During AXPONA 2023, I received a text from PTA‘s Matthew Partrick with a photo of SerhanSwift Mu2 MK II monitors, and a note that said I should check them out because they’re really “up my alley.” At first I thought Matthew was kidding, and that he had to know about my longtime association with SerhanSwift, and that designer Brad Serhan is one of my best mates in the whole wide high-end audio world. Matthew was not aware, however, but it was keen of him to immediately sense the connection I have with Brad’s two-way monitor speakers.
Words and Photos by Marc Phillips
SerhanSwift and Les Davis Audio have been making their presence known in the US over the last couple of years, despite my best efforts to do the very same thing a decade ago. Much of this is due to Dennis Ashendorf of Ocean Audio, who has adopted the Down Under Audio crew and has taken on their cause. At AXPONA 2023, SerhanSwift, Les Davis Audio and Ocean Audio took their sound to the next level with a stunning Boulder 866 all-in-one (integrated/DAC/network streamer) and Finley Audio–an American company making intriguing cables. Also included was the SmallGreenComputer streamer and ethernet from Sonore.
I own a pair of Brigadier Audio BA2 monitors from Brad, the only pair in the US, and I use them as my personal two-way reference. But the SerhanSwift room at AXPONA was perhaps Brad’s finest moment yet, along with Les Davis and Morris Swift. Someone in the room thought it was a good idea to play “Chocolate Chip Trip” for me, and I immediately hedged because I didn’t want Brad’s speakers to fail in a room filled with people.
You can probably see the happy ending coming, that the very small SerhanSwift Mu2 Mk. II speakers ($5,500/pr USD) held their own and didn’t fail. But I was surprised at how well they actually succeeded in giving me my usual goosebumps from this track. Yup, those little two-way bookshelf monitors didn’t strain a bit to reproduce Danny Carey’s monstrous energy. No, the SerhanSwift speakers didn’t go down to 20 Hz or anywhere close. But they didn’t break up, and they didn’t give up, so they wound up rocking the room.
So congratulations to my old mates for having such a great room. And it’s not just me who thinks they knocked it out of the park at AXPONA–it’s time for everyone to meet Brad Serhan, Morris Swift, Les Davis and Dennis Ashendorf.
If you would like to hear even more coverage from AXPONA 2023, check out our recap report and highlights from our audiophile-oriented show The Occasional Podcast. You can stream the episode direct from the embed below, or from your favorite podcast platform including iTunes, Android, Google, Deezer, Spotify, iHeartRadio and more.
Also don’t forget to check out our collaboration to commemorate the event with our solid bronze record weight available only for a limited run. This 800 grams of solid bronze features the PTA roundel on the top with also acts as a 45 adapter. You can purchase direct from the PTA Approved Store here on the site.
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