The picture I posted with Bruce Edgar was in my home and is for real. He flew into Omaha in 2005 to meet a client here and stayed the weekend and on the way to my place we visited a friend who had Avantgarde Trios. This was a Priceless moment and we visited a lot about the design of horns and got a lot of tips about set-up along with listening to a lot of music.
The Titan System has been modified with ASC Zinc/Oil capacitors in the crossover, Fostex T500 Mkll bullet tweeters, replacement reconed Electro Voice EV 18 inch lite-weight cone driver in the subwoofer, Truextent Beryllium diaphrams replaced in the JBL 2441 Compression Midrange Drivers. These drivers play seemless from 500HZ to 20,000 KHz.
Horn System has been re-wired with Elrod Copper low guage wire. Sonically tuned to my liking with Border Patrol 300B power amp. with Innerstage Transformers, VAC Signature Mklla tube preamp., Lindemann 825 DAC/Transport and Marchand MB42 Electronics.
HiFi Tuning Supreme fuses used in the electronics throughout.
Stage lll Concepts Cabling with Elrod Power Cords and Harmonic Resolution Systems SXR stand with MX3 Isolation Bases, Nimbus footers and damping plates.
HB Cable Designs Marble used for Power Conditioning.
15 X 20 room has been extensivly treated with Hiend Novum PMR Supreme MKll and ASC tube traps and panels throughout.
Someday I will re-introduce a turntable and experiment with computer audio but for now I am in heaven with this dynamic horn system.
107 db efficient 80 HZ Horn system using Vintage Drivers and made of Russion ApplePly. Vintage Drivers in my system consist of JBL 2441 Compression midrange driver modified with Truextent Beryllium Diaphrams, JBL K-120 12 inch driver reconed and re-magnitized in the folded mid-bass horn, Fostex T500 MKll for the horn super tweeter, Electro Voice EV 18 inch driver in the bass horn modifed with lite-weight cone and voice coil to keep pace with the horns. This was perfromed by gentleman from Australia but the name escapes me.
ASC and Dueland Capacitors for midrange and tweeter
I had these special made for my application. They are made of Zinc/with oil. This company is in NE. and is Japanese owned and makes specialty products sold the world over. I have Dueland Cast PIO on the tweeter crossover.
Audio Aero LaFontaine
The AA Lafontaine is the best I have heard in digital with Esoteric transport and 6021W tubes in the adjustable output stage. This player can be used as a server and the sound is similar to Zanden digital as a comparison.
Border Patrol 300B S-10
300B magic from Gary Dews. Purity at its best from top-to bottom.
Border Patrol EXS Power Supplies
These are brand new designed from Gary Dews and my 300B amplifier now sounds as if it is in musical control of anything you can throw at it. Weighing in at 80lbs. each with chassis and covers made of copper. 8w of SET magic with speed, dynamics, and extension.
Valve Amplification Company Signature Mklla
Pure tube magic preamp. using NOS Siemens 6922 Gold Pins. Now upgraded to SE status. Seems to be more resolution and extension upon break-in.
Stage lll Concepts Gryphon/Magnus Prime
Get out the way cabling made with Palladium/Silver Ribbons. These are best made and the most musically correct and forgettable cables I have ever encountered.
Stage lll Concepts Mantikor
Stunning speaker cables that are musical beyond belief with timbre and soundstage that make the speakers disappear.
Harmonic Resolution Systems SXR
SXR with M3X Isolation Bases with Nimbus Footers and Damping Plates. Electronics have a much blacker background with this stand.
Marchand Electronics MB42 Subwoofer Power Amplifier
The best of the best. Modified to have less gain for the 100DB efficient Subwoofer.
HB Cable Design Marble
Passive Power Slave with Elrod Gold Statements, Elrod X-2, and Stage 3 Kraken Power cables. The Marble is reviewed in Dagogo and my last purchase in Power conditioning.
Highend Novum Premium Mkll
I call it the Brass Gong but oh my do these things work. Focus, larger soundstage with depth, much better tone with Harmonic completeness.
ASC Tubetraps and Wall Panels Tubetraps
My room corners contain double stacked 16" Tubetraps and the walls extensivley treated with 8X48" ASC wall panels spaced 24 inches apart.
Jeff Korneff 45 SE
I also own a Jeff Korneff 45 tube amp. with V-Cap. Copper/Teflon Coupling Capacitors. used for amood change. Jeff made one of the best 45's of all time.
Living Voice OBX-RW
I took a side step and added a complement to my main system. One speaker that has always impressed me for it accuracy of musical production is the Living Voice OBX-RW. Outstanding tonality and coherence with great ability to draw you into the music. Like anything of high resolution they require great front end components to show there stuff so to complement my Border Patrol 300B I have added the Jadis JA30 classic monoblocks. These are instruments of musical greatness quite simple in design with large hand wound transformers and provide 30 WPC that works as a perfect match to the Living Voice 94 DB efficiency.
I have made some serious changes to the system in the past 8 months but I will be updating everything shortly in writing as I am not quite done yet.
The horn speakers were sold to an Asian couple in Delaware and I personally delivered them. I owned them 13 years. The reason for sale was I got tired of the size in my man cave size room and I the efficiency made so much a microscopic adventure to get right from a noisy tube to many other variables.
I now own a new set of Jadis monoblock amplifiers driving Gamut RS7i speakers from Denmark. Both systems have their specialties but this one is less work for me to get right. The speakers have no caps. to the midrange and are direct coupled to the Jadis emotion machines.
I do run mostly Stage III cabling but not quite all as of yet. I own the Kraken, Gorgon interconnect, Mantikor speaker cable and soon will have Typhon int. running to the amplifiers. I love the Stage III cables (pure audio jewelry) but I also loved David's power cords.....never heard the rest of the line but do have a friend in MN. with them so will get to hear soon. He has the TAD monitors. I also bet your system is amazing! So glad you are lucky to get to own the Master cords.
GWalt: This is an amazing and incredibly well thought-out system in a stunning room. For PCs, interconnects and speaker cables are you now 100% Stage3 across the board? They look massive and elegant at the same time,...their performance is reported to be as you and others write,...in a word, legendary in the audio industry. The big horns are one of the few horn speakers that I've ever loved the look of....the entire system has had me paging through the photos multiple times :-)!
What a stunning system and room,..CONGRATULATION!!! Enjoy the Music!!!
The Novum should be placed approximately ear level the same as most tweeters. I purchased a "solid" stand for it and have mine 36-37" to the middle of the Novum close to ear level as sitting. Just as important is the distance from the back wall to the middle of the Novum. Further placement out into the room expands the soundstage but weakens focus. Closer in tightens the focus and soundstage. Finding the optimum distance to the back wall takes some trial. YMMV but this is one tweak would not be without.
Before I retire I wanted to compliment my room with some music options. I have always admired the musicality of the Living Voice OBX-RW speakers. They are as coherent and seamless as any box cabinet speaker i have heard and have correct tonality for my taste. The designer Kevin Scott has been refining this design for over 20 years and it just sounds right to me. 8 WPC of Border Patrol power drives them wonderfully but I came across a match made for them with the Jadis JA30 monoblocks.. Now I have both horns and dynamic speakers properly driven by some of best electronics I can ever imagine. I feel very blessed to have this much music under one roof.
System edited: Well I have a substitute for my Lindeman 825 that suffered a storm power surge here in Nebraska and is under repair with more surgery to go but is should return as a back-up. I have purchased a used AA Lafontaine for my main service and it is much better than the old Prestige/Capitole that had service reputations. This player has the Esoteric transport with adjustable fixed or variable gain. Rich and musical with an exceptional ability to draw into the music.
Hi Lac: Here is the deal. Right from the box I plugged it into my subamp. (replacing a Silent Source reference) so I could break in there and let it draw current. What I experienced was a much quieter black background, larger soundstage, and firmer foundation? I did not think a subamp. was capable of following noise like that but then the preamp. feeds to it and vice versus. There has been subtle differences along the way to 250 hours but nothing major. I run a Elrod Gold Statement MX2 (cord between Diamond and Gold) from the wall to my HB Marble so my test will be to swap that around and see how the Kraken compares. You have to do the best you can at the start of the chain so we will see. At any rate this thing is special and expensive as you know. By the way you have some premium gear in your system along with your cables. I bet it glues you to listening and fun. If you ever want to try the Kraken for comparison sake let me know as it would be great to hear what it does vs. your cables. gwalt
Gwalt, Congratulations on the addition of the Stage 3 Kraken PC. I've never heard it but I know it's an awesome PC. Let us know what location it ends up in and how many hours it takes to burn in. Thanks...
I recently added a Stage 3 Kraken PC and still experimenting with it in different locations. Out of the box it is easily the best PC I have ever experienced and now with 200 hours is incredible and easily heard on the horns. Plugged into any source it simply lowers the noise floor and expands holographic imaging and spaciousness. The cute thing it does better than even an Elrod Gold Signature is provide a firm/full foundation to the music without loss of resolution. Simply magic in this system.
Hi Melbguy1 Thank you for the nice comment. I have heard a lot about the Jorma cable but have never experienced it. It is also wonderfully made and of course expensive. I am in the process of listening to the Stage 3 Kraken and Triton PC's along with the old Zyclops. Very interesting comparisons indeed. Now I hear that the next step for Stage 3 is to introduce a new series of interconnect/speaker cables. He does not change often so this should be interesting. I need to win the local lottery however I am most happy with my current cables. I like the Magico line when mated to the proper power and bet your music sounds compelling. Best Regards, Gwalt
Congrats on a nice system Gwalt! The Stage 3 Concepts Mantikor sc's are in the same league as Jorma Prime. I must also say i'm a convert to Berylium dome tweeters after having experience with ribbon and ceramic tweeters previously. (I have a pair of Magico S5's).
I am glad I caught you as I am not on here very much except the weekends. Congratulations on discovering BP Electronics.
I don't think the P-21 is any harder on the tubes unless they were biased incorrectly that I am aware of. If you ask Gary he is not a huge fan of Sophia tubes as he personally had one go poof but I know he ran them for quite some time. I have a pair of Royal Princess that have maybe 500 hours on them with no issues except one tube is hotter in bias than the other. These are definitely richer in the lower midrange than the cheaper Chinese/Russian tubes.
If you want the best current stock tube on the market my belief is the Takasuki made in Japan however be prepared to pay the high price.
Most of the brands are either Chinese or Russian made currently which is where the EH is at. EH non-gold grid can sound a bit hard. I would try the EH gold grid cryo-set which is smoother throughout and very dependable if you have not went there. Secondly, you might want to try the Black Treasure series from China for increased musicality while staying affordable. I have not tried the Genelux Gold Lions or JJ's and likely won't anytime soon. Anyone tried the Full Music line with carbon plates as I suspect they are the same as Sophia's?
In the end, I find Gary's new Border Patrol EXS PS's make the cheap tubes sound wonderful and much closer to the high priced glass as they get the best out of everything.
Gwalt, Congratulations on your BP upgrade! As an owner of a BorderPatrol P-21, I can attest to the strength Gar's power supply add to the guts and delicacy of the amp. I've also asked this question to Dmarkov so I'll repeat my question. I was running Sophia Carbon Princess which I loved for their rich, yet detailed and dimensional presentation. However, I ended up having to return my amp to Gary for repair after an issue with the tubes. Evidently they are not compatible. I replaced them with Electro Harmonix which are fine but don't have the magic. Knowing the P-21 is a push/pull, I'm not educated enough to know if this configuration is harder on tubes. Any suggestions for an alternative to the EH?
I like the Siemens 60's gold pins in my VAC the best so far with the Amperex PQ's being a bit warmer and the Siemens being more honest and a bit more vibrant. Since you now own the GAT you will have some time to "look around" for tubes and experiment with matching. Tube rolling itself can be a frustrating experiment but something will lock in. The matching of all these things gets back to mention that the weakest link controls the outcome. It is a great hobby to be in if you like something that will drive you to borderline insanity. Great hearing from you and do enjoy the music.
Hi Gary Thanks for taking the time to respond and your detailed comments. I certainly was not looking for a " which is better " type of inane comparison . These are SOTA preamps and 26 DB gain with your high efficiency speakers would be an issue. It's always interesting and refreshing to hear a different non commercial perspective. My only gripe against the GAT is that it is soo dependent on tube rolling. The stock EH 6922s were IMHO pretty ordinary. I have a pair of Amperex PQs 7308s but these are not the best of the best. That would be a pair of D getter 1956 Amperex pinch waist 6922s which are rare as rare. NJoy your musical journey and do keep in touch Best Pradeep
I see your 40 year journey has led you to a lovely system. I bet it sounds magical. Matching up everything to what you like from the music is the key and is most difficult to achieve. With that said I found the VAC Signature a better match in my system over the GAT. Both are in the group of top tier of preamps. and are both great pieces in their own way. The difference for me was that the GAT had to much gain (25DB) for the horns and I had to configure the BP amps. with a lower gain driver tube (E82CC) for the 300B which was not as good as the 6c45pi I am using now. The designer used the 6c45pi driver when he voiced the BP amp. which has more life and dynamics so the VAC is better with the 12DB of gain and a higher gain driver tube in the amp. In terms of musicality each grade very high with maybe the GAT having a wider huge soundscape and the VAC being more holographic (bowling alley capable) and 3-dimensional with more resolution. Also for me the VAC responded more on the swapping of 6922-7308 variety tube flavors possibly due to how it is used and Kevin Hayes stock tubes being very good. In the end they each have the manufacturer's flavor and gets down to system matching properly to your tastes as both are first class pieces. Again I hope you read this as one not necessarily better than the other but just different with the VAC winning out in my matching situation for what I needed. YMMV due to your matching situation and needs for gain. Please realize that my comments relate to highly efficient speakers (107DB) with matching of gain to be of critical importance. In your system the GAT's gain may win out in dynamics and spread but it would be hard to know without installation on-site with gain needs from your other components. It would be a very interesting comparison in your fine system for sure and the only way to know.
Hi Gary Delighted to see your system page and congrats on some exquisite gear. Love the look of the horns. Would love to hear a properly integrated SET and horn system. How do you find the VAC pre compared to the GAT ? Best Pradeep
Yes I agree with your comments on the front end importance as everything is down chain from there. Systems are really only as good as your weakest link including but not any less important, your room acoustic tuning and treatment. This is an another topic but one of most important! I see a lot of rooms on this site without anything and I wonder what is missing from the fine components. Having two sets of horns is not only a unique treat but must keep you busy experimenting! Would love to hear them as you appear a horn lover. I have tried many cables if interested to share off-site you may call me at 402-276-0343. My current cables won out on the horns after a long exhausting search. OMG are they good but also expensive....again my last stop.
"tube plates ringing" :) Yes! I hear that too. I have two different horns to play with now, one Oris with 110db, the other Orphean with 114 db. And omg, it's a pain to hear all these noises, scary when I change tubes. To share my experience, I found that cabling is extremely important, and it was a long journey of resistance, so I take my hat off when I see what you did with your cabling. I also don't use any active filters. The other underestimated area was DAC and the front end in general. First I realized how important DACs were when I tried several good DACs, then came the realization that transports too make a huge difference, and the digital cable, although it's hard to find a good one. it IS a journey for sure.