Heard the Spendor 9's. Been into audio 30 years. My reaction is the same as yours. The tone is very good for a 4k speaker. Remind me of the ProAc 2.5's. Open and smooth.
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I have the S9's and really can't summarize them any better than Spendor does on their website. They won me over after several months of auditioning similarly priced speakers from Magnepan, Thiel, Martin Logan, JMLabs, and Monitor Audio. It was the only audition where I truly craved listening to them again.
I would note that they are relatively inefficient (87db) and prefer solid state high current amps despite their easy impedence load (two dealers I spoke to have also concurred with this). They sounded unbelievable with the Plinius 150watt Class A amp. Similarly, I'm bi-amping them with McCormack DNA.5 Rev A for the highs and regular DNA.5 for lows.
Spendors build the sound from the back forward, versus the more common upfront/in-your-face sound. It results in a more balanced, natural, and musical presentation. On top of that, their legendary midrange has made many people conclude that Spendors are speakers for music lovers. I would concur.
The key that sold me on the S9 is that it kept all the virtues of Spendor's classic models, but added a pizazz that was missing - both sonically and musically. I'd be happy to give more specific info, but nothing beats listening to them first-hand. It made the choice very easy for me.
My comments relate to the FL-9. The S9 is an evolution of the FL-9, with same drivers and overall configuration but new style of bass porting and I think slightly upgraded wire.
The FL-9 had a LONG break-in period (during which bass was shallow) but now I love them (great bass!) and would never give them up. The creapy thing about Spendor speakers (this is my third pair, after 7/1 and 1/2) is that in a direct A/B comparison to other high end speakers, the other speakers often are better at audiophile adjectives (air, snap, imaging). But in EXTENDED listening sessions the Spendors TRASH other speakers. Ok, my Proac 2.5's were good competion (Spendor won but it was close) but the Thiels I've owned were ultimately not as satisfying even though the Thiels were way better in most objective ways. The Spendors reveal something in the music that I don't have an audiophile adjective for. My friend's 9/1's have the same characteristic.
The great thing about the FL,and now the S series is that they take the old great Spendor characteristics and put them into a modern design with nice slim looks and decent imaging.
I may change amps or other gear, but I don't expect to change speakers for a long time.
By the way, the better FL and S series models (the 9 and 10) use the tweeter from the Spendor Classic and Master series of speakers. The FL 6, S6, FL8, S8 don't use this tweeter. I'm not sure what the implications of this are. I have not spend extended time with the 6 or 8.