Kharma Exquisites

Now that they have been in production for a while, how do they stack up with the other great speakers?
I have heard them on 4 different occasions, one very recently, and they continue to be at least for me the most musical (i.e. best) speakers I have heard. In all instances the speakers I heard were powered by Lamm amps, not always the same, but I am sure Lamm deserves some of the credit I am giving to the speakers. Voice and strings is where they move ahead of the other highly acclaimed speakers.
I recently heard the 1d's at CES this past month. The sound I experienced was definitely an eye opener for me. I went to the show looking for a "sound" or presentation that would set itself apart from all others.

The Lamm/ Kharma exhibit did this. The presentation from this demo was a showcase of the essence of musicality in a playback system. I mean, just music. After 2 minutes I forgot about gear and just listened with a big smile on my face. The music was simply there, everywhere in front of me. There were no boundaries, no outlines, no solid, immovable image. The presentation was that of a live performance. The music was so evenly laid out in front of me. Everything was in its rightful place. I could easily follow single instruments or voices throughout any given piece. No congestion. Every sound seemed separate from other sounds around them.

Every cd or record played simply sounded the way you would expect that it would if the performers were right in front of you. I would just like to know what this speaker can do in the lower octaves. Mid bass and up is a no brainer. But I happen to prefer a full range speaker that can also carry the full weight of the music also. Can anyone comment on this question of mine?
i own the Kharma Exquisite 1ds. i use the Tenor 75Wi OTL monoblocks.

Avnut, the Exquisites you heard at CES was the 1A, which has an external crossover, compared to my 1Ds, which are also bi-ampable but have an internal crossover.

i spent considerable time at the Kharma room at CES. although i enjoyed it, it did not compare to my room in bass extension or musicality. the Tenor is on another level compared to the ss Lamms. i have not heard the Lamm ML2 or ML1 on the Exquisites so i can't comment on that.

as far as bass performance is concerned i could make a few comments. even though my room is relatively small, i get true 25hz performance and -3db at 22hz. every visitor to my room comments that the bass integration is the best they have ever heard. i would say that the Exquisites do not have "rock concert" bass. it does not do "slam" like the Wilson watt/puppy 6s i had. but they do real world bass. instead of calling attention to itself the bass serves the music. the Tenor OTL have no dynamic limitations whatsoever on the Exquisites.

on the Exquisites music just "happens".....totally seamless and coherent; amazeing macro and microdynamics. i have had quite a few industry "experts" thru my room and so far they have all left under the spell of the Exquisite/Tenor combo.

i can listen to these beatiful works of art all day long and never get fatigued or tired of it. i consider it an honor to have the Exquisites. with the Exquisites it is about the music and not pieces of the sound. you concentrate on the performance and the musical content. you will find that small differnces between recordings or formats become much more pronounced. differences between cables and sources are bigger. i have always tried to go for neutrality in all my gear and the Exquisites are the ultimate neutral speaker.

Bill, if you want any details e-mail me and i would be glad to answer your questions.
Avnut: When I heard the Exquisite 1d's with the Tenor amplifiers driving them, the bass was among the best, if not the best, I have ever heard. Well into the lower 20s. Not only was it deep, but there was incredible texture, speed and detail.

Not to take anything away from Lamm's superb amplifiers, I thought the Tenor's did a better job on them. As a Tenor dealer, I my opinion may seem a bit biased, but I always try to be objective.
Ok, Mike and Jtinn you are scaring me now. The sound I heard at the show , I thought, was incredible. But then again I am still a rookie in the high end audio game. I have not heard as many high end set ups as you guys. But this year was my 3rd year in a row at CES. In all the rooms I have been through, none of the setups made me feel as though I had heard the ultimate...until now.

If more people could experience at least what I heard at the show, more people could really truly understand that this hobby really is about the music.

One last question though. Did you think the Rockport/Tenor combo was showing its best? For me , the sound was a little thick and less free flowing than the Kharma/Lamm combo. I felt the same last year also. What do you think?
Avnut, i will difer to Jtinn as far as number of truely high-end systems heard. but i can say that the Kharma Exquisite/Tenor in my room was so incredible when i first heard actually intimidated me. i had to have 6 or 7 experienced listeners in my room and get their feedback before i would allow myself to accept what my ears were telling me.....kinda scarey.

comparing the Rockport/Tenor to the Kharma/Lamm is tricky. my take would be that the amazeing Exquisites have such a special openness, mid-range purity, and coherence that it creates a very unique reality that no other speaker can touch. i could tell that the Lamm solid state amps held back the Exquisites from the supreme musicality and clarity i hear in my room with the Tenors.

as good as the Rockport Hyperions are, in comparison with the Exquisites, they are less open and refined. the ceramic mid-range of the Exquisites is so fast and uncolored even another state-of-the-art speaker like the Hyperion is exposed as less fast and slightly veiled. the Tenors were not a perfect match for the Hyperion and there was a slight loss of speed and snap......a loseness. with higher powered amps the Hyperion might have been better in this area but not as musical as on the Tenors.

consider my heavy bias toward the Exquisites and Tenors in my comments.....i can't help i sit here listening to them..... they never cease to beguile me.
Avnut: I spent 5 days in the Tenor / Audio Aero / Jena Labs / Rockport / Machina Dynamica room. I put the room together. We had severe problems the first few days due to construction problems and could not even setup the speakers properly until Thursday morning. Our room was the last to be finished on that floor. The show opened officially Tuesday at 10 AM and we still had construction going on until noon that day. It was not until Thursday morning that we actually acheived what I, and many others, thought was the best sound at the show. There was such a lack of fatigue and the musicality was quite good. Many people thought that due to the Tenor / Audio Aero / Jena Labs combination with the Hyperion's made a huge difference over the previous CES.

I loved the resolution and transparency in the Kharma room, but I tell you the sound was not even close to Mike Lavigne's room with his Tenor / Kharma combination. I thought the Kharma's lacked a little body at the show and I hear glorious body in Michael's system. If you heard it the way I have, you would realize the Kharma's were not near their potential at the show.
Thanks Jtinn and Mikelavigne for your comments. I have already started saving my spare change. :)