Vol'ti - v. - to turn over a new leaf; to move forward


10/31/2013 - NL25

So here we are a couple weeks post RMAF and things have slowed down a bit.  Enough so I can spend some time making changes to the website and catching up on a few lingering projects.

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2013 was another great show for us.  Many thanks to BorderPatrol Audio.  We couldn't have made that great sound without those great components.

Welcome new subscribers.  I met two people at the show who subscribe to this newsletter, and it was very interesting to talk to them and get their feedback.  I asked them how many subscribers they thought Volti had for this newsletter, and the answers were enlightening.  So how many subscribers do you think we have?

Keep reading - much more below, including my JBL Everest experience, Press coverage, plinths, coconuts, Tatiana, and heavy components.  LOL

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2013

Volti Audio had speakers in two rooms at this year's RMAF.  The Vittoras in room 1102 and Aluras in room 1114.  I shared room 1102 with Gary Dews of BorderPatrol Audio Electronics, and I'm sure glad I did - more on that later.

Photo by Scot Hull

In room 1114, the Aluras were paired up with SST Audio's new 'The Essence' amplifier as well as their prototype linestage preamp/crossover unit.  Actually there were four of these massive and beautiful amplifiers in a bi-amp configuration with the Alura speakers.   This promised to be a very nice combination.

Photo by Scot Hull

I also had my display in the lobby.

Gary and I after the show

This display never fails to draw a lot of attention.  It's a marketing tool that puts the name 'Volti' on everyone's lips as they pass by on the way to the elevators to the Tower rooms.  This show is so large that it is important to do micro-marketing to get people up to our room, and I think this helps for sure.  The cost is not high for this space, and it is certainly something I will keep long term.

Overall attendance was down this year, but in our room it was up from last year.  I think the reason for this is because of our new location over in the tower part of the hotel.  The hotel is made up of two parts, the atrium, which is a five-story building built around a large indoor atrium area that houses 'The Lift' restaurant/bar and a big open area for parties; and the tower, which is a conventional eleven-floor hotel on the other side of the main entry/lobby area.  In years past, we had our room in the Atrium section, and it's really nice over there, but we noticed a lack of traffic coming to our room.  The reason, we believe, is because there are more rooms over in the tower, so more attention is focused over there, and also because the Atrium has end-of-hall rooms that people have to walk a long way down a hall, past many other rooms to get to the ones at the end - which of course was where Volti was.   So anyway, long story short, the tower was much busier for us than the atrium, and we're glad to have made the switch, and we will continue to stay in that section for years to come.

We had a couple of new items for our room setup this year.  In the past I've set the electronics up on a rather simple, low-cost rack unit.  It was nice enough looking, but the BP equipment and the Volti room deserved better.  So for this show I built a set of plinths to display the equipment.

They are built with 2" thick Baltic Birch plywood and veneered in Cherry.  The wooden feet also have metal spikes underneath to provide better isolation through the carpeted floor.

I think these plinths actually did improve the sound quality of the system.  I often joke about such things, but I really do think there was a noticeable difference at this show.  Not to mention how nicely they displayed the BP electronics in the room.

We also had a nice sign made up.  At these shows it is always risky to try and hang things on the walls.   You never know if there will be a clear area where you want to hang a sign, and then there's always the possibility of damaging the walls.  I have always used those expensive pull-free hanging tabs from 3M, and they do work good, and it seems I've always lucked out having a place to hang my BIG Volti sign, but this new sign is free-standing, sets up in just a few minutes, and is very nice looking.  Although we didn't do it here at this show, there is space behind the cloth (in the rack that holds the cloth) to put absorption material to make a bass-trap of sorts.  Something we can experiment with in the future.

Photo by Jason Sirinus, Stereophile Magazine

There were a couple of changes in Gary's gear for this show.  At my urging, he grudgingly installed a remote controlled attenuation pot in his preamp.  I really like to be able to adjust the volume level of each song we play to get just the right level for that particular song, and this is best done while standing back away from the equipment after starting the CD.  I also like to be able to control the Extended Low-Frequency cabinet output with a remote, so I can have that adjusted optimally for each song.

At this RMAF, Gary introduced his new Power Supply Units for his amplifiers.

These things are crazy big and heavy.  Roy Gregory described them well:

"The EXS power supplies are a new and far larger version of BorderPatrol's existing external units, the new design weighing in at 80 pounds apiece.   Each copper chassis houses a pair of mains transformers, an up-rated HT choke and three independent, tube-rectified outputs, each with its own dedicated choke input filter.   Extensive cryo treatment is employed throughout, the pair of EXS power supplies raising the total cost of the three-chassis amplifier to $25,750".

Scot Hull described the new PSU's in his own inimitable fashion:

"Big is right.   The new approach dictated a higher inductance choke and two massive power trannies (wired up in a 'novel way'), and all that got wrapped up in a heavy-gauge copper chassis.   The result?   Ultra-low distortion.   Oh, and about 80lbs worth of metal.   Each.

Does it matter?   Yeah.   I'd say so.   With that much power on tap, the amp can track a speaker load pretty closely, and as a speaker deviates from flat & easy, this new PSU has more than enough to make up the gap already to hand.   20wpc have never sounded this flat, linear, and endless.   Let me rephrase - no BorderPatrol amp, which I've already said elsewhere are some of the best-sounding tube amps being made, has ever sounded this good.

Anyway, set up along the long-wall of the room with the matching subwoofer off to the side, this system pretty much unzipped my ears and stuffed awesome inside.   Yep, that was me, a Part-Time Doll, stuffed full of audio awesome.   Tone?   Check.   Dynamics?   Check-check.   Coherence?   Check.   Grab you by the balls until you squeal like a little girl?   Check.   Bass that can crush your rib cage like Oddjob with too many billiards balls?   Check"!

So backing up a bit - at the end of a long set-up day on Thursday, we finally turned the system on to sit down for a listen.   With all the changes noted above, the system sounded very different than it did at previous shows.  One problem stood out right away - we had too much bass!  It wasn't necessarily bad sounding either, like we've had before with the typical room bass node that you hear talked about at shows so much.  It was just heavy and thick sounding.  We set about to try and figure out what was causing this - changed back to the regular PSU's, changed tubes in the preamp and the DAC, talked about how maybe the plinths needed to 'break in'.  Ok that last one was a joke.

I think Gary knew what it was all along.  He finally told me he thought it was the new volume pot in the preamp.  The one I made him put in.  Testing it at home after installing the pot, he noticed a lot more bass in his system.  The Vittoras and the BIG PSU's just revealed it even more.   Luckily he brought along the old pot and replaced it, and sure enough, that was most of the issue.   No remote for me.  I turned the tweeter up one notch in the Vittoras, and after everything settled down, we were finally making a really good sound.

The sound got better and better as the weekend rolled along.  On Sunday it was very quiet, and I had several chances to sit in the sweet spot and crank the system up in good shape, and it was very impressive indeed.   The best I've heard at any show, and I'm not just talking about Volti systems either.  No other room I've heard at a show has ever produced such startling dynamics throughout the entire bandwidth, along with the perfect tonal balance that this system had.  Gary and I were looking at each other, saying this is good . . . really, really good.

Maybe those plinths really did finally break in by Sunday?

Thank you Gary for making such great gear, and for being willing to show it off with the Vittoras.

SST Audio - Room 1114

I mentioned in the last newsletter that my friend Sergei from Moscow, Russia has started a company called SST Audio.  They are just introducing their new amplifier called 'The Essence', and I have to tell you that pictures do not do these amps justice.  I was so surprised when I saw them in person how big they were.   They are massive, and heavy, and beautifully designed and detailed.

Thanks to Scot Hull for the photos

Poor Sergei - he's been running ragged for weeks now, traveling from Moscow to Italy, to the U.S. and then back to Italy, then back to Moscow, with no time to even catch his breath.  It was our hope that the amplifiers would be ready in time so Sergei and his crew could come to the U.S. a week prior to RMAF so they could adjust to the time difference and have time to work on the setting up the system prior to the show, in somewhat of a relaxed atmosphere.

Gary, Michail, Tatiana, Greg, Sergei

I arranged for a room at the hotel for SST Audio to use for a few days prior to the show, and even had the Alura speakers brought up to the room for them to use.  Sergei had a brilliant idea for using some IKEA furniture as a 'stage' for the equipment in the show room, and so he had me purchase five pieces and they were also shipped to the this room.  But unfortunately, Sergei and the crew didn't arrive until the Wednesday before the show, and never had time to set things up.

The Four amplifiers were not completed until the night before they were flying from Italy to the U.S.!   The amplifiers (and everything else) had to be packed in suitcases for the flight over, which meant that they had to be disassembled and packed in pieces into suitcases weighing no more than 31.8Kg each!  Egads!   That also meant they had to be re-assembled at the hotel!

So when I got to RMAF to meet up with Sergei on Thursday morning, and walked into the room where they were assembling the amps, and saw the state of affairs, I really had my doubts that they were going to be able to pull it all together in time for the show.

It was very cool though to see these amps disassembled and to see how they were built - holding one of the Titanium tops in my hand, realizing it had been laser cut from a solid piece of Titanium!  Sorry I don't have pictures of all this to show you.

With great effort and many hours of work, Sergei and his Technician Michail managed to get everything put together and working, almost in time for the start of the show.  I think room 1114 opened up a couple of hours late, but really, it was a wonder that they managed to get it opened at all on Friday.

The IKEA stuff worked great, and the setup looked very nice.  When I first went in, it sounded very good tonally, although something was out of phase because there was no imaging.  The next day when I went in the system was sounding much better.

I was very busy with room 1102 all weekend, and I regret that I didn't spend as much time as I should have over in 1114, but many people who came into 1102 were very complimentary about the look and the sound of the SST Audio/Volti room.  We also received some nice press for that room.

Sergei, Greg, Tatiana, Gary

It's easy to like Sergei.  He's fun to talk to, and with all the time/travel/setup constraints involved with this show - nothing seems to phase him - he just keeps a big smile on his face and no matter what it takes, he keeps moving forward with one great idea after another.  He has plans to sell equipment here in the States, and I found out at the show that I will be the U.S. distributor for SST Audio!  I'm very appreciative, but not sure really what this will mean for me.  I guess I'll see as time goes on.  I'm sure Sergei could have arranged for his gear to be distributed by the very best available here in the U.S., and so his decision to have me be involved must be part of a bigger plan that I am not aware of yet!  Lol

At the end of the show, Sergei told me that he liked the Aluras so much that he wanted to buy them and use them at the Moscow High-End Audio Show coming up in just a few weeks.  So Volti did sell a pair of speakers at the show, which is very cool.  Even cooler, is that I think the Aluras will show very well in Moscow, and I'm hoping that maybe there will be a sale or two from that show.

Thank you Sergei for your support!

You Put The Lime In The Coconut . . .

Room Treatment

Audiophiles all have a different approach to acoustically treating their listening rooms at home, and it's no different at the shows.  You'll see some rooms with almost no treatment and others with panels, bass traps, and curtains hung all around the room.  I believe acoustically treating a room can be beneficial to the overall sound.  I also know there are many audiophiles who cannot do much, if anything to their rooms at home.

I am not a big fan of having panels hanging all over my listening room, from an aesthetic point of view.  I also think that acoustic room treatments, especially if overused, can 'kill' the sound of the system.

I like the physical nature of the sound reacting to the room - I like to adjust the volume of a song so that it just starts to excite the room.  The interaction between the system and the room is not something I want to knock out, at least completely.

At the shows, I'm showing that the Vittoras can be put in a normal room, with very little room treatment, like the rooms that my customers will have at home.  I think it's better to show off my system in a relatively untreated room, for my customers to imagine it getting better, than it is to start out with a highly treated room and have my customers wondering how much worse it might sound if they don't do the same at home.  There's something to be said for a system that does not require much in the way of acoustic treatment to make a good sound.  When my customers see that I've plunked down the Vittoras in a normal room and I'm getting a great sound with them, that is a great sales tool for me.

It's Funny Sometimes

I didn't get out much to hear other rooms, but I did cruise down the halls in the Tower a couple of times.  I was drawn into one room because of an unusual looking horn tweeter sitting on top of a tower speaker with what I think was a single 6" driver mounted up high in the cabinet and what I think was a 12" woofer driver and a 12" passive driver side-mounted in the same cabinet.  I sat down and they were playing a song I was very familiar with.  A few seconds after sitting down I heard a thud, and then a thud thud, and then a thud, and another thud thud.  Almost like someone was turning a powered subwoofer on and off in the room next to us.  I turned to the guy next to me and asked if he knew what the low thud noises were, and he didn't know.  I turned and asked the guy behind me, who was running the room, and he said it's in the recording - most speakers don't go down low enough to reproduce these low frequencies.  He said he had measured them and they were at 34Hz.

So at this point I'm a little baffled, but because the system was sounding so good (if you ignored the arbitrary thumping), I figured I'd stay for a bit.  The tweeter was fantastic sounding - turns out it is a plasma horn tweeter - and the real highlight of the room.  The next song came on, and again it was one that I was very familiar with.  Guess what I heard next?   Yup . . . thud, thud, thud.  So I asked him again - and again he said it was in the recording.  Sorry, there just no way that those unnatural thudding noises were part of the recording.

I'm guessing the 12" woofers in the speakers were separately powered, and had DSP at part of the action, with the very low bass boosted to extreme levels, which would explain the unnatural thumping noises.  That's what it sounded like anyway.   Somebody probably thought this was impressive.  There's a lot of this kind of thing happening in a lot of rooms at these shows - far more than I EVER would have thought prior to getting into this business.

Aiming High

It was first thing Sunday morning, and really quiet at the show, when I decided to go hear the JBL Everest speakers.   JBL is an iconic speaker company, and known for building great horn speakers for many decades.  I'd always wanted to hear the Everests at one of these shows, and just never got the chance.

Gary has some fantastic music that he brings to the shows, and he had one disc that had really great bass and great recording quality that he stuck on first thing Sunday morning.  So I listened to one track from this disc (can't remember the name of the artist) on the Volti/BP system, grabbed the disc and headed over to the atrium side to visit the Everest room.

When I got to the Everest room, only the person running the room was there and he was willing to let me listen to my CD and at the volume level I wanted.  Very cool.  So sitting in the sweet spot, with the same track that I had just listened to a few minutes before on the Vittoras, and with the volume level set the same, I enjoyed listening to these flagship JBL horn speakers, and of course comparing how they sounded to my own design.

So how was it?  Fantastic!  Really.  I didn't have to stretch to find things to like about these big horn speakers.  There was an instant familiarity - like, yup, this is my sound.  And . . . . was . . . I . . . ever . . . happy about one minute in, when I realized that as good as these speakers are, the Vittoras are much, MUCH better.

I think the midrange of the JBL's may have been a bit smoother, but the high frequencies sounded harsh - the typical hi-sensitivity tweeter sound that I've found is the case with the dozens of tweeter and tweeter driver/horn combinations that I've sifted through over the years to find just the right one for the Vittoras.  Most hi-sensitivity tweeters peak at around 8Khz - 10Khz, and drop off from there as the frequency rises.  This was a familiar sound to my ears.

No speaker as large as the JBL Everest has any business sounding lean in the bass, but that's exactly how I would describe what I heard.  Remember, I had just listened to this exact same song minutes earlier on the Vittoras, and the bass was strong, deep, tight, well-defined - really just fantastic in every way.  And now listening to the Everests, I was left wondering how two 15" woofers in such a large cabinet could have less bass output and less low bass extension than the relatively small folded horn of the Vittora.  But there it was, and it was not hard to hear the difference.

Ah yes, but Greg, the Vittora system has that big ass subwoofer cranking along with it.  Yes, you're right, it does - normally.   This is the part of the story I really like.  After listening to the Everests, I got back to my room and told Gary about my experience.  He said, "You know the subwoofer wasn't on when you were listening, right"?   "What do you mean", I queried.  "Neither one of us turned the subwoofer amp on this morning, so you were listening to the system without the sub"!  Need I say more?  Insert big smile here.

Overall, the sound of the Vittora system was much more full-bodied, smoother, with greater bandwidth, and just plain more musical than the JBL Everest; and not by an small margin either.  Now I suppose this could be a matter of the Everest room not being set up properly, or the rest of the components in the system not doing justice to the Everests, etc...

My experience in comparing the $17,500 Vittoras to the $60,000 Everests left me feeling very proud of my accomplishments, and also feeling as though I really am selling the Vittoras for far less than I should be.

. . . and call me in the morning . . . I said woo-woo-woooo

The Coconut song by Harry Nilsson brought a few smiles to the room as one of the demo songs I added to my repertoire at this show.  I think Gary was tired of hearing it by the end though!

We played all kinds of great music at this show.  Gary has some great stuff that he plays, some of it with solid bass that really smacks you around.  Many people brought in music that I hadn't heard before, prompting me to write down the info so I could buy it later.  Two people played songs from their own burned discs and when I commented how much I liked their choices, they both came back to the room to give me CD's that they had ripped somewhere at the show - which I thought was very nice.

Twice during the show while I was spinning discs in the room, listeners asked for loud rock music.  I'm prepared for this, with nice cuts from AC/DC, Def Leppard, The Cars, etc... and we had a great time rocking it out.  One comment I really liked - "you must be confident in this system, playing music like that".  Yes, we were confident that whatever music we played that weekend, it was going to sound great.

The most rewarding thing for me at these shows is when someone who is obviously expecting the horns to fail, is suprised by how great the music sounds - making them rethink what they are hearing elsewhere.

A New Marketing Direction?

What do you think?  Sergei said I could use Tatiana to model for Volti Audio, and I'm thinking maybe this is what Volti needs to sell more product!

My wife isn't impressed with my idea though.

RMAF 2013 Audio Press

The Press written for the Volti/BorderPatrol room at RMAF2013 was "as good as it gets", says Gary Dews.   And I think he's right.  I read what people have to say about our room and I think to myself that there's just no way that we keep making great sound like this without having the sales follow.

That's what I think anyway.  We'll see.  It's been unusually quiet around here since RMAF ended.

The excerpts below were taken directly from my seriously updated Show Coverage webpage, which has been in existence for quite a while, but with very little content.  Now you can read more press coverage on the Volti speakers than you could ever want by clicking HERE.

Best Of Show!

Volti Audio and BorderPatrol Audio in Room 1102

Read about it HERE

Roy Gregory, The Audio Beat

"Painstakingly hand-built in Maine on a cost-plus basis, this is a huge amount of speaker for your money - in both physical and musical terms".

"The (comparatively) affordable costs make this a huge bargain, but for some listeners, the low price might call the system's quality into question.   It shouldn't.   With over $6000 worth of parts and 200 man-hours invested in each pair, conventional pricing would place these speakers around the $60,000 mark - and they'd still hold their own"!

"The easy dynamics and scale that any good horn system should deliver were accompanied by a surprisingly coherent soundfield, great top-to-bottom continuity and a refreshing lack of intrusive coloration.   Despite the large cabinets and small room, this was a system that brought a smile to the face and got the feet tapping.   It really allowed music to breathe, vocals being especially impressive, while jazz could (almost literally) blow you away.   Yes, it would go loud, but it would also play almost anything with sufficient refinement and the sort of poise that could cause traditional horn haters to question their eyes, their ears or their prejudices".

Taken from The AudioCircle forum

"At least 3 people told us how great this room was and how much we needed to check it out.   So here we are.    Very, very retro cool looking.   Furniture grade cabinets with old school acoustic cloth.    . . . they sound GIANT.   Like Voice of God giant.   Second they are the only speaker at the show where their dynamic capabilities actually startled me.   As in I literally jumped out of my seat.    Phenomenal".

Jonathan Valin, The Absolute Sound

"The Vittora proved to be unusually neutral-sounding for a horn (even better of-axis in this regard).   Very focused, a bit forward, and a little supercharged in the mids (as horns often are), it was still pretty smooth and powerful overall with a better-than-decent blend between the horns and the outboard dynamic subwoofer".

Various posts from The AudioShark forum

"Put these on your must audition list.   104db efficiency too.   Bigger than life.   Recreate front row at a concert like you can't believe.   Fabulous".

"These speakers are outstanding.   104db efficient.   Gorgeous build.   Matching sub.    $17,500/pair.   Check out Art Dudley's review in Oct Stereophile of these.   Class A rated.   Too big for my room though...."

"I really like the Volti Vittora speakers.   I need to hear them".

"The "best of show" so far?   Volti Audio Vittora's.   It's not even close".

"Thinking of their sound kept me up last night.   Damn!"

"When I played ACDC, after Diana Krall, after Alison Krauss, I was sold".

Scot Hull, Confessions of a Part-time Audiophile

"My Volti Audio/BorderPatrol room experience at RMAF wasn't exactly new as I've previously had most of this gear in my home.   Which may not entirely explain why my eyes nearly popped out of their sockets at the sound I was hearing coming from the RMAF setup".

"Holy [expletive deleted]"!

"More air, more separation, more tonal depth . . .
. . . the presentation here in Denver, from top-to-bottom, was just effortless and completely seamless.   Greg Roberts seems to have taken his loudspeakers yet another giant step forward and for that, I must doff my cap.   Well done sir"!

"I'm going to have to lay more than a few Wreaths of Glory and Fame on BorderPatrol's Gary Dews . . . no BorderPatrol amp, which I've already said elsewhere are some of the best-sounding tube amps being made, has ever sounded this good".

Jason Victor Sirinus, Stereophile Magazine

". . . when I heard, in succession, impressively full-range sound and excellent low-bass definition on Mahler's Symphony 2, and gorgeous warmth and color on everything soprano Arleen Auger sang, I felt as though I could simply float through the rest of the day in a state of peace".

"Despite a bit of softness to the sound-a slight gray tinge that I associate with SET amplification - the end result was both convincing and, with celestial music, absolutely heavenly.   Thank you, Volti Audio and BorderPatrol, for the gift of music in Room 1102".

Clement Perry, Stereo Times

"All I can say is Oh My....What a sound!   Even under these stressed out show conditions, and way before I even sat down, the sound coming from this combo was immediately gorgeous and instantly special.   Everything sounded open and harmonically right:   devoid of any obvious colorations or distortions.   I want to emphasis 'harmonically right'.   This gave the room a sense of ambiance that was rare and exciting to hear in showroom".

"The sound was something special.   Something that sticks with you.   Not because it was better than anything else necessarily, but because it was totally unexpected and certainly among the best sounding rooms I heard".

Steve Marsh, 6 Moons

"Volti Audio, Border Patrol Audio Electronics.   This was a pairing high on my list to hear this year.    I am an unabashed fan of Gary Dew's approach to music reproduction and when he showed me the outboard power supplies for his S20 parallel single-Ended 300B amp, I was highly impressed".

"When you hear the bass capabilities of this amp on the Volti speakers, you put to rest any criticisms of 300B bass being mushy.   This bass was meaty, tuneful and very realistic with no messy hangover of notes.   The tonal balance was fabulous".

"This room was one of my favorites of the show with a fleshed-out tone that I largely attribute to Gary's amps  .  .  .    But I do not mean to slight Greg Robert's Vittora speakers, which are some of the most coherent hornspeakers I have ever heard, with seamless integration of the Volti subwoofer too.   There is no horn coloration and they have the efficiency and liveliness to mate beautifully with Gary's amps.   These products go together like meat and potatoes".

Scot Hull, The Absolute Sound Magazine

"Room Number Three was a known quantity for me, but I'd been clued in by a little bird that this demo of the Volti Audio Vittoras was something I couldn't miss.   I'd been lucky enough to spend six weeks with these horn loudspeakers late last year and had been nearly undone by the experience - my love for them only outdone by love for my wife . . . but that's another story entirely.   No, here the big Vittoras, which may bear more than a passing resemblance to some classic designs from Klipsch, were driven by some new electronics from BorderPatrol that promised a revelatory experience.   The S20 parallel single-ended 300b-based choke-input filtered and tube regulated stereo amplifiers had been given a huge leap forward with the addition of a pair of hulkingly huge power supplies.   Added to the Vittoras, this system was very nearly the last room I visited at RMAF.   Out of spite, I requested some Morcheeba and was reminded that the optional, matching subwoofer ($2,900) really did keep up.   I'm sure the neighbors were thrilled when I finally left, wrung out, and a bit damp about the head and face.   My, oh my".

"The other Volti Audio room featured the Alura, another Tractrix horn-based loudspeaker, this time mated to a 15" bass driver.   Driven by some arrestingly gorgeous amplifiers from SST Audio, I was struck by the delicacy and air out of this speaker (and devastating slam, too).   With that tweeter horn at the top of the stack, designer Greg Roberts managed to lift the sound stage to completely fill the entirety of that front wall.   Hee hee!   What a great show"!

Unknown Source

"SST Audio amps and Volti Speakers.   OK, this is a great room, I really liked it a lot.   It featured FOUR 813 SET monoblocks making 40 wpc at $62k for a pair.   The speakers are 99 dB sensitivity and combined with the huge SET amps makes for effortless dynamics.   One of the more enjoyable systems to listen to at the show for sure, it did a great job with everything I threw at it".

Vittora Price Increase

Show after show goes by with terrific feedback and praise from show-goers and the press.  With so much great press from this last show, including a 'Best Of Show' nod, along with my experience comparing the Vittora to the JBL Everest, along with prodding from Gary Dews; I have decided that it is time to raise the price on Vittoras to what they should be selling for.

We knew this was coming at some point, and 2014 is the time.

So if you've been on the fence about getting a pair of Vittoras, you've got two months to get them at the old price.  At midnight E.S.T. on December 31st, 2013 the price increase takes effect!

Notice Of Change of Price and Other Details for the Vittora System

As of January 1, 2014 the Vittora speakers will be sold as a five-piece set that includes two top horn sections, two bass horns, and one extended low-frequency cabinet.  They will continue to be sold direct from Volti Audio, without dealer markup and the price of the five-piece set will be $25,000.   The price includes three wooden crates for shipping (shipping cost not included).  They will be offered in three veneer choices and black cloth at that price - Bosse Cedar, Anigre, and American Cherry.  Hundreds of other veneer choices are available at extra cost.

Note a few other changes as well.  We will no longer be referring to the subwoofer as a subwoofer, but rather as an Extended Low-Frequency (ELF) cabinet.  I've already changed all the wording on the website.   I want my customers to think of the ELF cabinet as being part of the system, because that's what it has always been right from the start.  The Vittoras can still be purchased without the ELF at a lower cost.

Another change is with the veneer choices for the Vittora system.  I'll be offering them in three stock veneer choices (perhaps more offered in the future).  This makes it very easy to order veneer because I don't have to go through the long process of helping a customer choose veneer without being paid for my time.  I don't mind choosing really cool veneers, and getting photographs of the actual veneer sheets, and discussing how a particular veneer will match an old armoire passed down from Great Aunt Martha; really I don't; I just need to be paid for my time to do it.   I'm sure you understand.

Volti Website

Nothing drastically different with the website, but you'll notice new photos on the index page and Vittora page, as well as an expanded show-coverage page with some great quotes and comments from people who have heard our speakers at the shows.  The Vittora page has been changed more than any other, with far fewer words than before.  I've also added a page called 'Vittora-More', which is a collection of detailed mini-essays about the Vittora, and also some other interesting tidbits and photos.  This is the page I'll use to be long-winded, and keep the regular Vittora page concise.

I'd really like to get your feedback on the website changes, so please send me an email and let me know what you think.

Email Greg

So what do you think?  A 'Best Of Show' nod, lots more great Press, we sold a pair of speakers, I'm convinced that the Vittoras are a better speaker than the Flagship JBL model . . . .   pretty good stuff huh?  I'll do my best to keep it going, I just hope the sales continue to grow, especially with the price increase.  We'll see.

It might be a while before I send out another newsletter, since there's really not much happening that is newsworthy coming up.  At least not that I can see coming up anytime soon.  But I'll write again as soon as I have enough stuff to tell you about.

Thank you for your support, and until next time, I hope it all sounds good!

Greg Roberts

Volti Audio - Klipsch Upgrades - New Horn Speakers