Show Report – Axpona 2016

Written by Ryan Scott on May 31, 2017. Posted in Vapor Sound News

For some time I’ve said, “If I can’t have a big room, I’m not doing the show”. Because honestly the bigger rooms are just such an advantage. The acoustics are better, but also larger rooms gives us space for displays and to have conversations with customers without interrupting listening. But Axpona show organizers putting us in a room with HVAC that sounded like a Harrier taking off last year (and charging a stupid amount of money for it) left a bad taste in my mouth. I honestly didn’t plan on doing the show at all, but the LampizatOr guys were persistent, so agreed to do a standard room with them.

I had always liked the Derecho, but didn’t love it. There was just a bit of a crunchy character to the upper midrange, just enough of a twinge in the ear to prevent you from complete relaxation. It’s something you could see in measurement data, but the options for high-efficiency cone midrange drivers are slim-to-none, so we lived with it knowing we did the best with the design we could. Then we noticed a Parts Express forum member experimenting with the driver, who noticed the same issue, but created a method to eliminate it by cutting thin slits in the cone and then coating them with damping compound. Well that’s exactly the type of geeky cost-efficient performance boosting that we love here, so we had him make us a pair for evaluation.

Long story short, problem solved. From slightly unrefined the midrange became smooth and romantic. There were NO negatives to the cone treatment, no crossover changes required, and it added nothing to the cost of a finished pair of speakers. So we couldn’t wait to demo them again to the public, which we did at Axpona 2016.

Show partners were the afore-mentioned LampizatOr, again with their Golden Gate DAC and their new Komputer music server. Amplification came from another St Louis based company, Musical Design and their steal of a deal $2995 T-100 hybrid amplifier. Mike Powell of Verastarr again provided cabling, and it performed flawlessly as always.

I’d characterize this room as warm and intimate, good resolution but without resolving capability being the first thing you notice. That’s always been the point of the Derecho, provide an inviting and dynamic sound that’s approachable to all … and now with the new midrange that’s exactly what it is.

Scott Hull of Part Time Audiophile thought this was the best Vapor setup he’s heard yet, and although it looks as if we received an “award”, I don’t know what it is exactly.

And another Audiophile Oasis award from Positive Feedback and writer David Robinson. Although, could someone please let him know the speakers are by far the most important piece of the chain 😉

Doug Schroeder of Dagogo, and Vapor Audio Joule owner, Reports on our room

As always, lots more reports to be found on the net but I’m feeling a bit lazy. It’s hard not to find it a bit amusing that in 20’ish shows and 8 years of doing them, Absolute Sound still hasn’t said a damn thing about us. Vapor doesn’t, and won’t ever, play the payola game.

Ryan Scott

Owner of Vapor Audio