Its funny you should mention this. I just heard this awesome Sub Sat combo at the CES show. Its by Angstrom. Here's a pic of it. http://www.shows.soundstagelive.com/shows/ces2003/dly_jan11.shtml
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The January issue of HiFi+ gave rave reviews to the Pen Audio system from Finland. I first heard them in Finland in September and then again in October. The company is four years aold and the owner/designer has been making speakers for 10 years.
You can use them as a sat/sub system or just use the monitors which are great.
The review is understated. The silver model reviewed is sweet and liquid, and might be thin on certain recordings, but not as the review stated. The normal (copper) Charisma is fantastic. The speaker disappears. The soundstage is wide and deep. You are drawn into the music as it engulfs you. If the silver is sweet and liquid then the normal Charisma is silky smooth, dynamic, accurate, musical and transparent. They are a must have!
The Charm subwoofer is very flexible and does what it is suppose to. It crosses over at 70hz, has a 150 amp feeding a pair of 8" customer woofers in push-pull configuration. You can run it from preamp or balanced off the power amp. It features, both hi and low pass filters, subsonic filter, phase control and gain.
The company was at CES and US distribution is near. I turned in my Meadowlarks and ProAcs for the Charisma. I did not buy the subwoofer yet. I am waiting to hear their new woofer system first. In the meantime, the Charisma's go down to a realistic 60-65 hz and in my 14x16 room they are just fine.
They truly challenge other monitors and floorstanders in the 5-8K range. Charisma is about 3k and the sub about 3500. The new woofer system should be about 2500.
Actually, there's a vast amount of possiblities in sub/sat combo's that can sound fatastic! The trick is obviously you need some excellent sounding monitors and a worthy sub(there are lots of both out there) as a foundation. But then, just as, or more importantly, the trick is in THE SET UP!!!!
Where as most full range monitors are already crossed over perfectly(for all intents and purposes), in pefect phase(if designed as so, likely), coherent from a propegation of sound stand point(if designed as so), and are well balanced from the manufacturer! There are lots more "USER VARRIABLES" to consider with a sub sat system! But when you get it right, it can sound as good or better than any full range speaker system!
That all said, the real question you might have asked would be "has anyone heard an outstanding sub/sat SETUP?!!!!" because the combiation of gear may have TREMENDOUS potential, but it might never get set up well enough to MEET THAT POTENTIAL! That's my experiences anway.
So, concluding, I would say that most any high end/higher fidelity loudspeaker and quality sub(within reason) should be able to sound extremely good if you can set things up correctly. Again, however, where it usually falls short is likely going to be the set up execution. And if you're talking about music only purposes, there's other variables....because HT is another consideration entirely.
To better respond to your question as foreverhifi200 rephrased, yes, I have heard an outstanding sub/sat set up. And, Foreverhifi is right about set up and variables. I think this is one reason that the Pen Audio system worked so well. The sub is adaptable.
Pathos Integrated, BOW CD player and Pen Audio with Goertz wires throughout
CJ MV 60, Cary CD player and Pen Audio with Acoustic Zen speaker cables
CJ 2500A power amp, CJ premier 18 preamp, Marantz 8300 and Geortz