The DC Hi-Fi Group

DCHFG January 2019 Meeting

With all the excitement of the Holidays and CAF 2018 behind us, DCHFG members congregated to trade stories about their latest gear acquisition and other Hi-Fi topics.

DCHFG President, John Gatski, brought the meeting to order and provided updates on possible future meetings and events. We are still hopeful that we will be able to visit the Furnace Records Plant and local audio legend Conrad Johnson in 2019.

John Gatski provides DCHFG updates

DIY subgroup co-chairman, Paul Elliot, gave a presentation on the latest solder tools and techniques and demonstrated the mini solder tool he is now using. Chris Barker was present but resting on his DIY laurels.

Paul Elliot discusses Soldering

Amar Krajvansh, Headphone subgroup chairman, gave an exciting update on his new line of headphones he and his partner will launch in early 2019. A prototype was on hand to audition. The target price is $899. More details to follow!

Dr. Vinyl, aka Jose Ramirez, updated members on the $3,800 Sutherland Phono Loco phono stage.

Russ Katz, president of The Vinyl Revivers, presented a preview of the Dr. Feikert line of turntables with a focus on the $3,500 Volare.

John Gatski prepares the audio demo for the afternoon
New Benchmark DAC3-B being supported by a very early sample of the Sutherland Phono Loco preamp

Thanks to all that attended!

How Good is your Hearing?

I was watching one of my favorite Youtube channels about music production (Rick Beato) and he showed how his music intern who was trained at Berklee, has perfect pitch, and can hear a 18k sine wave did when she took an audio test at NPR.

So, take the audio test at NPR and watch the Rick Beato video and report back on the DCHFG forum how you did. Good luck!

DCHFG Holiday Party 2018

Boy does time fly by when you are having fun!

DCHFG celebrated its third holiday party on December 8th where members gathered, along with significant others, to enjoy a festive meal and reminisce about the significant Hi-Fi events of 2018.

DCHFG President, John Gatski, invited CEO Dave Kelley of the newly revived KLH Speakers to demonstrate the very reasonably priced ($1299) KLH Kendall floor standing speakers. Dave Kelley previously worked for Klipsch Speakers for many years. It would  seem transducers are his passion.

KLH Kendall powered by Pass Labs Integrated Amp

Considering the sound quality and fit and finish, many people would price these speakers in the multi-thousands of dollars. In fact, the price has been further reduced for the holidays to $974 making them an incredible bargain!

DCHFG President John Gatski seems pleased by the sound of the KLH Kendall Speakers
DCHFG Members listen intently to the KLH Kendall Speakers

With 2018 rapidly winding down we have 2019 and all the exciting future products to look forward to.

I would personally like to thank John Gatski for all his hard work shepherding DCHFG to the 150 plus members we have today and a big thank you to all the DCHFG members for their support and camaraderie.

Happy New Year!

DCHFG Rummage Sale Success!

The long delayed chill of Fall arrived on the morning of the first annual DCHFG Rummage sale. DCHFG members and select outside vendors dug deep into their basements and closets to bring forth wondrous Hi-Fi gems from the past. Every category of audio playback gear was represented. Stylish Bang & Olufsen BEOVOX S 75 SPEAKERS were on display recalling a time when B&O was the arbiter of design before the modern reign of Jony Ive and Apple Computer.

Vinyl sales from several vendors were brisk. Other shoppers focused on vintage tube gear. Many speakers were on sale ranging in price from $15 dollars a pair to Martin Logan Electrostatic models.

Some young Hi-Fi enthusiasts were spotted carefully surveying the best bargains and choosing their first Hi-Fi rig from all the goodies on display.

From the attendance and positive comments it would appear the DCHFG Rummage may become an annual event?

For now, all eyes are focused on the DC Hi-Fi event of the year taking place November 2-4, 2018 at the Rockville Hilton. See you there!



DC Hi-Fi Group September 2018 Meeting

With the advent of Fall, DCHFG moved to a new venue in Alexandria, Virginia. The prepared demo featured the Amphion Argon 3S speakers, Prism Sound Callia USB Audiophile DAC and Pre-amplifier, and the DIY Amp Camp Amp Class A amplifier.

With no advanced planning, the little amplifier that could was able to drive the Argon 3S speakers to a pleasing level in a relatively large room. Many DCHFG members were impressed by the transparent sound of the 8 watt amp in combination with the Callia DAC. Music files were sourced via Tidal High Resolution streaming using an Essential PH-1 Phone. The audio was streamed using the phone’s usb output using the excellent USB Audio Player Pro app.

The Amp Camp Amp was recently built by DCHFG member Chris Barker. It features a Mosfet Class A based design by the legendary audio designer Nelson Pass. Several other DCHFG members have either purchased the kit or expressed a desire to do so. A discussion thread for DCHFG Amp Camp Amp builders is ongoing at the DCHFG forum.

Continuing in the DIY amp mode, the Argon 3S speakers and Callia Dac were paired with a DIY amp using an ICEpower 50ASX2 self contained amp module in a Ghent Audio case. With more reserve power, there was no issue driving the speakers. Again, many DCHFG listeners were impressed by the sound of this modestly priced DIY combination.

Everyone enjoyed the gourmet pizza lunch that was provided.

DCHFG members are now gearing up for the first annual rummage sale on October 14th which is open to the public. See you there!