Melco Server, Aqua Acoustic Quality DAC, Audio Valve Preamp, ATC Powered Speakers, JL Audio Subwoofers

Entracte Audio's room displayed a nifty little system centered around a pair of active ATC SCM 40A speakers ($CAD13,800/pair) supplemented by two JL Audio E110 subwoofers ($CAD2300 each). Preamp duties were handled by Audio Valve's Eclipse preamp ($CAD6600), while the source consisted of a Melco music server ($CAD7300) being fed music files from an external hard drive, and the Italian Aqua Acoustic Quality La Voce S3 Discrete R2R ladder DAC ($CAD5500).

Though I felt the sound could have used an extra layer of harmonic meat on its bones, it was engagingly animated and dynamic, and capable of producing fast transients, startlingly deep bass, and a convincing sense of drama and scale.

tonykaz's picture

Can I quote you on this?


being the plagiarist that I love being, I intend on having an extensive use for this important New and Improved Audio terminology.

I had no idea the reach of your lexicon.

Thank You

Tony in Venice

ps. it's nice to not read "to be honest" amongst your pronouncements. That Brit term is a "tell" of the fraudulent.

allhifi's picture

Man, TinV: We think the same thing:

For sure, the well-meaning? author likely couldn't find a better word/term for seeking/enjoying 'more coloration on the bone" -although I'm not sure he quite understands music/hi-if in such a (accurate) manner.


JRT's picture

Pricing seems steep, and other reported on setups at the show included still higher priced digital subsystem gear with similar functionality.

I expect that Kal could find as good or better performance on significantly lower budget.

Kal has touched on some of this in his column, but it was peripheral to the focus on playback of 5.1 music in surround. Now that he is shifting focus, I think it would be good for Stereophile readership if he could show them more about assembling a variety of useful, practical, scalable and upgradable (not overly integrated, not overly proprietary) digital audio subsystems, from server through DAC and maybe or maybe not through an analog control preamplifier.

allhifi's picture

In the event that you represent (thankfully) some 'new' blood at Stereophile, perhaps you may wish to offer up your thoughts on how the lucky reader/audiophile could attain:

" extra layer of harmonic meat on its bones.."

Help the reader out man. Say something. Recommend something. Geesh -same old bs, make yourself useful -recommend something -or a likely/suspected reason(s) ...