This review page is supported in part by the sponsors whose ad banners are displayed below

Srajan Ebaen
Financial Interests: click here
Source: 1TB iMac running OSX 10.6.7 with PureMusic 1.8 in hybrid memory play with pre-allocated RAM and AIFF files up to 24/192, Weiss DAC2, Burson Audio HA160D as DAC, Antelope Audio Zodiac Gold/Voltikus, April Music Eximus DP1, Burson Audio DA-160, April Music U3, Esoteric UX1/APL Hifi NWO-M
Preamp/Integrated: Esoteric C-03, ModWright LS100, Bent Audio Tap X
Amplifier: ModWright KWA 100-SE
, Trafomatic Audio Kaivalya, Octave MRE-130]
: Aries Cerat Gladius, Rethm Maarga, Voxativ Ampeggio, Zu Essence
Cables: Complete loom of Zu Audio Event, Entreq USB and Firewire cables
Stands: 2 x ASI HeartSong 3-tier, 2 x ASI HeartSong amp stand
Powerline conditioning: 1 x GigaWatt PF2, 1 x Furutech RTP-6
Sundry accessories: Extensive use of Acoustic System Resonators, noise filters and phase inverters
Room size: 5m x 11.5m W x D, 2.6m ceiling with exposed wooden cross beams every 60cm, plaster over brick walls, suspended wood floor with Tatami-type throw rugs. The listening space opens into the second storey via a staircase and the kitchen/dining room are behind the main listening chair. The latter is thus positioned in the middle of this open floor plan without the usual nearby back wall.
Review component: CHF16.450/pr in Switzerland, other countries will vary with currency exchange and VAT

For me Sven Boenicke is one of at most five speaker developers worldwide who presently advance our art with true innovation. That is the expert opinion of Joachim Gerhard, famous designer for Audio Physic and now boss at Sonics. Gerhard would have smiled at the Munich HighEnd 2011 debut of Sven's new $125.000/pr Orpheus SP 3.0. Milled from a solid block of Birch ply, it uses honey-comb cardboard blocks with tiny air tubes to control laminar flow through the massive back port and to avoid all wool damping.

This scheme effectively reduces internal reflections to a minimum and avoids the time smear from the rear wave migrating back out the front through the driver diaphragms. Despite being a very big four-way design, the filter network contains a mere two albeit ultra-quality parts. One is an extreme copper-foil choke to low-pass the 15-inch woofer at 80Hz. The other is a cast Duelund capacitor to high-pass the Raal ribbon tweeter with its custom Swiss Audio Consulting cryo'd silver-wire transformer. The 6.5" midrange and 12" woofer both operate full-range. Any amp thus connects directly to their voice coils.* Various jumper settings on a custom silver Audio Consulting attenuation transformer fine-tune the subwoofer's output. All drivers undergo in-house modifications. Those include C37 lacquer application to the diaphragms and baskets, Harmonix tuning bases on the magnets and solid Cherry phase plugs to replace their stock dust caps.

Preinstalled also are tuning tweaks like Bybee Golden Goddess quantum purifiers, Stein Music matching devices and Marigo Audio Labs VTS dots.


* The wooden lens around the midrange features a finely toothed edge as the Raal tweeter does with its Inox plate. Such irregular borders randomize edge reflections. The radial perf ring hiding surrounds and baskets of the two woofers meanwhile is a variation on the theme first introduced with the B10's wooden lens which covers the entire woofer except for its dust cap.

A year earlier at the Viennese KlangBilder show, Boenicke had his SLS model compete directly with live music. This allowed attendees a first-hand taste of what he considers his reference and aims to accomplish with all his speakers.

Far from lip service, Sven not only regularly attends live concerts, he records for his own B:There label with this microphone preamp from fellow Swiss audio extremist Serge Schmidlin of Audio Consulting (see our RoadTour for some background on Serge). Sven even experimented with costly glass rather than polycarbonate as carrier for his finalized production discs.