Kestrals: Good intro into two-ways?

There's been a lot of talk on A'gon about the benefits (and problems) of two-way speakers, especially with first order crossovers. I'd like to hear for myself but short in-store demos don't do it for me. Used Meadowlark Kestrals are reasonably priced and well liked. Would they be a good intro into the world of two-way speakers? If I like them, would I also like Merlin, ProAc Response, etc?

I listen to rock with occasional jazz, blues and vocals. My room is 14' x 20', vaulted ceiling. My system is entry-level hi-fi (Anthem,Arcam,MF,Audioquest,Harm.Tech.) with no apparent sonic problems.
The orginal Kestrals were a great buy in their day...and even a better used value today...usually around $700...and I feel they outperform the new Swifts by a wide margin...especially in the bass department...also...Vandersteen 1cs or 2ces are time honoured phase correct designs...they dont play loud...and probably not the best for rock..but for jazz,blues, and especially for vocals(which are very 3-D)...they would be perfect...1cs around $500used..2s around $700...boxless design...hence a very open,deep soundstage...
I would recommend the Magnepan 1.6 since your room is adequately large. These are available on the used market for approximately $1K. They are less affected by image shifting with frequency that often occurs when placed in rooms with vaulted ceilings. Also, they follow the line source dipole principles of radiation which minimizes side wall reflections to some extent. And, above all, they sound just excellent. The soundstage is large and the presentation very cohesive. The disadvantage is that they will need to be placed about 2.5 feet out into the room (away from the front wall). They like their room.

The Meadowlark Kestrals are good also. I don't want to put these down and it is sometimes difficult to convey their sound without being taken the wrong way. So I will start by saying that you can't really go wrong with them as they are hard to dislike. However, it is easy to like something else more due to one's particular priorities. And I feel the Magnepan 1.6 performs better based on my priorities. By comparison, the sound of the Kestral is a little flat or undynamic. The bass response seemed anemic in my room. The overall sound was just as cohesive and seamless as the Maggies though. But, I always felt as if I was missing some excitement - that perception of the real venue which I get with the Maggies.

So it is a matter of preference. Both good speakers - just another alternative.
I have had the Meadowlark Kestrels for about five years. I find them to be a very smooth,detailed and amazingly open.They are a real world speaker. They respond very well to the electronics behind them.I use Audio Research tube gear.One of my all time favorite speakers is the Spica TC50. After all.......the Kestrels claim to fame is that they are today's Spica.Have you considered the "original" Advent or Dahlquist DQ10 or 20?In the right systems any of these would work fine.Good luck!
I'm with Spicaguy. The TC-50 is wonderful and found for around $325 used. Easily modified with better caps and wire, it will compete with the venerable Rogers LS3/5A.

Also look into the Axiom line. Very surprising. in Ottawa was clearing out old stock on these before the price increase. M3Ti was going for a ridiculous $225 USD shipped 2 day air to the lower 48. This is an insanely good speaker for that price. Order the black through Marc. Good luck.
Great input.
The Maggies sound interesting. My reluctance to go with a two-way is that I like the big, dynamic sound I have now. What I like about the Kestral is the depth and the space around the instruments. Maybe the Maggie has both. Is the Musical Fidelity A3 enough at 125 watts? Is there another speaker with the "two-way" magic that's also load and dynamic? I'm willing to spend some $$ for the right speaker.

I'm also thinking that maybe I should set up a second system for lower volume listening to jazz, vocals and blues. This would use a small, tube-based integrated amp. The Kestrals rear-port would make placement difficult in a small room. I think that the Spica's would be perfect for that. Are they book-shelf or floor standing?

Mention of the Dalquist DQ-10 always brings great memories. This was the first truly hi-fi speaker I listened to in the first truly hi-fi system. Many brain cells were lost then but the sound still remains engraved.
I used to own the SPica tc-50s...and during their day they were a good speaker...and in terms of imaging and transparency...still highly regarded...however...they have no bass,little dynamics,and poor detail resolution compared to modern designs...their sound is cold and dark...since they are very forgiving...they would work well if you have older, rougher jazz or blues recordings ...especially vinyl...for a 2nd system they might work...

I also like the Maggie with most planar designs...they do lack some "body" in the midrange...and can a bit thin with amplified music...on acoustics,strings,and vocals they really shine...