Thanks, I like the look of the cherry too.
How are you enjoying your M3s? Did you have box speakers previously? I would have to buy without hearing them and so am nervous and trying to learn as much as possible from owners!
Thanks so much for your help
I only got the stereo pair hooked up last night. Immediately, I'm encouraged. My definition of revealing is about a low noise floor, clear gradation and delineation of recording character and quality, and a sound performance that is interesting to listen to, etc. Not "revealing" as I often understand its use, which I normally read as "brutal when/because something isn't right."
Anyhow, yes, I've owned and worked with many box speakers. My aim with this purchase was high value and high fidelity. Also, I'm a tweaker, but nod a modifier. I like a full-breadth, balanced sound and will aim for that first, and reaching for "absolute sound" occurs when successfully removing artifice around that balanced presentation.
Out of the box, there's nothing wrong with the M3 Sapphires, lots right, and their promise is evident. I didn't hear them before I took the plunge. It's the most I've ever spent on one piece of gear, and I'm glad I did. When I worked for Linn, Inc. here in the US, source is considered most important and speakers are the last/least piece of the playback chain. I didn't buy these to make better what I was hearing, but do expect their characteristics will serve as a clear window into the tale of my upstream choices.
About their bass performance, I'm not there yet; I'm only getting started, and my speaker bases are within 6" of the rear wall. I'll make 'em sound good given my circumstances, but they're not in an ideal setting. I anticipate they'll be akin to the experience I had when I owned a used pair of Magnepan Tympani 1D's, and a friend was listening to live Grateful Dead played via DAT and a McIntosh MC 2120 amp that I also used to own. He commented about the bass, and I pointed out, and asked him to notice, that the bass sounded like Phil Lesh, no more and no less... that was the quality (at least one) by which I judged my system.
Anyhoo. I'm happy and encouraged.