I have a pair on the way. Currently have two other quality speakers in the house. Should be interesting!!!
Just received the speakers, and I must say, I was impressed before I even hooked them up! Build quality is very good. Solid construction, good fit and finish... these are very good looking speakers! A bit understated, but that tends to appeal to me anyway. Binding posts are high quality, gold plated with gold screws too.
After hooking them up, my impressions of the sound are very similiar to what has been posted on AudioAsylum. These speakers throw a HUGE soundstage, and I'm not talking about width alone. The A/6's project a very three dimensional sonic picture, with a very good depiction of height and depth. So far, bass reproduction is very good too. It seems to extend pretty low, but more impressively, it is very clean all the way down. So much so that it is pretty easy to distinguish between the cello and double bass sections on symphonic pieces--no simple feat! I like the treble too... Clean and detailed, but not at all harsh. Right now, the mids are just a tad soft and muddy... for example, the piano sounds a bit like the mute pedal is down all the time. I anticipate this will clear up with extended break in though... I'm probably overstating it too... The speakers, even right out of the box, are very enjoyable!
Reubent, I'd be interested to hear your observations. I was using Vandersteen 1B's before, and the sound of both speakers is similiar--they are both warm, very musical speakers. However, I prefer the non-broken in Fried's on two fronts: (1) the A/6's are truly "full range speakers" -- the bass is really, really good in terms of both extension and clarity. The Vandersteen's always needed to be paired with a sub to really get good low bass extension. (2) While the Vandersteen's might have been more precise in terms of placing images within the soundstage, the A/6's (to me at least) present a more realistic sonic picture. Perhaps because it does a better job with transmitting width, heigth, AND depth (the Vandy's seem more one dimensional to me).
In any event, for $300, these speakers are a no-brainer. Not to mention the fact that Shayne is a really great person to deal with--courteous, professional, and very fast!
I, too, have jumped on the bandwagon. I should have my speakers in the next few days. They are actually not for me, but my fiance. She demanded a GOOD pair of speakers for our(her) soon to be assembled family room system. For $300, I don't know how they can be passed up.
A very good friend of mine was a dealer for Fried. Also, the company was 5 minutes from my home. Have my share of stories to tell, as everyone does. While I do not recall the A/6, our impressions were always that the marque featured good bass response, and a warm, musical presentation. Not the easiest speakers to drive was always the impression we got, although they were never a tubeophile's nightmare.
How does the brand stack up against the rest of the world? Well, in my opinion, if this speaker was introduced today, it would carry a $2500+ price tag. Of course, some things would need to also be updated, mainly the drivers and cosmetics. Both of which would drive the price up much above the $2500 figure I just threw out. Drivers have come a long way in the past decade. I would also expect that the crossover parts quality could take a step up. Like drivers, passive parts are now a lot better than what was available a decade ago.
Personally, I have entered into a sort of infatuation with series crossovers, which Bud Fried has always been a staunch proponent of. In my opinion, what a series crossover offers is a cohesiveness of sound unmatched by any speaker(just about every speaker made) featuring a passive alignment. Somehow, the sound of a multi driver loudspeaker melds into the sense of there being only one source of the sound. The most descriptive word I can think of is "natural". Series crossovers are just so smooth; it's kind of unreal. While my seris crossover experiences have not been with Fried, I am keeping my fingers crossed...
Fried has also been a proponent of another rare loudspeaker feature, the transmission line. This was the defining point of Fried. It's complex, more difficult to design, expensive to build, less efficient. But, for those people who are into transmission lines, no sealed or ported box alignment can ever come close. Very deep bass.
My faint recollection of Fried was a sense of naturalness, musicality, and richness. Like the man himself, more suited for classical than rock(which he always referred to as the music of drug addicts). And, like I said, not the easiest speakers to get volume out of(hope I am wrong here).
I will definitely be keeping a keen eye on how things evolve during break - in. Fried(like Coincident) always carried the reputation of taking a LOOOONG time to break - in. I have already warned my fiance to expect them to sound horrible the first few days, as any new speaker does. Ewha, the fact that you are already pleased with your pair is a great clue as to them being long term keepers. My rule of thumb has always been, if you like a speaker right out of the box, you will absolutely love them next month.