The Most Realistic Speaker Technology?

OK, maybe this is the question that I should have asked originally...

I need some help, because I am now more confused than ever. I am in the market for new speakers, and have about $10,000 to spend, more or less. I am looking for the most "realistic", "true-to-life", "you-are-there", quality speaker there is, at that price. But the sheer number of speaker companies, speaker technologies, and speakers out there is mystifying, stupefying, and bewildering, so my search has been extremely confusing. I am not a constant upgrade kind of guy, and I don't have a lot of money, and so the speakers that I buy are the ones that I have to keep for a long time, and so it is even more imperative that I make the right and wise decision.

I realize that everyone has their own different opinion of things, and that different people like different types of sound from their speakers, and that that may be their favorite whether or not the sound coming from their speakers sounds even remotely realistic at all. And, while I respect the right for everyone to like their own particular pair of speakers that puts out a particular type of sound that suits them that they like and that sounds good to them as their favorite, regardless of whether it sounds realistic or not, my tastes are slightly different. My particular idea of good speakers are speakers that produce sound that sounds "real", or speakers that sound like a live performer is playing right there in front of you. Please forgive my particular taste, I know that a pair of speakers can sound perfectly good to someone whether or not they sound very realistic at all, but that is just what I personally in my own opinion consider good speakers, speakers which produce music which sounds as lifelike and as close to reality as possible.

And so, the first step that I am trying to do in order to nail down my speaker search is to isolate the type of speaker technology that sounds the most realistic. Since I know that most of you have heard literally dozens and dozens more different types of speakers in your lifetime than I have, all from many different types of assorted speaker technologies, can any of you tell me what, in general, is the speaker technology or type of speaker that sounds the most realistic and true to real life, like having a live performer playing right in front of you, that sounds the most similar to that? I know that part of this depends upon the system setup and synergy, room treatments, etc., etc., and I know that people do not always prefer the most realistic sound, but oftentimes just prefer the sound that sounds good to them, but surely, there must be some speaker technologies that sound more realistic, and more true-to-life than others. Please keep in mind that I am only asking for the speaker technology that sounds the most realistic, and not for a speaker company or a speaker itself, as I think that that would be impossible for anyone to say.

Knowing that most of you have heard many other speakers than me, and from all different types of speaker technologies, I thought that maybe some of you guys could tell me, maybe some of you could then give me a good place to start, or at least some of the more stronger options that there are available out there in terms of true-to-life music and sounding the most realistic.

If you could please help me out with a little advice other than, "well it all depends on you, you just have to listen with your own ears, and try to find what sounds right, and decide for yourself", that would be great. Because, unfortunately, that does not help me out much because I do not have "golden ears" as they say, and I do not even know what to listen for. Can you guys please help me out, and at least give me some places to start in terms of which speaker technology I should be looking at more than others, to get the most realistic sound? I would really appreciate it.

Thanks to all of you for your responses, I really appreciate all of your help, and am grateful to you for any help, tips, and advice, that any of you guys can give me. All advice is appreciated.

Showing 1 response by emailists

I think you have answered your own question. Surely it must be the "Realistic" brand sold locally by Radio Shack. If it wasn't truly realistic, couldn't they be sued for false advertising?

Ok seriously. As other have alluded to, I think you have to look at the system as a whole expendature and plan. You didn't mention what the rest of your gear consists of.

Since you can't afford to make costly mistakes and swap out gear as many of us do, I think you need to really take a good long time and educate yourself as to what is out there, and what type of sound you like, are looking for, and is appropriate for the space you have and your musical tastes.

Sure planars can be rewarding, but they should be far out into the room. Can you accept large room dividers?

Maybe your looking for a truly full range speaker, so bass performance will be a key factor in your choice. Maybe you listen to chamber music or small acoustic ensambles, so you value midrange purity at the expense of extension. You should also become familair with tube vs. solid state sound and convenience, as this might alter your choice. Maybe you are an imaging fan, or want something very liquid and organic sounding, forgoing ultimate detail.

Bottom line is listen to as many speakers as you possibly can. Determine what your tastes are (surely there is no perfect wine - people have diffferent palates) and educate your ear at the same time.

After a few months you'll know yourself what kind of sound and what type of speaker you are looking for. You'll have a favorite 2 or 3, then you can research what people have written about them, and perhaps read about other brands that people have commented about in the same post. Then you'll try and listen to those. If you take the time to research all of this, you may very well find your dream speaker/system that you will be confident was the right choice for you, and one you can be happy with for a very long time.