I’ll confess: I’m not really a fan of single-driver loudspeakers. I’m not not a fan, either. I have no dogs in this particular race — to me, the ideal of simplicity is one that has to meet the pragmatics of implementation. That’s where I get involved. Said another way, I don’t care all that much about what the paper says. Play the damn thing and let’s get on with it.
So, when I ran into Santy Oropel of Twin AV at RMAF, and he shooed me to see his Triode Corp of Japan gear all laid out and driving a single-driver tower from Existence Loudspeakers, I just went with it. If Santy likes the brand enough to choose to share with them at the largest audio show on the circuit, the least I can do is give it a listen.
But before I could listen, I had to do a lot of touching.
The Erotic is a floor-standing single-driver bass-reflex loudspeaker ($6.750/pair). I’m pretty sure the driver is a bamboo-coned Tang Band, and the resulting design is a modestly-sensitive 91dB and a frequency response of 30Hz-19kHz, though I suspect that’s generous. There’s a review on High Fidelity that goes over the particulars, so I’ll defer. I’ll say this, though — that finish does not look like a veneer over MDF. No sir. It was so smooth and satiny that I wanted to stand there and rub it like Genie’s lamp. Paired with the gorgeously finished Triode Corp gear, this room shaped up to be a feast for the eyes.
The rest of the gear was from Triode, save the PS Audio P10 regenerator sitting silently at the back of the gear, and included a new-to-me amp, the TRX-P6L stereo amplifier ($3,200). This amp sports a quartet of 6L6GC/KT-88 tubes for a max of 30 watts in UL and 15 watts in triode mode. A TRX-1 preamplifier ($3,200), which won an award from my erstwhile publisher, was connected to a TRV-CD5SE disc player ($3,200). All cables came from Acoustic Zen.
The sound in here was several different kinds of wonderful. There was an ease and flow that made the room a delight to visit. Tonal balance was very round, which speaks to all kinds of clichés, but I was really surprised. Not the most extended, nor designed to be, the Erotic nonetheless stuck with me all weekend. A very sexy debut.