I have heard the 3.7's and I totally agree with you :)
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I love the Thiel CS3.7. The bass is not as massive as in my former Revel Salon1 but the Thiel is a pretty amazing package for the price and I like it more than the Salon. I like it over all the speakers I heard in the 20K and under range. I am going to buy this speaker soon. I have heard the CS3.7 with a Thiel sub ($5000 I think) and I hated the combo. There could be several reasons for this but I was happy I liked the lower priced speaker over the speaker + sub.
While I wait for a place with more living room space I bought the Thiel SCS4 which has the same tweeter as the 3.7. The sound is not harsh but very nice for a relatively inexpensive monitor ($998/each). I have paired the speakers with a Bryston 4B-SST and I have not complaints about the harshness of the sound. There are many posts in AGon about Thiel being harsh and Bryston also being harsh. You would think both together would be unbearable based on comments here.
In the past I have sold off speakers I found too harsh (rookie mistake buying those decently rated speakers). But the new Thiels tweeters are not that way at all.
The new stereophile has an article that mentions other speakers in the Thiel 3.7 class that the reviewer(s) would consider to own.
I pretty much agree with you on your 3.7 thoughts. I do not however fined them thin and my guess is you have gotten used to some extra bass from your Vandersteen Quatro Signature II. Every Vandersteen I have heard has had the bass goosed by the owner (nothing wrong with that by the way, I like my bass too). Anyway the Thiel have enough bass for a mid sized room but will sound thin is large rooms. They are some of the most dynamic speakers I have heard, they seem very quick to start and stop every note.
I would give the Revel Ultima Salon II a try as well. Used they are about the same price as the 3.7 new. They are also flat and dynamic but have better bass weight (but no more punch). The highs are cleaner on the Salon 2 but you do lose a little bit of the midrange magic that the Thiel has going on IMO.
It is too bad Jim passed... From what I understand he left drafts for Thiel to make a 7.3 but knowing Thiel it will still be a long time before we see a model come to market.
No, I run my Quatro's dead flat per the EQ data. The eleven band equalizer smooths the room signature peaks and dips, it doesn't eliminate it. Simple laws of physics say a box the size of the Quatro (3.7 is about the same volume) and about the same efficiency and X-over design, isn't going to play as deep with just the box. You need some serious help (two x two hundred watt class B ampplifiers in the Quatro's case!). So the Quatro isn't magic, you pay to play, a BIG box or active and carefully matched amplification.
I ended up really liking the Dynaudio C4 series II signature. Oh yes, a BIG tall box with lots of volume. There is no good way around this physical reality. They go "up" instead of "out". But volume it still is!
Passive radiators can help tune volume in a small band in smaller boxes but you lose tightness as a trade. The 3.7's are far and away the best application I've head that use a passive radiator. Its so good you won't miss the last 10Hz all. THAT is why it is so good, they made what bass the apeaker does do perfect. Quality over quantity.
I auditioned the same music sources I use every day on my Quatro's, and deep the Quatro's go in my solid basement room. But the Theil 3.7 is one nice sounding speaker, in the 10K range I have the Quatro wood and the 3.7 as my top picks so far (they knock out a lot way above that, too!).
The C4 series II is serous money to move up to, or the Revel Salone studio 2 and the like. To get that FULL size soundstage and bass depth AND with impact, you need a large box. The price of the C4 II pretty much stops me in my tracks from the likes of a Vandertseen Model 7!