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Positive Feedback ISSUE 9
october/november 2003


VSAC 2003 - A Terrific Regional Fine Audio Show! Photo Essay, Part III: The Second Day, Second Chapter
by David W. Robinson 


(All photographs and image processing by Robinson)

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Once I made it down to the second floor (at last!), the first place that I stopped was the room of another good audio friend, Ron Welborne. Here we have Welborne Labs electronics mated with the Oris horns…

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…and being fed by a splendid turntable, the Teres Audio Model 265. Dig that wonderful wood! And it sounded very fine indeed… rich, without being syrupy, and excellent detail.

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Chris Brady, designer of the Teres Audio turntables… he’s definitely passionate about what he does!

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Chris Brady holding the wooden platter with the embedded weights…

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…and demonstrating how easy it is to change platters from wood to acrylic. The sound of the acrylic is more detailed, and less rich. You might prefer it, but I liked the wood platter better. Who knows? Perhaps Teres Audio will send in a turntable for a listening session here in RiverCity eh? Then I could come to grips with my initial impressions of this pleasant ‘table.

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Here’s Ron Welborne’s Ultrapath phono amp, which sounded as though it liked the Teres Audio Model 265 very well, thank you!

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Yessir, that’s a good combination!

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Next up was the Cardas room. I always like dropping in here; George is a very close friend. He couldn’t make it to VSAC 2003, so "the gang" kept things rolling along for him.

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A Chazz amp with the Philips SACD 1000 in George’s room

The view in the Hudson Audio/Omega Speaker/Opera Audio/Eurolab/Moerch room…

…and a closer look at the Eurolab turntable with its spiffy Moerch tonearm. Very tasty indeed!

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Now here’s a righteous place indeed: the deHavilland/Rethm/PranaWire room! Check out these Lowther drivers!

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George Kielczynski and Kara Chaffee’s stunning new GM70 845 SET… at about 60 Watts per channel. Definitely a world-class boogie agent!

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Kara, the design engineer, and George, the "motive force," posing with the new GM70…

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…and George enjoying the limelight! He and Kara really love fine audio, believe me…and deHavilland’s components sound like it.

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Joseph Cohen of PranaWire… his cables sounded exceptional in combination with the deHavilland gear.

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Dan Wright’s Modwright/Wolcott Audio/Rogue Audio/Quad room had a lot going for it…

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…particularly those tasty Modwright SACD-777’s with tubed output! I’ve heard this sound in my own listening room, and have been very impressive with Dan’s implementation of the 5687 output on SACD players. Definitely worth serious attention by those who love their SACDs!

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The Modwright Sony XA-777ES with tubed output in the rack with Shakti Stones above, and Pass Labs gear below. The tubes glowing to the lower left are from the Wolcott monoblocks.

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Here are some examples of Dan’s work with other components. This man definitely knows what he’s doing...

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Dan Wright of Modwright, and Dave and Carol Clark of Positive Feedback Online taking a moment to enjoy the sound.

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Audio Research amplification with Acoustic Zen cabling (yowzah!) and Alon speakers in the Experience Audio Room 1.

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Also in the Experience Audio room was a Clearaudio turntable… definitely a pleasant sight for those of us who really love vinyl. And you just have to love a ‘table with THREE tonearms…it’s for the real vinyl nerd!

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Experience Audio of Seattle also had a second room, featuring kit from Nottingham, Rives Audio, and Esoteric.

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Me, I couldn’t resist a rare opportunity to photograph a Nottingham turntable. We’ve been trying to get one of these in for review, but the US distributor seems to have a bad case of lapsus logisiticus going…don’t think we’ll ever see it! But they are different looking, no?

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Now here’s an interesting room:  Sun Audio/Audio Note/DeVere Fidelity/Music Hall/Modwright, as hosted by Two Bald Guys Audio… yep, you got that name right!

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See?! (Just for the record, that’s Harry Zweben and Kent Layden, two very nice fellows who just happen to make Portland their home. Spot on!)

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Some of the Audio Note and Sun gear featured by our bare-pated friends!

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Dr. Bruce Edgar’s Edgarhorns were once more in evidence at VSAC, looking and sounding better than ever before.

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Right next door to "Dr. Bruce" was the Cryotweaks/G.R. Research/Modern Audio Designs/Dodd Audio room; I didn’t get much of a chance to spend time here… time is always in short supply at a show, even a regional one.

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George Wright’s Wright Sound room was its usual mad and impressive collection of "God’s half acre of tubes"! George’s gear is reasonably priced, sounds terrific, and is irresistible to anyone who loves the sound of well-matched components and intelligent design work.

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Terry Cain’s high efficiency, high sex appeal speaker designs were excellent complements to the sound of the Wright gear.

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Beautiful, beautiful…!

After hours of looking, listening and photographing, I was finally finished with the second floor.

Next up:   the first floor, including the DIY projects…the modded SACD player comparisons… and some absolutely smashing new design work from Paul Weitzel!

Stay tuned!