Just auditioned Martin Logan ESL vs 60xt


I just left my Best Buy Magnolia HT and did A/B comparisons between these two speakers. I really wanted to walk away shocked at the ESL electrostatics but was left very disappointed.  They were just muddy and boring compared to the 60xts right next to them.  It was as if someone turned off the tweeter too.  I felt like there was almost nothing over 7k hz like cymbals, upper guitar string plucks, etc. 

Now, the 60xts did sound muddy in male vocals down low but they definitely peaked my interest more than the electrostatics. 

Now, if I ONLY owned the ESL's, I'd probably be happy, get used to the sound and think they sound good.  We're all subject to that trickery, but I just thought there should be more..

I was listening to some of my favorite tracks through Tidal, into a Marantz sr7705 receiver.. 

I know the amp/situation wasn't perfect but the sonic characteristics between the two would be unchanged in a more optimal situation.

Anyone else kinda feel this way?
 
dtximages
What you describe as the sound you heard from the ESL is completely contrary to my experience hearing ML speakers in general. Even my ~20 year old Aerius i model sounds extremely transparent and dynamic especially from mid-bass and up. They do need to be paired with a proper amplifier and are somewhat placement sensitive to deliver good sound so I suspect the receiver and room placement combined caused the sound you heard. No experience with the 60xt.
Maybe they weren't plugged in?  I'm not kidding.  I've seen them unplugged sounding like garbage, but just enough sound/high notes that some don't realize they're unplugged.
Nah they were plugged in.  Had i not had the 60xts right next to them, my ears would have warmed up to them and probably thought they were pretty nice... But you never know what you're missing until you A/B them next to something else.  

Also I'm not interested in a $3000 speaker that requires $30,000 of amplification, $50,000 of room renovations just to make them happy and sound better.  
Magnolia demo's the ESL using recievers with poor current delivery. The ESL as with other Martin Ligan ESL's will dip to 1 or 2 ohms in the high frequencies. What you heard is the rolling off of the highs due to the loudspeaker not getting what it requires. It affects the whole audio bandwith as well. Buy the ESL's, if a reciever is your budget, go to the nearest high end audio store and ask to see their used equipment. A buddy of mine just picked up a Jeff Rowland model 1 amp for 700 bucks to drive his ESL X's. The sound is a spiritual experience. 
dtximages OP

Give this dealer a wide berth, he stinks.

All ML esl’s go down to 1ohm in the treble, and to drive them with a surround sound amp Marantz sr7705 receiver.. is just ludicrous, it’s as if he wanted you to buy the 60xt instead. ML ESL’s sound like this with most tubes also rolled off no extension, unless they have a 2ohm tap then volume becomes an issue.

Cheers George