Description

For most audiophiles, an office system is an afterthought and rarely more than a computer, diminutive speakers and a desk.  Not so here.  Believe it or not, this is my current "reference" system and my primary space for "critical" listening.  Sad but true.  In our previous domicile, I had a SOTA listening room that I co-labored with Starsound Technologies and Dale Pitcher of Mosaic Audio for over two years.  It was an absolute sonic relation and profound, but sadly the neighborhood was unsafe for our little people due to careless, quasi-homicidal through traffic.  So, I sold all that equipment and moved to an older, quieter neighborhood on the end of a cul-de-sac with my wife and kids.  We now live in a 1971 rambler filed with quaint built-ins and absolutely NO room for big speakers and a big daddy, reference system.  That aside, I could not suppress the inner audiophile and still hankered for something "more."       

Cut to the present, and I now inhabit a 12 x 19 x 11 ft office space begging for music.  I briefly speaker rolled with a host of Trenner & Friedl speakers, including the Suns, Arts, and then the RAs all of which are superb transducers.  I am a huge fan of that company and their house sound and still have the Suns in my home rig which I adore.  Still, I had an itch.  I had a brief dalliance with Klipsch Cornwall Is in our previous home and even planned on modding them, but sold them as they were too large.  I very much enjoyed their speed and tactile presentation.  In the back of my mind, I have always wanted to own some true blue, big boy horns.  Enter Fred Crane from Audioprana.  I had bought some equipment from him in the past, including a Crayon integrated and a later a very fine 300B Trafomatic integrated amp.  Being privy to my present speaker journey, he mentioned a company out of Poland called Destination audio.  Sam, the brains and designer behind that company, had a large three way horn called the Nikka that he thought could work well in my rather tight and awkward space.  I looked at pictures of them and thought there was no way these behemoths would work in an office space where any speaker would be relegated to corner placement.  They were enormous (25 x 25 x 50 inches and 254 lbs)!  I was wrong.  Sam and Fred showed up in Charlotte and hand delivered and set up this pair of Nikkas which were actually a show pair that made the rounds at various shows that were captured online.  The Nikka deliver speed and tone in a way that I have not heard in any speaker before let alone a horn.  They certainly do not sound like horns, and this is with very modest upstream equipment, including a NAD 7125 which I purchased on Craigslist for a whopping $75 in addition to a WiFi streamer by dBSystems out of France.  In addition, grand piano reproduction has always been an acid test for me.  The Nikkas portray grand piano faithfully with both texture and scale that is compelling and another first for yours truly.  I still plan on amp rolling in the not too distant future, including the Trafomatic 811 integrated or possibly even Sam's future 81-based integrated.  Time will tell.

The overall system and room aesthetic is an homage to Don Draper of Madmen fame in addition to my own childhood and current resonance with all things vintage or "midmodern."  The credenza and the Letterman triptych are pure 70s and put my mind in a mellow place as do the aesthetics of the speakers.  Aesthetics should always be considered a system component or accessory as they also play a role in the mood altering science of audiophilia.  

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Room Details

Dimensions: 19’ × 12’  Medium
Ceiling: 11’


Components Toggle details

    • Destination Audio NIKKA

    SOTA 99 dB sensitive three way horn speaker out of Poland.  Artisanal in construction with rich tone combined with the speed of a high efficiency tone.   

     

    http://www.destinationaudio.eu/nika.html

    • DB Systems LaRosita Die Loreley

    French wireless streamer/dac designed by Dan Bellity.  I owned the original Zardoz back i 2008 and always loved Dan's house sound: of fatigue free digital and functional simplicity.  All I need upstream is my office computer (IMAC), 6 TB WD NAS and an iPhone with the Remote app.  Perfect for the office setting (or the home).

     

    https://www.larosita.fr/en-la-rosita-die-loreley

    • Cerious Technologies Low current, high current and PC optimized power cords

    Fabulous and affordable power cords.  Due to proprietary shielding, they are very quiet and organic sounding.

     

    http://www.cerioustechnologies.com/#products

    • AcousticBBQ SW and ICs

    Designed and built by my good friend Bill Dion and based on the great sounding DCA16GA tinned, copper Duelund wire in a cotton and oil dialectricum.  This wire was created by Duelund in an effort to resurrect the organic and musical sound of Western Electric wire of yore, and they have succeeded!

     

    http://duelundaudio.com/cable/

    • Kemp Elektroniks QA and SR plugs

    Kemp Elektroniks QA Plug

    "Quantum resonance and Schumann resonance generator" woo-woo tweaks that seem to add spaciousness to the soundscape.

     

    https://highend-electronics.com/products/kemp-quantum-approach-plug

    • BPT BP-10.5
    An isolation transformer-based solution to power conditioning that is a perfect solution for the typical noisy and polluted environment found in any office.  Built like a tank.

Comments 8

222222&text=ag
Owner
Thank you very much bomd!  It certainly puts me in a good mood...

agear

222222&text=bo
Great space and system. I certainly dig it.

bomd

222222&text=ag
Owner
Here it is in action spitting out some rather ominous sounding 8th century atmospheric tunes that sounds as if it could have been pulled from the Passion of Christ (forgive the crappy iPhone recording)


agear

222222&text=ag
Owner
Hey again amvm73.  The imaging and soundstaging is very good (for the space).  I agree with you regarding the sidewalls, and Fred and I batted around room treatments but honestly I feel no current need and it would potentially tarnish the aesthetics.  The only active issue are the blinds.  The frames rattle when I jam out, but that's a small problem to have.  If I had complete license and actually owned the space, I could be tempted to do what I did with my previous sound room (Starsound rods in the walls, horn-loaded back wall, etc) but that would make me look even crazier than I already do....;)

agear

222222&text=am
Indeed. If you have a clear line of sight to the horns, which appears to be the case, you should be fine. Bass is of course non-directional, so no worries, there.
My only other concern would be the reflections from the side walls, just ahead of the horns. That said, the room and surfaces are pretty symmetrical. And if the imaging and soundstaging already seems pretty lifelike, I guess it's best not to overthink things.
You don't want to turn that lovely office into an anechoic chamber. :-)

amvm73

222222&text=ag
Owner
Hey amvm73!  Thank you for the kind words. To be perfectly honest, I don’t notice any sonic deficits, but I have not done the experiment to remove the chairs. The speakers are tall (50 inches), and the mid range and tweeter horns are located above the back of the chairs which are fairly low slung.  Only the lower frequencies coming out of the 18 inch woofer are all that’s theoretically obstructed. In addition, the Herman listening chair sits much higher than the leather chairs in front of the desk. Regarding the iMac, it’s at an oblique angle and off to the side of the desk so again I think its effect is negligible.  Maybe the mood altering power of midmod aesthetic’s are overwhelming my critical faculties, but it sounds groovy....

agear

222222&text=am
Simply gorgeous system and office.
Don't the chairs and iMac mess with the directional acoustics a bit?

amvm73

222222&text=ag
Owner
I just reposted my office system due to a recent and radical change.  Enjoy.

agear

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