Edge Has an Edge

I spent much of my time at CES roaming around with Stereophile's self-proclaimed Web Monkey, Jon Iverson. I'd never met Jon before I came to the 2010 CES but he was a wonderful guide both to Las Vegas and to CES, as well as a smart and kind person to get to know. On Saturday morning he suggested we head on over the THE Show located at the Flamingo Hotel, right on the strip. One of the first rooms we happened upon was the Edge Electronics room. Jon said, "We've got to go in here."

I'd never heard Edge amps in person but I'd like to again after this experience. Designer Steven Norber showed me the new Signature 1.2 NL Amplifiers and gave us a listen. Driving the Montana EPS2 loudspeakers, the sound was full-bodied and gutsy.

Jason Victor Serinus comments: Though the Edge Electronics display was located in an acoustically challenging conference area near the dining area at THE Show, Steve Norber surmounted all obstacles to get fine sound out of Edge's newly upgraded electronics.

Playing Renaud Capuçon's recently released recording of the Beethoven Violin Concerto, I had time to reflect on what makes Edge so special. The sound is not only full, but also honest. Avoiding both the euphonic lushness of some tube equipment and the metallic sterility of much solid-state, Edge presents a pretty honest rendition of what music sounds like. It has its own signature, of course, but it never intrudes on fundamental musicality.

Auditioned under extremely difficult circumstances were the NL Signature 1.2 monoblocks ($42,388/pair). Each 120 lb amplifier produces 400W of "quasi class-A" power into 8 ohms. Also heard were a prototype full-function Edge preamp (price not set), Steve's own digital player (Edge's new, pure DC battery-powered CD player is coming before long), and PBN/Montana EPS 2 speakers ($10,000/pair). Analog, of which I heard but a little of before John Atkinson's final-day talk began, consisted of a PBN Audio GrooveMaster table ($10,000), Jelco SA 750D tonearm ($700), and AZYX Airy II cartridge ($3295). Shunyata power conditioning and Cardas Golden Reference & Straightwire interconnects completed this fine-sounding chain.