AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage

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Vinnie R.

AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« on: 24 Apr 2017, 06:51 pm »
All,

AXPONA was another successful and packed show!  8)

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.  :wink:

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!  :thumb:

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.  :wink:

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!   :o  :singing:  :drool:

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!

Vinnie

jtwrace

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #1 on: 24 Apr 2017, 07:10 pm »
As usual, excellent sound!  If anyone ever wants to hear Harbeth's sound good, listen to the LIO with them. 

Great job Vinnie!   :thumb:

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #2 on: 24 Apr 2017, 07:15 pm »
Some early feedback from the show:

http://forums.naimaudio.com/topic/axpona-chicago-anyone?reply=70131329523784562#70131329523784562


Quote from: MangoMonkey"
Apart from Naim, the electronics that stood out for me were the AVM gear as well as Vinnie Rossi powering the Harbeth SHL+ special edition.

vinnie's design is very interesting / the system is powered by ultra capacitors alone. 1/2 of them power the system while 1/2 of them get charged. And then they switch over. This apparently isolated the system from noisy mains. I learned this today. Toe Tapping was an involuntary reaction to the music playing in his room. Again, no bling - just the Vinnie Rossi all in one into Harbeths speakers.

http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/threads/axpona-impressions.666413/#post-16319727
[Photo credit from forum member "rischa"]



http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/threads/axpona-impressions.666413/page-2#post-16323228

Quote from: Joe Spivey
I didn't make it to all the rooms but the standouts for me where the

1. Vinnie Rossi/Harbeth
2. Kii Audio Three
3. Legacy/Raven


http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/threads/axpona-impressions.666413/page-2#post-16323683

Quote from: avanti1960
Part 8. Hey Vinnie! Vinnie Rossi Lio modular amplifiers and Harbeth SHL5+ speakers. Never a cleaner, more natural sound there was. I have raved about the sound of these amplifiers since the first exposure at the '13 AXPONA show. This Lio model featured a tube line stage with MOS FET transistor power stage.
While not quite the 3-dimensionally huge sound scape that an all tube amplifier can deliver, the beefy presence and low end power of the solid state output stage made up for it. The Harbeth's seemed just a little too large for the room and bass modes were present if you sat in the wrong spot. But listening in the nearfield was a joy to behold.
Often speakers with "super tweeters" can produce too much "air" and high end as to sound artificial and exacerbate any noise in the rest of the system. Not so with Vinnie's amps which are off the power grid because of their capacitor charge / store technology. They have absolutely no detectable noise floor and as such the system sounded incredibly natural and real. All this without the use of proper speaker stands.
A tip of the hat to our gracious host for an extraordinary product and room.


[photo credit from forum member "avanti1960]

This nice email was waiting for me when I returned:

Quote
Hi Vinnie,
I was able to visit your room yesterday during the show.   This was my first high end audio show and I had a great time. That said, I’m a consumer in the market for my first decent system.   The combination of your amp and the Harbeth’s speakers blew my mind.  For me personally it was the best overall sound quality there.   You were in the middle of a conversation at the time, but I would really appreciate a couple minutes of your time to talk.  Hope the show goes well for you.

MANY THANKS to all your posts above  :notworthy:


Quote
As usual, excellent sound!  If anyone ever wants to hear Harbeth's sound good, listen to the LIO with them.

Great job Vinnie!   :thumb:

Thanks, jtwrace!  Awesome seeing you and many other AC members there.  Thanks for stopping by for a good listen.  Hope you all had a fun time at the show. 

Vinnie



jriggy

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #3 on: 24 Apr 2017, 08:21 pm »
Monique and I enjoyed finally meeting you, Vinnie!

Boy, those KR PX-4's were the bees knees! Took away any small bass issues from the day before and along with your comments, had an even more dimensional feel. So natural and I could sit in front of that set for hours...

Jason R.

timind

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #4 on: 24 Apr 2017, 10:39 pm »
I walked into that room twice. Unfortunately it was packed both times and I never got to listen. :cry:

Theobetley

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 38
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #5 on: 24 Apr 2017, 11:55 pm »
Clearly one of the best sounds at the show. I own a DHT and love it but the sound with the kxpr4 tubes was super. Keep those modules comin' . Just got to figure which one I want. Congrats to you Vinnie.

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #6 on: 25 Apr 2017, 03:10 pm »
Monique and I enjoyed finally meeting you, Vinnie!

Boy, those KR PX-4's were the bees knees! Took away any small bass issues from the day before and along with your comments, had an even more dimensional feel. So natural and I could sit in front of that set for hours...

Jason R.

Hi Jason,

It was a pleasure to meet you and Monique! 

Quote
I walked into that room twice. Unfortunately it was packed both times and I never got to listen. :cry:

Hi timind,

I'm sorry about that.  Sunday was the slowest of the 3 days, but Friday and especially Saturday were high traffic for sure!

Quote
Clearly one of the best sounds at the show. I own a DHT and love it but the sound with the kxpr4 tubes was super. Keep those modules comin' . Just got to figure which one I want. Congrats to you Vinnie.

Thanks, Ted!

Vinnie



Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #7 on: 26 Apr 2017, 05:37 pm »
This was just posted by Stereophile's Jason Victor Serinus  8):

"Harbeth and Vinnie Rossi score again!"

http://www.stereophile.com/content/axpona-more-adventures-jvs-day-two#v7FYpL6k02W2QB0Q.97

Quote
Harbeth and Vinnie Rossi score again! Here, the Harbeth Super HL5 Plus 40th Anniversary Edition loudspeaker ($7495/pair), which includes a new supertweeter and a 40th anniversary magnetic grille badge, joined a Vinnie Rossi LIO Super Integrated ($11,675 as configured), Acoustic Signature WOW XXL turntable ($3495) with TA-700 tonearm ($1295) and Ortofon 2M Black Cartridge ($850), and Triode Wire Labs cabling to produce a very smooth and nice sound. The midrange was lovely, the top fine, and the soundstage wide. In short, what's not to love?

On my 24/96 tell-all track of the last movement of Seattle Symphony's recording of Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring, I could listen well into the soundstage. Bass, which is prodigious on this track, was excellent and fast. Image size may have been diminished from what I'm accustomed to, but the mids were simply gorgeous.


Read more at http://www.stereophile.com/content/axpona-more-adventures-jvs-day-two#TgwjrmivJ1h6JGs0.99


[Photo credit - Stereophile / Jason Victor Serinus]

Thank you for stopping by for a good listen, Jason!  You were sitting in the sweet spot, and that certainly was where the magic
happened and the bass was much tighter (nearfield setup, less room interaction).  :thumb:

Vinnie

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #8 on: 27 Apr 2017, 05:09 pm »
This was just posted:

http://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/axpona-2017-speakers-below-20k/

Greg Weaver / The Absolute Sound:

Most Significant

Quote from: Greg Weaver / The Absolute Sound
"The 40th Anniversary Edition Harbeth HL5 Plus ($7495/pr.) was a clear standout. This edition, celebrating 40 years of speaker building, includes WBT Nextgen binding posts, a new super-tweeter, and UK made polycapacitors. Driven by all Vinnie Rossi electronics, including the LIO “Super Integrated” system ($11,675), which combines the LIO DHT linestage, LIO MOSFET amp, LIO phonostage, and LIO DSD/PCM DAC, the Harbeth system was remarkably musical. Strengths here included especially faithful tone color and texture, with intricate yet undeniably accurate layering, soundstaging, and imaging."

Many thanks to Greg for visiting and enjoying our room system!  8)

Vinnie

zybar

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #9 on: 27 Apr 2017, 05:11 pm »
Way to go Vinnie!!   :thumb: :thumb:

George

Odal3

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 863
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #10 on: 28 Apr 2017, 03:13 am »
Congratulations on another great show!!

System sounded really good and it was especially fun to see how you could pull it off on those audiophile speaker stands.

I didn't have a chance to introduce myself since I was holding on to the sweet spot chair...and then you were busy before we had to run to have a chance to see all the other rooms on our long list. We should just have stayed in your room.  :D


Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #11 on: 28 Apr 2017, 03:07 pm »
Hi Zybar and Odal3,

Thank you!

"But wait - there's more!"


Positive Feedback: The Best of the Best at AXPONA 2017

Quote from: Maurice Jeffries / Positive Feedback Online
Sticking with my smaller-is-better mantra, Vinne Rossi, Triode Wire Labs, and the good folks at Fidelis turned in another quality outing this year. Powered by a Lio hybrid amplifier (here in its "Super Integrated" $11,675 configuration and outputting a "scant" 25 wpc into 8-ohms), the new Harbeth Super HL5 Plus "40th Anniversary Edition" speakers (from Fidelis) soared to uncommon musical heights. Sounding superbly musical, detailed (but not exceedingly so), and oh-so relaxed, the Harbeth's pulled you into the performance. Greg Weaver, who joined me for the ride, put it best: the Harbeth's make you forget about audio and force you to focus on the music and the performance.

http://positive-feedback.com/show-reports/the-new-axpona/

Many thanks to both Maurice Jeffries and Greg Weaver for auditioning our 'minimalist' system (yes, complete with "Westin" branded table-stands) at Axpona and posting your very favorable impressions!

:thumb:  8)  :singing:

Vinnie

jpm

  • Full Member
  • Posts: 315
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #12 on: 29 Apr 2017, 07:16 pm »
You can add a mention from Steve Guttenberg to your coverage as well

https://www.cnet.com/pictures/latest-greatest-audio-products-rock-chicago-expo/9/




Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #13 on: 1 May 2017, 02:33 pm »
Thanks for posting that link, jpm!

 :thumb:

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #14 on: 5 May 2017, 02:20 pm »
From Eric Neff / HI-FI + Magazine:

Quote from: Eric Neff / HifiPlus
The Vinnie Rossi LIO is a modular triumph in sound and quality. Here is the tricked-out model which includes the Direct Heated Triode front end. Sporting the Phono Pre, DAC and 25wpc amplifier modules this version of the LIO comes in at $11,675. Paired with the 40th anniversary model Harbeth Super HL5Plus at $7495 and Triode Wire Labs cables the sound was truly three dimensional.

http://www.hifiplus.com/articles/axpona-2017-digital-audio-and-amplification-part-one/?page=2



Thank you, Eric!

Vinnie

soulforged

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 35
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #15 on: 9 May 2017, 02:28 pm »
Hi Vinnie, It was a pleasure meeting you and listening to the setup. Being a former owner and a lifelong fan of the SHL5, I am intimately aware of what these speakers are capable of and with LIO they just shone! The absolutely quiet darkness between chaotic passages of the 21st Century Schizoid Man and the visceral presence of the saxophonist during Silvia Droste's rendition of Besame Mucho was a clear indication of the synergy between LIO and SHL5...thank you so much for accommodating me and playing my songs!

Another happy outcome of the multiple visits I made to your room was the introduction to Youn Sun Nah's music...been tripping on this incredible singer ever since!!!

All the best!

...and now to setup a trust fund to buy LIO someday! :)

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #16 on: 9 May 2017, 04:56 pm »
Hi Soulforged,

Nice to meet you at Axpona, and thanks for visiting and listening!  I'm glad you liked some of the tracks that I was playing.  :singing:

---

This was just posted by Rafe Arnott / Part Time Audiophile:

https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2017/05/09/axpona-2017-vinnie-rossi-keeps-em-smiling/



[Photo credit: Rafe Arnott / Part Time Audiophile]

Quote from: Rafe Arnott / Part Time Audiophile
This is a sonically outstanding amplifier: lively, engaging, constantly daring you not to respond to its sensory provocation...

At this price point I cannot recommend the LIO highly enough, considering the state-of-the-art analog, and digital circuit designs, the fact that it also features Rossi’s patent-pending Pure DC-4-EVR Ultracapacitor Technology power supply so you won’t ever need to upgrade your power cables (and allows for a staggeringly low noise floor) it is a true bargain in high fidelity.



Many thanks, Rafe!  :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy:


AXPONA 2017 - What an awesome show it was!  8)

Vinnie





mirekti

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 199
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #17 on: 9 May 2017, 05:15 pm »
...sorry, duplicate. Not sure how to delete the post.

TimS

  • Jr. Member
  • Posts: 93
Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #18 on: 9 May 2017, 08:51 pm »
Hi Vinnie

Were you using the KR PX-4 tubes in the LIO while Rafe was listening?

Thanks

Hi Soulforged,

Nice to meet you at Axpona, and thanks for visiting and listening!  I'm glad you liked some of the tracks that I was playing.  :singing:

---

This was just posted by Rafe Arnott / Part Time Audiophile:

https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2017/05/09/axpona-2017-vinnie-rossi-keeps-em-smiling/



[Photo credit: Rafe Arnott / Part Time Audiophile]



Many thanks, Rafe!  :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy:


AXPONA 2017 - What an awesome show it was!  8)

Vinnie

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2017 - Room Coverage
« Reply #19 on: 10 May 2017, 02:51 am »
Hi Vinnie

Were you using the KR PX-4 tubes in the LIO while Rafe was listening?

Thanks

Hi TimS,

No - from Rafe's pictures I can see that I had the SV811's running in the LIO when he came to our room on Friday.

Vinnie