CES 2014 - The Venetian
WE WERE fortunate to have the opportuinity to help out Jeffrey Catalano from High Water Sound at CES this year. Jeffrey exhibited an amazing system in the Venetian Tower room 30-322 featuring TW-Acustic, Tron, Ortofon, and Cessaro products. Our special edition A3-500 300B monoblocks with silver output transformers and Low IMD circuit were also featured and helped create absolutely amazing sound as many attendees noted. It appears the marriage between the A3-500 and Cessaro Chopin horns was a very good one.
BELOW are some photos and blurbs as covered by industry sources [NOTE: Many who visited the room thought that the A3-500's were actually Tron amplifiers and as such some of the comments are out of context]:
The Absolute Sound - by Jonathan Valin
January 13, 2014.
JEFFREY CATALNO of High Water Sound has been telling me for years that his favorite Cessaro horn speaker for smaller rooms is the two-way, front loaded, $40k Chopin. This year he showed with that speaker, driven by Tron amplifiers, and sourced by TW-Acustic, and as it turns out he was absolutely right about the Chopins, which were simply superb, boasting a seamless blend of drivers and lack of horn coloration unparalleled in the horn systems I've previously heard (including other Cessaros). Man, you should have heard these things rock on The Doors! Though a little congested on tuttis, the Chopins were also glorious on Ravel, with simply beautiful string tone - well simply beautiful everything.
Click HERE to go to the article as published on The Absolute Sound website.
Audio Federation of Boulder, CO - Mike
January 14, 2014.
Horning Speakers on Electra-Fidelity and TW-Acustic
WHAT THE previous two systems missed this had in spades. Dynamics, excitement, harmonic color. Got here to late they were packing, when Neli and I went for my second visit at the end of the show. Trying to think if there was a room with more excitingness [no, you are right it is not a real word, but it should be, no? see a few posts back for a discussion about what this word means if you care (and can't figure it out by context)].
HORNS Do have n advantage I think, although the Soundlanb/WAVAC system was exciting to a degree as well (and it is an electrostatic speaker). The Acapella (horn speaker)/Einstein system was pretty exciting when playing the TechDAS TT, but was too polite to be exciting IMHO when playing digital. Oh, The EMM Labs MTRX amps on the (sorry, but really not so great) Sony speakers was pretty much a hang-on-to-your-calm-audiophile demeanor kick ass kind of sound, too. The Kharma room also had some good excitingness, but in a less relaxed and casual manner than this room here.
ANYWAY, I think this was the most exciting room at the show, unless you have a hankering for a $100k TT or $130k amps (or both).
This room may have even sounded this good last year, but I think they were answering a long question by an attendee when my long-suffering self got there during the photo safari part of the show. Glad I got to hear it (a little!) this year. Best I heard the Horning speakers sound. I originally thought these were Tron amps but now, although very blurry in the photos, it appears they may not be [I spent most of my camera time there photographing the cool spectacle that IS the TW-Acustic TT (with 3 arms no less) and the speakers].
UPDATE: as per the comments. The amps were a special edition of the Electra-Fidelity A3-500 300B amplifiers utilizing the circuit design and hand wound transformers of Jack Elliano at Electra-Print: "The output transformers are wound with solid silver and the design features a proprietary low IMD circuit. Manufactured in Las Vegas, NV."