Apogee Scintilla...... but they're rare as hens teeth.
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"Ruthlessly revealing" is IMHO an oxymoron. Revealing is great - you can't get better than a speaker which can reveal all that the electonics have to offer. But, when the upper mids and highs are boosted to artifically give the appearance of more detail, then the speakers are no longer revealing as the umphasis in the tilted up area obscures information in other frequency bands. Ditto for electronics.
Perhaps you want to know which are the brightest and most unbalanced speaker on the planet?
I own speakers that would more than likely be considered as 'ruthlessly revealing', a 2-channel/HT set-up comprised of ATC speakers. They employ the same design standards as their highly regarded studio monitors. In spite of their 'ruthlessly revealing' character, they are not the least bit harsh. I think Newbee has a point in that many people seem to equate a highly revealing speaker with potentially bright, even harsh, sound and at the very least will repeat the "only sound good with great recordings" mantra. I might have thought so as well prior to my experiences with ATC, but contrary to this notion, I find the sound of everything from pristine audiophile-grade recordings to gritty punk-rock bootleg quality tracks to be all around deeper and more musically involving.
"ruthlessly revealing" isn't necessarily an oxymoron. A pair of speakers can be incredibly revealing and "ruthlessly" display any flaws of upstream components. Of course, this may/may not be a good thing, depending what type of electronics/other components (ie room) are in the picture.
The most revealing speakers I'VE heard are the Wilson Alexandrias. Usually subtle changes such as cable changes are instantly very noticable.
In the spirit of your question, I've found Thiel speakers to be extremely revealing. When first installed I revelled in the newly found detail but, after living with them for a while, "ruthlessly revealing" is an apt description IMHO. I sold my pair as they began to grate on me. Some of my favorite (poorly engineered) CDs were unlistenable.
I consider this for excellent studio monitors. Ones that won't let flaws hide. Recording engineers need that. So why do they use garbage brand X? That's another thread--we won't go there now. But ruthless in this sense doesn't mean bad--it means you are going to get the truth--like it or not. We've designed rooms like this, and there is no where to hide. Bad recording--you'll hear it. Great recording, well that's bliss.
Most ruthless are typically high-end monitors. They don't produce so much bass to muddy things and disguise flaws, What you hear is the truth of the recording. Genelec demo'd a speaker for about $20k at CES--that exposed everything. I find Talon Hawks to have similar attributes. I like ruthlessly revealing in the right context. The Von Schweikert VR-9, while full range, has adjustable bass and in the right room can also be ruthlessly revealing.
Keep in mind, those mentioned are just examples--there are many more. Nor, do I think that ruthlessly revealing is for everyone. Many speakers can convey the music, without being so revealing and may be more enjoyable for many listeners. I own multiple systems. None are ruthlessly revealing, though some components may be.
If you want "thoroughly" revealing -- meaning accurate reproduction of every separate sonic "event" in the source material, then I think you should consider an electrostatic loudspeaker.
I don't understand the use of the word "ruthless" in connection with music listening (with the possible exception of heavy metal)
VMPS RM 40's. I'm also recently a dealer for them but please accept my opinion as honest. The planar mids with the neo magnets and the ribbon tweeters let all the sound out that's in every pit. In my opinion planars, ribbons and electrostatics just have speed I've not heard from a cone although I've heard people say there are some. Line arrays with ribbon tweeters and many mid/woofs would also be up there. Go listen for yourself.
Some of the most resolving, coherent, natural sounding speakers I've heard:
Joseph Audio Pearls
Aerial Acoustics 20T
Having heard the Watt/Puppy 7's, I can only imagine how resolving the
Alexandrias must be.
Same with the Von Schweikert VR-9 SE's.
If price were no object and I was looking for the most highly resolving
speakers, these would be at the top of my list.
If you really want to reveal, then you are probably better staying away from 'hifi' speakers and go for studio monitors. Studio monitors are designed to reveal everything when engineering a track, hifi speakers try to enhance/embelish the sound. For a medium to high SPLs I'd go for Genelec's, for lower levels, something like PMC's which I've found in a number of mastering suites.
Personally, I'd stick with hifi speakers for home use, monitors sound fanatastic with a good mix, but will pick out all the flaws in a bad one. I love the Genelecs in the studio over all the other monitors, at home I like Spendors.
Opera speakers with diamond tweeter. These speakers pick up up all kinds of miking "games", filters used during recording. This speaker was far beyond any B&W (dunno about their diamond tweeter), JM Labs, or studio monitor I have ever heard.
Made most of my favorite recordings unlistenable. But then again, not everyone buys a stereo to play music they like.
i agree with newbee on this one.....are you refering to "bright" or "neutral/resolving"...
if neutral/resolving then i nominate the audio physic libra.... very revealing... made me a believer out of cable stands, power cords, isolation devices... they have to be tweaked within 1/16 " placement or it doesnt happen...