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News and Reviews at The Audio Classifieds

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Always smiles at Bottlehead

Dan and Eileen Schmale are ever the convivial host and hostess for the monthly DIY Meetup at Bottlehead Electronics in Bainbridge Island, Washington. After tech chat and getting caught up on the latest tube adventures, we headed upstairs to sample what is cooking in the chef's kitchen. Dan's speakers now inhabit dense and striking birch cabinets, having graduated from the initial MDF material. According to Dan, the birch wood transmits energy in a much more appealing fashion, compared to the energy-absorbing MDF.  At present the crossover is stationed on an external platform, although an internal configuration is planned as an option.

We listened to Tape Project's Mozart Piano Concerto in C Major by the Seattle Symphony on a rich reel-to-reel Nagra that sports Bottlehead's latest, first-class repro preamplifier. In addition, we heard cuts from Mondo's recent release of soundtrack from "Twin Peaks."

The speaker presents straight on in no-nonsense fashion, with a solid bedside manner. Listeners enjoyed themselves and became occupied with sporting the various amplifiers at their disposal - a very good sign when you are developing speakers. We listened to digital, tape, and vinyl. The speakers reported the typical edginess that accompanies the digital world, but we were treated to a vinyl contrast of intimacy, and finally grand horizon of sky one often experiences when tape hits the tapehead. A speaker that doesn't get in the way of what's coming across the signal is worth remarking on.

All in all, it was a great visit to Bottlehead and worthwhile afternoon to try out Dan's speaker undertaking.
Interested in the CES of the Pacific Northwest
Let's Meet Up at the Bottlehead DIY Meetup tomorro...