Reviewer:
Srajan Ebaen
Financial interests: click here
Sources: 27" iMac with 5K Retina display, 4GHz quad-core engine with 4.4GHz turbo boost, 3TB Fusion Drive, 16GB SDRAM, OSX Yosemite, PureMusic 3.01, Tidal & Qobuz lossless streaming, COS Engineering D1, AURALiC Vega, Aqua Hifi Formula, Fore Audio DAISy 1, Apple iPod Classic 160GB (AIFF), Astell& Kern AK100 modified by Red Wine Audio, Cambridge Audio iD100, Pro-Ject Dock Box S Digital, Pure i20, Questyle QP1R
Preamplifier: Nagra Jazz, Esoteric C-03, Vinnie Rossi LIO with DHT module, COS Engineering D1, Wyred4Sound STP-SE Stage 2
Power & integrated amplifiers: Pass Labs XA30.8; FirstWatt SIT1, F5, F6, F7; S.A.Lab Blackbird SE; Crayon Audio CFA-1.2; Goldmund Job 225; ; Aura Note Premier; Wyred4Sound mINT; Nord Acoustics One SE UP NC500MB; AURALiC Merak [on loan]
Loudspeakers: Albedo Audio Aptica; EnigmAcoustics Mythology 1; Sounddeco Sigma 2; soundkaos Wave 40; Boenicke Audio W5se; Zu Audio Druid V & Submission; German Physiks HRS-120; Eversound Essence, Rethm Bhaava [on loan]
Cables: Complete loom of Zu Event; KingRex uArt, Zu and LightHarmonic LightSpeed double-header USB cables; Tombo Trøn S/PDIF; van den Hul AES/EBU; AudioQuest Diamond glass-fibre Toslink; Arkana Research XLR/RCA and speaker cables [on loan]; Sablon Audio Petit Corona power cords [on loan], Black Cat Cable Lupo
Power delivery: Vibex Granada/Alhambra on all components, 5m cords to amp/s + sub
Equipment rack: Artesania Audio Exoteryc double-wide 3-tier with optional glass shelves, Exoteryc Krion and glass amp stands [on loan]
Sundry accessories: Acoustic System resonators
Room: Rectangular 5.5 x 15m open floor plan with two-storey gabled ceiling, wood-sleeved steel trusses and stone-over-concrete flooring
Review component retail: CHF6'280/pr


What's 95dB, 4Ω, shorter than one metre, weighs 24kg, sports a single French Supravox driver, carries a 5-year warranty and comes from Worb in Switzerland's canton of Bern? Well, that'll be Mr. Frauchiger's second product of course, the Bernola L17 widebander. Under the Dafraud umbrella, he'd first launched the Purson DAC1 in 2013. That we'll review later this year. Today is Bernola time. And no, that's not a fruity granola from Bern whereas yes, one lone sentence about these speakers seems surprisingly condensed and nonchalant but... that's how our man prefers it. Really.


"There's not much I want to say about them. It's best to listen instead. They were built with the aim of authentic musicality. Although they are mid-sized, they like bigger rooms (80m² or bigger are fine) but they will work down to 20m². With at least 1 metre from the front and side walls, the more the better, they will reproduce a nice deep completely detached soundstage." That's all he said. I gently did a twisted Oliver—can I have some more?—but except for three ball bearings and three threaded inserts should a user prefer spikes, nothing more shook out; no unobtainium this, no proprietary that. How much can you tell about a speaker by just - er, listening to it? Actually, all you need to know. The rest is fluff, garnish at best. If your ears can't tell you, the rest doesn't matter. For once, a maker called it. Word!


Who is this man of few words? The Clint Eastwood of hifi? A trip to LinkedIn revealed that Daniel spent shy of four years as scientific assistant at the University of Fribourg before putting in 7 consulting years with APP, a firm that provides assistance for organizational processes, IT, strategy and project management. This he followed up with a year as project manager at Senox AG (software systems for domestic and medical tech), then another two years as management member of Audio Aebersold AG who handle hifi brands like AVM, KEF, NAD, Octave, Primare, PSB, Rega, Rowen, Ruark & Co. Hogging the director's chair at dafraud GmbH has occupied him for the last four years. Very enterprising. With Daniel due for an Irish holiday in April, I'd meet him in person. Perhaps I can add more garnish afterwards?

... to be continued...

Bernola website
dafraud website
Purson website