01 January 2001
I started my experience with hi-fi, later high end nearly 25 years ago, starting with a Technics amp, JBL L36 speakers and a Technics turntable. After the first contact with this medium I was infected and always looked for improvement. So I changed the one and the other component, but was never lucky. One day I think it must be now nearly 10 years ago, but I remember this day still, I had the chance to listen first time to electrostatics speakers - the legendary Quad ESL63's - driven by Spectral electronics and a Simon York turntable. I was so impressed of the sound stage and detail in this system that I started to look for something like this for my home. I bought a pair of Martin Logan Sequel's ,drive them with a Conrad Johnson Tube amp and my old Thorens turntable. Then I started to improve the front end: Spectrals DMC6 preamp and DMA 90 power amp and after the same experience as with the Quads I bought an SME 20 turntable. Because of the small electrostatic panel the Sequel has not the quality of a full range electrostatic speaker. So i came to my current system:
The Martin Logan CLS II full range electrostatic driven by a pair of Jadis JA200 power amps, a Jadis JPS 2 preamp, and for the lower octave a REL Stadium II subbass (crossover at 42 Hz).
The front end is still the SME 20 turntable with the SME V arm and the Spectral MCR Signature pick up. Because of the low output (0,2 uV) I use the phonostage of the Spectral DMC 6.
For CD I use a Krell CD1 as drive and a Krell Studio II DAC. No cheap components, but they still don't reach the sound quality of my analog section. My preferred music is jazz (80%) and rock (20%).
So I go on collecting vinyl, one of my first things to do when I am traveling around is looking for record stores. Another way to find records here in Germany is second hand fairs, they are on Sundays changing the town every week, so now you will know what is my main occupation on Sundays. I collect specially two Jazz labels, that's ECM, a german label with modern Jazz (some famous artists on it: Keith Jarrett, Pat Metheny, Jan Gabarek) and Pablo Records with Classic Jazz (e.g. there's Count Basie, Joe Pass and Oscar Peterson on it).
But these days its getting harder to get new releases on vinyl, so I have to buy CD's. My listening room is 7m x 6,5m and there is no acoustical treatment in it. But it is still good, after a longtime of looking for the right placement of the CLS the soundstage is wide and deep, i can't locate them from my listening position. That's for me the most fascinating point of dipole speakers.
The sound is detailed without any harshness and separating every instrument. Yes that's it !
I thing I've built my dream system and there is no need of changing any component for me.
The WAF doesn't exist for me, because I am single. But some friends called me crazy for spending so much money in a hi-fi system, but when I made a demonstration to them they changed their mind and were very impressed of the sound quality.
Juppi's comments about his System:
AA: "Juppi, how would you describe your system's sound?"
JB: "The sound is neutral, quick and detailed, right for long relaxing listening, the soundstage is wide and deep, if there are the right recordings it's three dimensional, bad recordings are a problem, you can hear every mistake of sound engineers."
AA: "Do you think there is room for improvement?"
JB: "In the equipment not, I'm really happy with it. I see some room for improvement in my rack (still it's a self build model) and maybe in room treatment."
AA: "Have you got plans for upgrading?"
JB: "For the moment not, the only thing I am looking for is a better phono cable."