Originally Posted by World Leader Pretend
Whaa? I've got a tiny room and I wouldn't trade my dual 18s for anything less. At some point you need to have enough displacement to go deep enough. Measuring a sub by the size of its cone isn't the smartest thing to do.
I think WLP is still a quite a bit over-geared for his space, but there is some logic to having high output speakers/amplifiers and running them at (comparatively) lower levels, rather than lower output speakers and amps being driven higher. Particularly with cone speakers (couldn't speak as much to electrostatic, etc.) their accuracy improves with ample amplification at lower overall levels. It mostly has to do with the undesirable acoustic results when the cone/diaphram of a speaker is extended towards it's limits.
It's important to remember that wattage is only a measure of dB (or loudness/intensity) if you're looking at it exponentially. Purchase your amplifiers based on the power needs of your speakers. Contrary to popular belief, you are much more likely to "blow out" your speakers by under-powering them than overpowering.
Edit: Oh, and I like Marantz
receivers, if you aren't looking at completely separate amplification, integration and processing. B&W
speakers are pretty awesome.