the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Audiophile Id

Posted by Jeff Id on September 10, 2022

This is one of my favorite toys. A Mark Levinson stereo system with Paradigm speakers.

That’s our cat Lucy hunting squirrels or bugs or something super important.

Levinson 53 amplifier monoblock 135 lbs each

Paradigm 7h speakers

Levinson 526 pre-amp

Cocktail audio source

Source and pre-amplifier sitting on a glass plate from our old carver audio sunfire amplifiers (we had two)

We are blessed with a large room and windows mounted perfectly by god apparently, before we bought the house, which we can open to make the world’s greatest bass traps.

It sounds like a band standing on our deck outside. We hear more content in the recordings than I can ever explain. It is literally better than any amplified concert and, when/if you want, has powerful enough bass to clear your lungs.

We used to have Kef speakers which in our experience were amazingly clear, however these Paradigms have beryllium mid range cones which transmit the majority of the sound information. Beryllium is much stiffer at the same weight as any plastic or aluminum cones so this creates an incredibly clear soundstage which once we heard it, we didn’t even review the latest Kef blade models. We gave up on our favorite brand without listening.

Polymer cones cannot do what these Beryllium cones do.

Now in my day, which apparently is a thing now that I’m comfortably over 50, Paradigm was not a premier speaker company. They sold consumer grade speakers, and they still do. However, these things are spectacular. We looked very hard at the higher cost 9h, which is a model larger but the 9h contains an integrated amplifier which while I’m sure it’s fantastic, it cannot match the quality (or insane cost) of the Levinson 53 amplifiers. The dealer talked me out of it, and I’m very happy with what we purchased.

The Levinson 53’s are known to be a ‘cold’ amp, meaning that they don’t have the warm feel of a vacuum tube system or even other solid state amps. Tube amp’s are fantastic, but due to their nature, they are actually low pass filters with odd characteristics. I still love them but not for my long term listening. The engineer in me loves the recording as made so we bought stupidly light and stiff speaker cones and stupidly linear amplifiers. All I need are better microphones and recordings in the studio now.

I wish I could paste a recording on the internet which gave the full impression of this.

One Response to “Audiophile Id”

  1. Jeff Id said

    Disappointing, not too many audiophiles on tav.

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