I've heard several Accapella speakers, but not the Sphaeron Excaliburs. $350k is a ridiculous amount of money--for anything--but those who can afford them probably aren't complaining. :) Accappela makes a nice speaker, but I'm not particularly fond of horns. Every audition I've had leaves me wanting for my old cones in boxes.
$325k?? how could that EVER be justified. A friend of mine in Jersy showed me a house that sat for sale for months at $800k and didn't get a second look. The owner pushed the asking price to just over a mil, while doing nothing to the house, and it sold in a week. Some people apparently just want to spend money.
forest jump said it best.
stupid is as stupid does!
I just got a pair for the bathroom, haven't hear them yet because I need to go to radio shack for some raw cable. Question? do I need to solder the banana plugs to the zip cord?
I haven't heard the Sphaeron, but I am very familiar with the Triolon Excalibur. It is, by a wide margin, the best speaker I've ever heard. I really can't imagine what the improvement might be, but I will say that the Triolon is the first really expensive speaker I've ever heard that didnt seem to be affected by the law of diminishing returns.
How could $325k be justiied? Pretty easily, IMO. If given the choice between the Triolons and a $300k car, for pure enjoyment I'd take the Triolons (and I am a car guy). I've known people with boats in that price range that they used a few times a year. People spend a lot of money on a lot of things, and I can't think of anything under half a million that would give me the long term enjoyment of even the Triolons. If the Sphaerons are even better...
I am currently worth less than that pair of speakers, but I am catching up. I can cook better pan-fried noodles, though.
Yeah, get a pair of those with some Wavac 833 monoblocks. Enough to buy a small country and you dont even have a source and cabling.
I dont understand the cost of those speakers. And don't give me no give turkey about materials, construction costs, and R&D. Because here is my answer. "Ferrari"
You can score a ferrari for 325k. And it hauls ass, has Far far far FAR FAR FAR higher production cost and WAAAAYYYYYY more engineering costs associated with it.
All i really wanna know is what Acapella is smoking, because i want some of that!!!!!!!!!!!
Okay-Everyone that had a negative response: How many of your friends think YOUR totally out of your mind for having the equipment you do? Go tell the average guy walking down the street your speaker cables retail for 1500.00 or your amp/speakers cost you 10K. Why such a reaction to speakers for 325K,when there is routine discussion about gear that costs 20/30/40K. I'll bet alot of people on this forum have systems worth AT LEAST half of their yearly income. Well the guy making 5 Million(or more)might like quality gear too. Just remember-the guy who buys these speakers already has a Ferrari,and a yacht,and a vacation home,and anything else he wants. So before you laugh at him take a look at your own addiction/obsessions.
I don't understand why people like horns. Is their memory of the good old days distorted? Horns are good for loud and cheap. I don't even understand the argument that the best amps were single ended but the only thing they will drive is horns. Thats like wanting a bridge so you dig a river.
The last CES I was at I heard a reviewer saying how good horns image. The whole goal of a horn is not to image. Thats why it is a compression driver. You are choking the dispersion so the sound is projected. If it imaged, you couldn't hear anything 30 rows back.
I would love to go to a huge concert and hear 2000 silk dome tweeters driven by 780,000,000 watts of class A power that has to float on air bearings so they won't break.
That's why there are horns. No rock group can afford a 13 trillion $ sound system that broke every other week.
Friend of mine once said, "A poor consumer is fortunate because he/she has nothing to lose because he/she has nothing to buy (with). A man on a budget is ultimately limited by that budget..."
Which is one way of looking at this tantalising product. Of course, for the asking price I could live my family for quite a few years...:)
I have no doubt that, as their statement product, it delivers outstanding tunes. The Triolon, already mentioned, is one of the very best spkrs I've listened to, by far.
After all even their el cheapo products are very good -- say the Violon (a steal at $35k or s/thing)!
You have a point there, but there is also the question of justificaion of such a high cost.
I challange anyone to show that these are more expencive to build than a ferarri, that thier R&D costs outpriced the R&D of a ferarri, and the materials cost more than whats in a ferarri.
Yeah, they are expencive as hell. Good for them. Now. Justify the price. A ferarri's price is easily justified.
Yep - a Ferrari F430, even at 200K is MUCH more easily justifed than a box and drivers (any box and any drivers).
Someone above mentioned a house they saw at $X amount which sold. I'll never argue that real estate pricing right now isn't overblown, but show me a speaker that comes with a plot of land? Last I checked, they aren't making anymore land...but "they"'ll make as many speakers as you'll buy.....
Lots of useless responses. Just because you and I cannot afford such speakers does not make them overpriced or worthless. I have not heard the top-of-the-line Acapellas, but some I respect have very kind things to say about them. I have always found that the tweeter on Acapellas always stands out in its excellence with Acapella speakers, perhaps the rest of the system in the best Acapellas keeps up with the plasma tweeters. I settled for the LaCampanellas without the plasma tweeter because at least the sound was integrated without the tweeter standing out. I wish they were substantially more efficient as I have never heard a 100 watt or above amp that I thought was worth a damn.
I agree Tbg. Athough Ferrari Analogy makes good point, if you got the money, and if you can afford it and IF YOU LIKE the sound of Acapella's or any other big bucks speakers or components, there is nothing overpriced or worthless.
I bet most of us would buy top of the line electronics or speakers provided we like the sound, if suddenly get in to money (mega million lotto).
I haven't either heard of the Sphaeron's before and I've never heard them. I do find $325,000 a lot of money for speakers. And, I don't know anyone who owns such speakers. Could I consider paying 325K for absolutely the best ever made? Sure. I have. But, I didn't.
I find the thought of metaphors as to what else costs 325K not significant. By the standards of Ships, nothing in the universe of audio costs anything.
It would be interesting to hear a great room with these speakers and other great speakers all together.
Personally, (or course that's all it can be) I think it is at least ethically if not morally wrong to spend that much on speakers or anything else for that matter except for maybe a house. Think about the world we live in and what that kind of money could do to alleviate some of its problems. I'm not saying that we can't spend money on pleasure, but for God's sake can't we use a little common sense? One day I heard Barbra Streisand admonishing the government, and people in general, for not doing more for the poor. The next day I just happened to be watching Oprah (with my wife of course) and there was Barbra admitting on national tv that she spends between $5-6000 a week on fresh flowers and that she did'nt even know how many cars she owned. I guess my response is somewhat edgy because after teaching high school for 31 years, I make about 1/7 the price of these speakers. And my system costs about 1/10 of my salary. But I do enjoy the hell out of music, so on that note I'll shut up and go isten to something---like "Fanfare for the Common Man".
The above post should have read, "my system has cost me a little over $2000 or about 5-6% of my salary". 1/10 of my salary is way too high.
Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous...
Heard them? I don't even have clothes nice enough to be allowed into any place that sells these. :)
So what do you say to the guy who just bought a 20,000 dollar Rolex,or the guy/gal who blew 50 large,on a new Lexus.Should I tell my future son in law not to spend serious bucks on an engagement ring,for my daughter?Diamond pricing IS controlled by a cartel,and even they are a rip-off!If I opened my mouth,in that scenario,I would not have a home(would be kicked out by wife AND daughter)to house my rather cheap 3800 dollar cartridge,that I just got(large discount,of course)!!
To the teacher's post above me. The problem with giving money to help people is that it doesn't help them. It makes them more dependant. If you want to help people, spend money on stuff from companies that will need to hire workers to supply you that stuff. Then they take their pay checks and buy stuff. Then they have kids because they have money and have to send them to school where you are needed to teach them and get paid. I think the same people that make fun of cables and say they don't work are the same ones that said trickle down economics doesn't work. Could it be....?
By the way, Reagan owned a Sequerra Tuner.
50K for a fine car is a deal in comparison. Worst come to worst, at least you could sleep in the Lexus.
i cant believe you watch oprah let alone admit it in public,what a real bummer that had to be i'd rather have a root canal without any pain killer than watch oprah her adopted son dr phil.
i couldnt agree more,i run a very large construction crew & many times i have seen loosers with their little hand painted HELP,HUNGRY,HOMELESS & GOD BLESS signs & ive offered them high paying jobs on the spot , each time they refuse, they are way too used to people who feel guilty of their own income throwing cash at them from the window of their new beemer.
99% of the time a bum is just a bum & the only thing they will do with free cash is to buy some sterno & get hammered.
I'm sad to say that Mike is right for the most part about a bum being a bum.
About the $325,000 speakers, I would say that there is some sort of value continuum that guides all of our thinking. The conspicuous consumer would likely buy these to be conspicuous but I submit that the true music lover might put $25K into a spectacular sound system and then lay the $300K into going to live music events around the world. How many could you attend and how long would that last? I think I could drag that out for maybe 5 years.
Those speakers have to be a quarter of a million dollars past the diminishing returns line.
Hello again. The only thing I will try to justify is the fact that it would cost a fortune to have 30 different musicians at one time in your house 365 days a year and ask them to play only two songs at a time then switch to something else. If the sound is breath taking and you can afford it, then the price is not as much of an issue. I do question the performance of such speakers as I have always had companies that produce products under $100,000 sound better than anything I have ever heard and I have listened to price no object equipment that tried to convince you they are awesome because they are expensive. Wow to the sucker that has more money than experience. (I didn't say brains because there are plenty of people much smarter than I who just don't get it).
I have spent a couple of hours with the UK distributor of accapella today and a great guy he is too.
I did not hear the speakers in question, but did hear again his Violins which are truly superb. We did a quick a/b demo with Virtual Dynamics vs Kubala Sosna Emotion.
The thing I leave with every time with these speakers is imaging, I have heard nothing like it, ever. What the more expensive acapellas sound like, I have no idea, only my imagination. They must be very special!
Excess just what is excess. I guess that depends on your disposable income and what you choose to spend it on. If you are Bill Gates just what do you spend your disposable income on. $325K speakers maby. Is this excess you bet. But it has already been said, tell the average person you spent $1500.00 on cables for your stereo. They will think you are nuts.
My system is yes half of my annual salery. I for one would not trade it for anything in this world. Ok I would like to upgrade a few things but it comes down to disposable income which I don't have right now.
If you are living within your means what does it matter wether you spend 5k or 325k on speakers as long as they bring enjoyment.
Dmurfet, did the plasma tweeter stand out as better than the rest of the speaker. I have not heard the new Violins, but this was the case with them previously. It was also the case on the Campenelles (Sp?).
Duane, the plasma tweeter in the Acapella's is not a compression driver. Go to the Avantgarde website and learn why they don't use compression drivers either. Horn doesn't always mean compression drivers. But compression drivers done well sound great. I have a friend with an ALE compression multidriver system that's incredible. Why do recording studios use TAD compression drivers if they are so bad. These are people who listen for a living. There are great and poor examples of just about all types of drivers but it's dumb to say all box speakers are no good or all planar speakers are no good. Every type has it's advantages and disadvantages. I've had Sound Lab A-1's and Quads and some great box speakers too but at the moment I think my Avantgarde Trios are way better but still not perfect.
tbg - I'm not sure if one part was better than another - I have only heard this pair and would be difficult to compare. I do think that that a lot of headroom made the normal vinyl clicking and popping even more pronounced. The K-S cables did seem to reduce this effect, but what one man calls low noise another calls rolled out high frequencies - I don't know enough to know the difference!
I just heard the $48K/pair High Violin MkIII in Southern California. The other components were Einstein 60 wpc tube monoblocks ($25K/pair), Einstein tube preamp (I forget how much), and Accustic Arts CD transport and DAC ($11K). Each component sat on a $1500 isolation platform. Throw in cables, line conditioners, racks, room treatment, and miscellaneous, and we were at around $150K.
I was curious to hear the exotic, much talked-about plasma tweeter. Certainly as a conversation piece alone, the plasma tweeter on the Acapella is unsurpassed. The plasma flames glow a beautiful pink-purple inside their impressive polished gold tweeter horns.
Plasma is the superheated, ionized, fourth state of matter that:
1) Cuts through steel like a hot knife through butter;
2) Will eventually enable nuclear fusion to be harnessed as an energy source; and
3) Produces the sweetest, smoothest, most ethereal and spacious treble I have ever heard.
I played some 80's and 90's recordings (classical and pop, from Bach to Basia) that I previously thought were well-recorded, and they sounded great on this system. What previously sounded like an excellent recording of a violin, now sounded like a live violin. I could hear Itzhak Perlman breathing between notes.
But then Brian, the owner of the system, played some more recent demo recordings, and the soundstage suddenly doubled in width and depth. Instruments now seemed to be playing from 45 degrees to each side of the speakers, almost from behind me.
Although the plasma tweeter gets all the attention, the rest of the speaker (horn midrange and 2 woofers) is superbly executed as well. Words like "sumptuous" and "elegant" came to mind as I focused on the midrange, and "authoritative, fast and tight -- amazing for 60 wpc" as I focused on the bass. The tweeter is fantastic but not "too good" for the rest of the speaker.
The only downside I heard was that for a few moments, the tweeter would make faint crackling noises, apparently the result of microscopic dust particles getting zapped in the plasma. Brian said that the speaker had just been unpacked after returning from CES. I only heard the crackling noises for a total of about 1 minute in 3 hours of listening. Those three hours went by far too quickly.
So now I am back home in my apartment, listening to my $3K system (homemade plywood racks, no fancy platforms), hoping the sound will start to improve toward the end of this bottle of wine. Life is good.
I would rather spend the money on having Neil Young play at my wedding