Sweet Streams from Salk and Van Alstine

Salk’s beautifully finished SoundScape 8 uses the same RAAL ribbon tweeter, Accuton midrange unit, and 12” side-firing passive radiators as the company’s larger SoundScape 10 and 12 floorstanders, but where those designs use single 10” and 12” woofers, respectively, the SoundScape 8 employs two 8” drivers. While the base price for the SoundScape 8 is $8000/pair, custom-finished models such as those seen here, which had a marble-like appearance, can cost up to $12,000/pair.

With a claimed sensitivity of “about 87dB,” the SoundScape 8s seemed comfortable driven with Audio by Van Alstine’s 300Wpc FetValve 600R power amp ($3499) and FetValve preamp ($2499). Music was streamed from Salk’s new StreamPlayer ($1295), which is compatible with signals up to 24-bit/192kHz, handing over to Van Alstine’s FetValve DAC ($2499). Cost-effective Blue Jeans Cables tied everything together.

Texas-style blues (Could it have been Stevie Ray Vaughan?) sounded appropriately smooth, sweet, and articulate.

Devil Doc's picture

I'm very fond of AVA for their products, service and integrity. I've often wondered why they don't get much ink in Stereophile.

The speaker cable looks to be Canare 4S11, terminated and sold by BJC. You should review their stuff sometime. I have their LC-1 throughout my system plus the 4S11. Frank Van Alstine recommended it. It's not expensive, but I wouldn't call it entry level.   I'd be interested in what you think of it. 


JohnnyR's picture

Finally a sytem that is both affordable and delivers great sound. I can hardly believe that anyone would need anything else more expensive that could match this in quality.

DetroitVinylRob's picture

Beautiful speakers as always from our local friends at Salk Signature Sound. Nice job Jim and company, SMAC looks forward to seeing you at another KarmaFest, spring won't come quick enough!

Happy Listening! ;^)>