When are speakers considered Hi-Fi and not Mid-Fi???

What determines the status of "Hi-Fi?" I was recently considering a pair of Klipsch Heritage Cornwall speakers. They get rave reviews, have almost a cult-like following, no longer have harshness from the horns, and are very resolving. Other than not reaching down too low into the bass as some speakers do, why are they not considered Hi-Fi? They can clearly reproduce the full range of sound with an incredible image and are not missing any capability in person or on paper. Seems when we follow a thread on here about most any speaker at any price there is always a contingent that feels to need to post that the certain speakers under discussion are Mid-Fi not Hi-Fi. I only use the Klipsch Cornwalls as an example to start. Budget is not an issue, and cost should not dictate. I was also looking at the Magnepan 20.7 for another example, and they are $13k more than the Klipsch, but low and behold someone within seconds pops up and says these are Mid-Fi speakers. I kind of bet I could ask about a Sonus Faber Aida at $130k and within a few seconds someone will pop in and call them Mid-Fi as well. When do we reach "Hi-Fi" these days? Is it simply an endless and baseless dick-measuring contest? Seems like it. If we were talking cars we always have the guy who brags about the 0-60 times of certain cars, but it's clear that the 0-60 time alone does not qualify a car to be a "supercar" as there are so many other things the car must have and do to make it into that class, and like speakers there is not always 100% agreement on what the factors are. When do we reach Hi-Fi status for speakers??? 


The product has to stand out from the pack and appear special somehow in order to be considered hifi by many in these parts.  Many truly hifi products around these days that many purchase are not of great interest to audiophiles.   Lots of people have those things so they may be hifi just not hi end. See the difference?

Klipsch Heritage stuff is the original high-end Hifi. Audiophiles were using Klipsch before stereo was even a thing. My grandfather bought a single Klipschorn in the early 50's to use with his McIntosh tube system and then later had to buy another for stereo when that happened. They are loud AF and will blow you away for Jazz and Rock. They can play more cleanly at high levels than any overpriced small audiophile minimonitors, including those that I own and love. If you like to listen loud, you will be super-happy with the Klipsch Cornwalls. 

A lot of audiophiles have found the horns to be a little harsh and believe the phase coherency not as good for presenting a 3D soundstage. You can improve this by revising the crossovers and making felt diffraction pads for them. 

Magnepan MG20.7s are some serious, Class A recommended stuff. When you are up to that level of performance, its just like buying "the best car in the world," whatever that means. I had a Rolls-Royce and a convertible Hummer a while back. Which was best? The Hummer was great for flying through the air and landing softly, driving over trees and running up and down the local river. The Rolls was quiet and comfortable. Neither were as reliable and easy to own as a Lexus. None of those can accelerate as fast as a Dodge Demon, and none of the above can corner like a Porsche... but my favorite car of all time is an old Land Rover. 

The Magnepan MG20.7s can create a wall of sound that can hit you with slam and accuracy, delicate details, and if you take the time to treat your room for acoustics and fiddle with them enough, they can create a soundstage to wrap all the way around your head. Granted, Wilsons can image better than that, and the original Quad ESLs will make midrange and treble better than any speaker ever made... but the Quads can only handle around a 50 watt amp and are very inefficient and easy to fry, have no low-end bass, and a sweetspot smaller than the average human head.

So I recommend listening to a lot of stuff. None will be perfect. They are all a sort of compromise if we are honest. Anyone who says an MG20 is mid-fi is a baseless dick-measuring contestant. 

I would put both the MG20.7s AND the new Cornwalls up there in the "best at _____" category, but they are great at two very different things. If you like them, buy them and just enjoy them and don't worry about online trolls with low self esteem bashing your taste. 

For many people who fancy themselves audiophiles, it is difficult to consider any mass market brand anything more than mid-fi. When something becomes widely available and popular, it is no longer "exclusive" and "exclusive" is one of the primary requisites for a snob. One sees this repeated in any other area of life -- fashion, cars, sports equipment, jewelry, food, and so on.

It's human nature -- if we are avid about a subject, we want to be above the hoi polloi.

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What he said.

No product is mid-fi or hi-fi by virtue of his price tag alone for me...

High fidelity is refering to a recording translated in a determine acoustical way by some specific acoustic content and properties in a room , the components are only tool serving acoustic needs.. ...The components price tags means nothing alone ...

Soundfield is not created by price tag...

But once said all component design are not equal for sure and come with a price tag which is in a loose way and non linearly related to their design quality / potential S.Q. ...

What plague audiophile world is ignorance of acoustic... And faith in price tag of any "new" design for a so called upgrade...