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14 Nov 2004: Yiannis Vlachos

Vlachos-system

By Lambros Valleras

Yannis is considered by many members of the club, more as a serious and rather idiosyncratic DIYer, than a normal (If this is possible...) Hi-Ender. In this spirit, his highly personalized systems that he puts together over the years, should be seen...

Although I arrived very early, the room was already filled with some of the more experienced members of the club, who don't miss a chance to witness something out of the ordinary. (If you consider out of the ordinary a system that is using a hand built main amp that has an old chest drawer as a chassis).

Everything, apart from the cartridge, turntable and modified CD player is DIY, including the beautifully strange looking flat cables that seem to have a paper dielectric.

We mostly listened to Classical music, but also to some jazz and even a great CAN album, which happens to be a favourite of mine. More LP's than cd's were the order of the day, but most of them were not in a pristine condition. How about the sound, you should be wondering... I'll start with the negative and proceed to the positive.

There is no deep bass at all. There is very little mid-bass and some upper bass makes it's presence in some recordings. There is very little treble as if you have switched off your tweeter.

There is not much feeling of depth or height information. Higher harmonics seem nonexistent. In high volumes, you feel as if the orchestra has lost it's body and acquire a rather screeching quality. But...

The sound seems to have no electric, electronic, artificial or even digital (with CD i mean) signature. It seems to emanate from some kind of time machine and not from a stereo system. It makes us forget about the hi-end and concentrate only on the music!

Heated discussions took place as usual, and for the first time in the Club history a vote took place about whether we should honor an invitation from a dealer-importer. The vote came up to be negative, due to the fact that several members of the Club had previous dealings with this dealer, which were very disappointing!

System Description

  • DIY, w/ 'Lowther 5' full range horn, driven by DIY 300B (General Electric) stereo amp and 'Phos Pro' by 'Petrakis' preamplifier
  • Analogue source: Alphason "sonata" t/t and a 304DL cartridge (amplified by valve phono stage by "Petrakis" 60db, w/ external p.su.) on an Alphason HR arm.
  • Digital source: E.A.D. 1000/E.A.D. 1000 HDCD tr/DAC combo.
  • Wiring: stock for interconnects and stock, w/ cryogenetically treated copper wire for speaker cables.
  • Power cables/Electr. install.: Not special.

And...

As usual, we also had a very good time eating and drinking. Some ate like they had two days to eat and some drank as if they had to forget what a bitch life is.

Altogether, we had a very nice time and we thank Yannis and Elsa for their friendly hospitality.

Yiannis Vlachos' Member Page

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