Audio Fidelity – Demo dal 18/12/2015 al 16/1/2016

Audio Fidelity vi invita ad una interessante demo dal 18/12/2015 al 16/1/2016, con i seguenti marchi:

Zu Audio
Bel Canto
Cardas Audio
Origin Live

Corso Virginia Marini, 48
15100 Alessandria (AL)

Orari negozio:
mattino: 10,00 ‑ 13,00
pomeriggio: 16,00 ‑ 19,30

Telefono: 0131/26.01.30

Evento Kharma – Zanden 2015: anteprima sale d’ascolto

Le nostre sale d’ascolto.

Clicca sulle miniature per vedere le immagini.

Evento Kharma – Zanden 2015 (Roma)

Audio Point Italia e Angelucci Hi Fi ti invitano ad un esclusivo incontro, un avvenimento speciale con Kharma International e Zanden Audio, sabato 5 e domenica 6 dicembre 2015 a Roma.
A questo incontro d’eccezione parteciperanno, nel pomeriggio di sabato 5 dicembre, Enzo Pietropaoli ed Eleonora Bianchini. Testimonial dell’evento: Giulio Cesare Ricci (Fonè).
In questa dimostrazione, dedicata a questi questi due grandi marchi, potrai ascoltare due sale d’ascolto così allestite:

Prima sala:

Kharma db11-S
Kharma db9-S
Zanden Model 8120
Zanden Model 3100
Zanden Model 2000 Premium
Zanden Model 5000 Signature
Origin Live Resolution MK III con testina Cardas Ruby Heart
Cardas Clear / Beyond

Seconda Sala:

Graham LS5 / 8
Graham LS5 / 9
Graham LS3 / 5
Leben RS-28
Leben CS 1000 p
Bel Canto RefLink
Bel Canto DAC 3.7
Bel Canto CD2
Cardas Clear / Beyond

Un’occasione unica, un elogio all’Alta Fedeltà, alla tecnica e all’originalità, a quell’arte che comincia là dove l’imitazione finisce.

Ti aspettiamo sabato 5 e domenica 6 dicembre 2015 allo Sheraton 2 Parco De’ Medici Hotel – Via Salvatore Rebecchini, 39 – Roma

Per informazioni:

Audio Point Italia – 095 27 26 01 – –

Chartwell presenta il diffusore LS3/5!

Chartwell, marchio acquisito da Graham Audio, presenta il diffusore LS3/5. Unico al mondo con licenza BBC, mai commercializzato fino ad ora. È stata la prima versione del progetto BBC più famoso: quello della LS3/5a. Inizialmente esso si chiamava LS3/5, ma a causa delle successive modifiche da parte della KEF® ai suoi altoparlanti, i progettisti BBC dovettero cambiare il progetto e adattarlo ai nuovi altoparlanti, chiamandolo LS3/5a.

Secondo Derek Hughes, progettista Graham Audio e figlio di Spencer Hughes, all’epoca progettista BBC, ha sempre ritenuto i primi altoparlanti KEF™  qualitativamente superiori ai successivi.

Per questo motivo Derek Hughes, dopo diversi mesi di progettazione e grazie alla collaborazione con Volt e Seas (per la produzione di altoparlanti perfettamente uguali a quelli utilizzati dai tecnici BBC in origine) è riuscito a realizzare una versione perfettamente conforme con l’originale. Grazie a questo incredibile lavoro, Graham Audio è riuscita a produrre, per la prima volta al mondo, il modello LS3/5 ottenendo anche la prestigiosa certificazione BBC.

KHARMA ELEGANCE S7-S SIGNATURE (The Absolute Sound review)

Describing the Kharma Elegance S7-S Signature as an elegant and expensive floorstanding loudspeaker is technically accurate, for, indeed, that is what it is. But once your eyes really begin taking it in, examining every exacting line and curve, every flawless detail, that description almost seems an injustice. There’s a slight otherworldly vibe about the S7-S. The exterior finish is a bit too deep, the heavy nameplates and impeccable chrome trim a little too lustrous. Something akin to obsession is suggested by the gently radiused corners of its baffle, the brushed aluminum bell of its port, the skin-tight seams where the crossover plate abuts the back panel—something that sets it far apart from the commonplace. Nonetheless, the Kharma Elegance S7-S is quite obviously a loudspeaker—specifically of the two-way floorstanding variety—in a bass-reflex enclosure with a rear-firing port. It is also the smallest of the four models in the Elegance line. It uses two of Kharma’s proprietary transducers: a one-inch beryllium-dome tweeter inset within a robust surround and discretely angled baffle, and a seven-inch, ultra-high-modulus (UHM), carbon-fiber mid/bass driver (the Kharma Omega7) that represents a sea change from the familiar ceramic cones of earlier Kharma models. In conversation, Kharma’s Charles Van Oosterum describes the UHM cones as the stiffest in the industry and “a real challenge to work with.” He credits FEA (finite element analysis) for playing a large role in optimizing the diaphragm’s shape so that first breakup resonances are pushed as high in frequency as possible. Its voice coil is an “underhung” design (wherein the height of the coil is less than the height of the magnetic gap), lowering its inductance, and, hence, producing a “faster,” more responsive driver. An underhung voice coil is also more linear at higher excursions because the coil doesn’t leave the magnetic flux field at either end of its travel. The crossover point is 2.25kHz, but Van Oosterum adds that this proprietary network uses neither a strict first- or second-order filter but something in between. The enclosure is a visual tour de force. It’s constructed from 35mm of heavily braced, high-quality MDF. Internal damping materials are made of a high-density cellular foam with a patented top layer that improves mid- and low-frequency absorption. The cabinets are actually hand-treated with this compound, which is said to effectively silence vibrations by “optimizing the complex interactions among the back-radiated energy of the drivers, the enclosure, and the baskets of the transducers.” The cabinet’s finish is an ophthalmologist’s dream—so clear you could pass an eye test reflected in it. Of course, you’re dealing with a nineteen-coat process that includes three layers of impregnation, five layers of grinding, three layers of color, and eight layers of clear-coating, after which the entire cabinet is hand-polished to its otherworldly sheen. A wide variety of standard colors is offered, as well as any color on demand.  

Kharma Elegance S7-S Signature

  The S7-S that Kharma supplied for this review was the hot-rodded Signature version, which includes Kharma’s own silver wiring throughout (the company maintains its own exclusive line of cables) and various internal hand-applied tweaks. Other flourishes abound, including heavy clamping-type speaker terminals reminiscent of the Cardas versions. These only permit spade connectors, but are very secure and apply excellent pressure. For stability Kharma employs its Spike Disk Suspension System (SDSS)—outrigger footers that are unique to the Elegance Series and works of art in themselves. These footers are pre-installed and integral to the cabinet’s structure. SDSS is made of composite materials with adjustable spiked feet capable of angling the speaker back slightly for dialing in time alignment—an adjustment I took full advantage of in the closer confines of my smallish listening space. Even the aluminum-framed grille is no afterthought—it’s masterfully assembled and attaches via embedded magnets so that there are no holes tapped into the baffle. For a two-way design in this price range, the Kharma rubs elbows with some elite competitors—some larger, some three-way. Thus, it has a very high sonic bar to clear. To be honest, you would think that by now every last drop had been squeezed from the venerable two-way design. But boy, you’d be wrong. From the get-go there’s no missing where the S7-S’s sonic strengths lie. Transparency is its calling card, pure and simple. For me this criterion (in partnership with resolution) is shorthand for the essence of the high-end experience—the ability to convincingly portray musicians playing live music in an acoustic venue. And that convincing illusion is what the S7-S conjured up on every one of my reference musical selections. Stravinsky’s Pulcinella [Argo], a go-to chestnut, is harmonically dense, rhythmically various, and wryly humorous. The S7-S reproduced each instrument clearly without smearing or veiling. It even managed to convincingly reproduce the weight and bluster of the raucous trombone and bass-viol duet—no easy feat. Solo piano, perhaps the single most difficult full-range instrument to capture accurately, was utterly of a piece from one end of the soundboard to the other. There was no shift in character or narrowing of perspective, and zero congestion in the higher octaves, even in the face of the attack transients of some highly percussive playing. As I listened to the spare arrangement of Lyle Lovett’s “Baltimore,” I was transfixed by the way the acoustic guitar seemed to swallow the microphone and the resultant waves of warm air radiating off the soundboard. Equally affecting was the sheer authenticity of the row-by-row layers of handclaps from the live crowd in Bilbao, Spain, during Joan Baez’s “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around” from Diamonds and Rust in the Bullring [Analogue Productions]. The S7-S even exposed the odd studio mishap—someone slamming a studio door at the end of Evgeny Kissin’s performance of the “The Lark,” for example, or a poor tape edit, or a late vocal punch-in. Cues such as these were emblematic of the S7-S in full song: a loudspeaker with a more immersive and open personality than previous Kharmas of this size. Tonally, the S7-S’s character was well balanced with a ripe, warmer cast and a nicely supportive low end. The soundstage it produced was firmly weighted and fully continuous, with an intensely detailed midrange and treble. There were no overt suckouts in the all-important upper bass, nor did the S7-S veer toward beaminess as it ascended to the upper octaves. The beryllium tweeter was fast and extremely high in resolution without adding its own texture. (There was a small hint of the dryness common to this dome material, but there was no mistaking the S7-S for a more clinical and aggressive studio-monitor-type speaker.) Inter-driver coherence was excellent, with absolutely no sense of driver localization. Listening perspective was a few rows back from the front, a location that added to the drama of symphonic depth and dimension, but occasionally seemed to soften the energy and drive of contemporary pop and rock. The S7-S dug deep in the bass, as well. I was getting rock-solid in-room response in the 40Hz range and substantial output into the mid-30s—not true subwoofer territory (the S7-S won’t rupture a fault line) but impressive on both a quantitative and a qualitative level. Without blinking, this Kharma peered deeply into the windy bell of the baritone sax during Jen Chapin’s cover of the Stevie Wonder hit “It Don’t Mean Nothing” [Chesky]. Its bass response was composed, but not leaned-out in a pitch-differentiation-only way. The S7-S had a wider range of expression than that, accurately characterizing timbres from standup bass to Fender bass, piano, organ, and heavyweight winds.

Kharma Elegance S7-S Signature
The S7-S shone most intensely with orchestral music. Whenever I dialed up a naturalistic volume, images and dimension came alive with the angles, light, reflections, and complexity of a Vermeer. It’s a rare loudspeaker of any size or driver configuration that has the resolution to map the contours of a recording venue like the Kharma can. It not only revealed the acoustics and immersiveness and sweep of symphonic venues; it also exposed the veil of artifice of contemporary commercial and pop recordings. You could almost peer into the recording studio where The Carpenters recorded platinum hits like “Close to You,” and see knobs being twisted to punch up a vocal, faders rising and falling, the application of varying amounts of reverb to dry off or wet down specific tracks. One of the most exhilarating aspects of listening to music through the S7-S was the degree to which it operated outside its box. Such observations are commonly reserved for small two-way, stand-mounted monitors, which are renowned for vanishing into the listening space, revealing little of themselves and everything about the music. However, even elite mini-monitors perform this disappearing act at the cost of highly restricted acoustic output, squeezed dynamics, and limited low-end extension. The S7-S’s magic is that it encapsulates the ethos of the mini-monitor—“no localization allowed”—but does so across a vastly wider frequency spectrum. In my room, the complex and varied transients and resonances of bass drum and timpani originated in precise spatial formations. During Vaughan-Williams’ The Wasps Overture [RCA] the percussion players lined up at the rear of the orchestra (and just forward of the hall’s back wall) came into strong focus, with the layers of string sections spread across the stage in front of them. What you didn’t hear was the S7-S’s cabinet, or its drivers, or its rear-firing port. In an era of new and exotic cabinet materials, the S7-S is a tribute to Kharma’s long experience honing the traditional enclosure. To my way of thinking, a large portion of my sonic impressions are owed to Kharma’s superb new mid/bass driver, which combines a muscular midrange balance with the sinewy, fast-twitch transient response that Kharma’s ceramic diaphragms were so famous for. The new driver is a major leap over its predecessor. This isn’t a negative referendum on earlier models, but my take was that these efforts, though ultra-refined, could also sound a bit fragile, even brittle, and seemed to be biased toward lighter more delicate music, shying away from the heavier macro-dynamics of large-scale music. Back in the day, I was truly in awe and admiration of a Kharma’s resolving power but not as emotionally moved by it. The UHM mid/bass has changed that.  

Kharma Elegance S7-S Signature

  The Kharma may very well be the zenith of the two-way floorstander, but it still has its limits, modest though they are. It will be at its effortless best in medium-sized to smaller spaces where it can tap a little extra low end via wall reinforcement. I mentioned earlier the slightly distant audience perspective, and have concluded that there is a narrow frequency dip in the presence range that softens energy there a bit. In addition, larger dynamic swings tend to soften a little sooner than they do with larger multiways. Bass excursions, while taut and controlled in the midbass, lose intensity further down. For example, there was a little less resonance and decay from the talking drums’ during Jennifer Warnes’ “Way Down Deep.” (These drum-skin cues were immediately recaptured in all their rippling glory with the addition of a capable subwoofer like the REL S/5 [Issue 252]—a great match with the Kharma for those seeking the last word in bass extension. Kharma makes a matching subwoofer in the Elegance line, which I haven’t heard.) The Kharma Elegance S7-S Signature is on a very short list of the world’s most musical, luxurious, and sophisticated speakers. And I have to tip my hat for the elegant way it takes its place on that list. It serves as a reminder that sometimes we don’t merely own a high-end component just to listen to, but also for the sheer pleasure of its company. We all can’t afford an S7-S, but I wish every audiophile could have the opportunity to hear one. That’s what I would call spreading around a lot of good Kharma.


Type: Two-way, bass-reflex floorstanding loudspeaker Drivers: One 1″ tweeter, one 7″ Kharma Omega7 mid/bass Frequency response: 29Hz–30kHz Sensitivity: 86dB Impedance: 8 ohms Dimensions: 14.1″ x 38.3″ x 21.8″ Weight: 79 lbs. each

Graham Audio LS5/8 loudspeaker review (Hi Fi +)


“The LS5/9 puts you in the control room, while the LS5/8 puts you in among the musicians.”

Leggi la prova completa delle Graham Audio LS5/8 su HI Fi+ n.128 a cura di Nicholas Ripley
Scarica il PDF completo.





Audio Point presenta Kharma DB11-S

Audio Point Italia sarà presente a Sintonie 2015 con due sale di ascolto e la partecipazione speciale di Charles Van Oosterum (fondatore e progettista Kharma International) e Vivienne Van Oesterum (marketing & mediamanager Kharma International).

Presenteremo in anteprima nazionale i diffusori Kharma Elegance DB11-S, pilotati da una coppia di finali Zanden 8120 in biamplificazione e dal preamplificatore Zanden 3100. Saranno presentate in esposizione anche la Kharma DB9-S.

Completeranno l’impianto principale le sorgenti Zanden 2500-S, 5000-S e il pre phono Zanden 120, l’interfaccia Bel Canto Ref Link e il giradischi Origin Live Resolution MK III con testina Cardas Ruby Heart.

Nella seconda sala sarà possibile ascoltare le Graham LS5/8 (monitor certificati dalla BBC) pilotate dal finale Leben CS1000P e dal preamplificatore RS28CX.

I cablaggi saranno Cardas Clear e Clearlight.

Vi aspettiamo il 23 e 24 ottobre 2015 a Lanciano (CH), per maggiori info:

Descrizione degli impianti completi:
Diffusori: Kharma Db11-S / Db9-S Amplificazione: Zanden Model 8120 (2 finali in biamplificazione) / Zanden Model 3100 / Zanden Model 120
Sorgente digitale: Zanden 2500s / Zanden 5000s / Bel Canto Ref Link
Sorgente analogica: giradischi Origin Live Resolution Mk3 con testina Cardas Ruby Heart.
Cavi: Cardas serie Clear

Diffusori: Graham LS5/8 Amplificazione: Leben Rs28cx / Cs1000p
Sorgente digitale: Belcanto Cd2 / Bel Canto Dac 3.7 + Vbl1 / Bel Canto Ref Link
Cavi: Cardas serie Clear Light


Audio Point Italia distribuisce Graham Audio

Ci sono cose senza tempo.

La cui storia è gloriosa e senza fine.
Basterebbe questo per descrivere i diffusori Graham Audio.

Unici nel loro genere, pensati e progettati seguendo una filosofia senza tempo: il leggendario suono “BBC – British Broadcasting Corporation”. Ricreato fedelmente attraverso l’uso di componenti realizzati con severe specifiche, come il celebre tweeter Audax da 34mm nella sua ultima versione e il woofer costruito in Inghilterra appositamente dalla Volt.

I diffusori Graham sono realizzati seguendo le rigorose linee guida della BBC, che esegue severi test e successivamente approva e certifica la produzione Graham Audio.

La chiave di questi progetti è Derek Hughes, figlio di Spencer e Dorothy Hughes, che fondarono la “Spendor” quando Spencer Hughes (padre dei progetti BBC) lasciò il suo lavoro alla BBC Research & Development.

Tra tutti i progettisti, Derek è sicuramente l’uomo migliore per riproporre il progetto originale BBC.

E il risultato è straordinario, unico.



Zanden Audio Systems Model 120 Phono Stage

There are certain brands that exist somewhere in the hi‑fi firmament, visible to all but attainable by very, very few. These objects of desire, so often at the centre of vociferous debate, are (seemingly inevitably) loved by some and loathed by others. But most such arguments are ultimately both spurious and pointless, as the protagonists lack both the funds and the hands‑on experience to reach conclusions that matter. It’s a little like motorsport enthusiasts discussing whether they’d rather have Nico Rosberg or Daniel Ricciardo in their Formula 1 team. Unless one of those motorsport fans is a billionaire wanting to be a millionaire, it’s idle dreaming.

One of the first names on the Audio Unobtainables dream team sheet would be Zanden. With products that regularly feature on audiophile’s “what if” wish lists – and with prices to match – the brand qualifies on all counts. The company’s most revered product is probably the Model 1200 Mk III phono‑stage, a two‑box unit that offers two inputs, switchable gain and five different replay EQ options – at a price that’s five‑pence short of £24K! Then there’s the (slightly) more affordable Model 1300: same facilities, single‑box, and a mere £13.5K – not exactly pocket money. Which brings us to the Model 120, a product that looks every inch a Zanden. It’s a Zanden thanks to that slim, square footprint, chromed chassis, and external power supply. Also, the four controls equally spaced across the frosted acrylic front‑panel and, perhaps more than anything else, those five different replay EQs make it unmistakably a Zanden product; one of a rare breed of products hailing from the gifted pen of Yamada‑san. Yet the Model 120 tips the financial scales at a “mere” £7,495; not exactly chicken feed, but positively cheap by Zanden standards.

This is where cynicism tends to kick in, with the obvious question being, what’s been left out? If the boxes look pretty much the same and all the facilities and functions are in place, what corners have been cut and where? If the Model 120 really is going to be the Volks‑Zanden to the 1200’s Mercedes SLS or the 1300’s AMG GT, then it needs to do more than just look the part – it needs to deliver Zanden performance too. Look a little closer and what you discover is that this is actually a typically thoughtful and carefully considered design that’s cut its cloth with considerable skill in order to also cut its costs. The first indicator comes in the shape of the compact external supply. It’s nicely finished, but with its through‑box format, it’s clearly designed to be tucked away out of sight – unlike the power supplies on Zanden’s more ambitious products. Given that the Model 1300 is a one‑box unit, you might well wonder why the 120 has an external supply in the first place? Look under the lid and you’ll find your answer. Unlike its bigger brothers, the 120 is an entirely solid‑state design, which necessites a separate PSU to remove stray electro‑magnetic fields. Going valve-free is not the show‑stopper you might think, thanks to the brand’s extensive experience with solid‑state and hybrid circuitry. In fact, the retention of Zanden’s LCR topology is arguably more critical. Explaining ‘LCR’ can get a little confusing; capacitance (‘C’) and resistance (‘R’) are obvious, but ‘L’ is short for ‘inductance’, in honour of the electrical pioneer Heinrich Lenz. You can’t use ‘I’ here, because that is already used to denote ‘current’. Incidentally, inductance (L) is measured in H (henry), while current (I) is measured in A  (ampere) – put them together and you can spell ‘hail’!

The Model 120 is equipped with two, independently switchable inputs, one single‑ended (RCA) and one balanced (XLR), although users can order it with two single‑ended inputs at no extra cost. Outputs are single‑ended only.

The front panel is an object lesson in minimalism. Working from left to right, there’s a push button for on /off, followed by a four position rotary control that combines input selection and cartridge load. This matches the ‘high’ or ‘low’ impedance requirements of the cartridge, each setting having its own pair of Jensen step-up transformers – ‘low’ impedance has 73dB of gain, and ‘high’ 63dB. The next rotary control selects the five EQ curves and the final push button switches absolute phase. All the selections are indicated by small, traffic light LEDs. There really should be no excuse for leaving the unit set to the wrong phase, EQ, or load, while for me, the acrylic front panel, matt controls and sharp LEDs make this the best looking of a notably attractive line. With all the functional versatility that makes the more expensive Zanden phono‑stages so capable and appealing, the Model 120 has all the physical attributes to become a firm favourite – especially given its more approachable price.

Time then, to talk musical performance and define where the 120 sits relative to its more illustrious brethren. If the 1300 trades away some of the 1200’s remarkable tonality and dimensionality, harmonic and acoustic coherence in return for a crisper, more energetic sound with more obvious dynamic authority, it’s tempting to assume that the 120 extends that continuum. In fact, it sits rather neatly between those two schools. It is softer and less emphatic than the 1300, without the remarkable sense of shape and space that comes from the flagship. In the context of products with five‑figure price‑tags, that makes it neither fish nor fowl: less precise than some, less warm than others. What that means is that you don’t get a Model 1300 for around half the price – which is exactly why the 1300 is in the Zanden family! Play the Zanden Model 120 in systems constructed from among its price peers, and you start to realise just what a cannily balanced product it is. It was particularly impressive paired with the Rowland Capri S2 pre and Model 125 power amplifiers. Here, the 120’s subtle softening took the edge off the Rowland’s laser‑cut resolution and transparency, while its sense of temporal integrity and rhythmic coherence gave music a real sense of life, bounce, and flow; a musical dovetail that immediately elevated all the products involved. The Zanden is also one of the few units that can sit comfortably beside the flawlessly finished Rowlands, and the musical partnership cuts both ways; the amplifiers’ clarity and resolution clearly showing the benefits of the 120’s various replay curves. With so many midrange amplifiers tending towards detail, focus, dynamics, and slam at the expense of more subtle aspects of rhythmic expression that underpin vinyl’s musical appeal, the Zanden does a beautifully judged job of nudging them back into line.

Zanden Audio Systems Model 120 Phono Stage

It’s the musical coherence the Model 120 brings to record replay that should guarantee it a place on your list if you are shopping in this price range. While other phono‑stages might deliver more resolution or a greater sense of substance, few if any, at or near this price match the Zanden’s overall sense of musical shape and phrasing. Nor do they offer its switchable EQ. By now, you’ll either know which side of this particular fence you sit, or the Zanden will allow you to discover, but with the right record the musical impact is far from subtle – and the other thing you might discover is just how many records that is.

By combining features and topology normally associated with far more costly products with a carefully executed solid‑state circuit and beautiful case work, the Zanden Model 120 succeeds in injecting a serious slice of genuine high‑end performance into the sort of systems more of us can actually afford. It preserves the timing, flow and phrasing, emotional and expressive qualities, the colour and weight that explain top‑end vinyl replay’s benchmark status, reminding you just how musically addictive records can be. Facilities and voicing are spot on, making it as versatile in use as it is in terms of partnering products, a genuinely high‑end unit that doesn’t look down its nose at less exotic or eclectic brands, instead elevating them to its own level. I got excellent results with Arcam and (take a deep breath) Naim amps, showing just how musically amenable the 120 really is. But the best bit is that it looks like a Zanden, it sounds like a Zanden and now, maybe a few more of us can actually afford to own a Zanden.


Milano Hi Fidelity 2015 – Galleria fotografica.

Milano Hi Fidelity 2015 – Galleria fotografica.

Vogliamo ringraziare tutti gli appassionati che sono venuti a trovarci, ad ascoltare il nostro sistema Zanden / Zu Audio / Cardas. Abbiamo ascoltato con molto piacere le vostre impressioni e soprattutto i vostri suggerimenti.
Vi diamo appuntamento ad ottobre, a Lanciano (Ch) per Sintonie 2015.

Buoni ascolti.