Aydin Esen's 
Date of Visit:
30 January 1999

The System

ProAc 2.5 and the rack

Aydin and Aykan in action

Few of his many CD's


e-mail to:
Aydin Esen

I remember from Stereophile magazine's recent interview with Dave Brubeck that he had a very "Mid Fi" System. Generally musicians are not audiophiles but  our world famous contemporary and Jazz music composer and piano player Aydin Esen is one of the very few exceptions. 

Aydin's system fitted with the "magical" Room Lenses (their inclusion dramatically  enlarges the sound stage and adds more air between instruments)  occupies his main living room. His American and also world class musician wife Randy K. is not audiophile (difficult to have exceptions here) but still encourages Aydin with his hobby.

Aydin has a separate working room where he's got his acoustic piano and his electronic music composition system, adapted to an Apple Computer with Midi Software. He had us listen to one of his latest compositions for 8 Pianos. He dreams to be able to play it live accompanied with 7 other piano players. He is pictured (left) on action with his 5 years old son Aykan (the missing drummer is expected to join them in five months).

As we are in the virtual presence of an exceptional musician, I will also make exception to the general format of my introduction section and include below his and his wife Randy K.'s very abridged CV's.

Aydin Esen
Born in Istanbul, started playing piano at age 3 and took his first lessons from his trumpet player father. He began an intensive study of music at the Istanbul Conservatory of Music during the 1960's. After finishing the conservatory in 1980 with first prize in Piano and Composition, he was invited to go to Oslo for further studies in Piano, Composition and Conducting at the Norwegian State Academy of Music. At the same time he toured with different groups around Europe. Later in 1983, received an invitation from world famous Berklee School of Music and went to USA. He finished Berklee in one year instead of the normal four years awarded with a special Artist's Diploma for his achievements in modern music and jazz. Around the same time he went to New England Conservatory of Music and completed his Master's Degree. Since the mid 1980's he has been performing, recording and touring with musicians such as Miroslav Vitous, Woody Shaw, Randy K., Pat Metheny, Roy Haynes, Anthony Jackson, Steve Smith, Peter Erskine, Tiger Okoshi, gary Burton, Michel Portal, Trilok Gurtu and Eddie Gomez. One of the most important of all his awards is the winning the First Prize at the International Piano Competition in Paris in 1989. That same year, he recorded one of his most important and famous albums "So Many Lifetimes" and received worldwide acclaim.
Aydin Esen has just completed the recording of his most recent CD called "Timescape" which is going to be released in April 1999. The covers of 6 of his many CD's is pictured on the left. Two of his compositions are included to Real Book of Contemporary and Jazz Compositions: "Love's Haunts" and "Anadolu".

Randy K. Esen
Her background is classical. Studied Voice in New England Conservatory and Oberlin Conservatory and finished formal studies at the Jazz Department of the University of Massachusetts. After that she met Aydin Esen in 1985 and since then they have been working together. Randy claims that Aydin has been her best teacher and says that Aydin thought her to be a Musician rather than a singer.

System's Components
CD Transport: Theta Data II
Jitter Unit: Genesis Digital Lens
D/A Converter: Theta DSP II
Mini Disc Player: Sony MDS-JE 510
CD-RW: Marantz DR 700
Line Preamp: ARC LS2B Mk.II
Power Amp: Classe CA-100
Speakers: ProAc Response 2.5
Interconnects: Transparent Ultra
Speaker Cables:  Van den Hul - Revelation
Digital Cables: Audioquest Optilink Z, Sraightwire Coax
Power Cables: MIT Z Cord II
Accessory: Argent Room Lens

Aydin's comments about his System:

AA: "Aydin, how would you describe your system's sound?"
AE: "Clear and open sounding. The speakers are sounding much b than they look and the system has an excellent synergy."
AA: "Do you think there is room for improvement?"
AE: "I have no complaints at all."
AA: "Have you got plans for upgrading?"
AE: "I would like to try and see the result with a tube power amp. Also I'm planning to buy a turntable system."