New or used???

I'm currently building a two-channel system starting with the speakers, and of all the speakers in the $3-$6K price range I have listened to (including Joseph RM25XL, Paradigm S6, B&W 804S, Totem Forest, Thiel CS 2.4, PSB Synchrony 1) the Von Schweikert VR-4JR, Dali Helicon 400 and Sonus Faber Grand Pianos and Cremonas all stood out for me.

Here's my dilemma ... For budgetary concerns (and so my fiancée doesn't kill me), I'm trying to keep the speaker purchase near $5K. I was wondering if any of you have any advice on buying new (the VR-4JRs or Dalis) vs. used (such as picking up the Cremonas or a pair of VR-4SRs used) as well as your opinion on how these speakers compare to each other. Thanks for your help.
Figure that you will lose 50% value the day you pick something out new or used.

Electronics has the worst depreciation of any consumer category and anyone who tells you otherwise is lying.

Additionally, the aftermarket is fueled by tweakers who are constantly moving on to the next best thing. Your model, used or new, will likely not be desired, as "new" or "better" product is served up as the replacement technology. Very few audiophile products have an iconic status that hold up against the test of time.

Also, audiophile space is littered by small engineering companies that are usually undercapitalized and or have limited distribution. You are paying the R & D dreams of some inventor.

The premier English and Canadian companies know value out of the box. ATC studio monitors from the UK and PSB and Paradigm from Canada make excellent product. The quality and build is excellent. With that said, most consumer oriented audiophile gear can't hold a candle to pro gear--the best pro gear from ATC, Harbeth and Tannoy will run circles around the speakers you have auditioned, and are built to be played often to professional sound engineer ears that make their living and reputation by them. Before you buy the next great audiophile product, I would seriously view pro gear as an option, especially active designs preamped that eliminate the need for amplification components and cables (and an optimal signal path).

I would try the ATC 20-2 or 16A--true honest and transparent sound.

If you want to go with separates, Almarro is a wonderful tube amp company out of Japan.RFD makes the best sounding integrated amps out of the UK. Both companies offer simplistic design sourced from solid parts. Try to match the speaker to these first.
The good news is that, the price of used speakers except the flavor of the month depreciate from the new price considerably.
Indeed if in need of repairs shortly after after aquiring them, most speaker repairs are relatively simple, For instance new surrounds. If a driver is blown e.g. a burnt voice coil, replacements exact OEM are generally avaiable, and simple to exchange.
The bad news though is that used full range floor standing speakers are incredibly hard to ship. A true hard ship. Good luck.
Ever consider monitors? Better WAF easy to ship,don't sound like the big speakers no replacement for discplacement.
I will not buy speakers that have to be shipped.I have had two episodes that caused me to question the wisdom of using anyone other than myself to transport them-ESPECIALLY if they were expensive,and or large.Besides,I want to hear anything used that costs over $1K.
Bobgofury said: Figure that you will lose 50% value the day you pick something out new or used.

I disagree with the "used" part of this assertion. Buying used can be a very good way to get equipment. I know this from experience since I've bought quite a lot used in recent years. I just recently sold a high-end SACD player (which I bought used) for more than I paid for it 18 months ago. Also, my previous tubed preamp (bought used) was sold for only a very small loss compared to what I paid for it after having it for a couple of years. Your point about new equipment losing value the day you buy it is valid.

To the OP: buying used speakers is OK especially if you can avoid the hassles of shipping. I have a pair of Electrovoice Patrician 800's in a secondary system that are nearly 40 years old that sound fantastic (they are all original). Good luck.
Every piece I have is used and I have had no issues yet "from my mouth to Gods ears" I have in the past purchased new and to truth support from the dealers stunk.I would rather take my chance used and save and if I have a problem down the road pay for repairs. used list as of now
Classe Dr-5 Pre purchased off of Ebay love it
power amps B&K M200 and an Amber series 70 both off of Audiogon
sound dynamics 300ti off of Audiogon
tuners both Kenwood 8300&Mitsubishi DF-20 Thrift store finds
cd players and dvd Audiogon
all cables off of Audiogon
so I have no issues and will continue in the future buying used off of Audiogon.