Went down to Chappel's of Bond street today to check out Monitor speakers, tested out the HS50Ms and MSP5s. I can't really say which one is better... the HS50s definitely lacked bass, but the rest of it sounded very clear and sharp. The MSP5s on the other hand had a much stronger bass, and a smoother overall sound.
The lady who was demoing them to me also switched on the SW10 subwoofer, dang, that made a BIG difference. Not going to consider that as it's like more than the price of two MSP5s.
So, what next? The HS50Ms are almost a third cheaper than the MSP5s. I guess it's time to save up. I also listened to the MSP7s briefly, but could not hear what's better than the MSP5s.
The thing is, do I actually need a pair of monitor speakers? At the moment, using the VRM box is pretty good on the whole, the main issue I have with headphone mixing is levels. It is really difficult to adjust the relative levels - I rely on a small mono speaker for that at the moment, and would like a proper monitor to at least gauge my levels correctly. Given that apart from speakers, accessories like stands, isolation pads, cabling etc needs to be considered. Expensive hobby, this is.
~ pianos ~
On my way out, I though to try out the Clavinovas. The one I tried was the Yamaha CLPS408PE. And dang, the keybed is sooo good. The sound samples seemed to be very good as well, I thought I was much more expressive on it than my CP33. I think this is because it uses the GH3 keybed, and the RGE sound engine is probably lightyears ahead of my AWM engine. The touch is definitely closer (as I imagine) to my teacher's grand, though probably lighter, and no escapement.
There was also an AvantGrand in the shop but another customer was playing it so next time I visit Chappel's I'll see if I can give it ago.