MBL DAC-CD Player, Integrated Amplifier, and Loudspeakers, Plus Wireworld Cables

Gobsmacked is a word I never use, but I will in this report. That's because I'm at a loss to find a better term to convey how I felt when I heard the system MBL had set up in their room—which, by MBL standards, was small (other qualities that came to mind about the system's look were tidy, clean, and really, really white). The all-MBL system consisted of a total of three components: The three-way omnidirectional Radialstrahler 120 speakers with integral stands ($CAD30,150/pair), the 300Wpc C51 integrated amp ($CAD14,600), and the C31 DAC-CD player ($CAD12,000), with Wireworld cabling throughout.

The sound I heard from this system was akin to hearing an event in person: lively, effortless, vivid, dynamic. The sound was seamless, the soundstage deep and wide. I think what impressed me most about the MBL's sound was how, more so perhaps than any other system I heard at the show, it made instruments and voices sound like the real thing. It was uncanny, and I was gobsmacked.

Anton's picture

MBL is my fantasy line up.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

When is MBL gonna make wireless stand-mount speakers like the B&W Formation Duo, for example? :-) .......

tonykaz's picture

$60,000 Worth of Civilian Audio Gear.

Every Show Reporting about MBL , from civilians that I know and Reviewers writing make the same sort of comments.

Obviously, I hope, the MBL gear is as good as it sounds.


Is MBL using "Gobsmacking" Source Material ( like I would use if I were doing a CES Show ).

I've heard un-compressed recordings in a Commercial Recording Studio played on Studio Monitors that routinely sound magnificent.

I'm pondering, did the MBL Demo People allow the playing of Show Attendee's Music? Haven't we read where Stereophile's Editor would bring in a little AK Player loaded with "his" known music.


You're MBL Show report seems to pretty much set the Bench Mark for what $60k worth of Gear needs to achieve.

Leaving me to wonder, how do those Wilson / VTL people extract their kind of money ?


Now, we are having the Ghost of Arnie Nudell & Paul McGowan planting a Flag in this Arena. These guys are already known for kick'n ass.

It seems like we are in for some exciting reports, vastly improved gear and darn good musical recordings.

It's a great time to be an Audiophile/Stereophile!!!

Tony in Venice

Ortofan's picture

... the little kid from the old VW Super Bowl commercial dressed up as Darth Vader and perched on a speaker stand.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

They kinda look like Olaf the Snowmen (Frozen), minus the carrot noses :-) ........

JackWlwi's picture

This was my best of show. It was not even close really. They had some interesting clear plastic diffusers around the room that no doubt helped, but the loud hall outside the room was not ideal. In spite of that, the room really stood out. It was not played loud so I can't comment on full dynamics, but otherwise, stellar.

navr's picture

Do you know the brand of those plastic difusers by any chance? All I could see was "SMT Shaped By Hand". But when I searched internet, nothing came up.

navr's picture


Jim Austin's picture

Svanå Miljöteknik AB, aka SMT AB.

The product is called Transparent Wing Mobile.

Jim Austin, Editor

ringmeraudioguy's picture

They may sound great but what about the ‘wife factor’? They look like a DIY project gone wrong. Sorry, but these are destined for the buyer who has a separate listening room.

navr's picture

Do you know the brand of those plastic difusers by any chance? All I could see was "SMT Shaped By Hand". But when I searched internet, nothing came up.