Upon reading random threads on GoldenEar's own forums, it seems as though the "sock" material contributes to the dampening of the speakers. They have been designed with this dampening in mind. So even if you prefer the unfinished look without the sock, technically, you'd be running the speaker outside of its intended specifications, so to speak. I'm not saying it would sound bad, all I'm saying is that Sandy and his team did design the speakers to have that cloth over the drivers, and they've been tuned as such.
Looking at the Triton One.R and Reference, it's clear that the cloth should absolutely be present over the drivers. If you apply the same logic to the center channel speakers, there's not a whole lot of surface area even available for a non-sock look. With drivers on both the front and the top, it only really leaves the sides open for a finished appearance. At that point, we're talking such a small surface area that it almost doesn't even matter.
My conclusion is this: the design of the Triton and SuperCenter series are unique and have a unique tradeoff in order to hit the level of value. On one hand, they're able to provide a very slim profile, which is especially advantageous with the center channel; you're able to get it closer to the display without occlusion. Another interesting point is that since there's cloth on the top of the center channel, you won't get a reflection from your display, so again, placement flexibility becomes even better. Why this isn't spun into a positive in GoldenEar's marketing material is beyond me, but I do feel like there's some added benefit behind this.
So after being as open minded as I can possibly be about the sock-look, I have two constructive criticisms for Sandy and his team
: trickle down the current design of the Triton One.R to the rest of the powered Triton lineup, plus make all of the cloth on all of the speakers (Triton, SuperCenter, and others) easily removable for cleaning and replacement as needed. Dust and animal hair are neither wife nor hygiene approved, and constant cleaning will wear them out, so we need to be able to cheaply replace the cloth as needed.