To celebrate the millenium, we decided to share the room with Silver Audio, a manufacturer of excellent silver cables. Their interconnect Appassionnata remains to this date my absolute favorite. The setup day was unusually stressful for we had never showed the Tower Series before and, the amplifier's BIAS were too high (at least according to the processor display). As it turns out, it was a software calibration problem. A quick fix in the firmware was uploaded to the amplifiers and they behaved just fine for the remainder of the show. Well, one needs to remember that we are showing prototypes of the Tower Series right out of our research lab.
So you wonder what the Tower Series is? The Tower Series is quite a revolutionary product concept we are working on. It combines beautifuly crafted cases in PolyCrystal and our incredible "no interconnect" Stack-n-Play design. By eliminating the need for interconnects, not only the components get the highest quality signal feed directly from the components above but also exchange constant configuration information through their embedded computers producing a tower with the maximum functionality allowed for any given configuration. Thus each system operates with the simplicity of use of an integrated system. Because this design reduces the need for interconnect cables, it allows the consumer to use higher quality cables where they are needed.
But we don't mean to take the spot light away from our real star piece of the show: The Odéon-lite. The Odéon-lite 24/96 upsampler DAC is our latest and proudest product that certainly raised lots of eyebrows this year. We basically decided to package our best digital and analog knowledge and our latest research in upsampling digital filters into a box for the least price possible without compromising quality. Out of that challenge, came the Odéon-lite DAC. We didn't know if we should be happy or sad when we first tried it in our labs for it sounded so much better that our most acclaimed Odéon-m1 DAC. And make no mistakes, The Odéon-lite may be compact and, it may be priced at only $980, but it compares and wins hands downs with DACs 20 times its price. In fact, Mike Hobson, CEO of Classic Records honoured us by replacing 4 of his reference listening room DACs with the Odéon-lite. It is as of this show our best and proudest DAC, and a reference must have piece for serious listeners. And we would like to thank Vince Christian of Vince Christian Limited, Mike Hobson of Classic Records and Roy of Green Mountain for featuring our Odéon-lite DAC in their systems.
CES 2000 remains one of the best shows for Birdland Audio. We realy enjoyed sharing the room with Max of Silver Audio and hope we will show together again some day. If I could add a recommendation it would be this one: don't hold your breath for the market release of our Tower Series, the prototype we showed is certainly appealing and very good sounding but there is still a lot of research and development work ahead as we have yet to find a way to satisfy feature requests based on feedback from visitors. It shall be challenging to find a way to incorporate the ability to use interconnects, but that seems to be what people want? Our Odéon-lite DAC however has been and is taking more and more market share and that is the best compliment our customers are giving us. We certainly are extremely proud of this unit and did I mention it is shipping now?
As a final note, we would like to thank all of you stopped by our room and helped us understand your needs better.
|Theta Digital||DaViD||DAD Transport|
|Birdland||Odéon-lite||24/96 DAC / Preamp|
|Birdland||TSA-255||Prototype Amplifier (top end)|
|Birdland||TSA-255||Porototype Amplifier (bottom)|
|Silver Audio||Appassionata||Silver interconnect|
|Cabasse||Baltic I||Top End|