I sometimes group systems into two categories: those you can step into without adjusting, and those you cannot.
A great place to experience what I am referring to is an audio show, where room after room has a different system setup.
Enter room one and your reference disc sounds like what you would expect. Enter room two and that same disc sounds very different.
What you might find illuminating is this: the longer you listen, the more acceptable your ears are to the sound. You get used to the colorations of the system.
I personally struggle with this. If a system is so far out of my comfort zone, it doesn't feel to me as if it's musical. I don't stay and get adjusted. The transitions are too jarring.
What's been your experience?