We Ask 10 Questions For High-End
During Enjoy the Music.com's very special 25th Anniversary we're asking various high-end audio manufacturers to answer the same ten questions. Their answers may surprise you! This month we're featuring Lukasz Fikus, LampizatOr owner and chief designer. Lukasz Fikus was born in Warszawa, Poland, in 1965. He graduated from Warsaw Polytechnic University - Electrical Engineering; specialty power distribution, and a major in High Voltage Physics. I also have an Executive MBA diploma from WUT School of Business in Warsaw in cooperation with London Business School, HEC Paris, NHH (Bergen). Lukasz then started doing audio projects as a hobby in the eighties and since then my adventure in this world has expanded.
In March 2010, after 19 years of working for one giant multi-international engineering company, Lukasz decided to quit and never again work in a corporate environment. Lukasz was not enamored with sitting behind a desk from 9am to 5pm, unable to tap into his creative mind in any real way. And so he stepped down from the position of Poland General Manager and thus liberated himself.
Lukasz Fikus registered his new company in July 2010 and maintained a manufacturing workshop in Warszawa, Poland, with 12 employees and tens of subcontractors. This workshop is already serving customers across all continents! Lukasz refuses to betray his
'LampizatOr principle,' which champions the individual, honest business and customer concerns. To continue researching, writing, and following the quest of truth as always. Being a Prometheus and a salesman? Does it stand the test of integrity?
He thinks that the answer is — yes! The unique
LampizatOr products that they build are the outcome of Lukasz's passion, experience, engineering skills, and some degree of craziness too! They are also strongly driven by the passion of all
his team. They are all audiophiles, after all.
Q. What is your first memory of falling in love with music?
A. My first proper headphones, stereo radio Zodiak, and Pink Floyd's album The Wall the day it was released. Yes, I am that old.
Q. How did you first get introduced to high-fidelity audio gear?
A. My friendly audio note dealer introduced me to the difference the AN DAC makes versus my stock CD player.
Q. What is your favorite piece of vintage hi-fi, and why?
A. Saba Grun alnico drivers removed from old Saba radios. these drivers re define the term of midrange purity and detail. The cones are made from hemp paper only, which is said to add to the excitement. After the driver dies you can roll it and smoke.
Q. When did you decide to start a high-end audio company?
A. When my engineering company was taken over by a wall street monster giant i decided i can not work for a matrix organized corporation even for one more day.
Q. What, and when, was your company's first product?
A. LampizatOr DAC level 3 was our first product and the first customer was from New York City.
Q. What challenges did you face during those early years?
A. The biggest challenge is that the minute you have everything figured out, ready and perfect — the rules of the game change and you have to start again. i mean customers' demands and expectations.
Q. How have your products evolved over the years?
A. We try hard to make a model pyramid to reflect the demand curve, meaning — to have a model at every price point. every price point has different market segmentation and different channels and marketing message. The audio market is the marketing manager's nightmare.
Q. What is your company's most popular product(s)?
A. LampizatOr Pacific DAC — our flagship — I believe is used by more audio reviewers at home than any other DAC out there.
Q. What is your next planned product offering and its' features?
A. For some time — over a year — we have tripled our research and development efforts to create the best line of phono stages on the market. Not just good — but quite literally the best. That is a huge thing for us. But we are getting there slowly and surely.
Q. What advancements do you speculate high-end audio will offer ten years from now?
A. I think that the future belongs to active speakers with amps, crossovers , DSP and DAC inside. Sort of what meridian did 25 years ago. Separate amps if you ask me, have no future.