The other day I stopped by Wynn Audio for some listening. My wife and my good friend tagged along. We brought some CDs we wanted to try on the super high end system that Wynn put together. The purpose was not a review of any specific component, but just to listen to good music.
Since the grand opening back in November, Wynn made some changes in the set up. Tidal Contriva G2 speakers were still in place. As were Goldmund Telos 1000+ monoblocks. However, the preamp was a brand new Goldmund Mimesis 37S with very few hours on it. Digital front end was Reimyo CDT-777 CD transport and DAP-998EX DAC. And once again, ZenSati cables were used throughout.
The first CD we played was Malcolm McLaren "Paris", which I brought along. And to be honest, it sounded average at best. When I played the same CD at Mark Jones' place I liked the sound much better, even with Focal Sopra No. 3 which were brand new with no hours on them. I guess this can be attributed to the fact that the Mimesis 37S hasn't been broken in yet and didn't sound at its best.
The other CD I brought along was "Masters Of Chant: The Final Chapter" by Gregorian. Again, I was not impressed by the sound. While the vocals sounded good, the instruments weren't very clear. This could be due to the fact that this CD doesn't have a great dynamic range. And Goldmund electronics are unforgiving when it comes to poorly produced sources. I am sure it would sound better with Tidal amps and preamp (which were not in use during out visit).
As Wynn pointed out, Goldmund electronics were turned on literally minutes before we arrived, so it all sounded a bit cold in the beginning, which would explain the shortcomings we heard on the first two CDs we played.
Things have improved significantly when we listened to the first CD my friend brought along - Ibrahim Ferrer "Buenos Hermanos". A great sounding Latin record with great dynamic range. All instruments as well as vocals were clear and detailed. Great instrument separation and imaging. But there could be some improvement in the sound stage.
Next we played Diana Krall's "The Look of Love". Again, great results here. Clear and detailed sound, good imaging. We all felt that this kind of music suited this system best.
Last was an album by an Indonesian singer Anggun called "Snow on the Sahara". Mixed results here due to the nature of her music, kind of electronic rock with very deep and passionate vocals.
After this Wynn played some selections from his own CDs and SACDs, He started with a song called "Here but I'm Gone" by Vanessa Fernandez from her album "Use Me". Stunning acoustic track, but we were craving for a bit more bass. As I noted in my old review of Wynn Audio, Tidal Contriva G2s only go down to 30 Hz. I bet this would sound simply incredible on Tidal electronics with Tidal Sunrays, which can go lower.
At my request Wynn played for us Nils Lofgren's "Keith Don't Go" from "Acoustic Live" album, which I remember hearing in Wynn Audio room at TAVES 2015. It made a huge impression on me at that show. And here I heard it again, but on SACD as opposed to vinyl. While it was missing the warmth of the analog medium, we still loved it, again confirming that this system really shines with acoustic music.
A few more tracks we listened to:
"La Voce Del Silenzio" by Andrea Bocelli
"Je T'Aime" by Kelly Sweet
"Memory" by Sarah Moreau
A few tracks from Oscar Peterson's "We Get Requests", which showcased the amazing recording quality of this album, highlighting excellent instrument separation with the upright bass in the right channel, percussion in the left and piano in the middle of the sound stage.
Overall, a very enjoyable experience. Once again, I wish to thank Wynn for his time and effort. Surely, such an expensive system is not for everyone and I often hear complaints in the audiophile and HiFi circles about equipment with such outrages prices. But I think there is a room for such systems in this market for people who can afford such opulence, just like there is a market for very expensive cars.