Speaker recommendation

I’m looking to buy a speaker in the $4000-5000 range. I was very impressed with the GoldenEar Trton 1 speaker I heard at a friend’s house, and I know the Tekton DI is very well thought of on this forum.
 I listen to mostly classical music, some Diana Krall and the like, and also big band music.
Any other suggestions?

If you listen to mostly classical music, then Sonus Faber is a good choice.

Above one appears to be good value to me.

It is not my speaker ad.

I also recommend new Rogue  Cronus Magnum II integrated amplifier to drive the speakers.

The combined price is less than 5K.
Your decision tree should reflect brands (and models) with a demonstrated bona fide synergy with the rest of your system.

A selection process predicated primarily on an arbitrary price point at the exclusion of this is a proven recipe for disappointment. There are many ad hoc choices out there, but One size does not fit all.

First steps- .. I suggest that you roll up your sleeves and do your research ...e.g. start with publication audio show reviews of speaker brands that were paired up with your electronics .

Before you shell out the cash, actually attending an audio palooza is an invaluable next step in demoing the list with a view to distill the contenders from the pretenders out there that need to be culled from the herd.

You should list your other gear in the virtual system before asking for recommendations. Room size, amplification, source, etc., etc.
Okay, here is the list:

CJ  P-11 preamp just refitted with Teflon caps
Schiit Gumby DAC
Nuforce ref 9 v3 monoblocs
Room size: 25’x23’
Since you mention The DI tekton , go to their site Tekton Design.com for your budget it’s worth to audition one of their speakers. Talk to Eric when he comes back from the RMAF show...take your time ....
You can’t audition the DI without actually having it delivered to your home, a very cumbersome process. I really want to know how it sounds with classical. I do know how the Triton 1 sounds.
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What would they be replacing?  What aspects of your current ones are you chiefly aiming to improve on?
I now have Dalquist DQ 20 speakers modified by Regnar. What is lacking is deep bass and precise imaging, especially front to back, which is non-existent.
 Otherwise, I love them. Very tonally musical.  
After I heard the Triton 1 I realized what I was missing.

So bass and soundstaging, right?

I think you were impressed by those powered woofers.  Personally, I believe for the classical music you listen to you need a more subtle and sophisticated speaker than GE.

Have you thought about PSB T3's?  Vandersteen?  Revel?

PSB T3 list for over$ 7000.
Crrutchfield has them for $3500
   Is this possible?
I haven't looked to be sure, but my guess is the Crutchfield price is per speaker, rather than for the pair.

Also, I just saw a pair of upgraded Tekton Double Impacts for about half of your stated budget. And they are close to brand new. It's not my ad nor do I know the seller, but I had the upgraded Double Impacts and thought they were excellent. Yes, the auditioning process is cumbersome, but how were you planning to audition the other speakers on your list? For long-term speakers, the process may be worth the trouble.

PSB T3 is also on the sale.


I have a PSB subwoofer and I like it.

Even though  PSB T3 is a very nice speaker with good bass extension, Sonus Faber Cremona is more refined and suitable to classical music.

You can go either way with no regret.


I have your amps and then had them modded by Bob Smith at TDSS with his level 3 upgrades.  The basic sound of the Ref 9's stayed the same which I already loved.  His mods just made them much better in all ways--call it at least a 30% improvement.  I've heard these amps with 5 different speakers and it was by all who heard, the best each has ever sounded.  

I've heard the GE 1's, the DI SE's, and Bill Dion's (grannyring) heavily modded DI's with better drivers, wiring direct to each driver and improved crossover parts--which were better sounding than the DI SE's.  My friend now owns Bill's pair of DI's.  With my amps driving them, they were a speaker you could love in all ways--not as much with different amps driving them.  They had it all--clarity, deep soundstage, jumping deep bass, with dynamics that didn't end.  The GE's were very good, but I wouldn't have traded for them.  They weren't as involving as I'd like. That pair of DI's modded were excellent and VERY involving speakers with very good bass and clarity with the right amp--one just like yours--plus upgrades.

I had a pair of VMPS RM40 BCSE MLS speakers for 5 years that are very good.  They are now replaced with my speaker for life, the 2 piece Vapor Audio Joule Black with several upgrades to them.  I got them for an extremely reasonable price used.  The Joules are my speaker to die for and have been for a few years since I heard them at Axpona.  This particular pair just seem to have NO weaknesses.  They open up all the different music to being very listenable on mediocre recordings to awesome on good ones.  They scale volume like no speaker like no speaker I've ever owned with these mono amps--I have to be careful with the volume control--I value my hearing.

@bigkidz How do Vandersteen speakers sound off axis? I am concerned they only sound great in a specific position and I rarely sit in a specific position. I have been on the edge about Vandersteen Treo, or if the price is right 5s
Classical music listener here.  Sonus Faber or KEF speakers in your price range would be the ones to get.

Yes, I, too,had my Nuforce 9 amps upgraded by Bob Smith.
Wonderful amps.  Only ones I’ve tried that can drive my very power hungry Dahlquist speakers and make them sing.
Question for you: Did you listen to much classical music on the modded DI’s?
Same question regarding the Joules?
I second the Vandy suggestion. Tekton is not a subtle sound. Spend some time with the ears listening. Sonus Faber is also excellent. If you want a $10,000 speaker for $5,000 consider buying used-after listening to it!!
Thank you everyone here for your recommendations.
 I’ve investigated and read reviews on just about all the suggestions.
Im going to audition several  speakers at a local establishment, including B&W,
Paradigm and Magnepan among others.
Hopefully I can come to some conclusions.

To be honest, it's not my preferred genre.  I listen to all kinds of music, at different levels.  I'm not one that likes a speaker for only a couple types of music.  I do have some classical albums--maybe 12-15 total.  I would be amazed if classical didn't also sound very good on either.  I'll be putting the Joules on my Sistrum SP-101 platforms as soon as I can get some help doing so.  It will improved the sound in all ways making it more like live music.  I know the Dahlquist DQ-10s very well--never heard the 20s, however.  That was one of my early high end dream speakers when I was just out of college.  I liked many aspects of the sound, but they don't come alive like either of these 2 speakers.  Their bass is just respectable.  

I find a lot of people like Focal speakers for classical music.  Big soundstage, great dynamic performance (above average efficiency), good detail retrieval, but smooth.  At around your budget & room size I'd say at least an Aria 936 ($4K MSRP) or better yet : the 948 ($5K MSRP).

I'd make sure if you can to demo a pair of Arias.

Honestly a much better speaker than Tekton's.  The fit & finish on Tekton's is shockingly bad.  I've seen finish coming off and even surrounds starting to lift from drivers.  

Golden Ear build is nothing that much to get excited about either.  Nasty looking / feel plastic caps / footer.  I find them somewhat lumpy in the bass as well & though smooth, frankly a bit boring.  
@rvpiano For classical music enthusiasts, I would normally recommend many British brands, like Spendor, Harbeth, PMC, Proac, etc., and some others, e.g. Vienna Acoustics, Audio Note, some older (used) Sonus Faber models.  But at your price point, I can't think of a model that excels at strong low bass.  Hence the suggestion of the T3's.  T3's are in plentiful supply; several dealers regularly discount them, and they come up on sites often, some bought and never used (still sealed).  Unlike a good deal of other brands/models, I don't think it would be difficult to find a pair.
I’ve tentatively bought (with right of cancellation) the Focal Aria speakers new at a 30% discount under MSRP. (I couldn’t pass up the bargain.)  I have a week to change my mind.
The T3 is really over my budget, even at a discounted price.
 I am still investigating others though.
Off access they are OK.  But since I build my own components they will sound much different that what you can hear form them.  The music you selected is why I recommended Vandersteen.  Krall sounds amazing on the old model 5's I currently own.  They reproduce piano, bass, and drums very well, for big band music, you have a built in sub that provides the big band/classical experience with depth and dimension that you do not get without the sub, plus the time alignment can really benefit from the layering you get with the Vandy's.  Separation of instruments is a key benefit for this music.  Plus the better components you use in your system with be very noticeable with the Vandersteens.  Having the ability to dial in with the cross-over options and sub options helps in different rooms.  You also only technically require an amp to really drive the lower mid-range up with the build in sub.  Also, resale is also pretty good if/when you decide to make a change.

There are many very good speaker recommendations that others have already posted but my reasons for my suggestion is stated above.  Good luck in your search.

Happy Listening. 
I just read a glowing review written in Stereophile of the Revel F208 speakers.
Luckily, I’ll be able to hear them this week in locations near my house.
Any knowledge or opinions of them?
I just read a glowing review written in Stereophile of the Revel F208 speakers.
Luckily, I’ll be able to hear them this week in locations near my house.
Any knowledge or opinions of them?
I think you should try adding a pair of subs with your speakers.
(Quad's, right)? I'll PM you.

One of the reasons I like Vandy's is that I can sit and walk around the room and the sound is still dimensional.
If fact my seat is practically in front of the left speaker, yet I still hear a 3D performance and the speaker is practically invisible.
Audio magazines and audio sites are full of glowing reviews.  Indeed, it's nigh on scandalous when the review isn't glowing.  Reading reviews and then going out to audition the components in person has demonstrated to me repeatedly that sometimes I share the same impressions as the reviewer, but rather more frequently I don't.  YMMV.
Martin Logan Montis seems to be available for $5K used for even brand new. > Love the sound of them at that price.They were $10K new a few years ago. Read the reviews.
Ditto + to Martin Logan Montis

I am happy with my present speaker which is out of reach to most people (new price was 55K 11years ago)

But if the speaker stop working, I may go back to planar speaker

Martin Logan is very musical and suitable for classical music.

The only catch is that you need big space.
I had a set of B&W N803 for about 5 years, and N805 before those.  I auditioned the Double Impact, and found them to be good, with nice soundstage, but not really smooth across various frequency ranges.  I felt there was a bit of "suck out" in mid bass.  I sent them back.  They did have a nice "live" sound, and I think they are good for the price... but not the giant killers others have suggested.

Then I got a set of F208s, and I think they are extremely smooth and flat response across almost all FRs.  I'm very happy with them, and have sold my B&Ws.  I've had them for about a year.  A few audiophile friends have listened to them, and have been very impressed.  IMO, they are a step up from the B&Ws, and a solid improvement over the DIs.  

I think the Revels are a good choice for you.
I auditioned several speakers today, including the Revel F208, the Focal Aria and B&W 702, but I selected the GoldenEar Triton 1 as suiting my taste the best.
It had a transparency and bass fullness the others lacked.
 I’m trying them out in my home before I make a final decision.
Again, thank everyone for you suggestions.

I went through the spec of  GoldenEar Triton One and it looks very good.

Good luck to you!

I got the feeling that it will go by well with Tube amplification.

It will be nice if you can audition the speaker at your home with Rogue Cronus Magnum II.
So far, I’m loving the Triton 1.
 Of course I’m agonizing over setup and positioning, but I think at least I got the subwoofer setting right.
The quest is over!
 I’m really thrilled with the sound of these Tritons.
The synergy with the rest of my equipment is terrific.
I can just sit back and enjoy the music!

There's a brand new pair of PSB T3's on the 'gon today that I'm pretty sure you could get for 5K, but I guess that's now moot.

We all have different ears, I guess.  I auditioned the Triton 2's a while ago, against B&W 702's, and to me the B&W's sounded a lot more sophisticated and timbrally "right".

I think synergy is the big thing.  In my listening, the B&W’s sounded puny in comparison to the Tritons.  I’m employing them with a  Conrad-Johnson tube preamp which really makes me them sing, and a 160w per channel amp driving them. The built-in subwoofer also sets them apart.
Honestly, it’s some of the best sound I’ve heard anywhere.