AXPONA (Audio Expo North America) is an audiophile show open to the public and was held at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel from April 14th through 17th, 2011. Avatar Acoustics (AMR: USA) was exhibiting in the penthouse, the largest and most prominent room in the hotel.
The Avatar Acoustics system comprised of:
AMR CD-77 CD Processor / DP-777 Digital Processor AND Dr Feickert Blackbird with > Monk Audio Phono > AM-77 Pre-Main Amplifier > Rosso Fiorentino Siena loudspeakers
Avatar Acoustics was handing out AMR Gold Fuses gratis to visitors to the room and to say that we were very pleased by the response is an understatement!
The following is what John Atkinson Editor of Stereophile had to say:
“The Avatar Acoustics room featured the Rosso Fiorentini Siena speakers ($24,995/pair) that made their North American debut at last January's CES, seen here with Avatar's Darren Censullo. A four-way sealed-box design, the Siena features two 8" aluminum-cone woofers, a 6.5" paper-cone midrange unit, a 1" silk-dome tweeter, and a Murata ultrasonic generator and produced a big sweep of sound on what appeared to be the Show's ubiquitous dem track, Nils Lofgren's live acoustic number "Keith Don't Go," driven by an AMR AM-77.1 integrated amplifier. But converting Nils' bits from an AMR CD-77.1 CD player used as a transport was AMR's new DP-77 D/A converter ($4995). Uniquely, this offers a choice of two DAC chips, one a non-oversampling 16-bit type which is recommended for CD playback, the other a 32-bit type optimized for playback of high sample-rate data, which offers minimum-phase, apodizing, and "organic" reconstruction filters.
The DP-77 has an asynchronous USB input that can accept data with sample rates up to 192kHz and jitter is reduced by using a high-precision clock and rather than adjusting its frequency in continuous steps to match the average rate of the incoming data, which can allow jitter to bleed through to the DAC chip, the DP-77's clock switches between 28 million discrete frequencies.”
Also, Enjoy The Music’s Editor Steven Rochlin also came by the Avatar Acoustics room and remarked:
“Moving back to the gear, the new AMR DAC was on proud display. The DP-777 is a bit unusual in DAC-land as it sports a pair of user-selectable DAC chips. One, a non-upsampling/non-oversampling 16bit/44.1kHz chip that’s recommended for CD-quality sources and another that’s 32bit/192kHz capable that’s recommended for use with your hi-res source material. The high-res DAC supports the following filters: Apodising, Minimum Phase, Linear Phase, Soft-Knee and Brickwall. Interesting, says I. It also sports dual AES/EBU, dual BNC, dual RCA and dual Toslink inputs — and a single 24bit/192kHz Class 2 asynchronous USB input.
Did I mention that DAC has valves?
More info on this over at Digital Audio Blog!
Very successful room. Well done, Avatar!”
Darren Censullo, President of Avatar Acoustics was very pleased to make the acquaintance of Scott Hull from "Confessions of a Part-Time Audiophile". Scott Hull
“The Avatar Acoustics room was my favorite room at Axpona this year and tied for “Best Sound”. The system produced a lovely, warm, enveloping sound stage that I thoroughly enjoyed rolling around in. Or maybe it was just wallowing around on the couch. Hmm. Anyway, it was really hard to pull the contributions made by the individual components apart — what we had here was a great system.
Love that lit-up Himalayan rock salt!
The speakers were the Siena from Rosso Fiorentini ($24,995/pair). It’s leather wrapped cabinet (… drool …) sports two bass drivers, a mid, a tweeter and a “supertweeter”. While not as extended in the bass as I typically look for in a speaker (F3 is at 35Hz), this was certainly working in its favor at the less-than-ideal room conditions at the Sheraton. The treble was exceptional — extended and sweet. The mids were full and voluptuous. The bass was tight and fast. All in all, it was just delicious. And that leather smelled great. Ahem.
Fronting the Sienas was gear from AMR: AM-77.1 integrated ($10,995), AM-77.1 CD ($10,995) and the new kid on the block, the DP-777 ($4,995 — more on this in a minute). The superb PH-77 was not in evidence, however, having been replaced for the show by a new offering from Monk Audio. I’ve never heard of Monk before, but I did get to chat with the designer a bit, and the new phono preamplifier ($2,995) not only has the proverbial kitchen-sink jammed into the little half-width chassis (there are options for gain, curve, load, as well as capacitance and the thing sports three inputs), it sounded fantastic. And getting the chance to watch Chris Feickert dance to Depeche Mode was a hoot, too.”
These very glowing reports from these industry stalwarts, left us speechless; we can only say a big “thank you” to Darren and Bonnie Censullo of Avatar Acoustics and we look forward to see y’all at Axpona NYX on 24th and 25th June.
Keep an eye out for AMR on the panel at the Computer Audio & Supporting Media Conference at the Axpona NYC led by Mark Waldrep Ph.D. Founder and President of AIX Records and iTrax.com.