AV123's Big Boys

Over in the Tech Center Hyatt, Mark Schifter's AV123 corralled a huge room in which to showcase their soon-to-be-shipped flagship LS9 Focus Line Source speaker ($5999/pair). Powered by gorgeous Dodd Audio KT-88 monoblocks (approx. $40,000/pair—there was no literature on hand), the brand new Ultra Fi Music Stream USB-connectable DAC ($3499) with a proprietary analogue output stage designed by Larry Moore, a Ridge Street Audio USB cable that he waxes ecstatic about, and a laptop equipped with every kind of classical music (except what I wanted to hear), the system was creating astoundingly large-scale, believable images and enveloping sound. While designer Danny Richie's proprietary woofer array was issuing tremendous bass, a touch of brittleness on the highs gave evidence of the fact that the planar-magnetic tweeters had hardly broken in. You can bet that I'll be back again on Sunday to hear how they sound with some more hours on them. What this speaker does for the price is astounding.

Buddha's picture

Holy Cow! Is that price a typo?

6K for their 'flagship' speaker?

Great show report, sir. I am looking forward to your Sunday report on this sytem!

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Uh oh, sacred Buddha. I don't think it's going to happen. There are two of us blogging the entire show, and I still have two and a half floors left to cover at Marriott. There are many rooms I'd love to revisit, but there isn't time when there are so many other systems to discover. However, in less than a month, I should be able to listen to these speakers in the comfort of my own home. Stay tuned for a post on the forum. In fact, remind me please. Gracias,jason

Tim K's picture

I checked out this room 3 times (Fri, Sat, Sun) and came away with was one inescapable conclusion; these are not subtle speakers. If you are into subtle music, move on. However, if you are looking for something to blast your eyebrows off with, you can't beat the price tag. Assuming, of course, you have the power to push them and a room big enough to accommodate them.

cwb4tx's picture

I have heard these a few times including the first beta demonstration a while back. They gave me the deepest and widest sense of soundstage I think I have heard so far in an average sized room ( ~3 feet off back wall though...)and dynamics were very impressive.I also want to comment that although these were powered by some pretty impressive Dodd amps at RMAF, I dont think you need outrageous amounts of power to drive them. They do not have low sensitivity (Note that a line aray does not decrease SPL over distance as quickly as a more traditional speaker) nor do they have unfriendly impedance curves...YMMV