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RMAF 2014: Odyssey and the well-tempered demo

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Logo - Blue VectorI’m a fan of Klaus Bunge and his brand, Odyssey Audio. Klaus has been killing it in the high-end of late, bringing together modestly priced systems that perform in all manner of immodest ways.

Shown here at RMAF was one of his signature soup-to-nuts systems. Package price? $6,900 for the set.

  • Kismet Beryllium Reference floor-standing loudspeakers: $4,200/pair
  • Khartago Monoblock Amplifiers ($1,995/pair)
  • Candela Tube Preamplifier ($1,600)
  • Fell set of Groneberg Cables

The secret sauce in here, perhaps obviously given my photos, is the full set of GIK Acoustics room treatments. Every time I go to an audio show, I’m still amazed at how few of them take advantage of room treatments, much less think to partner with an industry pro like GIK. I’m tempted to say it’s their loss, but it’s not, it’s mine. If half the rooms sounded as good as this one did, audio shows would be a very different place.

So, yes, let me cut to the chase and say that this was one of Klaus’ best rooms. Not sure that’s actually saying very much, however — all of his demo rooms are among the best on offer in any setting. Boom.

Word of advice, then — if you’re considering investing in a high-end system, go find Klaus first. Might save you a ton of money. Side note — be prepared to ask “what he can do” with the gear, too. No, I’m not talking about discounts (this stuff is crazy-priced already), I’m talking about upgrades. He’s got a warehouse full of bespoke little bits. Ask him about “taking it up a notch”. Just make sure you have a beer handy — that might be a long conversation.

So, lemme talk about what’s new. See that turntable? No, Klaus isn’t making turntables — that’s a vintage VPI up there. What Klaus is making is a new phono stage, called Suspiro.

The new Suspiro Phono Stereo Preamp is a Moving Coil / Moving Magnet (MC/MM) Preamp. It has been designed using the best current technologies for frequency response, linearity, low noise, very low distortion and low output impedance. It conforms to the established current RIAA specifications. Falls in line with the rest of the Odyssey Audio design products by offering high-end audiophile performance. Special and careful attention has been given by using only first class quality parts components currently available to the point of hand matching components to less than 0.5% in the critical RIAA network!

This design is based on two independent gain stages using wide-bandwidth FET (Difet) operational amplifiers. These FET based amplifiers (two per channel) provide excellent sound quality and speed for exceptional audio performance. This Phono Preamp is highly configurable on both input loading impedances and capacitance by internal switches.

Specs on the Suspiro:

  • Phono Preamp Type: RIAA – Moving Coil / Moving Magnet (MC/MM)
  • Gain MC: 40dB – 46dB – 54dB – 60dB
  • Input Impedance MC: 50 – 100 – 1K – 47K ohms
  • Input Capacitance MM: 100 – 250pf
  • Input Impedance MM: 47K ohm
  • Output Impedance: <1K ohm
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz – >50kHz
  • RIAA Specification: +/- 1dB from 28Hz to 25kHz
  • Inputs / Outputs: Two RCA
  • Mains Input Voltage: 120/240VAC (50Hz/60Hz)
  • Price: $1,250. The Special Edition is a two-box, external PSU version (shown here at RMAF) for  $1.950.

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About Scot Hull (979 Articles)

Founder, Editor and Publisher at Part-Time Audiophile and The Occasional Magazine.

1 Comment on RMAF 2014: Odyssey and the well-tempered demo

  1. I own a pair of “taking it up a notch” Odyssey Khartago mono amps, which Klaus upgraded to a kind of “Kismet state”. Just yesterday I, once again, experienced the amazed look in the eyes of people visiting my home and asking for a “let’s play some music and convince us of the quality of your system” session. The pure musical and emotional energy that is generated and presented through his -honest and fair priced gear- is absolutely mind blowing!

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