Old Forge Audio, Phonographe Distribution: Heretic, Thöress

In room 801, David Cope of Old Forge Audio, in conjunction with Phonographe Distribution, played a joyous-sounding system that included my and Herb Reichert's current favorite loudspeaker, the Heretic AD614 ($7290/pair); "AD" is a tribute to former Stereophile columnist and Deputy Editor Art Dudley. These speakers, which are manufactured in Canada, play with physicality, wholeness, jump, and speed that's rare among the many speakers I’ve heard through the years. The Heretic AD614 is pure and natural without exaggerating frequency extremes.

The Heretics found expression in a system with a Wattson Audio Madison streaming DAC ($3450) and the Thöress EHT integrated amp recently reviewed by Herb Reichert ($10,995), with various Luna Cables sending signals.

Whether playing the swinging hipster jujue of Aldous Harding and her chesty vocals and resonant instrumentation, orchestral or jazz, the Wattson/Thöress/Heretic system simply disappeared, leaving only heart and soul.