AXPONA was another successful and packed show!
This year I kept it clean n' simple and showed the following:
- LIO configured with: DAC, Phonostage, DHT PRE, & MOSFET AMP
- Harbeth's new SHL5plus "40th Anniversary" Edition speakers
- Acoustic Signature Wow XL Turntable & arm
- All cabling by Triode Wire labs.
(Direct USB connection from Macbook Air (running Roon) to LIO DAC)
As you can see, even the speaker stands / racks used were rather simple.
It turns out that we received a very nice pair of stands from Rensonant Woods , but unfortunately, they
just were not tall enough (especially with the hotel chairs) to get the soundstage high enough for me, and
considering that a packed room also has many people standing, I decided we needed to elevate the speakers.
The hotel room had a few end tables of the perfect height, and fortunately there were solid (marble top, maybe
50 lbs each) and we put cloths over them and they sure did the trick in a pinch. Certainly not audiophile-approved,
but for those who came to the room and listened with their ears
instead of their eyes, the system sounded excellent!
For example, vocal tracks from Dean Martin, Peggy Lee, The Fairfield Four, and others delivered spot-on imagining, realism, and
a 'disappearing act' with the speakers that left many tapping toes and showing big smiles, and kept many attendees
in the room for a while. Quite a few came back numerous times and just couldn't get enough of the system!
From the sources, to the cabling, LIO, and Harbeth's - the system overall played exceptionally well together and I appreciated all
the compliments and enthusiasm of the attendees. It was a pleasure to meet many new faces, and see many familiar ones as well. Here are some more pics of the system
(sorry, low-res from my smartphone):Enter the KR AUDIO PX-4 DHT
On Friday I was using SV811s (a show favorite with the SHL5's), but on Saturday morning a customer
surprised me with a new pair of KR Audio PX-4s that he just bought the week before and has fallen in
love with. He was willing to let me borrow them for the rest of the show if I liked them, and I couldn't resist
trying a new DHT with the LIO.
Not an inexpensive tube (~ $800/pair ?), but they AMAZED us all!
These tubes have the rich midrange of the SV811's, but with a more extended top end and more solid bass, . It was
a tube that could play rock, jazz, classical, electronica... all equally well and left some LIO customers who visited wanting
to get a pair for themselves (myself included!).
These tubes run on the 4V filament setting and only draw 1.1A of current each, so they run fairly cool
and should last a very long time in the LIO DHT PRE circuit.
I'll be sure to post links to feedback of show attendees and members of the press. And for Audiocircle memebers who
visited, please post your impressions and thank you in advance!