High End 2014: Estelon + Vitus = Extreme

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By Dr. Panagiotis Karavitis

What would you expect from a speaker that goes by the name “Extreme”?

To push the limits of proven concepts to the edge? To use some of the finest materials for the construction of the cabinet? To implement exotic materials such as diamond, ceramic composite and aluminum in the driver units? A good start, no?

Still, ‘Extreme’ is a tough word to live up to. Which is probably why Estelon went all out and used Kubala Sosna internal cabling, Goertz copper foil coils and Mundorf capacitors for the cross over.

Still not enough? How about if the speaker in question changes height with the touch of a button in order to perfectly match the acoustic properties of the room and create the perfect sweet spot? What if the tweeter also adjusts its depth, too?

Obviously, speakers like these need extreme amplification. Which brings us to Hans Ole Vitus of Vitus Audio, here coming to the rescue with his new MP-S201 power amp, rated at 2 x 1,400 Watts. A behemoth if you ask me, coupled with matching MP-T201 and MP-P201 pre-amp and phono stage, which drove the Estelons with ease, providing immense macrodynamics, coherence and striking imaging during the percussion in Tchaikovsky’s Symphony Pathetique under Monteux’s direction. Spiral Groove SG 1.1 turntable with Soundsmith Hyperion cartridge and Kubala Sosna cables complete the set up.

I like exteme.

In the pictures Alfred Vassilkov, founder and chief engineer of Estelon, demonstrates the adjustable height of the Extreme (from 1.77 all the way up to 2.07 meters).

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9 comments

  • Pingback: High End 2014: What a show! Wrap up and best sound | Confessions of a Part-Time Audiophile

  • So 700 watts of what? Class A? Class A/B? If A/B, then how much Class A?? Given the immensity of it all, maybe they can reduce the Masterpiece monoblocks from 4 chassis to 2 chassis, for two channels.

    • Panagiotis Karavitis

      Pure A class for 700/8>1400/4 would require heatsinks the size of a room. This is “intelligent class A bias”, probably meaning it will shift from A to AB at some point (not specified).

      http://www.vitusaudio.com/files/4405/upload/images/products/masterpiece_series/MP-S201%20-%20Flyer.pdf

  • superaudioaddicted

    Compexity doesn’t matter. We are still talking about the use of tank-siized capacitors (Mundorf or wathever manifacturer) in the x-over, but a passive x over is not necessary using an active x-over with a dedicated amp for each driver. In my humble opinion a dedicated amplifier for each driver is a better way to feed the loudspeakers instead of a single bulky amp that feeds the power-consuming dividing network ad then the drivers.
    I should expect such arrangement ftom an extreme system.
    IMHO

    • Part-Time Audiophile

      IMHO <– I'm just guessing, but perhaps these designers disagree?

      IMNSHO, I think "great sound" can be had many, many different ways. I've heard active systems sound like shit. I've heard active systems sound mind-blowing. Just offering this — it seems to be more in the implementation, not simply a matter of which technology gets chosen.

  • superaudioaddicted

    From an extreme system, I would expect a multi-amped system with an active x-over, not an old style bulky amp.

    • Part-Time Audiophile

      I suppose you could argue that “complexity doesn’t equal quality”.

  • Cpt.Kirk might prefer the just-released steam-punk-influenced Benchmark stand mount speakers…Mr. Spock might prefer these lovely Estelon Extreme models. Are these for the 1%, .1%, or .01%? Just askin’.

    • Panagiotis Karavitis

      SRP is 170.000 euros (approx 233.K $) and it wont even come close to the top 3 more expensive speakers in the show….