I have been in the business for a long time and when I read "piano black", I was skeptical about it. I have seen some examples of this and, being a woodworker myself, know that painting the edges and joints on MDF takes additional time and effort, especially when using high-gloss finishes. However, my reaction when I unboxed the first Episode ES-700-MON-6-BLK bookshelf speaker was "No s%$t?" The finish was far better than I expected and completely flawless. I didn't open one of them to see what's inside but even if I were to use a simple crossover and cheap drivers, I couldn't build these for anywhere near this price if I paid myself $8/hr and then pay for shipping. Then, I listened to them. I have been a fan of textile dome speakers for a long time and worked for the second US Jamo dealer, so my history with their "sound" goes back a little over 30 years. These are better than my Jamo J-101 speakers, yet smaller. Better bass with a smaller woofer, better mid-range, although a two-way vs three-way and better high-end extension. At first, I thought they were a bit bright in comparison to the speakers I was using (they have Vifa textile dome tweeters) but not to an objectionable extent. I left them connected and have used them since het middle of May, with and without my subwoofer. It's easy to like these with a wide variety of music and, while a lot of small speakers just sound small, these sound very natural for human voice and only the deep bass was missing. That doesn't mean they sounded wimpy and I don't have them in a bookcase or on shelves- I use stands, about 1-1/2' from the back wall and far enough from the side walls that they don't get any help in the low end.
This is a real speaker, at a low price. If someone wants speakers that are remotely close in price, I'll offer these first. I left these for a client to audition and he wants to know the price. With the exception of his KEF 107b speakers that were in his living room, all of his other speakers are Dynaudio. The bass from these isn't quite as full as his Dyn Audience 52 (I tried them on the same stands, months ago) but they're only half the price. These will be used with a subwoofer (unless the kids are sleeping) but in their new media room, they sound great with minimal setup.
Now, if they only came in white...... No problem- I know of a painting contractor who finishes fine furniture.