After reading the numerous online audio and home theater forums, I've caught hi-fi bug and spent an exhoribant amount of money assembling my system... (at least according to my income and modest bank acount ) I started with a budget of $1200 for three fronts... here are my observations. I purposely requested mid-fi components when possible to match my own setup-- Yamaha RX-V2095 and Cambridge Audio D500SE: Linn Espek msrp: $3500 Amazing speaker. Super musical and laid back. Best for jazz music (Dianna Krall and Miles Davis Kind of Blue) and classical. I wouldn't recommend these for fans of rock music or metal. The best imaging and tied for the widest soundstage based on the speakers I auditioned. SOURCE: Arcam Int, Arcam Diva CD72t Onix Rocket 750 msrp: $1400 Based on the opinions on avsforum, I expected a epiphantic moment at the sight of these speakers... No horns or trumpets... yet, the Rockets were my subjective favorites from my auditioning when comparing: A) overall performance B) price. I thought the Espeks were a more refined speaker, but they cost an additional $1-2k (depending on the discount from the dealer, demo, used, etc.) The Rockets were neutral and pleasant sounding- I was able to isolate Ms. Krall's enunciation of every word. On a Telarc recording of The Marrigage of Figaro (MoF), I was able to crank up Cherubino's solos without causing my eardrums to bleed (ring, yes...bleed from fatigue, no). Overall, a very pleasant experience at a very competitive price point. SOURCE: BK 507, Sonic Frontier CDP, massive amounts of line conditioning, and cable the size of garden hoses...didn't ask, didn't want to be rude. This guy had a Mark Levinson amp sitting idle... (yeah, I know the front end was pretty obscene) Soliloquy SAT5 msrp: $650, street $350 Plan B on my audition list was to buy some quality monitors and a REL/HSU/Adire/Aperion sub to save on cash, space, and physical stress (I need to enlist a friend or hire help to carry the larger floorstanders up to my apartment...I'm a little guy). The SAT5s were extremely polite--I heard some Linn Tukans at my Linn audition and found these two speaker somewhat comparable... the Soliloquy's are about half the price though. Despite everyone's rave reviews about Aperion and Ascend acoustics, I suggest trying to find a pair of SAT5s to audition. Best construction I've seen on a non-ProAc/Dynaudio monitor... (sorry, the leather really bugs me on the SF's). Match the SAT5s with a sub and you will be in heaven. They imaged almost as well as the floorstanders, albeit at a lower volume, and had a wider than normal sweet spot. Sentimental favorite. SOURCE: Cambridge Audio D500SE, CA int. 50 wpc I'll try to post more later when I get a chance... BTW, I also gave a short listen to the BW 603 series and was totally disappointed. Ditto for some Audio Physic bookshelfs (I can't totally knock the Audio Physic monitors since they were about 5 hours old).