You should post pics of your system. Love to see it.
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More than anything, I think it is the placement that affects the speakers the most. The amp/preamp is also a factor - but you have optimized your setup to your room. There are few dealers with multiple speaker setup that do that in a demo room. I had this experience when purchasing the Parasound A21 amp. I took my modest NAD integrated to the dealer and used it with the same amp that the A21 was connected to. The A21 was better, but not that much. Once I got a new one home, that is when I "really" heard it in full glory.
So, components at the dealer's place may be fine. It may be the setup and the room.
And yes, do post your system pics.
B_Limo, I had both Studio 60 and 20. Studio 20 had annoying frequency hump around 120Hz that is most likely multiple of bass reflex tuning frequency.
It is a matter of synergy. Aluminum dome tweeter was very revealing. It became unbearable with open sounding class D amp and Benchmark DAC1. Hyperion HPS-938 that I bought next is warm, sweet sounding in the same system. Both Paradigm and Hyperion are great speakers in their price ranges but synergy is a must.
If the gear doesn't make a difference, then why aren't we all using $200.00 receivers? If balanced xlr's, $300 speaker cable, external dacs and upgraded power supplies don't make a difference, how come I heard an audible difference with each of these upgrades? I agree that a room does affect sound quite a bit, but don't the components also? If I'm wrong, maybe I should sell all my gear and get a $200 sony that has phono inputs and an e.q. ;-)
Kijanki, I agree with your point about system synergy. I recall reading some pretty unfriendly reviews of the Paradigm Signature 8 v1, which had aluminum tweeters.
Some of the comments mentioned listening fatigue which the listeners attributed to the S8 v1's tweeters. Other listeners said the S8 v2 and v3, which use beryllium tweeters, were "tipped bright," even hot. I own the S8 v2's, but drive the speakers with all ARC tube gear. I think the speakers sound just fine. I surmise ARC tube gear tames the S8's Be tweeeters.
I suspect that synergy issues follow most systems, maybe even $160K Magicos or Wilsons. I also agree with Viridian that room placement makes a big difference too. Paradigm speakers are generally designed to have flat a FR. Perhaps the 120 Hz "hump" you heard may have been a low frequency harmonic bouncing around.
In any case, sounds like you're in audio heaven now. So enjoy!!