They are one of those companies that seem to be under the radar. Amazing, one could build an entire system from their gear from DAC to amps to speakers to cables. I would be very interested to hear a full Von Gaylord set-up. I like the reports of how their gear has terrific bass response and definition. Here is a link to a nice posting of their show displays on Audiogon;
and also at Dagogo;
It would be interesting to hear some first-hand comparisons with other better known equipment from those of you who have owned their gear.
At an audio show last year, I thought their room was one of the very best in show.
I have a complete Von Gaylord Audio system and could not be happier. Ray has been incredible to work with. Anyone who is considering the gear and is in San Francisco, is welcome to stop by my place to check it out. I am waiting for my LignoLabs racks and will post pictures once those arrive.
My system details below:
Spiral Groove SG-2
Soundsmith Strain Gauge (SG-200)
The Return of the Legend VG and VG1
Von Gaylord 7000S interconnects, speaker cables, and power cords
Von Gaylord Live Reference Power Conditioner
Over the course of more than a decade, in the various times I've heard Von Gaylord/Legend at shows or two of my local dealers, I've always come away struck by their incredible musicality and terrific sound.
Aside from that, their use of the 6550 has proved the only application I have ever enjoyed this tube.
Good to see other fans out there and I'm not crazy in my enthusiasm for this company!
Trelja, I agree about the 6550. I used to have a VTL ST-150, which was great on intimate/acoustic type music, but too dark and not so good with rock. I also felt the McIntosh MC275 was way too soft for me when I heard it, so I was hesitant about going with the Nirvana amps. But since I had such good experiences with the cables, preamp, and speakers, I decided to take a chance. It was absolutely the right move! At the time I was kicking myself after I sold off my Luxman M-600a because I liked it so much, but the Nirvanas are even better, being just as big, dynamic, detailed, and transparent, but adding just the right amount of that wonderfully musical tube bloom.
How hot do the Nirvanas run? Their website claims a cooler operating temperature for the tubes- do you find the heat from those eight 6550s to be problematic??
Extremely cool! You can literally put your hands on them when they are fully warmed up (not too long though). I have a 20 month old toddler and I don't sweat it when she gets close because if she touches the tubes I know there's no chance of her getting burned and it won't be very painful but just hot enough to let her know it's a no-no.
The VTL was like a radiator; these are like warming trays.
I agree that the Von Gaylord products are addicting.
I have gone from Thiel to Proac to Von Gaylord in my
search for a final speaker within my budget. Nothing
wrong with Thiel or Proac ( I still own some Proac
speakers ) but the "Return of the Legend" system brings
me closer to my sonic nirvana.
I am also able to listen at a lower volume and not lose " The Magic!" I found that my ProAcs, (D38s), needed power and volume to shine. I still love the sound of the ProAcs but the Legends really draw me into the music better. I have a mixture of cables and the lower end of the Von Gaylord electronics. LAD-2 Signature Pre Amp and LM Triode Monoblocks. No DAC in the system currently running from the Oppo 95 into the Pre Amp. Another benefit is that more of my music collection is tolerable. Many recordings I could not sit through are now enjoyable. I also agree that Ray offers outstanding customer service and is great to deal with.
If you are on the fence, you should set up an audition with Ray.
Hi, I have owned the Von Gaylord amps (LM Triode, L2 Signature pre-amp) for many years and absolutely love it. This is a top notch system, one of the best. I have Dahlquist 20i speakers, Von Gaylord interconnects, the new Wadia 121 dac, and HiDiamond USB digital cable (very good by the way). The sound is glorious. My system is very detailed, but warm, so there is no listening fatigue whatsoever. Soundstage is excellent. I waited a long time to find the right dac and had cheap cd players for awhile and no matter what I had, the sound was very good. It's hard to put together a system that has detail, but also doesn't sound harsh or analytical, and Von Gaylord is that system. They also have excellent customer service which is extremely important to me. I have worked with Ray for years, a great guy and they are eager to help customers put together the right system for them. I am very happy with my system and sound, I have no desire to change or update anything. If anybody is in the market for an amp or pre-amp, they owe it to themselves to at least give a listen to their products. Sandra
I just upgraded most of my cables from the Chinchilla to the Legend 7000s including interconnects from DAC to pre and pre to amps + power cords on the DAC and preamp -- still running the amps with Chinchilla.
WOW, a substantial improvement where I didn't think it was possible! The same wonderful rich and vivid tone is retained but instruments have considerably more air and texture within, incredibly open and transparent. Their sounds emanate more into the room making them just more life-like than before. By comparison, the Chinchillas sound a bit compressed. I never thought I would say that!
Actually, Ray had left me a pair of the ICs for a few weeks. I put them in and immediately noticed an improvement, but decided I would be disciplined and take them out so as not to get too used to them. A couple of days before he was to pick them up I found a pair of Chinchillas for my bedroom system. While I put those in I decided to compare them to the 7000s again (that was the fatal "mistake"). They both sounded really good but the 7000s had that extra realistic magic that made me consider them for my main system. Ray gave me a great package deal for being a loyal customer so I bit the bullet and the improvement in sound was undoubtedly compounded by changing multiple cables. The upgrade definitely bruised the wallet, but listening to the system with these cables in massages the wounds. :) There are other areas in my system which could have used the money, but I feel the 7000s were a worthwhile investment. Someday when I can scrape together the extra cash I will get myself a pair of JPS Aluminata to compare them to.
All the electronic I got for my main system are
Legend/Von Gaylord,all of it strongly improved my system
and I love it. It is just a hair away from perfect for me.
The legend Pre Amp L2 signature (got me 15% closer to perfect)
Speaker cables from Legend, (5%)
Legend D/A music reference (5%)
Interconnect Cables (4%)
Legend modified Phillips CD80 as transport.(2%)
Line conditioner live performance (2%)
Legend Power cables (0.1%)
driving my wonderful Infinity IRS Beta
with Pass x250 for mid/high awesome as long as it stays in class A (re paced one of my aging Rowland 7)
and Rowland 7 Power amps for the base.
My other systems are Klipsch corner horns with HH Scott and (Legacy Illusion with Jadis.
"... and the lower end of the Von Gaylord electronics. LAD-2 Signature Pre Amp and LM Triode"
Nothing low end with those, Ravicchio, the LM Triodes are one of the best small tube amps ever, real classics.
I have had the Chinchilla interconnects in my system for many
years. After trying many( and I mean "many")
interconnects over the years, these Von Gaylord interconnects
stopped my impulsive trying out interconnects and allowed me
to just focus on the music. I recently upgraded one of them to
the Legend 7000s and it added another level of improvement. I
also took the plunge and ordered a Lad L-2 preamp this week.
If this preamp makes a noticeable improvement in my system(
has to beat out my Audio Horizons TP 2.0 preamp), my next step
will be to try, perhaps, the Nirvana mono amps(currently have
VAC Musicblocs). Who knows, I might end up with an all Von
By the way, would anyone know if the Lad L-2 preamp inverts
I'll answer my own question. No, the Lad L-2 doesn't invert phase.