I listened to the LSi9s last night and they sounded amazing in my friends small living room on my Halo A23.
I listened to the B&W 604 this afternoon, they sounded pretty good, really good actually. Given I was in a top quality theater room.
I listened to the Martin Logan Montage after the Beemers. The beemers sounded like the moment when your ears drain of water after swimming and everything sounds rejuvinated, airy and clear. These were also test driven in a professional home theater sales room.
Out of all the speakers, I dislike the 604s the most. Although they sounded amazing, I still felt as though I was listening to a recording. Which truly surpirsed me as they were driven by a McIntosh Amp. The Martin Logans sounded great. The sound was different quite refreshing. At high volumes I never once felt like my ears were getting a workout. The downside of the Logans is that apparently they are very particular about placement. The sales man moved the speakers around the room to demonstrate how these speakers can bew tweaked by the slightest change in positioning. This is a double edged sword. On one hand you have a speaker great for tweaking, but on the other you have a speaker that may never sound its best in your home setup. This and the fact that the Logans feel and appear very fragile, I am hesitant to purchase a pair. I'm not saying the build quality is poor, in fact, I'd say the cabinet design is actually quite elegant and artistic. What I am saying, is that given the design and nature of the speaker, the technology involved demands a certain construction that is more fragile then say our good buddies the LSis. Ahh the Lsi9s, what a surprise honestly. I listened to these speakers on a relatively inexpensive amp (Parasound Halo A23) when compared to McIntosh (B&W 604s) and Krell (Martin Logain). The Lsi9s were also demoed in a less than perfect setting but accurately real life: my friends living room. The house was built in the 80s and comes standard with all the drywall and wife related imperfections to screw up good sound. Nevertheless, the LSi9s sounded amazing.
So . . . which did I like better the Logans or the LSis? I'm not sure . . . but the Lsi9s are the high end polks while the Montage is Martin Logans low end. Does this speak to anyone? The Lsi9s look mean and are built like tanks. The Montages look like my super model wife ( I wish), but also cry when they get smacked around. Which would you choose? I need some thought provoking arguments to help me decide. Or something I should look for when I take a second, third or fourth listening session.