AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread

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mirekti

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #20 on: 21 Apr 2018, 10:44 pm »
How many line level outputs on L2? ...just wondered if it would be similar to LIO so one could send it to L2 monos and subs at the same time.

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #21 on: 21 Apr 2018, 10:50 pm »
How many line level outputs on L2? ...just wondered if it would be similar to LIO so one could send it to L2 monos and subs at the same time.

Hi Mirekti,

Regarding Inputs/Outputs, the L2 Preamplifier will have:

- 2 sets of RCA inputs (unbalanced) and 1 set of XLR (true balanced) inputs
- 1 set of RCA outputs (unbalanced) and 1 set of XLR (true balanced) outputs
- 1 pair of 12V trigger outputs (to connect to the L2 Monoblocks and turn them ON/OFF along with the L2 Preamp
via remote or L2 Preamp front panel power switch).

- L2 DAC will have 1 of each: USB, Coax, and Optical
- L2 Phonostage will have 2 sets of MC, and 1 set of MM

Vinnie

Bones13

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #22 on: 22 Apr 2018, 03:09 am »
Thanks Vinnie for all that info. Looks like an exciting summer!

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #23 on: 23 Apr 2018, 06:58 pm »
Huge sound, little speaker? 

Yup - with the L2 Monoblocks driving the Harbeth P3ESR 40th Anniversary Edition, we made many attendees
do a double-take when they walked behind the sets of speakers and discovered it was the "baby" P3ESR's that were connected.

https://audiobacon.net/2018/04/19/axpona-2018-show-report-day-2/5/

Jay Luong of AudioBacon.net posts:

Quote from: Jay Luong/AudioBacon.net
...the Harbeth 40.2 weren’t plugged in when we arrived. However, we were amazed to find out the huge sound was coming from the tiny Harbeth P3ESR! Sweet, textured sound with convincing timbre and dynamics. Tempted to get a pair…

Ok - I'm not talking about big bottom octave reach or strong visceral impact, but they sure sounded like much larger speakers in nearly every other regard, they imaged like champs in the room, and had "reach out and touch" realism in the midrange.

Thank for visiting, Jay!

Vinnie

czubero

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #24 on: 23 Apr 2018, 07:38 pm »
Hi Vinnie,

Will the L2 preamp outputs (RCA and XLR) be fixed or Variable, and if they will pass thru the DHT tubes?

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #25 on: 24 Apr 2018, 01:10 am »
Hi Vinnie,

Will the L2 preamp outputs (RCA and XLR) be fixed or Variable, and if they will pass thru the DHT tubes?

Hi czubero,

The L2 Preamp outputs (both RCA and XLR) are variable.  The outputs are indeed from the DHT tube stage (which
really is at the heart of the L2 Preamplifier circuit).

Vinnie

olegausany

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #26 on: 1 May 2018, 01:48 pm »
Quote from: Vinnie R. link=topic=157019.msg1681560#msg1681560 date=1524347179

The "[b
L2 DAC[/b]" will be based on the LIO DAC 2.0 module, but with a few sonic upgrades on-board

Hi Vinnie

Congratulations on the new products and a quick question. Any plans to pass those sonic upgrades to the LIO DAC 2.0?

TimS

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #27 on: 3 May 2018, 12:36 am »
All,

I'm back from AXPONA and it was an incredible show!  It was probably one of the best (if not "the best") USA shows for me in terms of attendance, sound quality in the room, feedback from listeners and their interest in products).  8)

I was fortunate enough to able to demo a new statement product just in time for the show!

The L2 Signature Monoblock Amplifiers







Rafe Arnott of Part Time Audiophile caught up with me right before the show and I officially "let the cat out of the bag," here:

https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2018/04/13/axpona-2018-vinnie-rossi-has-15000-statement-mono-blocks-and-pre-amplifier-in-prototype-stages/

I mention some details/specs in the link above , as well as mention the upcoming L2 Signature Preamplifier.  Please understand that details/specs are subject changes between now and production, but I believe they give a pretty good ballpark idea of what is coming with the L2 Signature line.  A new thread about both products as well as website information will be added in about a month.  I can't wait to show pics of the L2 Preamplfier - it is such a gorgeous design that ties into the L2 Monoblocks so well!  Wink2

Here is the list of what we had playing in Axpona 2018 - Room 486:

Source

- Macbook Air running Roon playback software, feeding USB output to LIO DAC 2.0 (with a myriad of file types, including some excellent  DSD tracks from www.nativedsd.com and www.marecordings.com)

Electronics

- Vinnie Rossi LIO DHT Preamplifier with DAC 2.0 module
- Vinnie Rossi L2 Signature Monoblocks (prototypes)

Loudspeakers & Stands

- Harbeth 40.2, 30.2, and P3ESR (all "40th Anniversary Edition," and I switched between them numerous times each day at the show)
- TonTrager speaker stands (for the 40.2 and 30.2)

Cables
All cabling by Triode Wire Labs, consisting of:

- "Seven Plus" Power Cables
- "American" Speaker Cables
- "Spirit" Interconnects

Some pics of the room from the cell phone:









Next up, show coverage from the press and attendees ...

- Vinnie

Hi Vinnie

In his article of the L2 Sig Pre Rafe wrote
"The tubes will have attractive mesh covers around them to keep hum to a minimum (no matter what accepted tube is used)"
https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2018/04/13/axpona-2018-vinnie-rossi-has-15000-statement-mono-blocks-and-pre-amplifier-in-prototype-stages/

Will these covers also fit a LIO DHT PRE, maybe with a bit of modification?

Thanks

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #28 on: 3 May 2018, 12:51 am »
Quote
Will these covers also fit a LIO DHT PRE, maybe with a bit of modification?

Hi TimS,

With the L2 Preamp, the mesh covers (and tubes) will be half-way inside the preamp.  The mesh cover will rest on a circular metal plate that will attach to the tube sockets, and will be grounded.

For LIO, the mesh covers most likely will not work as well resting on the anodized top cover of the LIO (when aluminum is anodized, the surface of it loses much of its electrical conductivity).  But perhaps there will be a work-around for that.  I'll look into it after the L2 Preamp launches late June.

Quote
Hi Vinnie

Congratulations on the new products and a quick question. Any plans to pass those sonic upgrades to the LIO DAC 2.0?

Thanks, Ole!  Yes, after I launch the L2 Preamp (which will have the L2 DAC option), I'll be able to upgrade LIO DAC 2.0 in the same way.
Not sure about cost at this time, but I should have a better idea sometime in June.

---

I have received many emails and phone calls about the L2 Signature Preamplifier and Monoblocks.  I will start new threads for them soon enough, with plenty more details (and they will be added to the webpage).  I can't wait until they are ready!  :hyper:

Thanks,

Vinnie

trev4h

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #29 on: 10 May 2018, 06:14 pm »
Hey Vinnie -

Design direction on the new amps looks quite nice.  On the new Preamp:  Is now the time to ask a bunch of questions hoping to get some features integrated?

1) Will there be an upgrade in the display compared to LIO?  I love how you can name your inputs and have some control over the graphical interface a la audio research's reference line.  Input 3 becomes "Oppo 205",  New Phonostage module could display your cartridge, load, gain specs, etc... Instead of remembering which dac input is the digital input and which is usb.... they are named what they are so there are no riddles to solve when choosing an input. 
Also - this kind of display gives you options down the road to make great improvements via firmware.

2) Also, can you disable inputs that aren't plugged in?  When changing between usb dac and phono stage... I don't want to filter through 10 inputs.  They are the only inputs connected so it should be one click switching

3) Maintain previous volume used on each input when switching between inputs.  Auditioning a new amp or piece of gear is hard when it takes so much time to get to the correct input and then try to volume match

4) I know tone filters a taboo - I like a little extra low end though and a sub isn't always the best answer.  Any filtering or tone adjustments on the radar?

5) Make it look like something I want to stare at in the middle of my room for decades to come.

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #30 on: 10 May 2018, 07:36 pm »
Hi trev4h,

I'm getting closer to releasing some pics of the upcoming L2 Signature Preamplifier.  Possibly sometime next week!

1) As with LIO, the L2 display will be 7-segment LED based (not flourscent backlit LCD readouts).  The main
reasons why I prefer this are:

- Lower Noise.  The 7 segment LEDs are just that - 7 LEDs per digit.  They only run on 5V (as opposed to multiple voltages with other displays), consume very little current, and keep things clean.  I can run them, along with all the control circuits (e.g. relays, microcontrollers) on their own dedicated 5V supply (all linear regulated) that is separate from the audio power supply rails to keep those isolated.
- Reliability (never had one fail, and probably won't for a very long time).
- Appearance (I really like the clean, simplistic look of it compared to more exotic displays, but that's just me).  I don't want to see
too much "digital tech" on the front of my preamp.  Others love that stuff, so it really is a personal preference.

The L2's 3 digits will be larger than LIO's.  The window will be larger and a different shape.  And you'll be able to adjust the brightness ( continuous adjustment knobs inside the unit), as well as the brightness of the two LEDs on the front (for PWR ON/OFF, and 12V Trigger Outs)... and there still will be a "DARK" mode via the remote if you don't want the display glowing while listening.

I can consider renaming D3 (the USB input) to "USB", and D1 (the optical input) "OPT" , and D2 (the coax input) to "COA" if you think it will be easier to understand.  At least the USB input can be "USB", which I think is easier to understand.

2) There are no sensors to detect if a cable is plugged into an input jack or not.  So no easy way to skip inputs if they are not plugged in.

The way to do 1 button input switching is to have buttons for every input, but I don't want a bunch of buttons on the front panel or any more added to the remote. 

3) This is doable... or perhaps just not changing the volume at all when you switch inputs.  Currently, when you switch to phono inputs or dac inputs, it mutes (as they probably will have different gain).  I do this to avoid one accidentally having their music play too loud when they switch inputs.  But it can be eliminated.

I can change the firmware so it saves the volume setting when you turn the L2 Preamp OFF. Then when you turn it ON again, it will automatically begin at that volume (when you come out of MUTE, as I insist on MUTING during TURN ON and tube warm up to avoid any pops and the like).

4) I have no plans for this. 

5) I guess we'll just have to see if I reached this goal when the pics of L2 are ready. :wink:

---

BTW - the volume knobs on the L2 Preamp will be larger (2" vs 1.5" diameter), and we're aiming for them to have what designer David Evett calls "the bank vault" feel.  It is his design where there is a spring-loaded ball bearing and many "dimples" machined in behind the knob on the front panel, so as you turn them, you get a very precise feel and click sound.   

Each L2 Monoblock, as well as the L2 Preamp, will ship in its own injection-molded hard-case with custom cut foam inserts for maximum protection (They are rated for serious conditions and are water resistant), and many years of use.

More details to share soon...

Thank you,

Vinnie

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #31 on: 18 May 2018, 08:37 pm »
It's Friday, and as promised, I have some pics of the upcoming L2 Signature Preamplifier to share.  Keep in mind that like the pics of the L2 Monoblocks above, these are quite compressed images to load on audiocircle, but it's a good start!  David Evett will be sending me even nicer pics of both the L2 Preamp and Monoblocks for my website next month].

Here we go!  8)


[L2 Signature Preamplifier Front View, w/o Mesh Tube Covers]


[L2 Signature Preamplifier Front View, w/ Mesh Tube Covers]


[L2 Signature Preamplifier Back View, w/o Mesh Tube Covers]


[L2 Signature Preamplifier Front Angle View, w/ Mesh Tube Covers]


[L2 Signature Preamplifier Top Angle View, w/ Mesh Tube Covers, and showing Mesh Ventilation & engraved logo to match aesthetic of the L2 Signature Monoblocks]

-----

As I mentioned earlier, details are always subject to change, but the following information is the latest that I can share at the moment:

- Just as with the L2 Monoblocks, the L2 Preamplifier is very SOLID (Thick, finely brushed CNC'd aluminum panel construction)!
It's also approx. 3 inches less wide than LIO, but approx. 1.5" taller.
- All circuitry has all been completely redesigned from the ground up.
- With mesh tube covers installed, triodes used in this new circuit are quieter than ever!  They can even be internally bypassed with a JFET stage (with a flip of a switch), and there are added gain settings if needed (some users of lower gain tube power amps will appreciate this).
- Output impedance of both SE and BAL outputs is quite low and will have no problem driving loads down to 5kohm with ease.
- Just one switch on the rear-panel to adjust the filament voltage for the various triodes that can be used. 
- The left/right Belleson super-regulators for the triode filaments are attached to the 0.5" thick aluminum side panels, so they run cool.
- Top cover mesh (same mesh pattern as L2 Monoblocks) allows for plenty of ventilation.
- The new motherboard PCB layout (4-layer board), as well as power supply PCB layout, we're done by a true layout guru that I hired for this project.
- Firmware is very responsive.  New display is larger than LIO, and there are knobs behind the front panel to adjust the display and red LED brightness.  Last volume setting is saved when you turn L2 Preamp off and on again.  Volume level does not change as you switch inputs.  There is a MUTE button added on the front panel.  SOURCE and VOLUME knobs are larger and are very solid (we are pressing a bearing into the front panel to secure the shafts), and they will have an awesome feel to them as well (as I mentioned earlier in this thread).

UPDATES, May 18th

L2 Signature Monoblocks: 

- All parts (except for the enclosures) are in stock and we have started production! 
- Enclosures are shipping end of this month.
- Custom hard cases (pictures coming soon) will be here end of this month.
- Website will have L2 Monoblocks shown and ready to order end of this month. 
- Lead-time will be within approx. 3 weeks from when we receive your order.

- Once the L2 Monoblocks are on our website, I'll start a new thread for them here in the VR forum.
- Be on the lookout for an email newsletter by end of this month!  If you haven't signed up already, here
is the link to do so:  https://www.vinnierossi.com/newsletter-registration/

L2 Signature Preamplifier: 

- L2 DAC should be ready end of June.
- L2 Phonostage should be ready end of June.
- Website will have L2 Preamplifier shown and ready to order by end of June.
- L2 Preamplifier enclosures, parts, hard cases, etc. won't be here until early July,
and we should be shipping within approx. 3 weeks from when we receive your order (and subject to change based on demand).

- Once the L2 Preamplifier is on our website, I'll start a new thread for it here in the VR forum as well.
- Lots of more details to share soon enough! 

Yeah... it's been busy!  :hyper:

Thank you,

Vinnie

Bones13

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #32 on: 18 May 2018, 09:44 pm »
 :o
Looking great!

Can’t wait for more details.

targa02

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #33 on: 19 May 2018, 01:42 am »
Wow Vinnie!  You are a busy man!  I love the look of the L2 pieces and look forward to hearing them at RMAF!

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #34 on: 19 May 2018, 04:15 pm »
Thanks, guys!

Even better will be how they sound  :wink:  :singing:

Tommy123

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #35 on: 19 May 2018, 06:53 pm »
Really good looking amps Vinnie!

Will these be offered in silver?

What's the best connection option, RCA or XLR? Are these fully balanced?

lengcm

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #36 on: 20 May 2018, 02:21 am »
Any trade-in for existing owners for LIO DHT?

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #37 on: 21 May 2018, 04:24 pm »
Really good looking amps Vinnie!

Will these be offered in silver?

What's the best connection option, RCA or XLR? Are these fully balanced?

Thanks, Tommy123! 

The L2 Signature Preamplifier and Monoblocks will be black as shown (I have no plans at this time to offer them in silver). 

Yes, the XLR input/outputs are fully balanced stages.  Hard to say which is "best" (depends on the equipment you connect to the L2's inputs/outputs, and how their balanced stages sound compared to their single-ended stages).  So definitely try both if you can and then decide what you prefer.

Quote from: lengcm
Any trade-in for existing owners for LIO DHT?

Hi lengcm,

I am looking into offering a LIO trade-in program for those who buy a L2 Signature Preamplifier + Monoblock combo.  I hope to have all the details figured out in a few weeks...

Thank you,

Vinnie
« Last Edit: 21 May 2018, 06:35 pm by Vinnie R. »

Tommy123

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Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #38 on: 21 May 2018, 06:09 pm »
If I use the DAC function (via spdif or USB) on the L2 preamp, will XLR sound better since the signal is fully balanced?

Vinnie R.

Re: AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage Thread
« Reply #39 on: 21 May 2018, 06:33 pm »
If I use the DAC function (via spdif or USB) on the L2 preamp, will XLR sound better since the signal is fully balanced?

Hi Tommy123,

You may very well prefer the sound of the XLR outputs.  You have to try and compare...

Vinnie