Brian's review

Posted by Brian H., November 2017 to a cordial email group with about 8 members:

Hi everyone,

I guess it's about time I give a review of my setup.  The entire system has about 300 hours on it and I'm on the finishing touches to the room.

For those that don't know my setup consists of the following:

Sony Modwright HAPZ1es

LTA Micro ZOTL-MZ2-S With the stock now tubes Mogami RCA to XLR 6 ft cables going into the Valentina Actives

My room is 12 ft by 17 ft, the Valentinas were setup and positioned by Mr Janszen himself.  I was really thankful for the slight assymetric setup which helped with reducing room modes and making things as flat as we could across the audio spectrum.

I have the speakers 7 ft apart with their centers angled toward my seating position 7 ft in the standard equalateral triangle.

Lots of heavy gik soffit and tri bass traps, 8 of them total.  Diffusion in the front and sides of the speakers. Gik 244 panels on side and rear walls, 5 freestanding bass traps, two at first reflection points, 3 on rear wall with diffusion.

My review:

I love it!

Lol, it's been a journey to get to this spot in listening pleasure, I still have a room mode to crush but these Active Valentina's are a pure joy to listen to.  I can now understand why some who listen to Electrostatics won't go back to standard driver designs.

For reference, my musical tastes can be a bit strange and all over the place.  Classical,  Baroque, Original sound tracks, World music, Medieval, Orchestrated, Orchestrated Metal, Big Band Jazz, Swing, Techno, Electronica, Chiptune, As well as other genera that I can't classify.

The thing I love best about the Janszens is how resolving and fast they are when complex Orchestrated passages are run through them.  They present the sound in a beautifully layered etherial form as etherial as the notes move through the air at a live large concert hall or orchestra pit, all in my little room as long as the recording is good.

I involve my family in enjoying them, and understanding my addiction. My mother sat and listened to some Foreigner and was astounded by how this setup sounded, the notes she noticed were missing in other systems playing her favorite songs jumped out in a lifelike fashion.  She said she felt as if she was in front center row at the concert.  When I tried to explain the technicalities of the speakers, room, etc.  I actually got "shuushed" as she proceeded to select more of her songs and for the first time was experiencing a closer representation of what the artists intended for their audience to hear. 

That's not an easy thing to do for my mom you see, she's so active she won't sit down and take time to just listen, but she actually will for this setup!

The Sony Modwright is so simple to use, I started collecting music when I got my first CD player in 1984, and over the years my CD collection was huge as friends and family dumped their CD music on me as they went to mp3.  I have spent the last 5 years converting to Flac and some mp3 so the Sony is a very convenient solution.  The LTA used as a preamp is such an easy and carefree setup, It just works, no fussing other than to give it a minute and start enjoying it with the rest of the system.

I could just go on gushing about this setup, but really It has become my comfortable refuge from the stresses life throws at all of us.  Here are photos of my room.  Thanks to my understanding family for giving me this space to express my madness and build this shrine to music.  Thanks to Mr Janszen for creating Electrostatics I could enjoy in such a room, and for setting them up so quickly.  To LTA for a great pre amp that my family is not afraid to use, and to Dan At Modwright for Upgrades to the already good Sony HAP-Z1es.