YG Acoustics' Family Values

Just as I entered Emeryville's Hilton Garden Inn on the final day of the show, YG Acoustics' Yoav Geva (fourth from left) and his extended family were making their first visit to the Hilton. Filling most of an elevator, our little passel of smiling faces made its way to the YG Acoustics room.

There I was delighted to discover the Carmel loudspeaker ($18,000/pair), named after Yoav's two-year old son, Carmel. I doubt Carmel's voice is equally flat from 35Hzצ40kHz, or can yet bring out the deep bass voices on John Atkinson's demonstration-quality While You Are Alive recording of male vocal ensemble Cantus with the authority of his solid namesake, but he was as adorable as the Carmel was tonally secure.

Also along for the ride from Colorado was four-year old Hailey. She, too, has left her mark in the loudspeaker department. Her nickname, Kipod (the Hebrew word for hedgehog), has been inherited by the next higher model in YG Acoustics' line. Not yet memorialized in aluminum are girlfriend Sonja Knight, nanny Cecilia Acosta, YG Acoustics' Director of Sales and Marketing Dick Diamond (second from right), and Dick's smiling son Alex.

The rest of the company was none too shabby. How about three of the four-stack dCS Scarlatti system (costing around $75,000), the Krell Evo 202 preamp ($16,500) and 402E 400Wpc amp ($16,500), and the same Kimber Select wiring used as interconnects and speaker cable as employed internally in the YG line?

As superb as it was in conveying bass, the Carmel also did a marvelous job of handling the highs of Elly Ameling's voice. It was equally in control of the huge percussion and trumpet climaxes at the opening of Mahler's Symphony No.2, which is pretty remarkable for a small speaker.

Yoav couldn't let me go without hearing Petra Magoni's bizarre Musica Nuda rendition of the Beatles' "Come Together, Right Now (Over Me)." I don't know what the girl was smoking or snorting, but the YGs were fully up capturing the prodigious bass that surrounded her soap-opera excess. Equally impressive was the Carmel's ability to convey height and depth.

Having enjoyed YG Acoustics speakers on numerous occasions, I expect that in a different room, with different electronics, the highs would have been more radiant. Regardless, the speaker's ability to control the entire audible range without a trace of grain and distortion was first-class.

Thanks for the joy, Yoav.

Stephen Scharf's picture

I thought the YG Acoustics Carmels had a lot of potential but were let down by the Krell solid-state gear, which i found to have an edgy and hard highs and well, was generally solid-state sounding. Love to hear 'em with a Conrad-Johnson ACT2 S2 and Premier 350.....

thomas's picture

The YG's sounded harsh and dry , this is the 3rd time i have heard these speakers and am not a fan. I also noticed during my K2 sampler that the speakers were distorting at low volumes ( 85 db's ) when required to do lower bass ( 40-25hz ).

marvin's picture

To me this was the best and worst room of the show all at once: best sound, worst environment. On one hand the system sounded great (warm but not veiled, huge soundstage, tremendous bass, luscious mids, best sound of show hands-down), but on the other hand the small children who entered just as I was listening to my own CD were a big distraction that I shouldn't have had to deal with.The children danced around to the music and were obviously having a great deal of fun, but it prevented me from concentrating so I had to come back later and listen more critically, which is something that I shouldn't be troubled into doing (I am the customer, forget you not!).I tried to ask Yova Geva a question but he was too busy entertaining his toddlers, so I had to talk to the salesman instead.A hi-fi show is in my opinion not a "family fun" event - it is a venue that should be free from distractions, and should only be accessible to those of us who are old enough to appreciate music.

Jay's picture

Marvin: An audio show is like a first date. You are just being introduced and getting to know each other. Expecting an intimate experience the first time you see each other is unrealistic. Now that you like the sound, find a dealer and settle in for a long, kid-free session. Maybe you'll have breakfast together.

mike jong's picture

Wow marvin i wish i was smoking what you were. I thought the room sounded terrible and had no bass below 90hz anywhere in the room EVEN IN THE CORNERS!. They did play some good tracks thou.

starr's picture

Yo Thomas, Marvin and Mike Jong - I actually made a point of visiting all of the rooms at the show. Did you visit all? if yes, your impressions make no sense.Let's start with Thomas: harsh and dry? The YGA system was on the mellower side; Jason Victor Serinus heard it too. Also, you throw numbers around (85 dB, 40-25 Hz) way too comfortably to be a visitor - I assume that you might be an industry guy (I read on AVGuide already that there is a Magico guy who bashes YGA often using aliases)...Marvin - you are hyping up YGA to the point of being rude to other exhibitors - this was not the "hands-down" best of the show. One of the two best? that I could accept (together with Evolution Acoustics), but not by a big margin: a lot of other rooms sounded great too (Gradient, Wadia).Mike Jong - you, like Thomas, feel too comfortable throwing numbers around (90 Hz). Could it be that you are also an industry guy, or perhaps even the same guy as Thomas? Jason Victor Serinus liked the bass, and it was easy to agree.

Joel Barber's picture

For real????