As recipient of Rick's phenomenal work, my gratitude cannot be expressed in words.
There was a mishap with one of the speakers stuck in the mail system for almost a month, so I had the displeasure of looking at a single speaker, anxiously waiting for its significant other to arrive and wondering how they would sound like as a pair. Just imagine my pain of how to have lived through that month.
The color, in retrospect, was a mistake on my part. I took a photo of my flooring with my phone and asked Rick what would be the closest finish to it. If you were in the same boat don't do it! Have to have the proper white balance and brightness calibrated for this to have worked. But, by accident, the result matches the color of my theatre room perfectly. And all in all I loved the awesomeness of this special finish, even if I only got it by accident.
For the longest time Tempesta had been Selah's flagship bookshelf and 'II' improves upon what was already the best. (Although now the baton seemed to have passed onto the DSP-based Epico.) Transparent would be the word I would describe them. There is nothing between me and the recording. The speakers did not add any sound of their own. The name of the game is speed. RAAL ribbons are fast and the Accuton C51's are fast. But they do not sound bright or brittle - the sound is as close as the real thing as can be. But don't expect any fat warm mellow sound, these speakers add nothing and they won't embellish what was there.
The setup is very sensitive to ear height (as can be expected because of RAAL's vertical dispersion) and needs to be rather far out from the front wall. I haven't figured out optimal placement for imaging yet, but this is my own problem as I am pretty certain these speakers are considered relatively easy for placement. (There are no abrupt dispersion changes at either of the crossover points.)
Having lived with them for only a week or so, maybe it is premature for me to hit the submit button, but these are my thoughts so far. (I listen to mostly orchestral and some jazz.) But I consider myself so lucky to be able to have a pair of speakers like these. I have always wanted to have an end-all pair to stop all potential future upgrades and I thought these will be passed onto my children and my grandchildren as heirloom, and they are that good.