Linear Tube Audio/Clayton Shaw Acoustic Lab

Amplifier manufacturer Linear Tube Audio was seemingly everywhere at the show. LTA appeared with Daedalus Audio in the Randolph Room, with PureAudioProject in Room 825, with Credo Audio and Audioshield Distribution in Room 730, and with Audeze, Meze, iBasso, and ZMF in the Headphone Lounge; LTA debuted the new Velo ($2100) headphone amp at the show.

LTA received perhaps its best exposure in a room shared with one of the most widely buzzed about products at the show: Clayton Shaw Acoustic Lab's Caladan open-baffle speaker ($3295/pair).

No seats were available when I squeezed into Shaw's room, and the engrossed faces of the attendees thoroughly engaged in music told me I'd be standing for a while.

Due to a video on New Record Day and other media, Shaw sold 120 pairs of his Caladan Open Baffle Speaker in three days. And hearing is believing. At the price, the exceptional realism, clarity, warmth, extension, and immediacy of these speakers was impressive.

Also in room, the world debut of the LTA Aero DAC ($3600), an Innous ZEN Mk3 network streamer ($3649), an LTA Ultralinear+ integrated amplifier ($7650), and AntiCables Level 3.3 USB interconnects ($215), Level 5.3 XLR interconnects ($900/pair), Level 4.2 FLEX speaker wires ($640/pair), and Level 3 power cords ($330/each).

Shaw’s Caladan boasts a 1.5" thick baffle made from kiln-dried, solid American hardwood. It employs twin 12" Beyma pro-audio bass/mid units and a 1 1/8" silk-dome tweeter. Frequency response is said to be 32hz–20khz, ±2db, the sensitivity 93db/W/m, and the nominal impedance 4 ohms. The Caladan stands 38" high by 18" wide by 10" deep, including the legs, and weigh 35lb. Isoacoustics Gaia iii feet are included.

"This configuration builds upon the open-baffle, dipole concept, which evolved from the original Emerald Physics CS2 model introduced in 2007, passed through the Spatial M Series, and underwent rigorous testing and refinements,"" the Shaw website states. Shaw is a former designer for Spatial.

A Stereophile review of Clayton Shaw Acoustic Lab’s Caladan open-baffle speaker is in the works.