The little monkey coffins actually did all right with it! While we only listened at a reasonable volume, the 92db sensitive boxes actually managed to convey a real sense of real drums. There was a midbass authority that I don’t usually expect in this form factor, much less this price range. Bass seemed to extend solidly down into the 70hz range before rolling off, making for an almost visceral experience. The AMT tweeter managed to be more than fairly convincing at transients, and there was a realistic sense of detail that, until this demo, I would never have equated with Martin Logan’s Motion speakers.
Which brings us to the second most interesting part of the room. While the source was a Big Mac MCD500 disc spinner ($7000), the amp here was a single ended 300b integrated kicking out all of about six decent watts.
The Pacific Creek SE300i costs $2800, and it has stomp. The hefty 6L6 driver stage makes sure of that. Pacific Creek is apparently the side project of yet another Pacific Northwest engineer with an audio fixation, and the sound here demonstrated pretty convincingly that this model needs another listen. Or six. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the idea of enjoying a 300b amp plugged into speakers that say “Martin Logan,” but that’s what happened here. The world’s gone topsy-turvy on me.
The most interesting thing about the room, though, was the kind of thing only a dealer could provide. The analog source was a minty VPI TNT III — the stylistic height of Harry Weisfeld’s late futurism kick — kitted out with a 12″ tonearm and a Dynavector 10×2 cartridge. The sign in front said “$3999 or Best Offer.”
I really hope someone made an offer. That thing was just too pretty to send back to some shelf in Santa Rosa.