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High End 2015: Silbatone, Schröder, Schick and Western Electric

Silbatone-1332

HE15_Logo_GB_01I am still unsure what to make of the Silbatone room. I’m pretty sure there’s a company in there, attempting to sell things, but you kind of don’t get the feeling that this is one of those vintage-as-new audio vendors. In fact, you don’t really get the sense that anything at all is here in order to sell anything at all. I mean, sure, there are nifty little bits that might do your aspirational rig something amazing, but when the system is fronted by a small-theater Western Electric horn system, featuring a 12″ Field Coil TA-4165 in a massive TA7395 baffle (that big, distressed-looking box sitting on the outside).

The sound in here was almost a side-show to the glorious bits themselves, many of which were scattered along the side wall.

For sources, there was a new turntable and arm from Thomas Schick (Analog Planet has a video), sitting next to the cutest idler turntable you’ve ever seen. That latter is a Frank Schröder special, and also carried his CB tonearm with a Soundsmith cartridge. With luck, we’ll be seeing more of that idler, and by “we” I mean “I” because I want one. Prices are still TBD as this is a project not necessarily a product, but expect it to fall in the €5k range for the table and another €5k for the tonearm.

Further along that wall, I saw the 800mW amplifier running the 110dB sensitive WE horns, boxes and boxes of WE tubes, including all manner of unobtanium tubes. JC Morrison commented something along the lines of “just in case 300b tubes aren’t rare enough, we have some 300A tubes!”

It was all enough to make my head hurt. Absolutely glorious, but if anyone ever tells me that high-end audio is “only for a select few crazies”, this is the room that will pop into my head.

I am not worthy.

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About Scot Hull (975 Articles)
Founder, Editor and Publisher at Part-Time Audiophile and The Occasional Magazine.

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