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 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

Just went through Magnolia’s amplifier range, there’s nothing there that will drive ML ESL’s well.
They even have the ML Neoliths advertised!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  
What are they even doing stocking ML ESL’s, what a crap hifi?? shop?

Cheers George
BB Magnolia shops are for people with more money than discerning taste. They don’t have proper amplification and the speakers are set up poorly. I heard the ESL’s set up properly at a friend’s shop and they were terrific. So much transparency and air. Then I listened at a local Best Buy and they sounded terrible. 

They sell some pretty high end names and they have McIntosh amps in their main rooms mainly driving B&W and Martin Logan (not the ESL).  

We were listening on the Marantz AR8805 (or whatever their big $5k receiver is).  Sure probably not ideal, but I've never heard an amp just sound awful then sound great on a pair of normal speakers.

I'm sure it was a part but the fact that I was A/Bing on the same amp is the thing that makes me think the amp wasn't really it.

Set up?  Sure.. They did the best they could and separated the speakers off, brought away from the rear wall, etc.  

 but I've never heard an amp just sound awful then sound great on a pair of normal speakers.
That's because it couldn't handle the ESL's loading.
You needed to hear the ESL's again with an amp that can take 1ohm loading and do it comfortably without rolling off or becoming unstable, then you would have been very impressed with the highs and their extension.

Cheers George