Visit to Christoph: Odeon horns, Kronzilla SX, Aries Cerat Diana, Apogee Scinitilla

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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#1
http://zero-distortion.org/odeon-horns-kronzilla-aries-cerat-diana-apogee-scintilla/

These notes go through

Listening to Aries Cerat Diana and KR SX Kronzilla on the Odeon Nr. 38 at Christoph’s
Listening to the Odeon Nr. 38 with Lamm M1.1 at Christoph’s neighbor, Michael
Krell KSA 100 with Apogee Scintilla, heavily modded by Henk at another neighbor, Rolf. Hifi Hood in Leichenstein

David (Acousticsguru) also joined us.

Christoph.jpg IMG-20170404-WA0024.jpg IMG-20170412-WA0013.jpg Scintilla.jpg Scintilla Main.jpg
 

cjfrbw

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Apr 20, 2010
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#2
Scintillas were always regarded in the day as the Apogee of Apogees. I have heard samples a couple of times with SS amps, and I liked them, too. However, you have to be equally committed to the kinds of SS amplifiers that can make them work. That's the quandary, especially for tube lovers.

Those Apogee guys who heard both the 4 ohm version of Scintilla and the 1 ohm version claimed the 1 ohm version sounded better with the right amp.
 

BruceD

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Dec 13, 2013
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#3
Thank you K for the writeup and observations--I wish I had your time,fortitude and patience to pursue the Ultimate as you are doing :)

Kudos and keep up the great Posts--I hope fruition is around the corner for you :D

oh hope you don't mind I switched the Light on --I'm a curious cat!

BruceD

IMG-20170404-WA0024.jpg

IMG-20170412-WA0013.jpg
 

Ron Resnick

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Jan 25, 2015
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#4
This is another fun report, Kedar! Your enthusiasm is infectious, and it is fun to ride along on your journey of discovery!
 
Aug 26, 2012
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#5
Nice read Ked , thanks for sharing ... So the jury is still out , bespoke horns or Apogees ? Keep em coming ..... Cheers .
 

Ron Resnick

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#6
And KR versus NAT?
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#7
Ked, you've been consistent in slating the Duos for not being proper horns w the powered bass woofers
Just how are the Odeons ok in yr book w similar shortfall in design execution?
 

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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#8
Shakti on this forum, who does regular shootout, told me that he prefers KR over Nat transmitter due to the midbass energy, while his friend prefers the NAT due to better fluidity. It is going to be give and take at these levels, coming down to speaker match and preference. NAT has a wider range of models though, different price points and sound from the SE1SE upwards to Magma will change.
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#9
So Ked, how are you going to reconcile yr Apogees v horns dilemma?
You obv love both, but it seems the Apogees do more of the pure realism magic for you
These Scintillas will fit into a Central London apartment much more easily than Divas, FRs or Grands, and even Trios
Can be had for no money, and Jon's restoration won't cost the earth
And any number of bone crunching amps at reasonable cost should work w them
 

morricab

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Apr 25, 2014
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#10
Just for way of clarification, was the bias adjusted at all with the Diana? Also, were the speaker cables hooked up in the usual way or inverted? The Diana inverts the output polarity and there is a pretty big difference in the sound if it is wrong.

Let me see if I got your impressions correct, with smaller music you preferred the sound of instruments through the Diana (piano and violin you mentioned) but with larger scale works you liked the greater "grunt" of the KR?
 

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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#11
So Ked, how are you going to reconcile yr Apogees v horns dilemma?
You obv love both, but it seems the Apogees do more of the pure realism magic for you
These Scintillas will fit into a Central London apartment much more easily than Divas, FRs or Grands, and even Trios
Can be had for no money, and Jon's restoration won't cost the earth
And any number of bone crunching amps at reasonable cost should work w them
Hi that’s not entirely correct. At high level, both FR and Yamamura do realism differently, and at practical level, both duetta/Scintilla and bespoke horns do them. It’s impossible to choose.

Smaller Apogees – Room size possible, but they also need a room shape. Getting the size and shape in central London is a challenge. Horns – only size, they are ok with a corridor here, a glass window there, etc. So in that sense, horns better. But that massive bass section can cause problems to neighbors below, while panel vibrations are easier to isolate.

Apogee Duettas and Scintillas will leave a desire to eventually upgrade to FR, while the horns will kill upgraditis.
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#12
As usual in life, every new interesting avenue in life creates a new series of sliding doors
I guess my q really is whether you've settled on which presentation stirs yr blood more, and satisfies the reasoning zones in yr brain more
Having had a taste of what horns and ribbons do well, and badly, this is quite the dilemma
Bearing in mind you'll be tight for listening space in Zone One, will have lower ceilings than most bigger apartments (like I had in Zone Three), will certainly be restricted by neighbour complaints on bass transmission, surely these Scintillas could be the ticket?
 

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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#13
Just for way of clarification, was the bias adjusted at all with the Diana? Also, were the speaker cables hooked up in the usual way or inverted? The Diana inverts the output polarity and there is a pretty big difference in the sound if it is wrong.

Let me see if I got your impressions correct, with smaller music you preferred the sound of instruments through the Diana (piano and violin you mentioned) but with larger scale works you liked the greater "grunt" of the KR?
Christoph and David did bias it. I don’t know about the cables, ask Christoph.

Grunt and oomph on KR definitely, but on Winterreise vocals, and individual instruments of Old Castle, which is a soft piece, and individual instruments stand out, KR was better. On tuttis it also layered better and had deeper, and more top to bottom soundstage. On the violin/piano tracks, Diana had a magic, and maybe a bit more fluid.
 

User211

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Jul 28, 2014
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#14
So Ked, how are you going to reconcile yr Apogees v horns dilemma?
You obv love both, but it seems the Apogees do more of the pure realism magic for you
These Scintillas will fit into a Central London apartment much more easily than Divas, FRs or Grands, and even Trios
Can be had for no money, and Jon's restoration won't cost the earth
And any number of bone crunching amps at reasonable cost should work w them
I dunno what Henk charged but that is no ordinary Scintilla. It is close on twice the weight as the frame bracing is steel, not aluminium as per my Duettas, which is a lot lighter.

120KG is pretty impractical, really. Very difficult to handle. We had to break my Duettas into three pieces - front covers, stands and magnet assemblies to get them into my room. It's damn scary, it really is. One false move and you'll knacker the ribbons.

Come to think of it, I must weigh mine sometime. It'll be less than 120KG though.
 

morricab

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Apr 25, 2014
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#15
Christoph and David did bias it. I don’t know about the cables, ask Christoph.

Grunt and oomph on KR definitely, but on Winterreise vocals, and individual instruments of Old Castle, which is a soft piece, and individual instruments stand out, KR was better. On tuttis it also layered better and had deeper, and more top to bottom soundstage. On the violin/piano tracks, Diana had a magic, and maybe a bit more fluid.
So, sounds like it was very recording dependent as to which was preferable. Any non-classical music demoed?
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#16
Sure Justin
But we're talking about the cost of stock Scintillas, which must be nominal, and Henk's charge
Surely no more than £20k in total?
This is a mere frippery compared to what's being charged for modern day high performers
I'd liken this to Artisan Fidelity taking a stock Garrard 301, cleaning it up, maxxing the plinth and bearing, and selling it on for $20k
If Henk can complete a pr of tricked out Scintillas for £20k, surely there can't be any argument
2/3 cost of a new pr of Duos XDs or Universum Horns
Then again, I know he REALLY likes the Leipzig horns...
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#17
Justin, after having destroyed a Zu Denon 103 cart, and my NATs 211 tubes, the latter v close to seriously seriously injuring me (no , I can tell you), and knowing how much protective packing Apogees would need boosting weight closer to 150-175kg, and the "care" movers often demonstrate, good luck to anyone hoping not to put their proverbial audiophile foot in it installing such fragile beasts
 

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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#18
Sure Justin
But we're talking about the cost of stock Scintillas, which must be nominal, and Henk's charge

This is a mere frippery compared to what's being charged for modern day high performers
Pricing is a very complex subject when you compare it to competitiors.

• Where is it being made? A dac made in suburbs of Warsaw will be much more expensive if made in Zurich or UK, both for real estate and labor.

• Street Price – His Price is the street price, so you are comparing a Scintilla or a duetta to a 50k speaker

• Design – The top OTL will be cheaper than the top SS. So if you have a speaker that works with OTL, you will save more. My point is, each design has its own price value ladder. SETs have their own price-value ladder. Similarly, a planar by nature is cheaper than a cone. With a cone, you need to spend tons on the baffle (which a planar lover will say shouldn’t have been there in the first place) to make it sound good. Then, you need to ship it around to various distributors, dealers, hifi shows, customer returns. All this is built into the price. So, you could compare an Apogee by price to a cone, or you could say, I have the top planar compared to a meh cone. Then the debate actually is, what are the pros and cons of planars vs cones

• Distribution and marketing – Guess Henk’s cost on this – Zero.

• Profit objective – Your popular speakers need to have a certain margin to sustain their business and have a profit objective. People like Henk don’t, they are happy for you to pay for their hobby and whisky.

• Not to mention, people pay for status, and status here is defined by the groups you hang out in. As you know, on the UK forum, people will laugh at you if come up stating expensive price on cones + SS, and respect you for anything Kondo/Audio Note.
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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#19
I don't think we're disagreeing
Christopher of Artisan takes a $3k stock 301, fully takes it apart and reassembles w new parts, bearing, plinth, psu, aesthetic and engineering transformation, and sells it on for 5-7x the price of stock donor
Henk will do something similar w a donor pr of Apogees, but at much more competitive price tag
My point was that for an entry ticket close to £20k to incl donor pr, Henk's work, OTT protective packaging (adding third-half to weight), carriage, UK customs, piano movers, bespoke install, all that pricey Single Malt for Henk LOL, shelling out even this amount gives you performance you'd need to spend a massive amount more on to even get close w alternatives from the big names
This kind of entry ticket remains a relative bargain
Why, even a new pr of my Zus would cost you more than Henk Scintillas, and you wouldn't want those
 

User211

Well-Known Member
Jul 28, 2014
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#20
Once in the ribbons are quite well protected by a plastic mesh, and the weight becomes almost irrelevant until you want to decorate...

In VFM terms, the performance is very good.

I have a number of things I want to do to improve mine still further. But it is outside of realms of what the refurbisher is prepared to or can realistically do.
 

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