Sorry for the delay in response -- I've been doing other "life" stuff, and hadn't checked the thread...
The Escalante Design Pinyons, as can be expected from being monitors, image extremely well. Beyond that, however, they also present an extraordinary amount of detail without sounding too analytical. I listened to various other monitors that were impressive: the Magico minis come to mind, but at $20K+ for a pair of monitors
Most of the models that presented similar amounts of detail tended to sound a bit harsh, analytical, and ultimately, fatiguing. I would describe them as being somewhat cold. On the other side of the coin were the speakers that sounded warm and rounded. They were less fatiguing than their analytical brethren, but left me wanting more detail and zing. I always got the uncomfortable feeling that I was listening to a musical picture that was missing something; that the music was lagging the true picture. After a while, I would find myself going back and forth between two sets of speakers that represented the two extremes, while wishing for a pair that could do both the detail AND the musical part, without the shortcomings of either pair.
When I first heard the Pinyons, I was floored. I was finally able to just relax and listen to the music, rather than spend time looking for flaws in the reproduction. Now, I consider myself to be an appropriately jaded listener. Ive heard a lot of systems, starting in 1977, and am not easily impressed. For a speaker to leave an impression that deep, and that quickly, is quite a feat. Still, I took my time (months and months) and continued checking out other systems, looking over specs and technical info about the operating principles behind the sound, and listening some more, with all different types of music to ensure that I wasnt overlooking some hidden deficiency. What I found was that, coupled with their Uinta subwoofer, (one of the few subwoofers fast enough to keep up with the Pinyons), they cover the entire range from top to bottom, and they do so seamlessly, with a natural quality that is almost eerie. Overall, the sound is extremely smooth, musical, and effortless, allowing you to hear into the music and its original recording venue. The depth and detail that they can reproduce is simply stunning.
But perhaps the most telling aspect of their reproduction is what happens when I invite friends (both audiophile and non-audiophile) over. When I play their CDs, they think I've substituted a "special" version of their CD for theirs. I hear things like: "Where did those other things come from?" referring to the speakers ability to reveal layers of vocals and instruments, accurately represented in time and space. They comment on how they can hear all the detail, all the instruments clearly, but presented as a complete picture sonically. Having heard my previous reference speakers (Apogee Duettas), they were shocked that this sound was emanating from a dynamic speaker.
In fact, even though I currently own a pair of Fremonts, I am toying with the idea of keeping the Pinyons as the main speakers in a second system
or even a third