I was always interested in the fact that Axiom owners stated that Axioms were comparable with the Paradigm Studio line.
I recently went from the Monitor line to the Studio line and I fell in love with the studio's the first time I heard them. I've now completed my home theatre system with the Studio line and was thinking about running a pair of bookshelves in another room with a stereo receiver. Not being a rich man I decided to give the Axioms a try. So I ended up ordering a pair of M3's as I thought they would compare to the Studio 20's. It says on the Axiom site that they recommend the M3's if you are not running a sub. I bought a Cambridge Audio stereo receiver for my secondary system in another room. My Axioms arrived on Friday and I was anxious to get them hooked up and listen to them.
Anyway, I took them out of the box and I thought they are not too bad looking, obviously not compared with the Studio 20's, but not bad.
There is a major weight difference between the Studio's and the Axioms, 12.7 lbs. for the Axioms versus 24 lbs for the Paradigm. That is a big difference.
I hooked them up in my livingroom so I could compare them side by side with the Studio 20's ( Picture attached), I started playing the Axiom first which were set as B speakers. I played a couple of songs, and I thought not too bad. Then I made the mistake of hitting the A button, wow, what a difference, they were no where near comparable, you could do a sighted test a blind test, wouldn't matter, no way Axioms could beat Paradigm. I then thought maybe I needed a second opinion, and asked the wife to listen to both. Her response was "I told you not to buy into the hype". I asked her what she thought we should do at this point and she said send them back and get another pair of Studio's for the secondary system.
I sent them back Monday, the following Thursday I went to my local retailer and ended up purchasing the Studio 10's. It was easily the right move.
The M3's really sounded like they had a blanket over them. I am not sure how to explain the bass, it was there, but very weak. The Paradigm definately have some oomph to them.
It really goes to show you when you compare something side by side in your own home you really hear the truth.
Anyway, I am not here to put down Axiom, just giving my opinion. If you find my comments negative toward the Axioms, it is only negative when in comparison to the Studio's.
I have never paid full price for my Paradigm products from my local retailer, but I did have to ask myself if it is worth the extra money for the Studio's, the easy answer for me is absolutely yes, worth every extra penny.
My wife still calls me an dumbass for buying into the "similarly good" premise. To sum it up, I love my Paradigm Studio's and I learned a lesson.
Once you find the perfect speaker for you, stop looking!