Spectral Debut with MIT and Magico

Given that, for the first time since the dawn of the stereo era, cables were not part of my assignment, I never expected to find anything on my beat in the MIT room. But there, virtually dwarfed between MIT's top-of-the-line Oracle MA-X cabling and Magico Q3 loudspeakers, sang one of only two Spectral DMA-300 RS stereo amplifiers ($TBD) yet in existence. The sound through this stereo version of Spectral's monoblocks and Spectral's DMC-30 SS preamp and FDR-4000 CD player was spectacular.

I've come to associate Spectral with sound that is maximally controlled and ultimately revealing, yet shy of the sparkling illumination that I associate, for example, with the sound of the San Francisco Symphony in the best seats in Davies Symphony Hall. Not true of the Spectral DMA-300 RS. Voiced with MIT cabling, as is Magico—MIT makes a line of cabling voiced specifically for Spectral products—the system sounded maximally colorful and revealing, gorgeous, really, on a Reference Recordings track of the Turtle Creek Chorale with organ accompaniment. How perfect for an HDCD recording by Keith Johnson, who also designs Spectral electronics. Switching gears, an aria by soprano Dame Kiri Te Kanawa from her prime years was so transparent that it took me right to the scene of the operatic crime, as it were, and left me wishing the system had been in a bigger room (eg, my own).