LKV Research, Sonner Audio, Basis, Lyra, Small Green, Roon Labs, Prism Sound | CAF 2019

LKV Sonner CAF 2019

WASHINGTON DC (PTA) — LKV Research along with Sonner Audio, Basis, Lyra, Small Green Computer, Roon Labs, and Prism Sound really put on a good show. LKV Research was debuting their new Veros PWR+ for the first time on the east coast. Sonner Audio whom is still a relatively new name on the block was exhibiting their entry-level Legato Unum’s which sound like anything but entry level.

LKV Sonner CAF 2019

Tenacious Sound
Capital Audiofest 2019 brought to you in part by Tenacious Sound.
Verdant Audio
Capital Audiofest 2019 brought to you in part by Verdant Audio!

The Story

After a few phone calls with LKV Research mastermind Bill Hutchens over the summer, I felt imperative that I meet the man face-to-face, and give his LKV Research electronics a guided listening. Mind you this isn’t the first time I’ve heard LKV Research electronics while touring the audio show circuit, but the first time meeting Bill and discussing the new Veros PWR+.

In the front of the electronics from LKV Research, two familiar faceplates. The Veros One phono-stage, and Line One Preamplifier. From there, it was the new Veros PWR+ power amplifier that was gathering all the attention.

LKV Sonner CAF 2019

The Veros PWR+ power amplifier features LKV Research designed input stages, voltage gain, driver stages, and power supplies. All of the LKV Research circuits run in Class-A, while the output stage of the Veros PWR+ uses Bruno Putzey’s new Purifi (1ET400A) Class-D amplifier modules. The special thing about the Purifi amplifier modules is the way Bruno Putzey has arranged the feedback to normalize at a near constant level across all audible frequencies.

Specs for the Veros PWR+ are quite impressive with power output ratings up to 460-wpc into 4-Ohms, dual-mono signal circuitry, and LKV’s AZF short signal path gain circuit that has been optimized for the new Purifi module.

From Sonner Audio, it was the Legato Unum stand-mount loudspeakers on display. The Legato Unums are a sleek looking two-way design that features a 5.5-inch treated paper cone mid-bass driver, mated with a 1-inch ring radiator tweeter, mounted on a sloped time-aligned front baffle. Around back, a tuned port and single pair of binding posts. Sonner Audio included their matching wood stands to round out the ensemble. The stands are optional, but are highly recommended.

LKV Sonner CAF 2019

As sources we found comfort in the Basis 2200 Signature turntable with a Vector 4 tonearm, outfitted with Lyra’s Delos moving coil cartridge. On the digital side, it was Small Green Computer with their SonicTransporter i5 file server, and UltraRendu+Linear Power music server, running Roon Labs software, and feeding a Prism Sound Callia DAC.

All cabling was selected from Basis’ lines of Hy-per Shield power, and Perfect Signal Transmission series of interconnects and speaker cables.

The Sound

“Finesse and grip” is the lead-off description in my listening notes, and I would have to say that really does sum everything up. With gobs of power on hand from the Class-D modules, and LKV’s Class-A input circuitry everywhere else inside, the mating of the two topologies was fast, clean, and exciting in a way that Class-D amplification rarely shows.

The Sonner Audio Legato Unums are extremely capable speakers that highlight detail and yet still provide a smooth and soulful sound. Bass on the Sonner’s is much beefier than expected even with lower powered amplifiers. I know this, because I have a pair of them at home. However, here at CAF, with all of this headroom at our disposal it’s as if the monitors have forgotten that they are indeed monitors.