Audio Note, after whose speakers the Emotion series is designed I think.
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Audio Note is one that offers upgrades, but they are not that extreme with the pricing. I do know that Audio Note and The Ramsey Brothers (formely of Systemdek fame) have a good relationship.) The Emotion does look silimlar to one of Audio Notes offerings. I have checked on the offerings of ART from time to time but they have many offerings now that they didn't a couple years ago. I think the upgrade thing is cool but how will you know what differences each upgrade really makes? That to me is a shot in the dark!
Vandersteen and others offer upgrades on specific models as do many other companies. I don't know how they determine which models to offer upgrades on but I bet it has something to do with the number of sales of the units.
As I understand it, the origonal Emotion came as the Signature version. Art were persuaded to produce the cheaper version by dealers. I think the point of it, is to give you options and allow for later upgrades.
Ponnie, the difference is not a shot in the dark if you hear them side by side, or have heard others before. They are truly like different speakers.
Many companies proved after market upgrades of crossover components, for existing speakers. For example, I think there is one for Acoustic Zen Adagios.
The problem for all companies, seems to be that putting in premium components has a multiplier effect on the ultimate price. $100 of parts becomes $400 extra to the final price, when it goes through manufacturers, distributors and dealers mark ups. That seems to be why only the one man and his dog outfits, dealing direct with customers and a few dealers, can really afford top components. The dead hand of accountants always seems to be on the designers shoulders, in big companies.