Wilson Benesch Chimera

Have any of you compared this speaker to other offerings in this price range (Avalon, Kharma etc.). I have not be able to listen to the speaker since there is not a single set in my country but they seem to use some very advanced cabinet and driver technology that could form the basis offer a very good speaker if they are put to good use.

Best regards
I haven't compared them to other speakers in a formal way. These speakers were partnered with Naim electronics at the recent HE2003 show in SF, and I listened to this system for about 40 minutes.

The demonstrator was playing a CD I did not know - noodling acoustic guitar work I did not really care for. The system sounded nice - but the disc was not a known quantity. I listened for about 20 mins. Then I asked if he would play my demo cut ("You Can Have Him" from the Misty River "Live" CD) and it sounded very good indeed.

This song on CD has some awesome acoustic bass, and the Wilson Benesch really nailed it, with terrific extension and speed, and reproduced the sound of the bass player's fingers sliding up the strings with stunning authenticity. There are four women running some very nice harmonies on this song, and the system did an excellent job there as well. The whole song had a really nice kick to it, good timing and rhythm.

I listened to this same cut in 7 rooms - and this room was as good as any I heard that day.

Next up was a multichannel demo of the opening song from Diana Krall's "Live in Paris" and although there were smaller Wilson Benesch providing the rear channel, there was no center channel and no subwoofer. The bass was strong and full, and the imaging was rock solid with immediacy and realism. I was very pleased by the whole performance, and it was hard to leave - especially with the Diana Krall visuals.

I had a close look at these unusual speakers - the 2 bass drivers mounted backwards are pretty unique. The fit and finish of the carbon fibre sections is very good, and there is no question that these are well made.

My notes on this room stressed the PRaT - as that was certainly a strong point, aided no doubt by the Naim electronics. But the Wilson Benesch were a good match.

Of course, you can't believe anything I say; not at this price. So you are going to have to audition these speakers for yourself. You say there isn't a pair in your country, so it doesn't seem like you are going to be able to listen to them before you buy. No matter how good a speaker may be, I would caution you not to buy without hearing. Even if you are excited by their technology, rule them out if you cannot hear them prior to purchasing - there is just too much money involved.

There are lots of reviews for other Wilson Benesch products on their website. That will give you an idea of how they are regarded around the world. The Discovery and Act I have received excellent reviews in TAS and Soundstage.
Stereophile had a couple of paragraphs on their home page a week or do ago, in which a staff member raved about the sound in the Wilson Benesch/Naim room at the H.E. Show.
I heard the Chimera at the H.E. Show also, and I was very impressed. (That's four woofers by the way, Metralla, in an isobaric configuration.....who needs a subwoofer!! ;-)
I heard the Kharmas, and they sounded excellent also, but I'd give the Chimera's the edge on room friendly-ness in the bass dept. and for the art of their design/looks.
I've heard some other Wilson Benesch speakers, and I can tell you that they are truly world class, you can't go wrong. You will have to have excellent associated equipment to do them justice! Of course there are other speakers I could talk about, but those two are the ones you asked about. Good luck.