Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 21, 2023  |  2 comments
William Duncan (right), who lives relatively close to me in Sammamish, WA, has been after me for a while to hear Laufer Teknik Product's new offerings. Finally, the opportunity arrived at AXPONA. Sharing the room with John Siau of Benchmark Audio (left), Duncan and Laufer Teknik Products showed The Note ($32,500/pair), a line array speaker designed by Mark Porzilli of Melos vacuum-tube electronics fame. The price includes a SB 3000 subwoofer ($1010 each).
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 21, 2023  |  0 comments
Harmonic Resolution Systems (HRS) unveiled its new, significantly less expensive EXR-1921-4V audio stand ($7795) at AXPONA. (I'd originally seen this stand at Definitive Audio's private Music Matters event in Seattle.) Put to good use in the Ultra Fidelis Room, it joined HRS's SXR-1921-5V audio stand ($11,550/frame), M3X2-1921 isolation base ($3995), R3X-1921 isolation base ($1975), and Vortex V150 isolation feet ($1630/set) to support a system that included Vandersteen M5HPA High Pass Amplifiers ($16,800/pair) and Kento Carbon loudspeakers ($41,700/pair)...
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  7 comments
I'd encountered the pairing of room sponsor Nordost with VTL electronics and Stenheim loudspeakers in this very same room last year. But this time, with one more year to learn how to tame an extremely large, semi-intractable listening space, set-up wizard Stirling Trayle scored a bullseye.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  2 comments
As much as I was aware of the dizzying array of diminutive, Korean-made SOtM (Soul Of the Music) components, each identified by a different difficult-to-type assortment of upper and lower case letters plus numbers and dashes, I did not expect them to sound as good as they did. Allied to K Sound Lab's Callas Nostalgia Jr. loudspeakers ($26,990/pair), manufactured by a 25-year old company that is reportedly well known in Korea, the system displayed lovely colors, a rounded midrange, and enviable clarity on a file of "I am at Ease in the Arms of a Woman."
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  0 comments
Add the phrase, "with extended low bass" and you've got a sense of the sound in the Krell room. Paired with Magico A5 loudspeakers ($28,000/pair), Krell's Vanguard DAC ($7500), KSA-i400 stereo amplifier ($36,500), and Anti-Cables, the system produced deep bass drums with excellence.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  0 comments
There were no surprises in the two adjacent MBL rooms jointly presented with Kyomi Audio. Sitting in the sweet spot before the big system, spaciousness and transparency were superb on an older modern instrument recording of Bach's Concerto for Oboe and other instruments. Ditto for Dolly Parton's adorable "Love is Like a Butterfly," which sounded simply and utterly beautiful.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  1 comments
VANA CEO Roy Feldstein worked a room at AXPONA, no bells and whistles, no crazy demos or static displays. Roy simply plays the kind of solid gear that he excels in distributing, including European Audio Team (EAT), Kyomi Audio, Grimm Audio, Atlas Cables, Ferrum, Jorma and Marten loudspeakers, and Rekkord turntables.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  2 comments
A classic American brand, as flag-waving as the Fourth of the July, with an impressive history as a US industrial giant, all ears perk up when new JBL product is announced. Today's declaration brought to you by AXPONA: the new JBL 4329P Studio Monitor ($4500/pair).
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  2 comments
Robert Schryer reviewed the KLH Model Three ($1799/pair) in December 2022; I reviewed the KLH Model Five ($1998/pair) in September 2021—we each loved our respective pairs.

There's something honest and immediate about the revived KLH lineup; it feels right, looks right—"mid-century modern!" says Don Draper—and most importantly, sounds right. These are no-nonsense transducers that make exceptional music with most upstream components.

Jason Victor Serinus  |  Apr 20, 2023  |  0 comments
As I continue work on a follow-up review of the Next-Gen Power Supply Upgrade to the Innuos Statement music server and streamer ($21,700), Innuos has released its new Pulsar Network music player + USB reclocker ($6899). A stripped-down version of the flagship Statement, the Pulsar lacks both a ripper and internal storage. What it boasts instead is over 130,000µF of Mundorf capacitors, a large high-end inductor, and an audio-grade, 300VA toroidal transformer. The Pulsar favors its optimized USB output with reclocking over its non-dedicated USB, and lacks S/PDIF and AES/EBU outputs.