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I get the same experience from my Revel F208's and C208. In stereo mode the center image is amazing, sounds like the center channel is on. I attribute that to the wide dispersion and tweeter waveguide. Ultima2 Series (Salon2 and Studio2) have a zero diffraction front baffle that makes them image even better.
+1 on the Revels F208's. With the right setup / gear / room / source material they can be amazing. Not taking anything away from the Gradients with that comment since I haven't listened to them in... well, maybe 25 years. But the Revels don't look like trash cans.
:)
 

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Maggies are pretty special, The Kef R105/3 was phenomenal, beethovens..actually every quality speaker pair did, with attention to placement. The very BEST, speakers that didn't just make the front wall disappear, but the whole room went bye bye were the Meridian dsp 8000. few passive speakers come close.
 

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Maggies are pretty special, The Kef R105/3 was phenomenal, beethovens..actually every quality speaker pair did, with attention to placement. The very BEST, speakers that didn't just make the front wall disappear, but the whole room went bye bye were the Meridian dsp 8000. few passive speakers come close.
Best ones I've ever heard for that...KEF Blade 2. I'm sure the Blade (1) does as well, but my dealer can't bring them in...too big for any of their rooms.
 

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I got to hear the Blade and the LS50 back to back at a show in 2012 when they were new. I thought the LS50 imaged a little better than the Blade. The Blade imaged very precisely. The LS50 did too, but it also threw a bigger soundstage, even though they were placed a little closer together than the Blades.

Pretty much any small two-way stand-mounted speaker with mid-woofers in the 4-5.5" size range will image very well. The best I've heard for that are probably the Raidho D1. The best I've owned in that size range are the Focus Audio FS-688. The original Totem Model 1 with 5" Dynaudio woofer was also in the same class as the Focus Audios. I've also been impressed by the Penaudio Cenya Signature, Joseph Audio Pulsar, Harbeth P3ESR, and Paradigm Atom.

A lot of 2-ways use 6.5-7" woofers, and it seems to be a little more difficult to get top-notch imaging with woofers of that size. But one that impressed me a whole lot was the Wilson Benesch Vertex, which I owned for a while. Dynaudio C1 is another. Among floorstanding speakers, two of my favorites are the Magico S1 and Dynaudio C2. I've owned the C2s for 12 years and have no desire to upgrade them. They really excel at providing a big, expansive soundstage. The Magico S1s don't throw as big of a soundstage, but the micro-details around the images of instruments was very impressive.

Omnis are worth a mention because they can create a soundstage that remains stable as you move around the room. When done well, it's an uncanny effect that makes you feel like you can walk around and in between the performers. Usually, the imaging is more diffuse with omnis, but one exception was a show demo of the MBL 126. That was a wow moment. My wife was floored and encouraged me to buy them, but they were too expensive and too bright to my ears.

On the other hand, I've generally been less impressed with dipoles, possibly because room and setup is so critical. I've only heard Maggies a couple times, and not in a good setup. People say they can produce life-sized images, but I haven't had the chance to experience that. I did hear the top of the line Wisdom Audio planar magnetic loudspeakers in a very large hotel suite powered by Simaudio and augmented by subwoofers. That setup produced the biggest soundstage I've heard, and projected larger than life images into the room. It was very impressive, but somewhat unnatural.

I have more experience with electrostats, but my impressions are mixed. I've heard very good imaging from Martin Logans, but only in the sweet spot. If you move a foot left or right, it breaks down. Planar electrostats like Sanders and King Sound are even more finicky. If you want to be constantly moving your head around chasing their elusive and micro-sized sweet spot, those are the speakers for you. One electrostat that really surprised me was the Quad 988. They're designed with stators arranged in concentric rings, with delay lines to emulate a point source. So I expected them to sound more omni-like, but I was very wrong. They did have a wider sweet spot than other electrostats, and the images were precisely positioned, but the soundstage was smaller than I've ever heard from any other hi-fi speaker. It was like listening to a hamster orchestra.

Finally, I'll just say that I've rarely been impressed by the soundstaging abilities of large three-way speakers, even in really good rooms.
 

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The original Totem Model 1 with 5" Dynaudio woofer was also in the same class as the Focus Audios.

I wonder how the new(er) Signature 1 would compare to that legend? :)
 

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Herb Reichert of Stereophile reviewed it and compared it to his own pair of Model 1 Sigs.

I never got a chance to hear the Model 1 Sigs, just the original Model 1. I liked the Model 1, but they were just a bit tipped up and I liked the Focus Audio 688s better. But the speaker that really blew me away circa 2002 was the Totem Mani-2. It was above my price range at the time, and I didn't have enough amp to drive it, but DAMN, it was probably the best speaker I had heard to that date.

Another very good imaging speaker I heard around the same time was the ProAc Tablette. I forgot to mention it before.
 
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Ducati, My experiences mirror yours, sigh those D1 that sounded soo amazing at the show until Lars? told me the price was $27,000.
My dealer has a pair of persona 7f's that he tries different components with and I was startled at the difference changing components made and the opposite of what I expected. he had a 400wpc class ab stereo amp pre combo that presented a precise soundstage with sharply defined images within that exposed everything, impressive but fatiguing. the next visit there's a pathos 50wpc integrated connected to the same speakers making the most organic, enjoyable music ever. The ultra tight imaging was a little more vague, but way more believable and it made a pair of speakers that were initially a curiosity a serious contender.

Setup is important, but I think the more complex the speakers get the harder it becomes to get the best out of them.
With my modest integrated I can probably get better sound from a $5k speaker than a $25k speaker.
 
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I enjoy my PSB Synchrony Ones, but best imaging are my dad’s NHT 3.3’s.

Some folks said they only image well between the speakers, but I have found many recordings that also seem to expand that soundstage seemingly outside where the speakers are physically.

I have not heard many speakers from today that match their performance.
 

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Unfortunately I haven't heard the L800 but my Vintage SDA-2B are amazing... I've owned hundreds of Speakers in the past 20 years... Nothing comes close to Polk's SDA.
First SDA I have ever heard and I am a believer.
 
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Nice! Yeah SDA is crazy. If you can't buy the L800 yet, I highly recommend finding some Used SDA-2B or some SDA SRS I see them around $200 - $1500 and there are plenty of upgrades if you like to tinker.

https://forum.polkaudio.com/categories/vintage-speakers
Price isn't the problem, its space. They are big boys and I believe that they need a big room. I would have to redesign my whole room to get them in the room they need. But If I sell this place and finally get space I want its B&W 80# or L800s.
 

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Price isn't the problem, its space. They are big boys and I believe that they need a big room. I would have to redesign my whole room to get them in the room they need. But If I sell this place and finally get space I want its B&W 80# or L800s.
Not necessarily true. Not sure about the L800 cuz it is ported... The original SDA was a sealed box with a passive radiator, however the L800 has a down firing port IIRC

https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussion/169385/recommended-room-sizes-for-various-sda-speakers
 
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