Alta Celesta , Audio by Van Alstine, Anticables

Alta Audio was showing off their Celesta FRM-2 stand-mounted speakers ($15,000/pair) at AXPONA, driving these two-ways with AVA SET monoblock amplifiers ($5000/pair), which use two of Frank Van Alstine's single-ended MOSFET amplifiers in push-pull to obtain 600Wpc into 8 ohms. The source was Frank's laptop feeding data via a 25' USB cable (!!!) to his Mk.5 DAC and FET/Valve CFR tube preamp. Cabling was all by a brand new to me, Anticables.

I listened to recordings of Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" and Mozart's Eine Kleine Nachtmusik: while the sound was surprisingly full-range for a speaker with a 6" woofer—Alta's Mike Levy promotes his proprietary XTL bass tuning system as being responsible for what I heard—it was also somewhat mellow. I suspect I was sitting a little too high for the folded-ribbon tweeter to be fully effective.