Speaker recs. Please read all and reply. b&W, Vand

Full Disclosure. I recently purchased Adcom equipment. The GFA7400 amp and GTP-830. I understand this may not be the best in terms of quality equipment however for the price I bought it for, considering I wanted separates I could not turn it down. My plans are to make a solid system that will last me for years and give me audiophile performance. I need to still purchase speakers and a source for DVD/CD.
I listen to all kinds of music but I predominantly listen to Hip Hop, R&B, Rap. I also listen to rock and classical music once in a while. My wife has more varied tastes in music and I want to ensure the system will perform to her expectations as well. (this is a secondary goal) My buget for the speakers and DVD/CD is about $2000. Since I plan on making this a hobby I do not want to buy 5 speakers and a sub all at once. I want to expand bit by bit. I will need the system to meet all my home theater needs in the future.
I was thinking to begin by buying the DVD/CD, front speakers and sub first.
Thus far I have auditioned B&W DM603 s3, the 604, the 600 sub. During this listen I had brought my own CD's and therefore I know what it sounds like with the music I typically listen to. It was awesome until --

I listened to Vandersteen 2 Signatures. Please note I did not have the CD's I typically listen to but with the music the dealer played it just killed the B&W's. They aren't as pretty but the sound quality could not even compare.

I still want to try Magnepan's and any other hi end speakers that will fullfill my audio dreams. I really don't know what to do.

I want speakers that will last. If I buy the Vandys or Maggies, I don't know if they are good for the music I listen to. From what I have read it seems that these type of speakers are for folk and chamber music. If I play my harsher music on these speakers will it damage the speakers?
I know with a sub it the system will have an adequete amount of bass. Any suggestions would be helpful.
It's OK to solicit advise but like you've already discovered there is a difference & let your ears decide. (or at least be in the majority)

As for music damaging speakers, only if you clip. The speakers were made to reproduce a signal & don't know what the signal is. I'm not trying to be flippant but simply buy the speakers you like.

You've made a good start by going out & listening to different types & I suggest you keep doing this until you find something you're happy with!
Keep in mind that with the Maggies you will need the room to keep them away from the back wall. With the Vandys placement is not as critical and you can get away with less power. Good listening!
It sounds like you are well on your way to making a quality speaker choice. The Vandersteen 2CE Signature is an excellent speaker as are the B&W's that you have mentioned. The Magnepans are wonderful, but may require more power to work well. As others have already mentioned the Magnepans need to be critically placed to get the most out of them.

The Vandersteen 2CE Signature speakers are a very safe choice to make. They sound great, they will work well with your amplification setup, and they are not fussy in terms of placement. They are full range so you can enjoy R&B and Rap without the use of a subwoofer. Richard Vandersteen has produced this speaker in different upgraded forms for over 20 years. Tens of thousands of pairs are out there being listened to as you read this. I have owned them. I would assume that many of those who participate on this site have owned a pair of Vandersteens at one time or another. They are one of the great bargains in High End Audio. They would be my suggestion. I have suggested them to numerous people, even my ex-girlfriend from years ago still has a pair, and they all seem satisfied with the choice.

Good luck in your purchase and welcome to this disease of a hobby. May you be totally satisfied with your purchase and never look at another component again.
You were comparing a pair of entry level B&W’s with Vandersteens upper level model. Although the B&W Nautilus are a more expensive speaker they are a big improvement over the lower (CDM, 600 etc) models. This manifests itself through an noticeable smoothness and refinement with none of the grain of the lesser priced models (when used with better quality components, obviously).

I had a pair of Vandersteen 1B's for 8 years and loved them. Last summer I finally upgraded to the 2CE signatures and enjoyed finally having a pair of full range speakers. Until: I heard my brother's new pair of B&W 602 bookshelf speakers ($600 a pair). He was driving his speakers with my older electronics; Melos SHA-1 preamp and a B&K ST-202 Amp, Kimber PBJ etc) Granted, his sound had a bit more grain (much of this probably from his Pioneer CD/DVD player) but the midrange was just so much more involving. These little B&W's' just ROCKED compared to my $2K Vandersteens! Two weeks later I had sold my Vandersteens and purchased a one-year old pair of B&W Nautilus 803's. The 803’s are about twice the price of a new pair of Vandy 2CE Sigs so Vandys are an excellent audio value. My final synopsis is this: My Vandersteens sounded beautiful with Classical, Chamber music & Jazz combos. But with anything heavier, like Hip Hop, rock etc they were just too damn POLITE. They just seemed unhappy being cranked on the few occasions I pushed them. I even experienced Vandy's protective circuit kicking in during an extended Rocking session at my New Years Eve party. B&W’s just seem like a much more fun speaker, happy with ANY kind of music I pump through them.

Another quick story: I have a friend who works at a sound studio here in Chicago. He’s recorded many different kinds of music including lots of Hip Hop lately. The studio uses B&W’s, Manley speakers and a pair of Vandersteens. He’s told me that bands continue to choose the Manleys & B&W’s when mixing. As accurate as the Vandys are, the same music just doesn’t sound as engaging as on the others. Good luck with your decision but make sure you spend a lot of time playing your kind of music on the Vandersteens before you buy!