EAR Phono Box Phono Preamp, Merrill-Williams 101.3 Turntable, Koetsu Rosewood Cartridge, Marten Django L Loudspeakers, Magnan Cabling

As soon as I entered the second Kyomi Audio room and heard a track from Alice Coltrane and Pharoah Sanders' great recording Journey in Satchidananda, I realized that it had been far too long since I'd had the pleasure of listening to Dan Meinwald's eclectic and thankfully outside-the-norm music selections. Meinwald, a longtime member of our industry who has spent a considerable time working for EAR USA, had paired the EAR Acute Classic CD player ($6795), V12 integrated amplifier ($9795), and, in a world premiere, the company's new Phono Box phono preamp ($1895 in black) with a Merrill-Williams 101.3 turntable ($8995) with Helius Omega Standard tonearm ($3695) and Koetsu Rosewood cartridge ($3495). Speakers were Marten Django L ($10,000/pair) and cabling Magnan Silver and Signature.

The sound was as fresh as the music was fabulous. After Coltrane and Sanders' cosmic dazzle, we turned to a track from The Haxan Cloak—a 16/44.1 transfer from LP that showcased the system's ability to portray realistic depth—and the Penguin Café Orchestra's "Cutting Branches for a Temporary Shelter," also in 44.1. The vivid, alive, and thoroughly fresh sound was silvery on top with a lovely core and welcome silence between notes.

Russellbobby's picture

Playing the lovely digital files. Very popular player!!

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

You are correct. My bad. I don't have the equipment list to see if it was on it and I omitted it by accident, but it is likely that files were played with the N10 as the source.

Please see my follow-up on the N10. Yes, it is very popular, because Aurender has cannily saturated the market. And, yes, it is somewhat more transparent than a computer source. But if I had a choice between using the N10 and using a Roon Nucleus to feed files to my system via a dCS Network Bridge—the choice would depend totally on what connections the DAC can accept, as well as one's budget—I would go with the Network Bridge in a heartbeat. It is far more transparent than the N10, and the sound is superb.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

May be JVS could review the new Aurender A-30? :-) .......