T.H.E. show 2019 Stereophile

Leif S

Industry Expert
Feb 14, 2015

Von Schweikert Endeavor E-5 MKII Speakers, Grand Prix Audio Rack, MasterBuilt Cabling and AC Management, Esoteric Grandioso Series PIX Transport, D1X Monoblock DAC, N-03T Network Audio Transport, G1 Rubidium Master Clock, C1 Linestage Preamp, Etc.
Jason Victor Serinus | Jun 11, 2019

I don’t know about you, but I find the design of Esoteric’s Grandioso series enclosures quite attractive. In Long Beach, they also sounded great. Paired with Von Schweikert Endeavor E-5 MKII Speakers ($40,000/pair), an entire SUV full of Grandioso gear (including multiple outboard power supplies) impressed as exceptionally lively, solid, and musical.
I’ve sometimes described the Esoteric sound as dark, but I heard none of that in the company’s new top-of-the-line components. Backgrounds were gratifyingly quiet on Patricia Barber’s “She’s a Lady,” the top was open and illumined, midrange was full and true, and bass was solid. “Love the bass,” I scribbled about music that seemed a perfect complement to the look of Esoteric’s Grandioso components.
Cue up entirely different fare—the Patricia Barber antithesis, soprano Carolyn Sampson singing Fauré’s “Les Roses d’Ispahan” on her marvelous BIS SACD, Fleurs. The piano’s midrange was beautiful and strong—perhaps a bit too full—and the highs gorgeous. Ladies and Gentlemen, this system was a winner.
Doing the rest of the honors: Esoteric Grandioso Series PIX Transport ($50,000), D1X Monoblock DAC ($50,000), N-03T Network Audio Transport ($11,000), G1 Rubidium Master Clock ($26,000), C1 Linestage Preamp ($38,000), and S1 Power Amplifier ($27,000). Also essential to the system’s success: Grand Prix Monaco Audio Racks and MasterBuilt Cabling and AC Management.
Likes: Folsom

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