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Nov012008

News from the Mountain

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News from Green Mountain

5/15/11. Our compact Rio speaker is now called Rio II, with its new XTC™ crossover circuit, as announced last month! There is no change in price. Original Rios can be upgraded by Owners- new circuits replace their old circuits, from which we re-use many parts. Contact us for your kit price, but read onwards first, thanks. New web page info soon, we hope. Most specifications do not change.

Our reference Eos HD and original Eos are both now replaced with Eos HX, with its XTC crossover circuit. Original Eos and Eos HD can be upgraded to Eos HX, in the same manner as with Rio above. We were also recently able to reduce our labor for casting Eos' Q-Stone enclosures, so Eos HX will sell for 10% less than charged for Eos HD.

We are also very pleased to announce what we call the 'fancy-parts' version of Rio II we call Chroma. Its XTC crossover circuit is the same as Rio II, but executed with all of the very best sounding capacitors, resistors, and pure-copper binding posts, as in Eos HX. It makes a shocking difference- even more clear and musical than Rio II for a modest increase in retail price.  Owners of original Rio are advised to get the 'Chroma upgrade kit', instead of a Rio II kit.

4/25/11. Our designer has achieved the most muscially meaningful technical breakthrough of his near 40-year career. Called XTC™, for eXtended-bandwidth Time Coherence™, this requires only a change of the parts-values used in our very-simple first-order crossover networks. The cost is hardly different and our labor remains the same, so we anticipate no increase in prices.

Our designer says, "With XTC™ technology, listening is now a right-brain experience- no longer is one aware of separate sounds such as 'the bass', 'the mids', 'those sparkling highs', nor to 'details' or 'the image'. Your attention is completely captured by how the music is being played, how it flows, moves from note to note, how it makes you feel. You know immediately its message. Surprisingly at first, your body instinctively want to dance, exactly as if you were a teenager again.

All of this occurs no matter a recording's quality nor of the amplifier, even playing very softly, in any room having decent acoustics, while you are making dinner. XTC™ technology makes our speakers much more efficient on music (not on test-tones). More important, it has delivered immense pleasure in musical genres to which I'd never connected. Everyone who experiences this new technology agrees!

I've never heard any speakers communicate like this before and I never expected mine to sound this good. I will not patent XTC™ technology, as that would reveal too much about how I solved its math. Interestingly, I had been working on those equations for nearly 40 years before solving them one afternoon while stirring up a bucket of Q-Stone!"

We will be contacting recent Owners with this unexpected information. We will not be making money from their upgrades, as it's always been our policy to not surprise Owners with one upgrade after another. However, this breakthrough was unexpected, and is truly astonishing. Over the next weeks, we will be rolling it out in new versions of our existing models.

4/07/11. We are most happy to announce our new retailer in Amsterdam- American Audio Consultants! www.americanaudioconsultants.com There, Mr. Ray Davis and staff maintain three lovely showrooms available by appointment. At this time, Rio and Eos HD are on display. Welcome, Ray!

10/25/10. Our Designer, Roy, reports after the RMAF Show, "We unfortunately could not bring marvelous sound to the Show. We chose instead to display our Calypso HD speakers off to one side, as the amplifiers selected had no dynamic response into our speakers. We firmly believe the problem was the voltage supplied to the room, which measured only 107VAC. I apologize to all whom we disappointed, especially to Thom and Joel. It was still a great pleasure to meet so many GMA Owners and those just curious-- thank you all for coming. Everyone was in good spirits, more interested in listening than in talking technical!

"I believe low-voltage from the wall severely affected the Atmasphere M-60 OTL amplifiers' ability to work properly into the 5-Ohm load of the Calypsos. The 'large room' could not have been the issue, for the showroom at www.DepartureAudio.com, north of Denver, is just as large, with a higher ceiling. There, our Calypsos thunder given a large amplifier, much louder than I require for a Show, so the 60W Atmasphere amps should have been fine. But while they gave us a tone balance that was spot on, with superb clarity and image, the low-bass was entirely absent and dynamic contrasts were quite muted, even at modest volumes. I could not show off Thom's turntable and Joel's tonearm under such conditions, so Thom brought in his higher-efficiency Daedalus speakers which demanded less from the amps.

"I understand there was quite a turnout for what I am calling "Galibier Design's First Annual ToneArm Wrestling Match"-- 55 brave souls packed themselves in for quite sometime! Visit www.GalibierDesign.com for details.

"Below are images of our displays. Again, I am grateful to those who came by specifically to hear our speakers, and I apologize. I hope you can hear us someday!"

Thom Mackris of Galibier Design comments, "Thanks for being so gracious through all of this, Roy.  Collectively, you and I failed each other by not being able to prove out the entire system in a single location ahead of time.

"Even had we done this, there was one element we could not have simulated – the combination of low wall voltage and dirty power (nearly 20% down this year).  I’ve never experienced such low voltage in the 7 years I’ve exhibited in this room.  Obviously, there were some “high power consumers” on the circuit this year.

"We clearly found a system mismatch between the Calypso HDs and the Atma-sphere M60s, at least in the exhibiting context I lay out below.  Had we chosen to proceed with this pairing, it would have served only as an object lesson on how to not assemble a system.

"The combination of large room (19 x 26 feet), packed with show attendees (more power demands), show conditions (background noise resulting in even more power demands), low wall voltage (sub-optimal amplifier operating point), produced a perfect storm that made the Calypso HD’s sound like mini-monitors and my Stelvio-II sound like a small, low-mass turntable, which clearly is not the case for either of the two fine pieces.

"We continue to learn hard lessons about exhibiting, but in the end, I think we served the public in our choice – much as I regret that it came down to this.

Cheers,
Thom"

Calypso HD speakers in Bubinga, on passive display. Large Atmasphere amps were non-functional, from shipping damage.

Galbier Design's new Stelvio II turntable with the Durand tonearm and Dynavector XV-1 phono cartridge

Close-up of Durand tonearm, the "Talea"

Atmasphere preamp with its power supply, and the two Atmasphere M60 power amps. All are placed on Marigo Audio's TRi Mystery Feet. The racks worked well, and check with Galibier Design for their maker.

10/02/10. Our designer will be demonstrating Calypso HD speakers at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Denver, Colorado, held mid-October.

Roy says, "I am truly delighted to work this year with several of the world's leading designers to bring marvelous sound to the Show! First is Thom Mackris, of Galibier Design, spinning his extraordinary new turntable. I hope he lets me touch it! Thom said he will surprise me with his choice of phono cartridge, so I'm definitely bringing some very special LPs to play.

"We will be connecting the very simple system with cables and speaker wires by Marigo Audio, and their designer, Ron Hedrich, will be in and out of our room all weekend (he has a lot of folks to see). Ron is also responsible for the wires used inside all of our HD speakers, and also of the remarkable Mystery Feet placed beneath Thom's Atmasphere preamp and power amps.

"This a rare opportunity for anyone to hear what vinyl can really do, which is to sound more like real music and less like 'hi-fi' than one can imagine. These Calypso HD speakers are my personal research pair in cherry, with a zillion hours of careful break in. I have decided it's now best to offer them up for sale for a very good price at this show, before they can ever become dinged up (they are in perfect shape still!).

"On Saturday night after 6PM, Thom has invited anyone and everyone to meet two of the world's leading tonearm designers- Frank Schroeder and Joel Durand, whose tonearms will be demonstrated on the Galibier turntable. Frank, Joel and Thom will offer their perspectives on what makes for proper alignment of phono cartridges and tonearms for the lowest distortion and best tracking, and do their best to answer all questions!

"I have no doubt we will provide the best, most musical experience at the Show, so come hear it all in Room 1130! I am looking forward to seeing old friends and customers along with many new faces!" Links:  RMAF  Galibier  Marigo  Durand  Atmasphere

08/26/10. "The Sound of Time Coherence" post by our designer has been added to the forum on the website of Departure Audio: link

08/08/10. "How We Engineer Time Coherent Sound" has been rewritten for more clarity: page

04/22/10. "We are proud to announce our new retailer in Denmark-- Lydstuen of Silkeborg. Welcome to Green Mountain! Owner Kurt Andersen maintains a complete showroom, full of unique products, and offers his personal service and installation of the finest in two-channel reproduction. We are honored to be represented by such dedication."  website

04/20/10. "We are proud to announce our new distributor in Indonesia-- Finesse Audio of Jakarta. Welcome to Green Mountain! Mr. Surja Sutantio and his staff maintain a fine showroom with a complete inventory, and have long experience with the best in audio. Thank you for bringing GMA to your country. We know you will surprise many people!"  website

03/29/10. "Rio has been awarded "Five Stars" and "Best Buy" by HiFi Choice magazine of the UK! Excerpts are on Rio's home page. Click cover's image for their website."

02/24/10. "Eos has been awarded "Editor's Choice" by HIFi News and Record Review magazine of the UK. Excerpts are on Eos' home page. Click cover's image for their website."

12/5/09. "We have chosen not to attend the CES Show in Las Vegas in January, 2010, nor the T.H.E. Show held at the same time. New projects underway require our on-going attention."

10/5/09. "The 2009 RMAF was a lovely success, where Eos and Rio alternated playing from the main speaker stands every hour or so. Very many visitors were kind enough to simply sit and listen to either model- thank you! See photos below.

"It was obvious we made the right kind of impressions upon those who had never been exposed to time-coherent sound. We had many vistors return several times, including husbands and wives. This was a very well-attended show, with many more visitors coming directly from the Denver area than in 2008. Our thanks to the Show's dedicated founders and organizers, Al and Margie! For those who may not know, this was the first show held without Al's presence. Al passed away unexpectedly and we will always miss him."

Jerry of Audio Magic cables (L) discusses cable and power-filtration issues while Julian of Departure Audio (R) picks out something to surprise us!

Eos playingRoy Johnson of Green Mountain Audio (L) with GMA's UK import specialist, Ralph Bagge of Artisan Audio. We are both smiling, but have been worked to the bone by this time. Thank you for everything, Ralph!

08/15/09. "We will be demonstrating Rio and Eos at the Rocky Mountain AudioFest in Denver from October 2nd-4th. Roy will be there, along with Julian of Departure Audio in Fort Collins, Colorado. Together with Jerry from Audio Magic, this room will have superb sound!"

08/15/09. "Full information on our new Rio compact loudspeaker is now on our website! These wonderful speakers can now be auditioned at most all of our retailers. You will see a balance of design quite delicate, with many fine angles pulling together precise proportions. You will hear a balanced musical performance, no matter what music, at any loudness, on any system. We are very proud to introduce Rio for US$2500 per pair."

1/28/09. "We were kindly invited by Soundsmith (www.sound-smith.com) to use Calypso HD speakers in their room at the CES (The Home Entertainment Show, Alexis Park), held January 8-11, 2009 in Las Vegas. Roy, along with Peter Lederman, Soundsmith's designer, and Ralph Bagge of Artisan Audio, our mutual UK agent and Soundsmith's international sales director were all there, giving demonstrations to enthusiastic listeners.

Soundsmith_room_1

"About the system: A pair of cherry Calypso HDs were driven by Soundsmith's HE-150 power amplifier. Soundsmith's own Monarch and Dragonfly compact speakers were also played, using Soundsmith's HE-200 300Watt MOSFET amplifier. Both of these power amplifiers are unique, in their use of ultra-linear, high current MOSFETs in a single-ended design with zero feedback.

"The preamplifier most in use was Soundsmith's SG-810 flagship model, trimmed with cocobolo wood panels. Its signals came either from Soundsmith's superb Strain Gauge cartridge or from 'The Voice', their new moving-iron phono cartridge (with their SGS-6 ruby cantilever option) through Soundsmith's new MMP3 phono preamp. Their Strain Gauge cartridge was tracked in a Schroeder Reference tonearm of Palmwood, and we all thanked Herr Schroeder for fine-tuning the tonearm-setup (www.schroeder-tonarme.de)!

Soundsmith_room_2

"The Voice cartridge was mounted in a VPI (www.vpiindustries.com) JMW-Memorial tonearm. Both tonearms were fitted to VPI's HR-X turntable with added flywheels. We were pleased to introduce the latest generation of cables and speaker wires from Marigo Labs (www.marigoaudio.com) -- new copper MR23 interconnects and SC40 speaker wires.

"The music: LPs were spun virtually at all times, including jazz and vocals from Dave Brubeck, Louis Armstrong, and Eva Cassidy with orchestral performances from Mercury Living Presence LPs and several 45rpm, 12" re-masters from Acoustic Sounds. One record which saw a lot of use was by John Hart playing a Ken Parker arch-top guitar. Incredible! While we spun an acetate disc cut directly from the safety master tape, look this Spring for the direct-disc pressing of it recorded by Soundsmith for their Direct Grace label (www.directgrace.org).

"The room and attendance: Soundsmith had reserved a 20x22' room, in a location easy for attendees to find. Acoustics were tamed on setup day, leaving plenty of room for seating. Good sound was heard from every position. While it took time on Thursday for attendance to build, all of Friday and for most of Saturday visitors filled the room non-stop. Many people returned on Sunday for repeat demonstrations. We were pleased to see so many visitors from Asia and Europe. Several reporters gave a good listen including a few from some European publications."

Check out these sites for more Las Vegas 2009 coverage coverage:

www.enjoythemusic.com/ces2009/becker1/

www.uhfmag.com/Vegas2009/day2.html

http://live.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/ces.pl?&AP_1509&RoomView&&&&&&&THE09

 

 

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