Still looks pretty good tbh, at least in my opinion. Maybe not Genelec/Neumann good, but I've seen far worse(ex: PMC) for the price. From the googling I've been doing, they seem somewhat like ATC. Better than most passives, but not top tier for actives. Price is too high imo(which is I guess your point), but it seems that - like ATC - they've built a name that people are willing to pay more for than the actual performance justifies.
They haven't quite got ATC's legendary status but I agree. I tend to think that PSI has better, more modern design than ATC as well. The internals are certainly more complicated with that cascade of allpass filters.
If we rewind the clock a few years there was no good measurement data available outside of S&R (PSI datasheets publish DI as well as on axis FR and phase, which is pretty good). I really believe that has harmed manufacturers more than they are aware. They set a price point according their own sense of reasonability and costs and functioned because, using a term from finance, price discovery was limited. Consumers didn't know what they were getting for the money, and manufacturers weren't sure what they were selling for the money relative to their competitors. Or they could make believe they were selling to different markets/demographics and did not have to directly compete because they filled some niche.
Now that you can directly compare between speakers and prices globally by using measurement data, PSI tends to look worse. Take the earlier version of the A14M, measured by S&R in 2009:
The current version definitely shows some improvements, particularly in correcting that 1.5kHz dip and decreasing the amount and intensity of resonances, but is otherwise largely the same.
Similar strengths/problems recur in the larger A17M (measured in the same article):
Again a dip, some resonances, and semi consistent horizontal directivity, unremarkable vertical directivity.
The current PSI series in CAD
looks like this (price for one):
- A25M: $6.9k
- A23M: $6.3k
- A21M: $4k
- A17M: $2.5k
- A14M: $1.9K
The price of one A14M is equal to two KH120
s. When you get to the largest speaker the price discrepancy evens out: $6.5k for KH420
and $7k for a Genelec 8361A
. (The last three links are to S&R reviews.)
I think the main things to fault them about are the insufficient waveguides, directivity and potential resonances. Even if they consider their results sufficient and justifiable, the tradeoffs don't seem worthwhile in my eyes. But this is only because the data is more or less available. I would not have been able to make an informed decision before, and didn't.