Lall,with the trouble you've had with AA,are you really considering another unit from them?Doesn't seem like a good idea to me.
8 responses Add your response
Sounded really fine to me at CES this year, through CAT pre and monos to Hansen loudspeakers.
I have a Prestige, so was very curious, other than the generally favorable impression, I can't be much more informative as my own set-up is radically different (SET, and Horning Hybrid speakers), and show conditions being what they were.
I'm also hoping to get more of a proper opportunity to audition this player in the near future.
I still love the sound of my Prestige, but the transport struggles to put it mildly.
I have seen it during Munich show last May. Esoteric transport looks like a wise move, but the price difference between the Capitole/Prestige models and this seems to be excessive. When I first seen the inside the player, I thought that it may sell for 15k euro or thereabouts, but at 25k euro ... oughh !
Have heard La Source today at Audiophile Club, London. I own AA Capitole Reference SE and had demoed it 6 months ago in the same setup at Audiophile Club, so can try to make a few comparison remarks. The rest of the setup was BC-Acoustique A4 speakers and AA monoblocks; La Source was used as CD Player & Pre-amp. I had a 30th ANNIVERSARY SAMPLER CD with me which I used during the audition (amongst others).
La Source was so easy to listen to with all material thrown at it. It truly draws you into the listening - you are curious to hear more and more.
Soundstage depth was awesome & that was one of the main improvements over the Capitole Ref SE. There was so much more space beyond the speakers / listening room boundaries - it was scary. A large orchestra hall was easily imaginable.
Clarity of the presentation was phenomenal: strings very taut, zero distortion, ie very real.
High frequencies reproduction was spot on - very detailed, airy and very real once again. BC-acoustique speakers posed no bottlenecks in this area, so helped to hear La Source potential. Capitole Ref SE had also been very good in this area, although perhaps lacked a sense of realism just a tad.
Bass reproduction (eg church organ) has been top notch, perhaps not as thunderous as I heard in other reference setups, however, that could be due to AMP/Speaker limitations.
I was told that the Transport is custom & top of the range Esoteric unit. The player looked like a monolith unit certainly a bulletproof piece of engineering, weighing some 25kg.
When comparing the two AA players, of course, one can feel a similar AA sound signature, La Sources being a clear winner in all areas. However, not being able to afford a phenomenally higher price level of La Source, I'd say I can very happily live with Capitole Ref SE unit!
If you have that extra cash at your disposal, by all means consider La Source in your setup! I would at least love to hear its potential in other Reference AMP/Speaker setups...
The new La Source is a statement CD/SACD player that features a 32Bit/384 Khz re-sampling DAC, Esoteric CD/SACD transport, Digital inputs, USB input. Cryo'd Tubes output stage, OEM special La Source Teflon caps, Volume control (so no preamp is necessary (fixed outputs for traditional systems are also provided) Available Brushed SILVER or BLACK aluminum Finishes.
By using the exceptionally built Esoteric transport the new La Source will have rock solid reliability and sound unmatched in the audio industry.
Anyone with either of these two players, with some feedback?
As I'm thinking about dropping some hard earned cash on the La Fontaine DAC. Main reason is that I love the sound of my old Audio Aero Capitole MK II (10 years old), which has served me perfectly and never missed a beat. I wanted something with a similar sonic signature to the Capitole, but with higher levels of detail retrieval and tighter BASS. Basically a more modern interpretation of the decade old classic.
Other contenders are the new Meitner MA-1, DCS Debussy, Playback Designs, but have no opportunity to hear anything as I live in Australia.
Feedback much appreciated.
I have a LaFontaine.Hooray! Took up the trade up offer.
I've owned four Audio aero players and have admired the signature sound.I also enjoy the one box component with multiple inputs.
The sound.Well,added about 500 hours since I got it in August.It finally opened up about 2 weeks ago.Normal as the others were the same.
This is the first player(I've heard) that has the ability to portray the interaction between the players on stage.I've never heard this so clearly before. You will hear more finger picks from a guitar and more piano notes then you've ever heard before.Easier to sink in the chair and drift into space.You think you've heard everything there is to hear from your favourite cd,well there is so much hidden information that's been missing.Everything from emotional portrayal to imagery,soundstage and realism.It's not a wow factor .........it just is.
The seemingly impossible to eliminate digital edge is totally gone.
From a 'Cd' some will say not possible.