Compact 7ES-3

Question: Are the Harbeth Compact 7ES-3's a big step-up in sound from the Silverline Minuets? Both are to driven with a Jolida RD 302 (which uses the EL-34's). Thank you.
I had a pair of Compact 7ES-3's. They are indeed nice speakers, but ultimately I found them lacking in the dynamics department. I admit that I am a rocker, however, and perhaps with other genres they may be ideal. I used them with both a McIntosh MC275 and a Wyred 4 Sound SX-500 monoblocks. I sold the Harbeths and bought a pair of Salk SongTower RT's, and they are more to my liking... deeper bass, better imaging, crystalline extended highs from ribbon tweeter, more efficient, more dynamic, seemingly more accurate/detailed rather than euphonic. I am not slamming the Harbeths at all... and they are very nice speakers that may be the 'ultimate' for you. If so, great! I really liked the eucalyptus finish on my pair, but even that is not in the same league as a Salk custom finish (mine are Pau Ferro rosewood). Honestly, I was expecting a bit more from the Harbeths as they are generally regarded as one of the best speakers available. I guess it just really comes down to personal preference. I am happy with the Salks, but perhaps you will prefer the Harbeths. Nothing wrong with that... good luck!
Your post about the Salk's is causing me more confusion about speaker choice. Thought I had narrowed it down to Spendor 1/2's, Harbeth Compact 7 or Totem Forest...but I had heard a lot of great things about the Salks...any other folks care to weigh in?
Sorry! I didn't mean to try and persuade you to buy Salk speakers. If you are set on Harbeths, go for it! If not totally committed, then perhaps give Jim Salk a call. He will discuss your needs/desires with you and help select an appropriate speaker. Buying 'direct' from a manufacturer like Salk, Ohm, Tyler, etc. avoids the massive markups associated with belonging to the "dealer network", while still retaining an-in-home trial for some period. Not to mention the unfavorable exchange rate. Yu will get a lot of 'bank for the buck' by going with a domestic custom builder.
You have to hear these speakers (all of the models mentioned above) before making a decision. Or do what I do, alas, and rotate a bunch of speakers through the house (thank you, Audiogon). These models offer up very different types of sound -- different approaches to the art of reproduction, you might say. In addition to the kinds of music you listen to and the volume you listen at (very important), your priorities for music reproduction are likely not the same as the next guy's. What gets you off? Bass, dynamics, clarity, physicality, soundstaging? Do you like a huge soundstage? A tall soundstage? A close-in perspective or further back? Are cymbals your touchstone? Japanese taiko drums? Female vocals? Piano? Cello? Do all of your recordings need to sound good, or are you comfortable with revealing the warts and blemishes? Is it a requirement that you hear the warts and blemishes?

And if that's not enough, the synergy with your room and the rest of your system will be of paramount importance in how it all comes together.
Just to toss a different opinion into the mix. I have listened to the McIntosh MC275 in my system, but not with the Harbeth. The MC275 is an excellent unit with good slam but not exactly the last word when it comes to transparency and dynamics. The dynamics of the Compact 7ES-3 will come alive with the LFD Zero MkIII integrated. Compared to my other amps which include the Plinius and NVA to name a few, the LFD made all these amps sound lacklustre, shut-in and lacking in the dynamics department. The LFD made music come alive especially with rock music with its excellent speed, tonal accuracy and bass slam. At least that is what I have experienced in my system.

Of course, there are other speakers that will be even more dynamic and transparent, and that I cannot deny. However, resolution and transparency sometimes come at a cost. Too much of it can translate to higher listening fatigue. To each his own.