With AXPONA peeking around the corner, I wanted to touch base with some companies I knew would be heavily invested in bringing their statement, and flagship designs to what’s fast becoming the largest audio show in North America – AXPONA. I caught up with Von Schweikert Audio CEO Damon Von Schweikert, and VP of Sales and Marketing Leif Swanson recently regarding what the Riverside, California company had in the works for Chicago this year. Von Schweikert will be showing with the Audio Company in the (2) Euphoria ballroom of the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Centre Hotel.
Rafe Arnott: What specifically will you be showing in Chicago this year?
Damon Von Schweikert: We’re continuing the tour of our ULTRA 11 flagship loudspeakers with AXPONA and Munich. For decades we strove to present different designs at each show purely for novelty purposes. As manufacturers, we have numerous designs and want to place them on display as often as possible. That, and we appreciated that the press covering each show are looking for new products to report on.
But we got a lot of feedback over the years from show attendees who had come to hear something we displayed at a previous show and were disappointed not to experience it for themselves. So we tried something new when we launched the VR-55; we showed it consistently for 18 months and found that not only did we satisfy more consumers who were interested in hearing it, we also gave the press a chance to hear the VR-55 in various rooms with different equipment, which we believe is the best way to develop a well-rounded impression of a product second only to a home audition. So we’re keeping that going for the next two shows to finish up the ULTRA 11 tour.
RA: It’s my understanding that Von Schweikert is partnering up with The Audio Company for AXPONA. What’s the thinking here, did you have an established relationship with them from previous venues that you wanted to continue? Is this a win/win situation for you as a manufacturer, for them as retailer/distributor, and for attendees wanting to experience your equipment?
DVS: Initially Leif and I set out to procure as much of the show system for ourselves as possible which was a huge capitol investment. We also partnered with VAC and their amazing Statement Line of electronics which were dominantly featured in our patron’s system. We did several shows together including AXPONA 2017, Munich and the LA Audio Show. It was at the LA show that Kevin introduced us to his premier dealer, The Audio Company out of Atlanta, GA. We immediately hit it off on a personal level but it was TACs first experience with the ULTRA 11s and this system. They knew the VAC gear well, as they’ve represented the Statement gear since launch. Apparently, the ULTRA 11s made an impression. It was at RMAF where they approached us about representing VSA as our premier dealer and showcasing our full line of products. Not only that, they wanted to create their Ultimate system that would permanently reside in their showroom in Atlanta.
In fact, it was the last day of RMAF that we finalized plans to join TAC and VAC in their display at Capitol Audio Fest. Leif and I are so glad we did, it was an amazingly great show and we look forward to participating this year.
It was during this time that we realized the next step in the path for Von Schweikert Audio and the ULTRA 11s. Shows are great but they are very limited to just a few short hours to audition a system. Not to mention that even in the best circumstances, rooms are far less than ideal, certainly no comparison to a dedicated sound room with weeks or even months to adjust and improve a system’s performance.
The Audio Company shares our vision of how special this system is and possesses the resources to give it a permanent home. Now anyone interested in hearing this system with the ability to travel to Atlanta can experience it for themselves, with their music, without hurry. Also, The Audio Company has multiple systems that satisfy a wide variety of budgets, many of which feature our loudspeakers.