1 meant to my overall listening impression. The extreme speed and clarity of the new mid-range drivers now sound as one with the extraordinary ribbon tweeter. There is more increased integration wholeness from top to bottom. Delicate micro and dynamic macro sounds are produced much more easily with an enormous soundstage, better spatial cues, realistic harmonics and significantly more emotional impact for the listener. This is an incredible “wow” product if ever there is one. Enthusiastically recommended! (Dan Secula)
Soundkaos Wave 40 Speakers ($20k reviewed here): Finally arrived in my home after an extended stay in Greg Voth's spacious loft. Although, they perform wonderfully in a large space, they still sound is absolutely remarkable in a medium-sized dwelling such as my dining room. I'm in awe of their utterly natural footing and unforced stance at musical reproduction. Not for bass fiends, but for folks more impressed by beauty than power. Attractively built, they are among my favorites loudspeakers for low-powered tubes. (Clement Perry)
Tyler Acoustics Taylo Reference Monitors ($2400/pair): If your looking for a stand mounted monitor,for a small to medium sized room, I think the Taylo's have a lot of positives to offer.They're fairly efficient and easy to drive and they play "big" for their size. With enough bass to compete with many floor standers they competently walk that fine line between quantity and quality. As a thumbnail sketch I'd describe them as leaning towards the "warm/relaxed/musical" camp, but don't presume this means they're not capable of being detailed and exciting.They are and I found my time with them to be a joy! Highly recommended!! (Ed Van Winkle: Full Review to follow)