Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2012 • Best of Show

As predictable as the leaves changing colors around Denver this time of year, Wavelength Audio and Vaughn Loudspeakers put together a system that combined high-sensitivity speakers, low-power amplification, and high-rez computer playback and produced immediate -- and immediately involving -- sound.

The Vaughn Cabernet II speakers ($9000/pair) mate a 5" ribbon tweeter with 16 4" drivers (eight front and rear) in a two-way system that also includes a pair of 12" passive radiators. The result is a claimed 100dB sensitivity and 8-ohm impedance -- just right for. . .

. . .the Wavelength Duetto v3 stereo amp ($5000), which uses a pair of 300B output tubes to produce 10 watts.

Also part of the system were a Wavelength Royal direct-heated-triode preamp ($7500) and long-discontinued REL Stentor II subwoofer. The source was a MacBook Pro 15 Retina routed to a pair of Wavelength DACs: Crimson HS with Denominator ($9000) or Cosecant HS with Denominator ($4000). AudioQuest Diamond USB cables, Niagara interconnects and Redwood speaker cables connected everything.

Gordon Rankin of Wavelength played DJ, and he had an extensive selection of music literally at his fingertips. The sound we heard the three times we visited had the purity and unforced resolution that have become identifying marks of the Wavelength/Vaughn pairing.

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