Grimm Audio reaches the US
Earlier this year, Michael Lavorgna told us about Grimm Audio’s attractive and intelligent LS1 system ($39,900), which incorporates high-resolution (24-bit/192kHz-capable) A/D and D/A converters, six Bruno Putzeysdesigned NCore amplifiers, a DSP processor, USB interface, a preamp/control unit, integrated bass modules, and all the necessary cables. There is even an analog input. All you need to add, then, is a source.
Generally, when placed in front of an “all-in-one solution,” I’m as skeptical as the next guythere must be some significant compromises somewherebut, in this case, after speaking with the designer, Eelco Grimm, and enjoying the music that effortlessly filled the room, I feel confident that the LS1 is something special.
Grimm explained that his first product, released in 2004, was the AD1 analog-to-digital converter. (Based around a discrete power supply, the AD1 is the converter used by Channel Classics’ Jared Sacks to create his DSD masters.) In designing the AD1, Grimm focused on achieving neutrality, rather than concern himself with matters of ultimate precision or musicality.
“Our goal is to present the listener with everything that is on the recording. We don’t try to sweeten the recording. We found that neutrality, on its own, was very beautiful.”
In 2008, Grimm turned his attention to the loudspeaker, “the bottleneck” of a high-fidelity playback system. “We wanted to start at the basics, to achieve an entirely new concept of loudspeaker.” The result is the LS1 system.
With a prototype source streaming a 16-bit/44.1k file of Mary Gauthier’s “Mercy Now,” I was moved by the music’s presence, detail, and clean, engaging overall sound.
I think we can expect much more to come from Grimm Audio. The company is now distributed in the US by New Jersey’s GTT Audio & Video.