You could drop Gerard a e-mail at UHF. I believe they may be reviewing a pair to use in one of their systems....uhfmag.com. Good-luck.
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I own the Avatars. They are excellent speakers, particuarly suited for most domestic environments (not to big, not too small) They are easy to live with in a number of ways. They are (very) easy to drive, place, and listen to (never harsh). The overall characteristic to me that distinquishes these speakers from others is their easy going, natural sound. Do you find that everytime you put on a CD you have the urge to get up and change it to something else 3 minutes into the recording? You don't do that with the Avatars, you find that you are listening to the whole CD, start to finish. So, they are not hyper-detailed, tip-ed up, or etched sounding - a bit forgiving up top. Most British speakers are like this. I'll try to answer you specific questions. Placement: mine are about 9 ft from my ears; 1 ft from the side walls, 32 in from the front wall in a 12 ft wide room. The couch is in the middle of the 26 ft long room. (it is a living/dining/kitchen room) So, the room is pretty large. They guy I bought them from new a lot about them and set them up this way. Rather wide placement, with the tweeter axis pointed at your knees, a rather unusual placement he said was recomended by the designer. But, this does help with problems with side wall reflections. After the guy left them with me, I moved them around a bit, but they ended up exactly as he set them up. I haven't had the desire to move them since. I'm sitting at my dining table writing this note on my laptop. They sound fantastic back here as well, the imaging is not as good as on the couch, but the overall tonal balance is the same, and I do a lot of listening from this position while working. There is a sweet spot equi-distant from the speakers, of course, but I do a lot of listening laying on the couch or not exactly in this center position. The verticle dispersion is also very good. They sound fine at low volumes. Another high point to me is that they sound good at high volumes. I like "big" orchestral music and these speakers are easily the best smaller speakers I've heard at conveying the scale of a full symphony orchestra in a small room. (this is also something that some of the reviewers have said, I agree) I like all kinds of music, chamber, classical, jazz. I don't listen to rock so much. They are lighter speakers, so a kid could easily tip them over. But, I wouldn't say they are top heavy. And you'd have to have 100# speakers to avoid that. And, finally, yes a cello sounds like a cello. I've spent a lot of time concert halls, and know what real instruments sound like. A non-audiophile pianist friend of mine was over recently and said that of all of my set-ups I've had since he had known me (and there have been many!!!) this was easily the one that 'got the piano right'. I'll send you a picture of my setup if you want....let me know....feel free to correspond directly if you have other questions.
I have to agree with Joe Stereo, fine speakers for all musical genres. They are detailed but not in a fatiguing way, dynamic and make music a joy to listen too. They were built by a tube fanatic for tubes, but I do'nt see it. I've listened to the OBX at shows with 300b poweer amps and they are great but I'll stick to my Pass lab Aleph 3's from you're neck of the woods. But they are sensitive so they will cope with very low power. Am I the only who can appreciate 600 watt Krell's Levinson, Classe etc, but feel like I'm being beaten over the head by them.
To answer spefics:
They do need room to breathe, at least 2 feet from the back wall, preferably more. I've been moving them out slowly when the wife is'nt looking and each inch opens out the sounstage.
they do sound good at low volumes, again a problem I have with muscle amps that do'nt seem to.
They do have a big sweet spot, but sound good all round the room.
Yes they are "tippy", quite tall with a narrow footprint.
They are not monitors, the last word in detail and totally uncoloured. I do'nt care, sacrilige I know, but the failings are minor,mainly in the upper base and they just sound good and make music enjoyable.