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Capital Audiofest (CAF) 2016 Show Report
Capital Audiofest (CAF) 2016 Show Report
EMIA Audio
Report By Kemper Holt

 

  Walking into the EMIA room and I was transported back in time to a vision of Mark Levinson's legendary stacked Quads, this time without the Decca ribbon and gigantic Hartley subwoofer. EMIA's Dave Slagel had help from Kent McCollum (Electrostatic Solutions) in rebuilding the Quad 57 panels, put two pairs in a gorgeous wood stand, and reworked the semi-direct drive amplification using 300B tubes in this iteration. This design in-progress isn't yet ready for purchase, yet if transparency to the source is your Grail then you had better start talking to Dave.

 

 

Dave and Ijaz Khan used a turntable that assembled a Garrard 501 motor and chassis, redesigned bearing, a high mass unipivot Dymondwood arm, and a “nuded” Denon 103 cartridge. An EMIA Silver Step-up transformer ($3600), prototype EMIA phonostage without any capacitors in the RIAA correction, and an EMIA Silver Autoformer Volume Control ($5400) completed the system.

 

 

I heard a vintage Ella cut that portrayed her voice perfectly, and the band around her was crystal clear. I really enjoyed this system; it made me want to bring some records from home to enjoy. The top to bottom coherency was of one voice, see through transparency (literally) others strive for, and genuine dynamics made this a fun room that engaged me with the music and made it tough to leave.

 

 

 

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