Can speakers be both "big" and "accurate" ?

I've got a small dilemma on my hands and I think I need some outside influence. I've been upgrading my old college stuff (you don't wanna know), and now have a Sonic Frontiers Line1, Bryston 4BST, Rega Planar25, etc, etc. Don't want to get into a discussion about interconnects, please. I've got a 14'x18' room, firing down the long end, and am in the market for speakers. I have auditioned various different types and brands of speakers- I'm not hung up on a name as long as it works with my Line1 & 4BST. In all of my attempts, I haven't yet heard a set of speakers that can do "BIG", as in "fill-the-room-with-sound-big" (or "stupid-loud", as I've sometimes heard it described), while AT THE SAME TIME be "accurate", "detailed", etc, etc, like a mini-monitor. I've got a set of B&W CDM1-NT's in another system, and while I like their clean, accurate sound in that smaller space, they just don't do it for me in the main system. I'm thinking larger floor standers to get the "big" sound thing, but I also want the details and "there" there when I listen to accoustic jazz. Are these two things mutually exclusive, and if not, suggestions? I'm budgeting around $3k. Is this realistic? I really appreciate your time reading this! Thanks!
I'm not sure what you mean by "big" sound, but I suspect you're targeting lower mid-range warmth and reasonably clear and "spacious sounding" upper end (usually upper-mids onward).
For the latter, a lot depends on speaker placement: as you're firing along the long side, reflections from side walls could easily smear the imaging (i.e. the precision) -- so not a speakers problem.
For the latter, a subwoofer could do the trick -- if you decide to stay with small speakers. Models like the JMLab mini Utopia or the small B&W Signature or the small Sonus Faber (Cremona line) are nice and project a sound that is far "bigger" than their size would suggest.

As to recommending specific larger speaker models, hints regarding your musical preferences would be useful: there are VERY many speakers that could (or not) fit your bill... Cheers
I think your room might be a bit small for what I would consider a "big" speaker. That said, I think the Dunlavys ceratinly qualify as "big" and "accurate" speaker.
I hate to say it ,but are you kidding?

If there were not speaker's out there to fulfill the requirements you are asking then it would all be a waste of time & $$.

It depends on your room also!What is the size of your room?
What are you planning on spending?
Do you like Box or Planer Speaker's?

There are many floorstander's that will do what you ask.

I am getting NEAR's that are not sold anymore ,but they have what your looking for.Unless you like alot of Organ Pedal Music look for a speaker that goes down to below 30Hz..

I will see what I would buy.B&W's are nice,but they do not have the Low Freq. expansion you mention.I liked the CDM1NT's and that was one of their drawbacks.

The 804's or 805's ,forget the designation,but they will do it for you.

Shahinian Acoustics loudspeakers meet your requirements. In fact, they will exceed your greatest expectations.
I heard that the Bose Wave Radio offers big sound.
Inner Sound should do great in your room. These are Electrostatic speakers. Detailed, transparent, good dynamics and should play loud enough with no problem filling your room with music. They have built in amps for the bass. i can't remember the power on the Bryston 4b. I think it is 200 watts? With the newer models out, you should be able to find a pair close to your price range. I can't think of a better speaker for $3000 unless you have no interest in an ESL.
Try a pair of Soliloquy 6.5s.They have a small foot print,very efficient,have extreme dynamics and solid bass down to 23hz.They are also extremely accurate.If these can't feel the room with sound nothing will.They are about 55 inches tall and weigh 130 pounds a piece.The front baffel is narrow for better imaging,I think only about 9 inches wide .Good luck
Obviously! The real question is quite the reverse: can small speakers be both "small" and "accurate".
My guess is that your problem is not the speakers, but the room. Maybe not too small, but not optimal acoustically. I'd suggest you start looking into room treatments to cut down the reflections. This will allow all the volume you want while maintaining the detail.

Jdombrow has it, except that i would suggest that the room might in fact be too small - mine is slightly larger, fairly well damped, and i max out its accoustic capabilities in the mid 90's db wise (at listening position) much beyond that nothing much improves, just gets louder.
It may well be that what you are looking for does not exist. If your definition of accurate is nearfield listening at moderate SPLs or listening through worldclass headphones, all bets are off. First, nearfield or headphone listening essentially tries to eliminate the room from the equation as much as possible. Second, the behaviour of speakers does not typically scale linearly. Different drivers of a speakers may start to compress at different SPLs, for example, which will alter the sound depending on SPL, or an otherwise excellent amplifier may have trouble delivering the required amount of current fest enough to faithfully reproduce the dynamics of a musical event (and it may not even be amp that is at fault if it starving for power from the wall).

On the other hand, if you definition of accurate is reproduction of musical events with realistic SPLs, sound stage in three dimensions, emotional impact, "suspension of disbelief" for more than mere microseconds etc. there are systems capable of doing just that. Whether a symphonic orchestra at full crescendo can be reproduced accurately is another question. I deliberately used the word system, not speakers, in my above claim. Putting all the burden on the speakers is not fair. Obviously, you have to start with a set of speakers that is capable of producing what you are looking for but then you have to go all the way with proper room tuning, choice of electronics, cables, power, vibration control (which gains in relative importance the higher your SPLs) etc.

I am speaking from experience with the very speakers that I own (Avalon Eidolons). Depending on how they are fed, they are capable of producing accurate auditorium size portraits or simply be loud and unconvincing. I guess that the same will be true with many other speakers.
Try Gallo Reference speakers. They are no longer made, but there is a set on Audiogon for $1850.00. If you want to engulf your room with sound, these will do it! Bass output is more than you would expect out of two 6.5" drivers (26Hz). The speaker has no crossover. The woofers are weight damped to match the natural roll off of the tweeters. The round enclosures have no cabinet diffraction and inherently do not sound like boxes. The unique CDT tweeter emits sound 320 degrees and is very fast like an electro-stat. They throw an amazing soundstage and are very accurate and detailed. You will feel like you are “in” the jazz club, and with your amp they will go “stupid-loud” if you want.

Proper set up requires that they be out in the room and well spaced out to work. The best seat is typically on an equilateral triangle. Off axis listening is quite good, because there is no high frequency roll off from either speaker unless you walk behind them. I run mine with tube pre-amp and 35 watt solid state mono blocks. They should work nice with your set-up. Use the spare cash for a sub if you really want to go low. I set mine on the lowest cut off 35Hz and 24db per octave for the last bit of bass extension. Feel free to E-mail me for any additional information.

Thanks for the responses, as well as the criticisms! I think I need to make some clarifications, though. I'm not looking to do both "loud/big" and "pinpoint imaging" at the EXACT same time, even though that's what I said. I'm just wondering what speakers could do them both, at the proper time? And, by "big", I guess I mean to surround myself in sound (no 5.1 please), and get the impression of a live performance. "Stupid-loud" shouldn't need explaining. My tastes are truly varied, as we all like to believe, but I can groove to Led Zeppelin one minute, jam with Miles Davis the next, and swing with original Big Bands recordings, all in one sitting. I particularly like three-piece sets with awesome pianos- if a speaker can blast out Boston when necessary, and then do Gene Harris or Herbie Hancock, I'm sold! Please, keep 'em coming (and Yes- I'm paying attention to room reflections, as much as my wife will let me)!
Vandersteens are known "huge spacious sound" and time/phase your price range the Vandy 3a will fill your room with sound...and bass to 30hz...not designed for loud party rock...but most hi end speakers arent...
My room is the same size as yours 14x18,and I am firing the speakers down the long end as well. My speakers are arguably the best speakers...period! They are very large, very accuate, and very detailed. They are the most efficient speakers with a rating of 104dB at one meter with only one watt of power. They have the deepest, most dynamic bass of any full range speaker with a bass range down to 35 Hz. You have probably guessed that they are Klipshorns which is correct. Even though they are corner speakers, you can aim them where ever you want using 4x4 foot dense particle board as false wall baffles as I have done. This will allow you to get the full bass range without having to restrict them to the corner. Yes, brand new they would cost over $7000 if you don't mind the six month wait (if you are lucky). However, you can get these gems used here at Audiogon or at Ebay from $2000 to $2500.
Someone was bragging over at the Klipsch website Forum that he just got a beautiful pair of Khorns on Ebay for $1500.
~~~~If you get a chance to hear a set of Infinity RS1, your search may be over. A second amp will be needed. Huge sound, scary accurate, cabinets disappear as the sound engulfs the listener. Rarely come up for sale, guess why?

Just The Facts

Redwoodgarden gets no argument from me! Klipschorns, and most of the Klipsch boxes that Paul W. Klipsch designed are the outright bang-for-buck bargains in big and accurate sound as far as I'm concerned. The current crop of Klipsch speakers that were put out by the company after it was sold to Paul's cousin, are NO COMPARISON to those speakers in the Hertiage and Classic lines that Paul designed (some of which they still produce, though I'd opt for looking for vintage examples). If you don't want to be limited by using your corners, try out the La Scala, which uses the same drivers as the Khorns, but in a smaller package that is forward firing. I use and LOVE LaScala's and have heard them A/B'd side by side with Khorns. Khorns have a more authorative bass, and, depending upon your room and corners, can throw a pretty incredible sound stage. La Scala's are no slouch in either department, but are scaled down as is their size (whe I say scaled down, they are the size of two large dishwashers!!). I actually thought the LaScala's sounded a bit more dynamic in their presentation and a tad more forward. The only downside of using Klipsch horn speakers, is that with your SS Bryston amp they will most certainly NOT be singing their hearts out as they could with tubes. I'm going to get some flames hear, so I'm donning my flame-retardent suit now, but combining Klipsch Classic/Heritage horn speakers with an SS amp is a total WASTE of a GREAT pair of speakers! Yes, you will get big LOUD sound from those 104db efficiency horns, but you will be missing out on some of the most spectacular subtleties in dynamics, detail and clarity that you could have if you were using a decent tube amplifier. And the beauty of it is, you don't need much power at all. My 300B SET amps putting out 8 watts per side, will drive my LaScala's loud enough to drive anyone from the room (my room is only 12 X 15), while still remaining musical, detailed, dynamic and crystal clear! No doubt good vintage Klipsch will give you what you are looking for. They are difficult and expensive to ship, so finding a pair local to you would be best. They can be had at outright bargain prices sometimes, as Redwoodgarden points out. If you like smaller boxes you could also look at the Klipsch Forte's and Chorus speakers, which are also excellent speakers, but for big sound, they will not compete with the Khorns or La Scala's for what I think you might be calling 'Big Sound'....still, they are excellent speakers for the money!
Find a 2-way rear ported speaker that goes down to around 32Hz. and you'll do fine.

My room is the same dimensions as yours which does not need to be taken up by big Panel Speaker's and the like.

JM Labs,Revel,JMR(Jean Marie Reynaud),DeCapos,ProAc's,Legacy and Canton I would look at .I know Canton sells speaker's that go down below 30Hz.JM Labs I do not know about ,but I know they use great drivers.

You have alot to choose from and I would look for quality sound.The list can go on and you have to go hear for yourself and when you hear it you'll know.It's kind of magical when you finally find the sound you are in search for.Sometimes it takes yrs. though.

I had thought that Panels' were the speaker's I liked the most until I bought a set and had to give up a place that had a giant living room.Then I had to revert back to Box speaker's and I could live with thm,but they did not have the transparency that the panels did.Then I heard NEAR's which had the same trait's,took up less room and had dynamics I could not experience with Panels.BTW I had listtened to alot of Panels Accustats,Maggies,ML's.

Just keep going out and listening and you'll find the Speaker soound your after.Remember to take your own music that you know really well also.

Wish people could hear my 2-Ways because they have enough Bass for all ,but the most discriminating Bass Freak!I have a Sub,but feel I really do not need it.

Happy Hunting!
Avalon Eidolon
Can a large speaker fill the room and be accurate as well? Oh my yes. Take for example an Apogee Duetta Signature. Tall (5 foot)planar two way that goes for about $1400-1800 around here. Will most definately fill the room with sound and can be astonishingly accurate from the upper bass on up, especially on vocals. Bass easily extends into the 30 hz range but is best used with a GOOD sub and a GOOD electronic x-over (like a Marchand or Bryston)to cut the lows off of the bass panel. Several subs have pretty good internal electronic x-overs with transparent high pass sections.

Properly set up and fed (which your 4B-ST is certainly cabable of doing) you'll be glued to your seat and wittness to an at times breath taking musical experience.
Pbb is right on.