Harbeth speakers are designed to sound good at low volume levels. Choose the model based upon size of room and/or budget.
Triangle and Reference 3A's are both excellent for low level listening.
another vote for harbeth speakers. Very full sounding at lower volumes unlike most speakers their size/efficiency!!
Spica TC50 for sure, beats anything I have tried against them at low volume except maybe Spica Angelus. Have not owned TC60s, but probably good too.
This subject comes up regularly, so you may want to check past discussions. Quad electrostatics usually get the most votes.
I have much experience with speakers that sound good at lower volumes.
The Harbeths as mentioned are good.
Also I would add, not knowing budget:
Kudos Cardea C10 or possibly C1
Joseph Auduio RM XL or RM 7
Linn Tukan or Katans
Audio Note ANK
Have you considered headphones?
While there are many good suggestions here, for truly good lower level listening, you need either a speaker that will allow you to adjust the tweeter, midrange, and woofer levels, or you need a good quality equalizer.
This is due to Fletcher-Munson which cannot be ignored if you want quality listening at low levels. Highs and Bass will need a slight boost for the frequency response to be "heard" accurately.
Nearfield listening will also help, but not like adjusting the speaker, or quality equalization.
Zu Superflys - I had these in my home for several days and was very impressed with how well they were able to reproduce all of the music contained as well as the emotional expressiveness at low volume. (Driven with 6C33C SETs.)
BRF has the right idea. I presume you don't want to disturb your neighbors or new child. Real music is not soft...soft sections are contrasted with loud sections...even string quartets should be played at a realistic level....real music in real space is the goal of this hobby.
Thanks to everyone for the responses - I've not heard Harbeth but will try to find a location to audition them.
Omega makes some nice single driver monitors that are very good at low volumes and the Merlin TSM's are excellent two way monitors that are a sealed box design and sound great at lower volumes.
Honest1, I have a pair of Angelus for the living room with tubes and love them. Love the whole line. What do you recommend with NAD that sounds similar for small room 11x10?
BrianV - if you love the Angelus, you will certainly like the TC50. Not as extended on top or bottom, but richer mid-upper bass, compared to the ANgelus. I have found them to sound good with everything from a Harmon Kardon to Pass Labs Aleph3 to JJ828. They will reveal the differences between electronics, but never seem to sound bad with anything.
Unfortunately the TC50s are to big for my application. I have had them and loved them. They were wonderful even for 2.1 movies.
dont know the rest of your set-up but when I added a quality preamp, lower volume listening was improved 100%.
If you need a small speaker and like the Spica sound, I would recommend the Audio Physic Steps from the late 80s, before Joachim sold the company. They offer a much more detailed sound than the Spicas, but are still very natural sounding. They have a much smaller footprint than the Spicas, but I don't know how they do close to a wall. Probably best far from side walls, though.
If the TC 50s are too large, I to will suggest a good set of headphones (with good headphone amp).
Rides2work. Forget the comment about the tc50s, as it was directed to the wrong individual. I still recommend a good headphone set up !