Speakers that leave room to upgrade front-end

I'm looking for speakers for a small apartment-- listening area is about 10' x 10' and whole room is 13' wide x 27' long x 9.2' high and i listen across the width of the room. Very varied musical tastes-- I keep my music alphebetized, and a typical range from the "Ps": Charlie Parker, Maceo Parker, Gram Parsons, Pearl Jam, Michael Penn, Portishead, Pretenders, Prince...... What are your suggestions in the $1.5K range?

Please keep in mind that I don't want to get too far ahead of my front-end equipment-- I'm running a Rotel rsp-960ax preamp into a Parasound HCA-806 (6 X 80 wpc if I recall correctly). I anticipate upgrading the amp set-up to bi-amp the mains with a nice ss 2-channel amp like a little Bryston. Down the road, I definitely anticipate bi-amping the mains using the small solid state for the lows and a tube amp for the highs--nothing too esoteric though.

In short, I need speakers that will work nicely with my current mid-fi set-up but that will be good enough to take me through a couple substantive upgrades over the next several years. I've looked at the SF Concerto and the small Energy Veritas-- I'm very open to alternative suggestions.


I recently heard some wonderful small floorstanders from Totem, the Hawks. They list for $2,200 but I have seen them used and it's possible you could get close to budget even new from a dealer.

They were being played through a better-than-midfi system (Simaudio) and sounded just fantastic on all kinds of music.
Try to audition electrostatics. In your range you should be able to score used Martin Logan's or Innersounds. Stat's are extremely clean, detailed, and image great depending on room setup . The lean sound that is sometimes pointed out as a problem with stats is tempered by tubes. I use Logans and tubes in a dedicated room just a little bigger than your dimensions and love the combination. With a dedicated room of your size you should at least try to hear it setup with ML Aerius.

Have fun.
I agree with Danlevy. You would be well served with Hawks, or Forests from Totem used. They can live with your amplification and will really improve with a better amp like a bryston. Also, they work well close in and against walls and are an excellent small room speaker. You could also go with one of the stand mounted totem's but the floorstanders are easier to fit in. good luck.
Cones vs Planars, now there is a REAL fork in the road.
I currently use a pair of Totem model 1's in my audio room (matched with a REL sub) and a pair of Totem Arro's in my den. The Arro's are made for small rooms and can be placed close to the back wall. Check out the reviews. For a small speaker, you get a pretty big sound. You will still need good source equipment to get the best sound.
Totems would be very nice (good suggestion, Dan). Having some options to consider, though, is ideal, even if you ultimately go with the Totems. So, you might look into some of the Axiom line or the smaller stand-mounted ATCs.
check the archives. Just broken in pair easily obtained in this price range with high end finish + stands.
I auditioned the Fabers,SPendors, and many other good speakers...but went with the new Quad 12L standmounter...they have a very, open airy quality with surprising deep,tight bass...and they are revealing enough to be mated with very hi-end equipment...such as Quads own amps and CDP...they retail for 1k...plus stands...bring you to about 1.5k...if there is anything better for the money...I certaintly havent heard it...