Vienna Beethoven Baby Selected for Positive Feedback's Dealer Challenge
Mon, 01 Feb 2016
Recently, Robert Schryer, a Positive Feedback reviewer, approached Montreal high-end dealer Son or Filtronique with a simple challenge: make the best sounding system you could with a maximum selling price of $18,000. A week later the reviewer would show up to evaluate the system.
The dealer accepted the challenge and we were delighted to discover they had selected the Vienna Acoustics Beethoven Baby Grand as their loudspeaker of choice. So... was the reviewer impressed? Read on...
Think out-of-body experience. Yes, I'm serious. No, it's not weird, because you know exactly what I'm talking about. It's that destabilizing effect that washes over you when you suddenly find yourself at the wheel of your car and realize you just drove 20 minutes at highish speed without a single memory of having actually done it. Now substitute listening to music for the driving part and you get the out-of-body experience I'm talking about. That's the stuff of audiophile hopes and dreams.And I got some of it from Dany's setup. Stretches of time when all I was aware of was the emotion and artistry in the music: the slow burn of a movement's climactic buildup, the breathy inflections of vulnerability in a voice, the joyful exaltation in the ascending notes of a saxophone. I'd be immersed in these otherworldly dimensions—these alternate lives—until such point—an abrupt gesture from Dany, the end of a song, that little voice in my head telling me to get on with it—I'd be knocked back to Earth, stupefied, and wait out the seconds for my bearings to return.Robert Schryer, Positive Feedback, February 2016