Volent VL-2 SEPrice: $8500 per pair

Website: www.volent.com.hk

Doug said: It’s also a seriously good speaker with exceptional build quality, terrific looks, and a wonderfully distinctive sound: deep, rich bass that will have you believing you’re listening to a much larger speaker; a well-balanced midrange that’s wholly natural and seamless, despite the very different technologies of its two drivers; and clear, prominent, lively highs that can sound spectacular with well-recorded music, but can veer toward brightness with "hot" recordings. In my opinion, where the VL-2 SE stands tallest is in the areas of transparency and detail.

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: Unique, expensive two-way that delivers distinctive sound.