Still, a view from "higher up" is something that many of us are not privileged to. Looking at the major complaints from those higher up, a couple of things draw attention to themselves:
1) don't change anything unless you have a reason. I think that I have read at least a thousand times about this tweeter, this horn contour, this tube with NO REFERENCE TO WHAT WAS WRONG BEFORE. Basic sound is actually very easy. Instruments have specific timbres, ensembles are seated in "predictable patterns", rooms where live music is performed has predictable sense of "space". It should be easy for even us dummies to figure out based on these simple characteristics what we like and what could be better. Without a clear idea, we are subject to whim not knowledge. When our playback is to the point where there are few distractions from the MUSIC, then the depth of our souls becomes more of an issue. I think that the technical minded have more trouble ignoring playback issues than most musicians. That creates a problem with common language.
2) having an opinion is one thing, broadcasting it is another. We all like what we like based on what we know. When informing others about what we like, it is useful to at least share some common language. If our knowledge base is limited, we can only describe symptoms - not the root cause! It makes no sense to criticize dipole speakers if you can't describe what they do in your own words. It makes no sense to criticize big horn speaker setups if your listening room will never be bigger than 20 square meters. You simply can't relate to what those more fortunate live with.
3) Enjoyment covers a big field. There are some that can get musical meaning out of portable radio playback and others with half a ton of audio gear that enjoy the technical much more than the musical. It is only audio and not worth losing sleep over. It can be great fun if we let it be!
4) Be proud of YOUR successes. Even if you have a "dummy" or "moron" full range backloaded 3" speaker and a 500 watt PMPO solid state entertainment center, you can get started by LISTENING and identifying some of the stuff talked about by others here. Stuff a pillow in the BL horn or move the speaker 3 feet away from the wall and figure out the difference. Get together with others and experiment with simple changes. Take notes and you will be at the beginning of a wonderful journey. Many times our ears can point us in wonderful directions if we turn off prejudices.
5) The road to better is paved with knowledge not hearsay. It takes a lot of experience to come to valid conclusions. Less bass could mean more transparency to some, to others increased definition and to others simply less bass. To really know, you have to live with it for a while, compare it to other experiences. If you take notes, you have words describing sensations - this leads to better descriptions of those sensations.
6) Accept the fact that you still have a long way to go. If you don't feel a need to change anything, there is nothing wrong with that. If you feel that some aspect of playback is constricted or exaggerated, examine those feelings. We mostly only notice things that are in excess. The mind is better at filling in things missing.
Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
I really enjoy this site. Romy has a fresh view that is actually easy to understand, if one simply reads instead of interpreting what he writes.