Von Schweikert and WestminsterLab dance with Lampizator, Sonore, Small Green Computer, MasterBuilt, and more

Damon Von Schweikert, CEO of speaker manufacturer Von Schweikert Audio, did something interesting in the room (1621) he shared with Gary Leeds of WestminsterLab. Faced with a challenging room whose opening to a second inner chamber of similar size all but guaranteed that bass would be a mess, set up two Von Schweikert V-12XS MkII Shockwave subwoofers ($33,000 for two), facing each other. One was in the listening room toward the rear along the side wall; the other was in the opening. Operating 180º phase, the two subs equalized pressure at their positions and canceled standing waves, resulting in much smoother, more focused, and correctly proportioned bass. I’d call Damon sly, but nothing about his set-up was hidden.

As I struggled to listen to George Benson's "The Ghetto" over lots of loud talking from the inner chamber, I discovered a wonderful midrange, this one tube-smooth, complemented by fast, well-controlled bass—nothing like the bass from the woofer-equipped Pontiacs and Buicks that made my life miserable in my East Oakland ghetto back in the day. This sounded like music.

Heading the system were Von Schweikert VR-55 Special Edition loudspeakers with Foundation/RC bass controller ($85,000/pair), four WestminsterLab Rei Class A monoblock amplifiers in vertical bi-amp configuration ($67,800), and two WestminsterLab dual mono Quest balanced preamplifiers with the carbon fiber option ($53,800). Making its worldwide debut was the very smooth-sounding Lampizator Poseidon Balance DAC/preamplifier ($28,500), which replaces three older DACs in four variations each—12 in total. The Poseidon, which supports up to 768kHz PCM and DSD512, has a new remote control and OLED display, a "vast array of tube options," integrated volume control, Lampizator’s highest input and lowest output impedance levels, a redesigned auto-mute circuit, and more.

Also making essential contributions: Sonore Signature Rendu SE deluxe music streamer ($5350), Small Green Computer sonicTransporter i9 (Gen 4) Roon server ($3999), Masterbuilt Audio Ultra cabling with Final Touch Audio Sinope USB, Vividus zwo grounding box ($13,000) for source components, and Folgenhaüs and FalkenOhr racks and stands.