Disappointment. Despair. Abandonment and loss. Forlorn-i-tude. I imagine that these were the thoughts Dan Meinwald and Tim de Paravicini of E.A.R. when then realized that Tim’s newest toy, the Acute 4, would not be successfully making its way out of shadowy recesses of UPS, who was entrusted with bringing the prototype unit to the Venetian Hotel at CES this year.
While I’m not sure that last “thought” is actually a word … it could be. So. There.
Anyway, the Acute 4 is and will be a SACD transport with DAC that will support native file-based DSD playback over USB. Priced at $12,000, the Acute 4 will have a tube output stage — actually, it’ll use four tubes total, and will have significantly lower distortion than the outgoing model. It’ll also be clad in pure Sterling silver and have a giant Superman “S” on the front panel. Okay, I made that last bit up. But it’d be cooler that way.
The new Marten Django L loudspeakers did make it, so that’s something. The $9,000 model complements the upscale $15,000 Django XL, though the styling is pretty much identical — as are the choices in color: grey or black. The three aluminum drivers in the XL have been swapped for a pair of large 8″ aluminum/ceramic drivers, creating a 2-way loudspeaker with a 6ohm nominal impedance, 88dB sensitivity, and a -3dB point at 27Hz and 30kHz. Internal wiring is all Jorma Designs, and the cabinets weighs a robust, but not backbreaking, 75lbs each.
Sound in the E.A.R. room has, as I’m finding usual for this pairing, a relaxed and magical feel to it. It’s just lovely on the ears, and something I’d be very happy to explore in the future. Perhaps starting with the Acute 4!