Paradigm Persona 3 vs 5 vs Monitor Audio

I just spent a couple of hours comparing the Paradigm Persona 3 and 5. The 3 sounded very good and I was sceptical about whether the 5, for one additional speaker, was really worth 70% more. I expected it to be very similar to the 3 with some added bass. After hearing the 5, I think it offers more than the additional bass. As good as the 3 sounded, the 5 had added depth and realism, even on music without that much bass. I listened to St. Saens 3rd Symphony and Beethoven’s 7th (2nd movement) to hear the bass and Eva Cassidy, Cecilia Bartoli and Brahms Piano Trio #1 for other characteristics.

The 3 is well priced compared the competition and certainly is a good choice. If you can afford the extra $7000, the 5 is definitely better--to me worth the significant price differential.

 To complicate my choice, we then visited another dealer to hear the Monitor Audio pl300ii and it’s an excellent speaker too if you like what I do--wide soundstage, good imaging, realistic rendition of individual instruments. It’s not an easy decision between the Paradigm 5 and the Monitor. To confuse myself further, I’m going tomorrow to hear the third speaker on my short list--the KEF Reference 3 which I’ve liked in prior hearings. I hope to make a decision after that.

If you can afford the 5, get the 5.  However the 3 is 80% as good for a lot less money.  Diminishing returns.  When you step up to the 7F, you reverse that curve and I think you get a TON more speaker for only 7 grand more.

I have spent a tremendous amount of time with the entire line.  My good friend has a full 9H surround based system with the matching center and it’s staggering.  Using Anthem STR separates and home theater bypass.  Incredible stereo which happens to also be the best home theater I’ve ever heard.
@ kmicamei

I have the 5fs in a similar sized room to yours and they are just perfect. 
Cabling is very important with these speakers.   Make sure you have Speaker cables that tend to be voiced toward the warmer side. 
Also  Budget for a $ 700.00 set of Harmonix tuning footers if your are on a solid surface. Take the Personas to a whole new level!!
I listen to the paradigm persona 7h here in Vancouver and as good as they sounded they just weren't as 3D and open and the high-end was not as good with the Berlin Tweeter as was the monitor audio Platinum 300 generation 2 that MPD Twitter is so much more open and more real sounding than the beryllium Tweeter it's not even funny. The monitor audio beats the paradigm in every area and it's only 18,000 compared to the 7H which is 25,000 for that money you can buy the Platinum 500 ll for 38000 and it'll absolutely trounce the 9h.
So weird that someone who casually listened to a pair of speakers would go out of their way to seek out threads to talk them down.  Pathetic BS post.  FIVE posts, all anti persona.  This forum is a joke.
What’s a joke is not respecting an opinion that’s different than yours. It’s a subjective "hobby", we hear differently and have different preferences. So, if I post a lot highlighting how great Personas are that’s great, but post five bad things about Personas the forum’s a joke. Why participate in something that you feel is a joke? I’ve actually heard the 7Fs and 9Hs. I can hear why some love them, but I can also hear why some don’t.