Well after quietly reading thread after thread on this forum and the Avs forum I finally decided to take a chance on the Home Theater Direct (HTD) Level III "Combo Y" Tower Speaker setup. I was a little bit worried about this since I'd not seen or heard the speakers before ordering, however I was reassured by the 30 day return policy (with even return shipping at their expense), plus the mostly positive reviews of those who'd purchased them. I ordered them last Thursday night. HTD had them shipped before COB the next day. They arrived by UPS late Tuesday. I had them wired and running on my new Pioneer 1014 the next day. I am very happy. The speakers sound very clear, smooth, and distortion free. I find the sound very easy on my ears. I don't have to strain to hear, there is no annoying booming sound from the bass, the treble is clean, but not "bright". Cosmetically, the speakers look great. We bought the Dark Cherry Wood ones. I'd heard the subs were the weak link in the system. I can see why people would say that. The sub gives a very clear bass without booming but doesn't cover those last few HZ at the lowest end of the spectrum (20-28HZ). I once heard a Carver Sunfire that did reproduce those last few Hz. I haven't heard the HSU or SWS subs, but I imagine they are also a little better. However, all these subs cost more--in some cases a lot more. For what I paid, the sub sounds very, very good. To me it sounds better than any subs I've auditioned at BB or Circuit City. BTW, the Sub does have binding posts just like the other speakers now. I read a review somewhere that talked about clip connections for the subs. They obviously have upgraded those connections since that review came out. I have never heard Rocket, Axiom, or Ascend speakers so I can't compare the HTDs to them. I think you will pay more for each of them unless you can catch them on sale. All I can say, is that for $1,000 I think it will be difficult to find any systems any better. Just my two cents for what it is worth.