2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback

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Triode Pete

2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« on: 17 Feb 2023, 04:03 pm »
The show kicked off smoothly. Room 403 sounds incredible!



Plenty of libations for those who want a relaxing musical experience!



TWL is also in Room 503 with Leo from Orchard Audio and AJ from Soundfield Audio. Room sounds great!



Cheers,
Pete

RonN5

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #1 on: 17 Feb 2023, 07:10 pm »
Volti  always sound really good....Really happy to hear that the Orchard/Soundfield pairing is also excellent...but honestly, this is not a surprise. Its gotta be the wires!

rollo

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Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #2 on: 17 Feb 2023, 07:48 pm »
  You are hearing a system. TWL ties systems together

charles



Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #3 on: 18 Feb 2023, 05:46 pm »
  You are hearing a system. TWL ties systems together

charles



Volti  always sound really good....Really happy to hear that the Orchard/Soundfield pairing is also excellent...but honestly, this is not a surprise. Its gotta be the wires!

Thanks, guys!!!


Btw, an extremely busy Day 2 at the show!




Cheers,
Pete

RonN5

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #4 on: 19 Feb 2023, 12:10 am »
Visited this room twice today…the Razz and the Rival both sounded both beautifully musical and powerful at the same time…

This room is a definite must hear!

orchardaudio

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Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #5 on: 19 Feb 2023, 11:39 am »
The harpist Isabeau Corriveau was the highlight of the show for me.
https://www.youtube.com/live/6vT0-Qi9hWY?feature=share

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #6 on: 19 Feb 2023, 10:01 pm »
Some comments on our Room 403…




Cheers,
Pete

tonyptony

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #7 on: 22 Feb 2023, 02:05 am »
It was good listening in the Volti room, and it was good talking with you about power cords, Pete!  :thumb:

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #8 on: 26 Feb 2023, 04:08 pm »
From Positive Feedback's Tom Gibbs... https://positive-feedback.com/show-reports/florida-audio-expo-2023-part-3/

Florida Audio Expo 2023 - Part 3
02-24-2023 | By Tom Gibbs | Issue 125



Volti Audio with Border Patrol and Triode Wire Labs

Volti Audio's room is always a "can't miss" for me. Greg Roberts of Volti and "Triode Pete" Grzybowski are two of the nicest, most accommodating guys in high-end audio, and spending time in this room is like visiting with old friends. They're always quick to offer a beverage, and never refuse a music request, and generally will accommodate any volume level for any particular selection. That keeps the show attendees happy, and also gives them an excellent opportunity to check out the synergy of the particular system on display in the room.



The Border Patrol tube electronics and Triode Wire cables are an integral part of Volti Audio's excellent sound!

This year Volti featured two loudspeakers, the "New Rival" and the Razz (which I reviewed for Stereophile a couple of years ago). The New Rival has a slightly more compact cabinet structure compared to the original Rival, but still features the same internal componentry found in Volti's flagship Vittora loudspeaker. The Razz offers a generous helping of the sonic signature of its larger siblings in the Volti line, which, considering its quite reasonable price point, is pretty amazing. Amplification and DAC were, as always, all-tube from Border Patrol, and the excellent cables were supplied by Triode Wire Labs. Streaming was courtesy of an Innuos ZENith/Phoenix stack.



The New Rival loudspeaker is an superb update on the original!

I missed the Razz demo, which is usually much later in the afternoon, but made it in time to get an extended listen to the New Rivals, which were cranking out some Led Zep as I slipped into the crowded room. The sound was robust, but still very fluid, especially in the midrange and top end. No doubt due to Greg's constant attention to the crossover elements he employs in his designs—and the tubed Border Patrol amp and DAC contribute mightily to the great sound. A guy sitting beside me leaned over and asked "So how do you like the sound?" I told him he was asking the wrong guy, that I'd wear his ears out about how great this room and those loudspeakers sound. He just laughed, but he also hung around and continued to enjoy the music for an extended period—this is one of those rooms you just can't get enough of!

Thanks, Tom!

Cheers,
Pete

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #9 on: 27 Feb 2023, 11:16 pm »
Some superb feedback from the Editor-in-Chief of Part Time Audiophile, Scot Hull,  https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2023/02/27/triode-wire-labs-borderpatrol-innuos-and-a-double-shot-of-volti-flax-2023/

Triode Wire Labs, BorderPatrol, Innuos, and a double-shot of Volti | FLAX 2023



They’ve been showing together for so long that I have a hard time remembering when the last didn’t. Triode Wire Labs, BorderPatrol Audio Electronics, and Volti Audio are, for better or worse, linked in audio recent show mythology as the Three Amigos. It’s kind of remarkable, actually, because Pete, Gary, and Gregg are all rather different, and agree on rather little. Listening to them talk, they sound like siblings — the in-jokes fly fast and furiously, punctuated by constant ribbing, and an impressive amount of laughing — both with and at each other.

In contrast to the fussy and meticulous care they bring to room-setup, their demos are almost notoriously laid back — there’s no weird lighting, no tight-fitting sport coats, no endless list of mysterious widgets being un-plugged or plugged back in, no RedBull-fueled monologue riddled with pseudo-science or outright snake oil. There’s only the music. And that, perhaps, is how it should be.

At every show, I visit these guys early and often. For me, their room is a palate-cleanser of sorts. I’m deeply familiar with their “house sound” and I am 100% simpatico with it. In the spirit of full disclosure, I consider these three guys to be friends — and that is, in part, because the consistent quality of their demo rooms over the years has kept me locked in a permanent orbit — but I am also a customer. I have gear from all three and love that gear to pieces.

Let’s start in the middle.

The BorderPatrol SE-i DAC is a converter that PTA readers ought to be rather familiar with by now. To wildly understate the obvious, I quite like it. I find that it “does things” that few converters do — it makes me want to listen. Very recently, Herb Reichert of Stereophile used the analogy of the glass to talk about DACs — and, in one of the most interestingly useful digressions I’ve ever read, talked about the different kinds of glass and how DACs might sound like this or that. To my ears, the BP DAC is the closest I’ve come to no glass at all, and that is something I continue to prize. With that kind of sound, who cares about high resolution?

That DAC was connected to my favorite of the BorderPatrol amplifiers — the S20, a parallel single-ended 300b amplifier, shown here with the “modest” EXD power supplies and a quartet of new 300b power tubes from Western Electric. This amp puts out a modest 20 watts per channel — and if that feels “light”, I will refer the reader to those who are using this amp or a variant to power loudspeakers from Wilson Audio or Tidal Audio. Clearly, it is not the case that every watt is equal. Gary is happy to talk nerd with any who ask, and if you do ask, you’ll likely get a screed on the vital importance of good power — he personally favors the tube rectified choke input filter variety, which he uses extensively.

Triode Wire Labs carries the signals out. I don’t really know what the secret sauce is here with TWL, but it’s pretty clear that there is a secret sauce, and this system sounds better because of it. The Obsession power cords (from $1499 each) have Furutech FI-50 NCF connectors; the Digital American power cords (from $499 each) have a special noise-reducing feature that I am not smart enough to understand; and the American Speaker Cables (from $699 per set) were fitted out with Cardas CAB bananas and the Spirit II (from $399) features OCC 7n copper. The Digital Interconnect (from $399) is a “split power & data” USB cable — and is a personal reference.

And that brings me to the silent partner — Innuos. Two out of three of my personal systems use Innuos servers because of their quality and their ease of use. Here, the Amigos were using the ZENith and the Phoenix Reclocker.

That was the standard gear. What changed, depending on the day, were the loudspeakers.

On my first visit, I heard the Volti Razz (starting at $6,500/pair), which here was finished in a raspberry (colored) veneer. This loudspeaker, which I haven’t spent much time with, comes in a variety of stylish clothes, err, veneers. The cabinets are tall, the speakers relatively easy to drive (97dB), and are fun as hell to use and listen to. Seriously, for this money, this kind of sound is both very difficult to find, and if you do, tends to be rather expensive, vintage, or unobtanium. As a current-production entry-level offering, the standing recommendation from the PTA team has been to run, not walk, and grab a pair while Greg continues to offer them. “A steal” might be not be strong enough wording.

But for my taste, it was the much ballsier New Rival (starting at $14,995/pair) that really tickled my fancy even while it was punching me in the gut — the drive, the bass, and the finesse of this speaker is just excellent. Oh, why “New”? Well, pretty much for a lot of little reasons, Greg says — “new crossover tweaks, new bracing, new this that the other and that thing I could tell you about but would have to put you in a ditch for, wait, are you seriously writing all of this out, Scot?”

After all that, it might seem a bit anti-climactic, but climbing into the sweet spot took me to a pretty astonishing place. I am finding it hard to describe, and to be fair, I’m actually kinda loathe to do it. Seriously, you really ought to do yourself the favor, and find a way to check it out yourself. There’s a reason why this system gets rave reviews, and my words — copious though they are, are never really gonna carry that over to you.

Here’s the short form: I love it. And here in FLAX, this may be the best I’ve heard it.

This room was a best-in-show contender, without doubt or reservation. Brilliantly well done — once again.















Thanks, Scot!

Cheers,
Pete

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #10 on: 28 Feb 2023, 06:18 pm »
Some additional feedback, this time with Orchard Audio & Soundfield Audio by Positive Feedback's Tom Gibbs...
https://positive-feedback.com/show-reports/florida-audio-expo-2023-part-3/

Orchard Audio featuring Soundfield Audio and Triode Wire Labs



I was familiar with Orchard Audio from my exposure to their PecanPi streamer, but I had no idea prior to FLAX that designer Leo Ayzenshtat also would be exhibiting two Gallium Nitride Class D amplifiers. The Orchard room featured the Starkrimson Ultra Stereo 500 wpc amp, as well as a pair of Starkrimson Mono 150 watt amps. And the system would also be featuring the aforementioned PecanPi streamer/network audio player/DAC. Soundfield Audio supplied two different standmount loudspeaker models, the M1C and a second model I haven't been able to identify yet. All cables were provided by Triode Wire Labs, with the exception of the proprietary power supply cables utilized by the pair of mono amps.



The Starkrimson Ultra stereo amplifier is a beast!



The Starkrimson Monos are a cool and compact design that Leo prefers to position close to the loudspeakers. The Triode Wire Labs cables are everywhere in this room!

To say that my interest in Gallium Nitride amps is extreme would be a complete understatement! I've used multiple Class D amps in my system over the last couple of years, and I'm definitely a believer. I had the luxury to chat with Leo for what seemed like forever about GaNFET technology, and about his design goals for both the stereo and mono amp configurations. And because the amps were each connected to separate pairs of Soundfield Audio loudspeakers, it was very easy for Leo to switch between them and demo the differences (and similarities) between the two amp designs. When I walked into the room, the Starkrimson Ultra stereo amp was playing through the Soundfield M1C loudspeakers; the track was the DSD file of "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square" from an SACD by Harry Connick, Jr. The track displayed absolute realism of sound, a perfectly rendered soundstage, and when Branford Marsalis' sax solo appeared, the complete liquidity of the presentation totally grabbed my attention! The sound was exemplary, probably due in no small part to the excellent Orchard digital equipment. I'd love to get my hands on one of these amps to test with my own system!

Thanks, Tom!

Cheers,
Pete

orchardaudio

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Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #11 on: 2 Mar 2023, 01:51 am »
Absolute sound also mentions us:
https://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/the-2023-florida-international-audio-expo-alan-taffel-and-andrew-quint-report-from-the-show-with-a-slightly-new-name/

“More conventional was the setup in the Orchard Audio room. With extremely affordable Orchard electronics (e.g., the $2500, 500-watt/channel Starkrimson Stereo Ultra power amp and the $550 PecanPi streamer), Soundfield Audio M1V2 speakers ($2200/pair) and Triode Labs cables, the total system came in at just over $5k—the least expensive system I heard at the show. Yet the sound was far from bottom of the sonic pack.” — Alan Taffel

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #12 on: 3 Mar 2023, 03:57 pm »
This time a review from Ken Redmond on Mikey Fremer's Tracking Angle... https://trackingangle.com/features/ken-redmond-s-florida-audio-expo-2023-highlights  Ken summarizes his FAVORITE rooms at the show!

Volti Audio/Border Patrol Audio/Triode Wire Labs




A perennial show favorite room, Greg Roberts (Volti Audio), Gary Dews (BorderPatrol), and Pete Grzybowski (Triode Wire Labs) have teamed up for years at audio shows and know how to make a hotel space sing. I walked in on a rocking demo of Tower of Power's "Diggin' on James Brown", and everyone in the room was tapping their toes or shaking their head. No stoic listeners in this room, simply people enjoying the music. I love seeing that!

A BorderPatrol S20EXD 16w parallel 300B single-ended triode amp ($20k) powered the horn-based Volti Audio Rival speakers ( $15k) using an Innuos server with a BorderPatrol DAC SE-I ($1525.00) and Triode Wire Labs wiring. This system had a broad dynamic expression that when I listened to a song took me "there". Don't miss this room if you make it to an audio show where they are exhibiting.


Thanks Ken!

Cheers,
Pete

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #13 on: 5 Mar 2023, 01:41 am »
Wow, Editor-in-Chief Scot Hull from Part Time Audiophile names his "Best in Show"! https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2023/03/03/scots-best-in-show-flax-2023/

Scot’s Best-In-Show | FLAX 2023



Another runner-up in the Best-In-Show category was my perennial favorite — the BorderPatrol, Triode Wire Labs, and Volti collaboration (with Innuos!). I love the sound this gear makes — and while I am partial to the collective effort, I know that each are excellent in their own regard. Here at FLAX, the sound was punchy, precise, and on-point. One of their best demos to date — and all the more remarkable due, yet again, to the completely expected room constraints. How do they shoehorn such great sound into such crap rooms? Mystery notwithstanding, for what most of us will face with our “real world conditions”, this gear, in this combo, has proven again and again that us normal folks are absolutely capable of absolutely world-class performance. Just brilliant.

Thanks, Scot!!!

Cheers,
Pete

GregC

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #14 on: 5 Mar 2023, 02:34 am »
Congrats Pete!

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #15 on: 11 Mar 2023, 07:30 pm »

orchardaudio

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Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #16 on: 12 Mar 2023, 05:53 pm »
Here is what Jay's iyagi had to say about our room Florida Audio Expo:
"Really good dynamics, really good neutral and smooth sound to it", "Good depth and sound-staging", and "Everything was fluid liquid and overall flew really very well in this room"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_64DvBcpgs&t=649s

Charles Xavier

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #17 on: 12 Mar 2023, 06:22 pm »
Here is what Jay's iyagi had to say about our room Florida Audio Expo:
"Really good dynamics, really good neutral and smooth sound to it", "Good depth and sound-staging", and "Everything was fluid liquid and overall flew really very well in this room"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_64DvBcpgs&t=649s

Seems to be everyones thoughts

Triode Pete

Re: 2023 Florida Audio Show Feedback
« Reply #18 on: 13 Mar 2023, 07:41 pm »
Here is what Jay's iyagi had to say about our room Florida Audio Expo:
"Really good dynamics, really good neutral and smooth sound to it", "Good depth and sound-staging", and "Everything was fluid liquid and overall flew really very well in this room"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_64DvBcpgs&t=649s

Thanks, Leo! Great Sound!

Here's what Jay spoke about in Room 403 with Volti Audio & BorderPatrol...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_64DvBcpgs&t=578s

"This room was AWESOME... Sounded AMAZING!..."

Thanks, Jay!