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Gershman Rocks with Red Rock Audio
The Canadian Gershman Black Swan speaker ($30,000/pair), which mounts the tweeter and midrange unit in a separate A-frame enclosure to prevent their performance being affected by vibrations from the woofer, made its debut at HE2006 last May, and I was looking forward to hearing what it could do at CES.
Driven by Red Rock Audio's Renaissance 50W push-pull triode monoblocks ($39,750/pair), they sounded sweet indeed. The zero-loop feedback amplifiers must, of course, have had something to do with that. Red Rock's Alan Stiefel (who moonlights as the organizer of the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest) showed me the amp's measurements, and though the lack of loop negative feedback means that the THD doesn't drop below an okay 0.1% at 1W, the amplifier maintains that performance over an extraordinarily wide bandwidth. The output tubes are direct-heated Svetlana 572-10s, a new tube to me, but which threw off an inviting glow as well as great sound.