Has MartinLogan gone too far with powered woofers?

I currently own Ascent i's and ordered Summits before listening to them, showing my confidence in Martin Logan. However, I then compared the Summits to Wilson Sophia’s and Watt/Puppy 7's with interesting results. With identical equipment (ML 309 cd player, ML 320s preamp and a pair of ML 436's) there was no comparison. The Watt/Puppies clearly stood above the Sophia’s and the Martin Logan's "limped" in last.

The problem with the Summits was that you couldn't dial out the bass. It was always present. And where does base management end. I have bass management on my DVD player (Marantz 9500) on my processor (Anthem Statement D1, with room eq./room resonance filters) and now on the Summits.

I am now torn between just keeping my Ascents or moving to the Sophia’s.

Do you think Martin Logan, a great company, has gone too far by powering the bottom end?
My guess is that the Summits you listened to had un-broken-in panels that weren't reaching down (in frequency) yet to mate well with the bass. When they do, it will be possible to turn the woofers down and still have the right amount of bass (coming from the panels as well.) As for the powered bass, well, they sure sound good, but I'm not convinced that switching amp technology is quite there yet, although I'm sure that's what's in my ML Depth, and it sounds very tight and has plenty of output.

I do think in the case of hybrid electostats, powered bass is good because it allows for a tube amp of more modest power on the panels without having to bi-amp and all that entails.
As you have learned, it can be unwise to make such a leap of faith based upon what you currently own. Krelldog is correct about breaking them in, although that's no guarantee you will change your mind, so you might want to explore other speakers. Once you've owned dipoles, it can be very hard to go back to box speakers unless the former have glaring faults. You're surely not lacking power with the Levinson 436s which are pretty nice amps, leaving you with plenty of options. It might help to describe your room, listening preferences and what you like and are looking to improve in your current setup.
The Summits allow you to cut the bass by 10dB at 25 Hz and also at 50 Hz. Has this not worked for you?
On a trip to Seattle last month I had the pleasure of hearing both the Ascent and the Summit. they were set up with different electronics but I was simply in awe listenintg to the Summit. The sound stage, clarity etc was incredible. If I remember correctly , they were using Mcintosh tube amps
my 2 cents.
I think the powered bass is great. I owned the Odyseys's for two years ran them with world class equipment. In a dedicated media room with properly treated accoustics. So I feel I got the most, I could out of them. They are a very musical speaker. However, they
are not close to the Summits in any regard. Summits are better from top to bottom. With the Odysseys I always felt I was had to chose ultimate bass, which ment using a soild state amp. Or great panel peformance using a tube amp. Now with the Summits using my Mcintosh MC 2000 amp, I have not heard better recorded music. And I heard a $150,000 system this week. Which did great "hi-fi" but did not make music. Just my 2 cents. NOTE The break in time is real and long. I hated the Summits for the first 3 months, only kept them because I trusted the company. I am glad I did.

I personally think the Summits are SO World Class, with vocals, accoustic music, jazz, small scale classical, they are just o.k. with amplified music, that if one hears them and does not love them, they are hearing the flaws of equipment and cables up stream. I know all the Wilsons you mentioned very well, they are not in the same leauge other then with rock music, which they are better at.

Just my 2 cents.