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    Review | Buchardt Audio A500 Speaker System

     

     

    Buchardt Audio A500 Speaker System
    45 days and counting...

     

     

     

    September 25th, 2020


    Buchardt A500 Driver.jpg#FutureFi

     

    I have been on a multi-year quest for simplicity in audio systems around my home.  Recently I have mostly been listening to the Kii Three speakers with the BXT modules.  The Kii speakers are an incredible system, but they are out of most "normal budgets." I have been looking for something simpler and more in-line with personal finances.  Unexpectedly I also still have my Dutch and Dutch 8C system, and I tried the Elac Navis ARB-51 system, which falls on either side of the Buchardt A500's budget-wise.  But I am getting ahead of myself.  

     

    Denmark based Buchardt Audio uses a direct to consumer sales model for its equipment.  They pay the import taxes and fees.  You purchase the system, and you have 45 days to evaluate and possibly return the gear.  There is a modest return fee. For the A500, it is $50.  

     

    The A500 is a nicely sized self-powered bookshelf speaker from Denmark available in three finishes, White, Black, and Walnut.  The cabinet has an unusual shape that slopes backward from bottom to top.   There are three drivers; a forward-facing tweeter is in a large waveguide. There is a second 6in forward-facing driver and a third rear-facing 6in driver.  The drivers have individual 150-watt class D amplifiers.  Also, the speakers contain a multi-core DSP system that manages the crossovers and a bit more. The primary input is via a WiSA standard RF interface operating at 24bit 96kb PCM. There is a second analog input via balanced XLR. There is a USB port on the rear of the speaker for loading DSP configurations called Mastertunings.

     

    As I write this, there are multiple Mastertunings profiles available for download on the Buchardt Audio website. Each of these tunings changes the performance/operations of the DSP crossover. They are easy to test by installing the tuning on a USB stick and booting each speaker up with the USB stick inserted in the speaker.

     

    Just one more thing that the A500 provides. The DSP implements an equal-loudness contour called the Fletcher-Munson Curve (ISO 226:2003) that compensates for human hearing at lower volumes.  The Buchardt monicker is Low-Level Enhancement (LLE).

     

     

    Buchardt A500 Hub.jpgThe second part of the system is the Hansong Stereo Hub that Buchardt sells along with the speakers. The Hub is an optional purchase, but it is a primary tool for using the speakers.  The stereo hub is the WiSA transmitter and provides multiple inputs along with Wi-Fi streaming.  It comes with a nice wireless remote for controlling volume, input selection, and more.  

     

    The stereo hub has some smart tricks up its sleeve.  

    - It is a Chromecast and Airplay receiver and has Spotify Connect.  

    - There is also Bluetooth and UPnP.   

    - There are multiple physical inputs, Line, three optical, one digital, USB, 3.5mm, and HDMI ARC.

     

    There is one other feature; Room Correction, for frequencies below 300hz. Using an iPhone app to sweep the room with the speakers emitting an audio pattern, the software calculates the needed adjustments.  It sends the info to the Hansong Stereo Hub for operation.

     

     

     

     

    The above is a short intro video we shot for The Three Techs!

     

     

    September 30th, 2020

     

    I have the speakers connected to AC power using Puritan Audio Laboratories power cables and the PSM-156 Mains Purifier.  An HDPLEX-200 LPS powers the Stereo Hub.  

     

    The speakers are on Elac single post filled stands using Isoacoustics Gaia-1 isolators.  The speakers do not have mounting inserts, so I use Sound Anchor Blue Dots to hold them on the speaker stands safely.

     

    NOTE: I already had the ancillary devices listed above available for use on the system.  While they are "upgrades" and optional, they add significant value!

     

    My everyday listening tool has been my Ryzen 7300 based Roon Server.  With the Hansong Stereo Hub, I have many other options.  The Hansong hub and the AURALiC Altair G1 are both Roon endpoints.  The Hub only through Google Cast. 
     
    I am also listening with Spotify Connect, Tidal app, Qobuz app, Audirvana, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, etc.

     

    I have played with MConnect, Bubble UPnP, and a couple more control point apps on iOS and Android.  I am going to leave this for later.  There is just too much to do.

     

    According to Buchardt Audio, the speakers need around 100 hours to break-in.  I found that after about 20 hours or so, things started to relax a lot!  The "piston-rings" seem to have gotten their Groove-On!  As time goes on they continue to improve.  

     

     

    October 3rd, 2020

     

    Room Correction and listening paths

     

    In my room, there is a 30-40Hz bump at about 5db. There are also a couple of dips above that. I have a lot of carpet, fabric, and the room's rear is mostly open to the home's entryway.  No listening room is perfect!  In this case, the Living Room has to function as a Listening Room, and I really cannot embellish it with acoustic add-ons.  Some DSP software helps things out.


    I have two paths to the speakers that I want to outline.  The first path is the Buchardt supplied WISA Hub.  I do not know precisely where the magic is in the WISA system, but I have not heard anything in its price range that comes close to the sound quality I am getting.  The flexibility that the Hub provides to this system is an almost perfect intersection of services for streaming music playback.  I also connected my Rega Planar 8 turntable and pre-amp to the line-in.  What more could I ask of the Hub?  At least one more thing, I can tell Google Assistant to play music on it!  

     

    The second path for my music is through my AURALiC Altair G1 directly to the A500 speakers via their balanced analog inputs.

     

    There are a couple of advantages to the G1, from the lovely display on the front of the device to the Lightning DS application that ties everything together, high-res Local Music, Tidal, Qobuz, Internet Radio.  

     

    So, the G1 and the Hansong Stereo Hub pair give me access to virtually every streaming and local music source I can think of.  I get to play with Room Correction, listen to LP's, talk to my stereo; WOW!

     

     

    Buchardt A500.jpgI have been putting off writing about the sound for a long time now.  It takes quite a while to accumulate hours on speakers located in the core of the home during the ordinary course of family life!  

     

    The other part of the problem is what audio path do I evaluate?  I really do not want to decide what the "best test path is."

     

    I am trying to promote the use of the system, so I have been testing multiple approaches.  While Sound Quality is essential in our home, the simplicity of operation may override sometimes. Having the Virtual assistant play something on demand is very compelling. Does Apple Music over Airplay sound better than Spotify Connect? Do I really care? I am not sure.

     

    During this process, I have found many hiccoughs in multiple systems, software and hardware. I may note them in a separate thread here on Audiophile Style to not confuse this report.

     

    The Primary Paths that I have chosen are as follows:

     

    I am streaming via Google-Cast and Apple AirPlay from apps on my iOS and Android devices. 

     

    Altair G1 via Analog XLR, the A500 Speakers using the Lightning DS app on iPad.


    The other issue here is the data path.  Using all of these services and streaming protocols, I do not always know what the sampling is.   Some of the testings are about functionality and not Sound Quality.

     

    Did I cover my tracks well enough here?  Or is the light at the end of the tunnel a Freight Train headed my way?

     

     

    October 10th, 2020  

     

    Short-cut to a sound quality test? I am not sure.


    I used the Hub and the G1 as two Roon Zones in my testing, comparing the WiSA path vs. the Analog XLR path into the A500 speakers.  

     

    For a few days, I used both sighted and blind to expose the difference between the two paths.  The Altair G1 has a better presentation than the Hansong Hub. The G1 has a tighter presence and more clarity. The overall feeling of the music with the G1 is striking. I have had two friends visits, masks on windows open.  Both were really surprised by the A500's.  One vote for G1 being a lot better.  The other was an abstain as we did not have enough time. For me the Buchardt A500 is the clear winner here.   I can enhance them with my Altair G1 and that has been three steps forward for me.   

     

    NOTE: I conducted the same test with the ELAC Discovery Connect and the Altair G1.  The Discovery Connect and its wireless protocol have pronounced performance degradation to the ELAC NAVIS ARB-51 Speakers I was testing last month.   It was not an acceptable solution for me.  The Elac's have been returned.

     

    I told you that this was hard!  Simplifying my system design has gotten more complicated to evaluate than expected.


    The A500's stated frequency specifications are 25hz to 40,000khz +-1.5db. I will not pretend to be able to measure this or hear it for that matter.  I can talk about what I hear, and that has been full of surprise and delight. 

     

    Out of the box, the A500's did something new for me.  The treble did not sound harsh.  The bass response was jaw-dropping.  How did the Buchardt Audio team make this happen?  As I have been auditioning them, I have not once felt something was off.  I am repeatedly amazed at the depth and breadth of the sound stage. Vocal and small ensemble performances feel almost alive.  The A500 speakers have exceeded my expectations in several areas, apparent sound stage, bass response, and WiSA sound quality.  They have responded well to the sound quality enhancements I have used, and their system flexibility fits right in with my desire to play with things.

     

    In communicating with Mads Buchardt, who seems to answer everyone's email, he suggested a couple of things from my initial setup.  He indicated that I should keep them further apart because of the way that the tweeter waveguides work.  He also outlined the procedure for measuring the room with my iPhone, as they have not done a video yet! 

     

     

    Oh, back to my listening report.  

     

    I consistently find vocals to be very pleasing with these speakers.  A couple, in particular, are Dominique Fils-Aimé and the lead singer from Blues company.  It has been wonderful to sample Annie Lennox across the years.  In Eva Cassidy's Live at Blues Alley I can hear more of the human sounds in the recordings, breathing, mic distance changes, etc. They seem more present.

     

    I enjoy piano music.  Getting a piano recorded well, and playing that back in a home environment is challenging.  I have found that many piano recordings sound harsh or odd to me. Many times the faults were with my reproduction equipment! With the A500's the number of recordings that exhibit that problem seems to be shrinking one by one as I listen to them.  I have a lot of listening to go before I get to zero, and there is always the internet with more!

     

    In my discussions with Mads Buchardt, he suggested I try the "new default master tuning." You have to format a USB stick and put the master tuning file on it.  Then power down the A500 speaker, insert the USB stick, and power it up.  The LED's will do a little circle dance to indicate success.  You have to do this for each speaker.

     

    I have only played a little bit to see if it worked.  I re-loaded the original MasterTuning so that I could finish these listening tests without any change.  Time is running short.

     

     

     21 Days in -- Small changes-- October 15th, 2020

     

    I have decided to keep both of my streamers in the system.  I am using the Hansong Hub to do the "casting stuff" and have the analog input for my turntable.  When there are some software updates, I will look into other uses.  

     

    I have proven to myself that the Hansong Hub and WiSA streaming sounds excellent and provides a lot of functionality I want.

     


    Streaming Week -- Friday, October 16th, 2020

     

    Things are progressing rather well here.

     

     

    This feels like Cake Week on The Great British Baking Show.  So many flavors to taste! I have been listening to Apple Music.  The User Interface of Apple Music is excellent.  Playing back Apple's streams of AAC  audio is a pleasure on the A500's.  It is a great way to discover music.  Apple has an extensive selection of music, and its curated playlists are great.   I am also trialing Spotify Premium to test Spotify Connect and understand their systems better.  

     

    On the Altair G1, I have my local music with Tidal and Qobuz.  I have been playing a lot streaming from both Tidal and Qobuz.  

     

    At some point I have to make up my mind and pick ONE streaming service.  Simplifying is not just the hardware side of things!

     

     

     

    October 24th, 2020  -- 30 days and counting

     

    Buchardt A500 Setup.jpgThe Battles on Stage — 8c vs. A500

     

    It has been a month! I have done too much work to get here.  Messing about with different streaming systems, control point apps, speaker stands, and locations, WHEW!   

     

     I have settled into a routine of just listening to the system when I want no heavy planned sessions.  The only requirement I am still observing is to make sure I listen through both the Altair G1 and the Hansong Hub in the same session. Nothing fancy, just keeping both in mind.

     

    I am still finding the soundstage's overall presentation to be one of the outstanding features of the A500's.   As I noted before, vocals stand out on these speakers.  Singers like Eva Cassidy are some of my favorites.

     

    I have also completed a SHORT comparison of the Buchardt A500's to the Dutch and Dutch 8C speakers this weekend. I am using the Analog XLR interface from the Altair G1 for my listening. The differences are smaller than the similarities. Diminishing returns?  Both systems have lovely imaging; they both have extended bass range.  8c's sonic presentation has more midrange detail, and they have a lot of weight.  They are a bit more forward. The 8c's let you know that they are in the room both physically and sonically.  I realized that I had been using a loaner set of XLR cables in the system before this test, and that has changed the Analog character of things. That will be remedied shortly when my AudioQuest Water cables arrive.

    As I mentioned early in this process, this is not a fair comparison.  The  8c's are around triple the price of the A500's.  This review is not about the Dutch and Dutch speakers, but they influence my thinking, as do the Kii Threes!  

     

    Finally, I have been put in contact with the engineering team at Hansong.  I have sent them the list of issues I have found so far.  They have helped me with a couple of cases where I was doing the wrong thing.

     

     

    October 28th, 2020

     

    My Playlist

     

    I took some time today to start building a playlist to highlight some of the music I have been listening to during my trial.  You will find the Qobuz playlist down at the bottom of the article.  I am also linking to a couple of other playlists that have been fun!

     

    https://open.qobuz.com/playlist/4833309

     

    AustinPop

    https://open.qobuz.com/playlist/2469971

     

    Kii Audio Spring 2019 — Updated

    https://open.qobuz.com/playlist/2236115

     

    Audio Consultants Playlist

    https://open.qobuz.com/playlist/2316959


    And the icing on the cake: We also figured out one of my problems—the A500's need a bit higher volume from the Altair G1 to wake up from sleep.  I thought I had a problem.  It was user error.

     

     

    November 9th, 2020

     

    This is the last day of my trial.  Let me level set my decision here.  I am comparing the A500's and the Hansong Hub against the Dutch and Dutch 8C and the Kii Three with BXT.  Being able to directly compare these three systems is a very unique opportunity.

     

    The A500 has a split personality.  The first is their analog side.  The audiophile in me almost giggles to see that.  I can hook just about anything up to that input.  It allows me to dig in and play around.  The second side is the Hub.  This little Swiss Army Knife has so many possibilities for digital, wireless, and analog my head spins.  So I am a kid on a merry-go-round, dizzy and laughing!

     

    I am fascinated by the Hub. I mostly use it for AirPlay, background listening, research, discovery, etc..  I am also playing with Spotify Connect to see if I can tell the difference between it and Apple Music.

     

    In my testing, I have exposed several software issues with the Hub, mostly with Google Cast.  All of my problems have been reported.  Since I mainly use AirPlay and Spotify Connect, this has not been a significant issue for me. 

     

    I am looking forward to proper Roon Certification although I have mostly abandoned Roon due to multiple interactions issues and reduced sound quality.

     

    As noted above, the Altair G1 is my Server/Streamer/DAC to feed Balanced XLR analog to various systems.  


    So, Bob, are you keeping them???   The answer is YES!  

     

    I have never experienced a pair of speakers that present this level of musical reproduction experience at this price point.  The A500’s show you when you have all of the pieces linked up to produce amazing sound in your own living room. When something is not right they show it to you.  When something soars to great heights, the shine a light on it.  These are truly what I consider “Performance Listening” speakers.   Mads Buchardt should be very pleased to put his name on these speakers.  The teams that built them should be celebrated.

     


    There is more to be done!

     

    I really want to see some software updates for the Hansong Hub.  I want to try different mastertunings.  I would like to see Roon Ready on both the 8Cs and the A500 hub.  I am breaking in my AudioQuest Water cables, and  I am waiting for some Herbies Audio Labs, Cone/Spike Decoupling Gliders.  I want to see if I can use them in place of the Gaia-1’s

     

    I hope that this journey through my evaluation has been enjoyable and encourages others to try out other system components.


    Thanks to Mads Buchardt for spending so much time responding to my emails and connecting me to the right folks directly for reporting my issues.  His support has been very encouraging.

     

     

    So "Enjoy the Music"

     

    ** I am closing this report here to satisfy my goal of getting this review done in the allotted time.  There is another chapter going on as I type this.  Keep a watch on Audiophile Style for more.  We will also do another video when I am “Finally Done”


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    Product Information:

     

    • Buchardt Audio A500 Speakers — Walnut W/ Hansong Hub.    4,350.00 Euros (LINK)
    • User Manual (13MB PDF) (LINK)
    • Stereo Hub Quick Start Guide (6MB PDF) (LINK)

     

     

     

    AURALiC Altair G1
    Melco N1-ZH60 

     

    IsoACOUSTICS Mini-Pucks for the Altair G1 and Melco

    Rega Planar 8 Turntable with Ania cartridge
    Musical Fidelity MZ-VYNL phono stage
    Audioquest Evergreen RCA cables for Phono to Hub
    Mogami Gold XLR Cables
    AudioQuest Water XLR cables

     

    Elac Single post stands.

     

    Sound Anchor Blue Dots to stick the speakers to the stands 
    IsoACOUSTICS Gaia 1 isolators
    IKEA Cutting boards as platforms

     

    Puritan Audio Laboratories 
    PSM-156 Power Line Filter
    PAL power cords as needed to equipment 

     

    Apple iPad Pro 12.9 (first generation) as a control point

     

    Misc

     

    DIY RYZEN 7300 based Roon Server 
    2014 Mac Mini for Audirvana
    Pixel 3a control point
    iPhone 11Pro MAX Camera and control point

     

    Other Items

     

    Dutch and Dutch 8C speakers
     on Sound Anchor adjustable stands
    Kii Three+BXT Speaker System

     

    VIP
     With speakers spread all over the living space for the last six months, it is great to have a very patient spouse! 

     

     

     



    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    Thanks, Bob!  Great write up on some very cool speakers.

     

    Hats off on their sales model as well.  Too many great products are available at too few dealers, and only a dope or hopeless optimist would commit >$4K without a trial.  Unless a manufacturer has a true national network, such as McIntosh's for example, they need to enable direct or etail trials for a modest fee/commitment.

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    Great looking (and I guess sounding :) ) speakers, and a very friendly sales/business model.  And your review style is different, well laid out, and refreshing.  I also have a real soft spot in my heart toward waveguides, so....kudos.  Congrats!  I imagine the next several weeks/months they will settle in to you space even better.  👍

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    1 hour ago, ted_b said:

    Great looking (and I guess sounding :) ) speakers, and a very friendly sales/business model.  And your review style is different, well laid out, and refreshing.  I also have a real soft spot in my heart toward waveguides, so....kudos.  Congrats!  I imagine the next several weeks/months they will settle in to you space even better.  👍

    Ted,

     

    Thanks for the note.  I am sort of casual in what I do.   We have to have fun with it.  And there is a surprise coming in the next couple of weeks! 

     

    I am starting a thread on the site in a bit discussing all of the software issues with related equipment that I had trouble with this summer. Roon and everybody else.

     

    Bob

     

     

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    A500 is a revolution, a revelation. But it's hard to trust a reviewer that says Apple Music user experience is stellar. Use Spotify and come back to compare. Apple missed the boat on this one. Sure it's better than Tidal, which is just frustrating on a mobile, but it's way way way behind all the easy functionality that Spotify offers for music aficionados. Anyway thanks for the review. Comparing this to Kii Three etc was not very clever. 

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    1 hour ago, juleepriest said:

    A500 is a revolution, a revelation. But it's hard to trust a reviewer that says Apple Music user experience is stellar. Use Spotify and come back to compare. Apple missed the boat on this one. Sure it's better than Tidal, which is just frustrating on a mobile, but it's way way way behind all the easy functionality that Spotify offers for music aficionados. Anyway thanks for the review. Comparing this to Kii Three etc was not very clever. 

    Spotify is rolled off compared to Tidal Hifi, try this album:

    Screenshot_20200319_113928.thumb.jpg.f4f0101792c5c89b4bfef983a1498bee.jpg

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    Just now, Exocer said:

    Terrific write-up @bobfa.  I was wondering why you were selling the Kii Three's!

    Thanks for the note.  I am scaling things back a bit.  I have too much hardware now that I have closed my audio business.  

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    Great review, made for excellent reading.

    I'm guessing that if you are using the analogue inputs on the A500's, then you cannot take advantage of the room correction software inside the hub?

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    Thanks @bobfa - how is the soundstage depth on these?  I am used to open baffle LX521’s which present a different soundstage to what you’d get off traditional box speakers.

     

    Do these speakers have ‘presence’?

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    I do not have experience with the LX521, I do understand they sound amazing.  The staging on A500 speakers is amazing.  I think it is in part the design of the tweeter subsystem.  They really do punch-above-their-weight!   Over the last 8 weeks they have settled in rather nicely.  Their presence is very good. Sitting in the sweet spot they almost disappear and the image really locks in!  Just sitting in the room it is closer to feeling of being there with the music.

     

     

     

     

    In closing they do not have quite the weight of the Dutch and Dutch 8C.  The Kii Threes have a bit more detail and with the BXT the Kii's dynamics are amazing.

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    6 hours ago, Tait said:

    Great review, made for excellent reading.

    I'm guessing that if you are using the analogue inputs on the A500's, then you cannot take advantage of the room correction software inside the hub?

     

    You are correct that the Room Correction is only in the hub.  I have some correction ability in my Altair G1 also.

     

     

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    6 hours ago, ShawnC said:

    @bobfa were you ever considering the A700's as an option?

    Shhh, there might be something to talk about down the road.  They are not shipping in the USA yet.

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    5 hours ago, bobfa said:

    I do not have experience with the LX521, I do understand they sound amazing.  The staging on A500 speakers is amazing.  I think it is in part the design of the tweeter subsystem.  They really do punch-above-their-weight!   Over the last 8 weeks they have settled in rather nicely.  Their presence is very good. Sitting in the sweet spot they almost disappear and the image really locks in!  Just sitting in the room it is closer to feeling of being there with the music.

     

     

     

     

    In closing they do not have quite the weight of the Dutch and Dutch 8C.  The Kii Threes have a bit more detail and with the BXT the Kii's dynamics are amazing.

    Think I’ve found an answer 

     

    While the soundstage wasn’t especially deep, it was very wide, with solo and grouped instruments in clearly defined positions.”

     

    https://www.soundstagesimplifi.com/index.php/equipment-reviews/145-buchardt-audio-a500-active-loudspeakers-and-stereo-hub-wisa-transmitter
     

    So this matches what I would expect for the design of speaker.

     

    They sound like great speakers mind.

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    A bit random question, but in your opening statement you state

    "the Kii speakers are an incredible system, but they are out of most "normal budgets."

     

    Sorry if I'm missing the point, but what does you owning the Kii's have anything to do with anyone else and or others budgets?  I get simplifying, but the Kii's seem to be a killer system and something you definitely enjoyed immensely?  Additionally, other then size their pretty simplified as is, being active.  Anyway just curious.👍

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    1 hour ago, Foggie said:

    A bit random question, but in your opening statement you state

    "the Kii speakers are an incredible system, but they are out of most "normal budgets."

     

    Sorry if I'm missing the point, but what does you owning the Kii's have anything to do with anyone else and or others budgets?  I get simplifying, but the Kii's seem to be a killer system and something you definitely enjoyed immensely?  Additionally, other then size their pretty simplified as is, being active.  Anyway just curious.👍

     

    I may not have elaborated this well enough.  OR maybe I did not articulate my me situation, feelings.  Budget is an overriding factor in most system designs.  I have spent a year and more money that I care to count to keep up with the Kii's.   I built spaghetti USB solutions and more.  That is where the complexity came in.  I got lost in it.  Of course it was my business at the time!    

     

    I have backed all of that down and started something simpler.  In my testing I have found a path that seems to fit me well.  My AURALiC Altair G1 is an all in one solution that provides and analog XLR variable level output that amazes me for the price.   This has become the target core of my system.   This is still rather expensive!  I am still hoping to drop this further down.

     

     

    While I was still operating my business I got the Dutch and Dutch 8C system.  They still have the potential to be a complete stand alone system once they get direct streaming.  

     

    Over the summer I started with the Elac NAVIS ARB-51.  They were a long shot for me.  They really perform well, but not to the level I wanted.

     

    When the Buchardt Audio A500 came along and a couple of the reviews were rather stunning I knew I had to try them.  Out of the box they really impressed me.  After almost two months of use they have really grown on me.

     

    During this testing with the Discovery Connect and the WiSA hub pop up as very interesting alternatives that cost much less than the Altair G1 system design.

     

    I am pretty close.  I will have to see what happens with the Hansong Hub software so I can fully evaluate it, can it replace the Altair G1?  

     

    And lastly there is a bit of FOMO going on here.  Buchardt has started shipping their A700 system.  Mads Buchardt describes them as having the same character as the A500 with more flavor! The A700 is a floor stander that has some interesting built-in isolation technology.  While they are more money, if they do not need the GAIA isolators that reduces cost. Then with no stands thinks look cleaner.  FOMO abounds.

     

    Maybe it never ends!

     

    bob

     

     

     

      

     

     

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    3 hours ago, bobfa said:

    Maybe it never ends!

    Bob, just a suggestion: you need to find something you are happy with and stop the FOMO. Judging from your posts. I'm pretty sure you can do it. Perfect is the enemy of "it's really good and I can be happy with it" as it were.

     

    IME, when you get off the constant upgrade path music listening is much more enjoyable - you stop thinking about how to "improve' things all the time and just enjoy the music.

     

    Do you find you are seriously missing something with the A500 or D&D? If so, what? How much $$$ will it take to get there, and is the improvement really worth the cost to you?
     

    Do you think the A700 might get you there? Just from reading about them and the A500, the A700 seems like it could be a final stop for lots of audiophiles who don't want to be victims of "nervosa". With that in the house, you could be left to play with only sources/UI. Much less daunting and probably much less likely to cause constant upgrade-itis.

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    @bobfaDo the speakers have auto on/off functionality?  Not much mentioned in the manual. 

     

    I hope you get the A700s to review, that's the one I'm considering.  Too bad they can't do the room correction from the phone app direct to the speaker, thus bypassing the need for a hub.  I just use Roon with Qobuz and my NAS.  I would only need the XLR input.  It would be better if it was AES.  Or better yet Ethernet input on the speakers.  The price of the hub isn't my concern, just not needed in my case but I would deiffenitly want room correction.  BTW nice video. 

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    1 hour ago, ShawnC said:

    @bobfaDo the speakers have auto on/off functionality?  Not much mentioned in the manual. 

     

    I hope you get the A700s to review, that's the one I'm considering.  Too bad they can't do the room correction from the phone app direct to the speaker, thus bypassing the need for a hub.  I just use Roon with Qobuz and my NAS.  I would only need the XLR input.  It would be better if it was AES.  Or better yet Ethernet input on the speakers.  The price of the hub isn't my concern, just not needed in my case but I would deiffenitly want room correction.  BTW nice video. 

    Shawn,

     

    All of the speakers I have been testing do echo the quality of the source.  The analog inputs on all of the speakers I have tested sound really great.  Make sure you have that part of the audio chain well in hand.  I have used Roon room correction and that works well.

     

    To echo my goals, simplicity, budget, and sound quality. I am very interested in the WiSA hub that goes with the Buchardt's!

     

    I will pass on your comment on the Video.  My two friends and I have a lot of fun with our YouTube channel. Tony does the video production work, he is great.

     

    bob

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    22 minutes ago, firedog said:

    They only talk about an iPhone in their literature. Can you also do the setup from an iPad?

    The app that does the room correction on the WiSA Hub appears to be an OEM product from Hansong.  There are other speaker systems using the same hub and they also private label the app.  It is my understanding that they have tested/modeled iPhone microphone systems to optimize the inputs.  I have not tested this by running the software on an iPad to see what the curves look like.

     

    bo

     

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    2 hours ago, bobfa said:

    Do the speakers have auto on/off functionality?  Not much mentioned in the manual. 

    Yes they turn off.  I do not know the interval.  

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    On 11/21/2020 at 9:10 PM, bobfa said:

    Maybe it never ends!

    On 11/22/2020 at 1:14 AM, firedog said:

    Bob, just a suggestion: you need to find something you are happy with and stop the FOMO.

     

    It will never end because it is a hobby. That means it will be a continuing process of exploration and discovery rather than to reach a final goal.

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