These Merlin VSM-M's come with the Battery Bass Augmentation Module (BBAM) and have been lightly used and boxed up for the past 7 years after I moved into a small place without room for a sound system. I doubt there is a pair of VSM-M's available with lower hours. The grills have not even been pulled out of the plastic.
The speakers are currently in the Atlanta Georgia area, though I will be driving to south Florida in late October or early November, so I may be able to personally deliver them to a buyer in this region to avoid freight issues.
I've owned various high-end speakers but these are my favorites. They do everything well and provide an uncanny level of detail and resolution without becoming fatiguing or analytical. I am only selling them because I no longer have a listening room.
Here are some excerpts from a Sound Stage review (www.soundstage.com/rise11.htm) of the original VSM model, but this version I'm selling is the upgraded / improved VSM-M model with the BBAM to fill in the bottom end (which can be used via a/c or battery):
"The very first thing I noticed about the sound of the Merlin VSMs was the way they disappeared into the music they created. This is certainly due to their diminutive size--for a floor-standing speaker--and narrow front baffle. Recordings like Diana Krall's All for You seemed to emanate from no identifiable spot in my room, which is not to say there was no imaging but rather that the speakers were not heard as the starting point for the music. While my reference ProAc 4s conquer the room, melting away the walls around them, the Merlins surrender to the music and just completely vanish. This effect is very seductive--I just love being seduced--and it's something I can't imagine anyone would grow tired of, an instant and sustained WOW!
But there's more. As I pointed out in my sneak peek, the VSMs use one of the most expensive tweeters available, the Dynaudio Esotar. Thus you would expect their treble to be outstanding, and it is. In fact, I've rarely heard treble that has as perfect a combination of extension and smoothness as that of the Merlin VSMs. Luka Bloom's Turf showcases his ability to write poignant songs as well as accompany himself on 12-string guitar. Through the VSMs, Bloom's playing had the requisite, uh, bloom--and full-bodied, steely sheen. These helped to reproduce a very believable account of an amplified 12-string in my room. The VSMs are also effortlessly dynamic, no doubt due to their 90-db efficiency, and sound incredibly fast and airy. I liken the VSMs' treble to a visual sensation, the one you get when you look into the sky and see no clouds--anywhere. The blue seems endless, and so does the VSMs' ability to resolve musically significant detail without etch or hardness.
Continuing downward, the VSMs have tremendous midrange transparency, and in this respect, they have no peers among the many speakers I've heard. Voices have just the right combination of resolution and body, ultimately sounding closer to real than reproduced."
"The Merlin VSMs present a rich sonic package for a relatively modest price: treble extension without fatigue, midrange transparency that's the best I've heard, tight bass that may not extend to 20 Hz but doesn't sound noticeably weak, tremendous dynamics, and the ability to disappear into the music. Add to these traits the VSMs' contemporary beauty and a ten-year warranty and you have the best speaker value I know of. Blunt but true. * * * Gracefully resolving, effortlessly musical, the Merlin VSMs are one of the finest speakers I've heard at any price. "
"By the time you read this review, however, Merlin should be in production of the BAM outboard bass alignment module designed specifically for use with the VSMs. I'm sure they've done this to address the concerns of those potential buyers who just have to be able to say to themselves, 'Whoa, great bass.' The BAM was designed in conjunction with JPS Labs, and it reportedly extends the VSMs' bass smoothly down to 30 Hz with no sonic degradation elsewhere."