Daedalus "version 2" speakers

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Daedalus Audio

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Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« on: 28 Aug 2013, 02:28 am »
here is an email from 'Beaglebump' who just had his Athena's updated to the version 2.  btw, he is a professional musician who teaches music at a University.  8)

Hi Lou,

Really enjoying all the work you put into the Athena.  Admittedly, listening time has been here and there, late nights, etc, due to schedule, but still, the improvements are not subtle and really impressive!   You know, I was hesitant the day before I packed these up, listening to them and thinking these are really in the pocket right now, love the presentation, and can't imagine there's much else there.  However, now they just sound wide awake. 

Rather than try to put this into some polished narrative, let me just throw out a few of my initial raw listening notes (for what they're worth/in no particular priority):
- Low frequencies in better balance within the spectrum - seems much more cohesive, firmer. 
- These were always exceptionally neutral, organic to the recording, but now it just really seems to put you there.  No cabinet signature (never has been). 
- Soundstage seems twice as big.  Source placement, etc. everything related has improved dramatically. 
- Really nice, clear transients - pop right out w/o artificial enhancement.  Wow - pno and acoustic guitar envelopes are spot-on.  Rides, hats, snare, shakers, implement identity are crystal clear.     
- Envelope is so rich and alive. 
>Reference examples from Alex de Grassi, Michael Hedges, Eric Mongraine, Antonio Forcione, Jeff Hamilton, Alan Broadbent, knocking me out here.<
  I'm really not for want of anything.


All I can say is, thank you very much.  Its really tough to pull away from listening, but when most of it begins after 11 p.m., at some point I have to cash it in to make that early start in the a.m.!  Looking forward to many years of happy listening with the Athena. 

Take care


btw - thought you might like to see a pic of my "listening partner" (you can still see where he was shaved at the hospital).  Always appreciate his discerning ear!   


vinyl_lady

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #1 on: 28 Aug 2013, 03:14 pm »
That's very cool. Thanks for posting this Lou. Everyone I have "talked" to about the version 2 upgrade just raves about it and how it is worth every nickel. Can't wait to have my DA-1.1s upgraded next week. :thumb:

Daedalus Audio

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Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #2 on: 28 Aug 2013, 04:01 pm »
That's very cool. Thanks for posting this Lou. Everyone I have "talked" to about the version 2 upgrade just raves about it and how it is worth every nickel. Can't wait to have my DA-1.1s upgraded next week. :thumb:

thanks, this really is a BIG step up in refinement, big enough where I could have done as some manufacturers would and slightly changed the cosmetics, gave them new model names and doubled the price. I felt it was more fair to keep an upgrade path open to existing users and keep the pricing unchanged (at least for now, as this does cost me more $), even though this is beyond JUST an upgrade, hence "version 2".

my hope is that people who have heard Daedalus speakers before and liked the tonality but wanted more refinement, imaging, air etc will take another listen.

thanks,
lou

Roger

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Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #3 on: 28 Aug 2013, 10:46 pm »
Hi Lou,
You have upgraded my DA 1.1 a couple of times including the all poly crossovers. After the last upgrade, I thought my speakers sounded wonderful so when I heard of the upgrade to version two I was hesitant to go that way. You have never been wrong so I went for it. I agree with 'BEAGLEBUMP' in every way. All I can add is WOW!!! Vinyl Lady you are going to love this one.
Roger 

jonbee

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #4 on: 28 Aug 2013, 11:40 pm »
As Beaglebump has noted about his Athenas, my basic RMAs are already superb. That said, Lou has a lot of credibility with me, so I'm ordering the polycap and v2 upgrades today.
I'll report on my reactions after they are done in a month or so.

Berto

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #5 on: 29 Aug 2013, 12:05 am »
I concur my v1 Ulysses are sounding better then ever, esp as my gear has improved. That is a wonderful review and I commend Lou for constantly improving while maintaining a upgrade path for existing customers :thumb:



dodgealum

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Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #6 on: 29 Aug 2013, 12:43 am »
Lou, this is one of many reasons why you have developed such a loyal following. The boxes for my DA-1.1's are out of the attic--just need to find some time to disconnect and get everything ready for FedEx. Very excited--I was sold before you posted the email but thanks for sharing!

shahed

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Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #7 on: 29 Aug 2013, 02:06 pm »
How much it'd cost to upgrade to V2? Is the upgrade price varies depending on the model? It'd be helpful to have the information listed somewhere.

Scottdazzle

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #8 on: 30 Aug 2013, 03:12 am »
My V2 Athena's will be up and running next week. I can't wait to hear them!

nature boy

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #9 on: 30 Aug 2013, 01:25 pm »
Congrats and enjoy Scott.

NB

audiogoober

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #10 on: 31 Aug 2013, 04:18 pm »
Below is some quick notes that I sent to Lou back in March when my Ulysses .v2's arrived. I was a very happy "standard Ulysses AP" owner and due to a change in room decor I switched flavors of wood and ordered a new pair of Ulysses .v2 in walnut.

Here's my comments on the differences between the original Ulysses (AP version) and the New Ulysses .v2:


"They're breaking in - this is what I'm hearing so far:

A much bigger soundstage...surrounding me and filling the room much more than my previous Ulysses and even the .v1 Orpheus at your shop! Break ins are usually the toughest with speakers in my opinion but especially soundstage depth is already better than my first pair and the Orpheus (prior to .v2 upgrade) at your shop! The imaging is much more focused...a huge improvement and very pinpoint. I already have them positioned perfectly and my listening chair is spot on. They seem way less finicky in regards to "inch by inch" room placement.

As expected without any hours on them at all, the frequency extremes were lacking and they're still fairly constricted....a bit grainy with elusive bass depending on the songs but they have opened up quite a bit in the first 27 hours. Surprisingly appealing yesterday but a very noticable improvement when I walked in this morning...mids opened up more than I expected at this point. I think the caps and drivers will take several hundred hours to settle but I was prepared for that.

More to follow as they settle in. Thanks and have a good weekend".


Another e-mail to Lou at 400 hours:

"I just wanted to drop you a line real quick and wish you a Happy Easter.

I hope things are well with you and friends.

My Ulysses .v2's have a little over 400 hours on them....and they are magnificent! The mid range and imaging are much better than my first pair and they excell at the frequency extremes too. Pink Floyd's Division Bell album (and tons of other albums I've listen to hundreds of times) are spectacular"!!


THANKS LOU!!!


Greg"


700 Hours:


"Hi Lou,

I hope all is well.  The Ulysses .v2's have about 700 hours on them, and are the best I've ever heard! Top to bottom with great mids...they're totally fleshed out and unbelievable. I wish you could hear them with the First Sound, Pass amps and the Meitner DAC. If you ever get over to New England...you're always welcome. Hopefully, I'll get my family out to the beautiful Pacific NW soon.

Have a great weekend Lou.


Best,

Greg"




I LOVE the Ulysses .v2's so much more ( and I loved the original, then the AP's) that  Athena v.2's are coming for our living room system in Late October! To all those considering..... I HIGHLY RECOMMEND getting the .v2 upgrade or giving the .v2 versions another listen as Lou suggests.

Also, if anyone happens to be in NH or the New England area and wants to take a ride up here and give either of them a listen, please PM me. J-Pak is coming over today to hear the Ulysses .v2's.



J-Pak

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Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #11 on: 1 Sep 2013, 03:43 pm »
I'd like to thank Greg for inviting me to his home to hear the Ulysses V2. That's what this hobby is about, sharing experiences and music.

These are truly exceptional speakers. The points that stuck out to me were how natural they sounded especially in the treble. All too many speakers I've heard make me want to run out of the room, especially when they're turned up. No such thing with these. Wonderful midrange as well. I didn't think Greg needed any subs or additional bass enhancement in his room. I remember telling him on a song with particularly well recorded acoustic bass you could hear the body of the instrument as well as the decay very clearly. I wish more of my favorite 50s and 60s jazz albums recorded bass this well! They also had great soundstage and very nice image depth. Also the wood work is really beautiful in person, pictures don't capture how nice the attention to detail is.

They've moved pretty high up on my list of speakers I am considering.

-Deepak

audiogoober

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #12 on: 2 Sep 2013, 08:00 pm »
I'd like to thank Greg for inviting me to his home to hear the Ulysses V2. That's what this hobby is about, sharing experiences and music.

These are truly exceptional speakers. The points that stuck out to me were how natural they sounded especially in the treble. All too many speakers I've heard make me want to run out of the room, especially when they're turned up. No such thing with these. Wonderful midrange as well. I didn't think Greg needed any subs or additional bass enhancement in his room. I remember telling him on a song with particularly well recorded acoustic bass you could hear the body of the instrument as well as the decay very clearly. I wish more of my favorite 50s and 60s jazz albums recorded bass this well! They also had great soundstage and very nice image depth. Also the wood work is really beautiful in person, pictures don't capture how nice the attention to detail is.

They've moved pretty high up on my list of speakers I am considering.

-Deepak

You're most welcome Deepak! It was great to finally meet...share thoughts, listen, etc.

As mentioned, my dedicated room (12x18) isn't quite finished yet. I still have some additional treatments that Alex and Bryan from GIK recommended. They provided a CAD drawing with descriptions after their analysis of my room (which was very impressive). I couldn't afford to get everything from GIK in one shot and still have to get the Monster Bass Traps on the rear walls along with a few other tweaks. Bryan and Alex said the Monster Bass Traps would help significantly with the low end....especially in my medium sized room.

I know, I know.... it's about the smallest size room Lou would recommend for the Ulysses. The Athena's were not out when I fell in love with the Ulysses a few years ago, changed flavors of wood and went with the .v2's.....they are now a part of the family (and my soul) and something I won't let go of. I plan for these heirlooms to be with our family for generations to come  :thumb:.


GIK recommended the Monster Bass Traps along the rear wall with scatter plates, starting with 4 grid diffusers high on each side wall and adding more if necessary. Installing two more sophit traps in the front corners so they extend all the way to the ceiling was also recommended. The exact height of the sophit traps was unknown because I built the bases (around the heater) for them after they were delivered.

Some old panels I made a few years ago from OC 703 and Gilford of Maine Fabric were still laying around so that's what I have on the back wall now and also covering the closet doors (velcro is fantastic;). Alex and Bryan felt using these would be better than nothing along the back wall until I could swing the monster traps (and they were right - the DIY panels do help back there). I need to access the closet so having Monster Bass Traps w/scatter plates on stands should be much more convenient as well.

When the 15 boxes arrived from GIK last summer, the improvements were amazing. Considering the size of my room along with the Ulysses and big amps, I'm thinking that adding the monster traps/scatter plates along the rear wall will be another huge improvement for the room....probably should have purchased the entire layout GIK proposed right from the beginning, but we had too many "projects" going on. I hope to have them soon and will follow up.



Lighting is terrible and will unfortunately be done last....sorry about the photos. Deepak was right.....even if I was a professional photographer (which I'm not) any photos of Lou's work just doesn't do justice. 









Listening chair and rear wall. Old DIY panels being used for now on rear wall and closet doors. These will be removed soon and two or three Monster Bass Traps w/Scatter Plates on stands will be installed.







Left Speaker and Sophit Trap.







Right Speaker and Sophit Trap.






Grid Diffusors and entry door. Any thoughts??? Corner traps would be nice but the door and closet scratch that idea  :scratch:







If anyone wants to give the Daedalus Ulysses .v2's a listen up here in New England, members please PM me. I'll also have the Athena .v2's here for a second system in our living room in late Oct/Nov along with a few different amps (Matt Kraemer/Aluminati, Pass, ModWright) and hope to have all the GIK treatments finished in the dedicated room by then. Ironically, the living room is much bigger than my dedicated room I'm using now. The living room is essentially where the Ulysses will end up for retirement.... or when the kids are all out of the house (whichever comes first;). With the dogs and kids, our house gets a bit noisy at times :icon_surprised:. Having my dedicated cave (which was previously a one car garage) has some advantages. Knowing the Ulysses will make it upstairs to our living room someday (which is all walnut) , and the Athena's will someday be down in the smaller room.... makes it all good.

 





Greg






« Last Edit: 3 Sep 2013, 12:38 pm by audiogoober »

jonbee

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #13 on: 3 Sep 2013, 12:48 am »
That looks like it should be a great room. I wish I had a dedicated room to set up that way.

audiogoober

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #14 on: 3 Sep 2013, 01:46 am »
That looks like it should be a great room. I wish I had a dedicated room to set up that way.

Thanks Jonbee!

It's taken a long, long time! Like I mentioned earlier, this room was previously a garage. After that, a bedroom, office, exercise room.... then I got dibbs! I'm very happy with it and find it's one of the only places I can go for total relaxation.


« Last Edit: 29 Sep 2013, 02:29 pm by audiogoober »

vinyl_lady

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #15 on: 28 Sep 2013, 07:47 pm »
Just after Labor Day I drove my DA-1.1s over to Lou's shop as part of a trip to see the Eagles at Key Arena, do a little vinyl shopping, but mainly to have Lou upgrade my speakers with the version 2 upgrade. I didn't have much time to listen until this week end with significant business travel in between. I did put in a CD and hit repeat before leaving for work so I have somewhere between over 125 hours on the Version 2.

My initial impressions as I listened off and on while breaking in the upgrade was that the soundstage was improved and there seemed to be more detail and clarity and improved low end response (not that the pre version 2 seemed lacking). Now with more than 125 hours and listening to some very familiar vinyl this morning (McGuinn, Clark & Hillman; Elton John; 45 RPM Rumours; DSOTM), I have to tell you I am blown away by the difference the version 2 upgrade is making. I am completely immersed in the music and I swear I'm hearing detail I have never heard before and I know these albums inside out. The soundstage is much deeper and wider; more clarity and detail; better, stronger, deeper low end response, I mean stronger, deeper bass; and the mids are 2die4. I could go on and use all the audiophile approved terms, but I think you get the idea. This is more of a noticeable upgrade than the all poly caps and that one was pretty noticeable me and to everyone I know who had it done to their speakers. Lou has really outdone himself this time!

If you own Daedalus speakers and have not had the version 2 upgrade, don't think twice, don't hesitate, call Lou today and schedule a version 2 upgrade. Don't wait! You must treat your music and your ears to this game changer.

Great job Lou. I really appreciate that you are constantly trying to improve your speakers and provide an upgrade path. For those that don't know, I started with the DA-1s in 2006 and upgraded to the 1.1s, had the internal wiring, binding post and all poly upgrades and now the version 2.

Folks, this really is a game changer! Check out Lou and Dan's room at RMAF and help spread the word.

Laura

jonbee

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #16 on: 28 Sep 2013, 09:11 pm »
I've ordered my poly and v2 upgrades. Sounds like Santa will come early for me this year!

jtwrace

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #17 on: 28 Sep 2013, 09:15 pm »
What does such an upgrade cost?

audiogoober

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #18 on: 28 Sep 2013, 11:55 pm »
What does such an upgrade cost?

I don't believe Lou posts pricing on line....best to give him a call.
« Last Edit: 29 Sep 2013, 06:53 pm by audiogoober »

jtwrace

Re: Daedalus "version 2" speakers
« Reply #19 on: 29 Sep 2013, 01:35 am »
I don't believe Lou publishes pricing on line....best to give him a call.
Why not?