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A Day with Joe Cohen of The Lotus Group

08-21-2018 | By Dave Clark | Issue 98

Alright, so as part of our trip up to the California Audio Show (see Malachi's and Kirsten's show reports HERE and HERE) Carol and I decided to add in a visit to Sonoma wine country as well as a visit to Mono Lake way over on the 395. As part of the trip up to Sonoma, why not stop and visit good friend Joe Cohen of The Lotus Group, have lunch, and give a listen to his latest system updates (Joe makes Prana Wire and Granada loudspeakers, as well as being the importer for a variety of exclusive lines found HERE).

Okay, if you have never met Joe, well… he pulls no punches as to what sounds good and offers what could be one of the best integrated systems and cables you might ever have had the opportunity to hear—and if you have not... then get yourself up to Joe's place as soon as you can! The Granada loudspeakers are a true state-of-the-art product that allows the end user to "tune" the speakers to their room and their music. Included in the price of the loudspeakers is the amplification and a completely user-adjustable crossover via a laptop.

  • Open Baffle Design 
  • Feastrex 5" Field Coil Drivers and Power Supply 
  • 2 - 12" Dual Voice Coil Woofers 
  • State of the Art Digital Crossover 
  • State of the Art Room Correction Available Frequency range 25hz to 20k 
  • Efficiency 92 db 
  • Wired with Acrolink 99.99997% pure copper wire and Oyaide 102SSC pure copper wire
  • Dimensions: 22" Wide, 54" Tall, 16" Deep

Here is a rundown of the system that we listened to in Joe's room…


  • The Lotus Group Granada Loudspeaker with X1 Crossover 1 Pr $150,000
  • Lotus Group built custom turntable with Redpoint Platter, bearing and motor pod $25,000
  • Durand Kairos tonearm $6450
  • Ortofon Windfeld Cartridge $4390
  • Airtight ATE-2005 Phono Stage $8950
  • EAR MC4 Step Up Transformer $2295
  • Airtight ATC-2 HQD Preamplifier $13750
  • SMc 125-watt Stereo Amplifier $19,500


  • PranaWire Lalit Phono Cables (2) $4950
  • PranaWire Vajra Power Cables 1.5m (2) $6950
  • PranaWire Cosmos Power Cable Custom 1.5m (1) $7200
  • PranaWire Cosmos Power Cable 1.5m (1) $5200
  • PranaWire Sukhavati Power Cable 2.0m (1) $30,950
  • PranaWire Avatar Speaker Cable 2.5m (Woofers) (1) $31,850
  • PranaWire Sukhavati Speaker Cable 2.5m (Main Drivers) (1) $63,250
  • Arhat RCA IC 1.5m (1) $14,745
  • Sukhavati IC RCA 1.5m (1) $40,600
  • Sukhavati XLR 1.0m (1) $27,950


  • Acoustic Revive RCP-1 Power Line Conditioner (2) $2250
  • Acoustic Revive RR-888 Ultra Low Frequency Generator (2) $695
  • Q AB4045 Hybrid Ceramic Platforms (2) $785
  • Q Hem-25 Footers - Sets of 4 (6) $1125
  • PranaWire Linebacker XE In-Line Passive Power Conditioners (2) $16,450
  • Furutech NCF Boosters (6) $350
  • Q TA-102 Damping Material (3) $95
  • Q TA-32 Damping Material (1) $85
  • Q TA-32 IP-11 Cable Supports (4) $215

Total system price: $509, 270

Joe wanted to play "Keith Don't Go" for us, and well…I mean we get it… the track is well done and serves as an audio workhorse of sorts… but it is so overplayed it has worn out its welcome, so we told Joe if he were to play it we would go… so he found a few other tracks as a substitute, and all was right.

So, what does this system sound like? Well, playing various tracks - that we really have no idea as to how they should sound, but that Joe felt showed the system in the best light possible - Carol and I were both stunned by the system's coherence, dynamics, resolution… clean and articulate. A whole that conveyed a wonderful sense of being right. As right as I wished I could get here if we were to play the same music tracks. While we know Yello rather well, the new release on LP is not all that familiar to us, but damn… slam, bass, extension… all so tight and without a hint of bloom or boom. Their music never sounded so good. So right.

Joe also played us a Ry Cooder release from a number of years back, and again… stunningly wonderful. No grit, grain… smooth and as extended without a hint of strain. One could just turn up the volume as loud as one could take and it all just held together. No change or shift in any direction… no sense of hitting a ceiling. Holy crap this is good. The music is just there—no sense of anything standing out or not being a part of the whole. The music hits you with that rightness. A rightness that is all about being swept away in the music. Time pretty much is forgotten… you just want to keep the music going. Which is what it is supposed to be about.

A few other tracks came and went way too quickly, plus we had not eaten that day and were getting rather hungry… calling the listening session short we headed out to lunch.

Joe is the consummate host and his system offers anyone who is willing to venture to Novato, CA (an hour so north of Oakland. CA) a revelation as to what his products can do with any music. He is an analog guy though, so either bring your own or let him know what you like to make sure he has it cued up for a listen. He will pay the airfare of anyone who flies out to him and buys a system or speakers as a discount off of their purchase.

We have heard this system in earlier incarnations at various shows, but in the years since, Joe has continued to evolve not only the Granadas, but his cables as well. What we heard here is clearly one of the best systems we have ever heard—period. Wishing we lived closer… or had $500k laying around.