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Decfest 2018 (Read 25118 times)
Palomino
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Decfest 2018
09/08/18 at 02:23:32
 
Ok, I’ll start.

Who’s going?

Looks like Steve has the room tuned up.  The new 25th. DNA horns.  Second listening room.  Beer and Devon’s cooking.  Should be a hum dinger.
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #1 - 09/08/18 at 02:40:38
 
I only will come if my demands are met.
1:  Good equipment
2:  Good people
3:  Good conversation
4:  Nacho chips
5:  Ice tea
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #2 - 09/08/18 at 02:58:51
 
Let's not forget Dan's ("Litefootdan") culinary bliss   Wink
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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #3 - 09/08/18 at 03:04:53
 
I didn’t want to assume “the Dan” would be cooking but yes a key component.  

Any chance you are coming Jeff.  Sure enjoyed the coffee last year.

Donnie I believe all your needs will be met except the tea.  No tea for you.
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #4 - 09/08/18 at 03:16:25
 
I sure want to Pal.  I am flying back from Scotland on the 3rd.  Flight time back to Los Angeles, time difference, turnaround to head up to E. Peoria...  Had I planned better I would have flown to Chicago from Scotland rather than back to L.A.  Then I can claim I came all the way from Scotland to Decfest 2018   Cool
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DPC
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #5 - 09/08/18 at 17:51:03
 
Still can't forgive myself for missing the very first one.  Have not missed one since and this year will not be an exception.

I want to meet this Donnie chap.  May be he can change my attitude on some issues. Cool
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #6 - 09/08/18 at 18:22:59
 
Cant miss me, I'm the middle aged overweight white guy. Lol
My reputation must proceed me, I'm a nice calm quiet guy.
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Randy in Caintuck
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #7 - 09/08/18 at 23:24:15
 
                     

                             


Count me in ..... if I'm breathing, I will be there .....

Everyone have a safe trip,
Randy

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Steve Deckert
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #8 - 09/09/18 at 04:59:42
 

You know, some of those red and blue and white strobing UFO's that we all saw are coming into the same locations in the sky!

If you're reading this tread and don't know what we're talking about with regards to UFO's, watch the video at this link:

http://fast.wistia.net/embed/playlists/ztxgllpo3b?media_0_0%5BautoPlay%5D=true&m...

It kind of captures the mood outside during the fest for those of us keeping watch!

Come this year and see what happens for yourself!

Steve
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #9 - 09/09/18 at 05:12:50
 
If you liked that video and want to see all of them, you can find them here:  https://www.decware.com/newsite/videos.html

We expect the whole abduction thing to escalate significantly in proportion to how much better the SE84UFO25 Zen Triode Anniversary amplifier is compared to the four amps they have abducted in the past.  :)

Steve

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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #10 - 09/11/18 at 18:15:40
 
Randy,

Will you be bringing something new to hear??  

I had a close call and thought I had to go to a wedding on Saturday so limited fest time for me.  Turns out I got the date wrong.  Whew.
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Randy in Caintuck
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #11 - 09/11/18 at 20:17:20
 


Hey Palomino,

As a matter of fact .....

https://www.decware.com/cgi-bin/yabb22/YaBB.pl?num=1536513951

Looking forward to seeing you .....

Have a safe trip,
Randy

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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #12 - 09/11/18 at 20:22:38
 
I'll take the big surprise behind door #2 Smiley
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #13 - 09/11/18 at 23:33:53
 
I'm thinking the big surprise is located in the new pole barn.
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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #14 - 09/28/18 at 02:19:17
 
My Deafest playlist if I can figure out how to get to it during the fest.


https://tidal.com/playlist/f42381b3-624d-4674-82f6-26a4d5a84304
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HockessinKid
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #15 - 09/28/18 at 20:01:39
 
Palomino,

Great looking playlist.  Just ask Steve to favorite this on his TIDAL webpage.  That should do it.

Getting psyched about the trip out, meeting the Master and Decware fans.  So looking forward to hearing the 25th Anniversary Zen to inform my next amp purchase.

HK
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #16 - 09/28/18 at 20:17:11
 

Yeah, using Steve's Tidal would probably be the best - I'm just not sure how to share playlists.

That said, I could try to pull all these in FLAC format if all else falls through.

I don't have a playlist this year, I've not really found enough "new" stuff that I want to listen to, and I'm sure you all are tired of me playing the same stuff for the last 5 years. LOL

Hell, I don't even have my system setup since Palomino has it!

Anyways, I'll be driving down Friday afternoon, I took the day off, and I hope to completely unplug from work. I'm super burned out and need a break.

I also have a couple batches of my home made mead I'd like to share, but I don't have a lot unfortunately. This latest batch I have is really, really good and the first one I'm actually proud of in the 3 years I've been casually brewing mead. So I'll bring what I have and hope for the best!  

Looking forward to seeing you all, and lounging around the shop all weekend.  :)  Also trying not to get my hopes up about the Polebarn, but I'm hoping it sounds amazing - I think a lot of you guys haven't really experienced 3D holographic sound as much as you think you have; it will absolutely ruin you once you hear it (audio ruination Smiley  )
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maddog07
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #17 - 09/28/18 at 21:15:53
 
Sorry to say I'm going to miss Zen this year.  Been every year since discovering Decware in 2011.  Ironic, or perhaps "not", Zenfest is the same weekend as RMAF (Rocky Mountain Audio Fest).  Exposure and discovery at RMAF in 2010 is what put me on the path to truth and righteousness, i.e. Decware and high-efficiency full-rangers.  
I also have some 'older' audio pals who want to attend at least one RMAF while they still can, and some younger pals who have never been, so I'm leading a caravan headed West Oct. 4.  
RMAF has grown exponentially since its inception in 2004.  It is now the largest consumer high-end audio show in the USA.  If you've never attended an RMAF... you should at least once.  It has proven to be good medicine for audiophilia nervosa.... and to bring peace and contentment to the audio tormented.  After you "experience" some $250,000+ systems and realize the sound you have based around your Decware and full-rangers is just as good or better than all but a couple of the megabuck systems - you'll develop a new found appreciation for what you already have.  And subsequent peace and contentment will come over you for at least a while before nervosa creeps in again.  ;D

Cheers to all the Zenfest attendees this year and especially the gracious hosts.  Take lots of pictures, good notes and reports to share with those of us who won't be there.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #18 - 09/28/18 at 21:56:31
 
I hope to visit RMAF one year, when it doesn't cross over with Decfest. I have family in Canon City CO, so I have even more reasons to go out west. Oh, and I'd like to visit Music Room one at PS Audio someday.

Safe travels out there! I'm kinda jealous!

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HockessinKid
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #19 - 09/28/18 at 22:11:04
 
Eric,

I think all Steve has to do is click on the TIDAL playlist link that Palomino provided while on his laptop.  Then he can save it as a favorite playlist.  That's what I did and it worked.

Look forward to meeting you next week.  Thoroughly enjoying your small form WiFi PC and TIDAL streaming with the ZDAC2 (modified TEAC NT-503).  No hiccups at all. Best sounding digital I've ever had in my system.  Almost rivals my vinyl playback.

HK
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #20 - 09/29/18 at 03:15:44
 

The TIDAL playlist... Got it. Couldn't have been easier!!  

Anyone else!
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #21 - 09/30/18 at 02:03:18
 

I have the DECFEST LIVE FEED updated, and am testing it tonight.  Please give it a watch and see what you think.

Thanks,

Steve


https://www.decware.com/newsite/zenfestcam.html
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #22 - 09/30/18 at 02:48:10
 
Not enough nudity to keep me interested. Lol
It sounds pretty good. Better than I remember from the past.
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Dominick
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #23 - 09/30/18 at 07:11:29
 
Here is my post from the Decfest forum:

At work now and tuned in like an hour ago when th was feed was live.  The clarity of the video was very good on my iPad.  I was using my BT Bose earbuds, and while not optimal, the sound was clean and full.

Had a few streaming issues, but I run my iPad through a VPN, and my WiFi signal was not the best, so that could account for the hiccups.  

Update:  Video feed got better when I got a stronger WiFi signal and turned off my iPad VPN software.  For those running mobile VPN software, I would recommend leaving it off.
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Brian
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #24 - 09/30/18 at 20:34:00
 
Anna's voice has an echo.
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #25 - 10/03/18 at 23:29:21
 
So anybody got anything going on this weekend? Cheesy
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deucekazoo
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #26 - 10/04/18 at 14:02:53
 
No not really. But I did hear there is this audio show going on or something like that this weekend!
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #27 - 10/04/18 at 16:45:42
 
Quote:
Look forward to meeting you next week.  Thoroughly enjoying your small form WiFi PC and TIDAL streaming with the ZDAC2 (modified TEAC NT-503).  No hiccups at all. Best sounding digital I've ever had in my system.  Almost rivals my vinyl playback.

HK


I'm so glad to hear that!  I'm very happy to know I can use my skills to make an impact in other's audio.

Now if I can just get more people to fill their room full of diffusers...LOL

See you at the fest!
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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #28 - 10/04/18 at 23:02:13
 
If I get a chance I will post some more playlists.  

The CDApS list is a smattering of everything I have compiled from AXPONA shows the last few years plus a few Decfest gems and a couple of Paul McGowan and Steve suggestions

Video/audio feed test was great and I concur that it sounds better.  Maybe it’s this new Zen Smiley

I’ll be dropping off my boat in Mackinaw and should be at the fest around 3:00.
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #29 - 10/04/18 at 23:42:34
 
I'm trying to finalize my plans. The weather is looking a little iffy to ride a motorcycle up tomorrow or Saturday, but I've been wet before.
Thinking about coming both Friday and Saturday, took Friday off and there is no good reason to waste it.
So if you see either a white BMW GS motorcycle or a white Jeep Grand Cherokee it is me.
I'll probably throw some of my Devil music on a stick to play sometime.
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Dominick
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #30 - 10/05/18 at 09:40:14
 
Sitting in Newark Airport at 4:30 AM with no coffee.   Angry
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #31 - 10/05/18 at 15:33:46
 
It looks like it is pouring in E. Peoria right now.
Hmmm maybe a car drive isn't that bad.....
But I'd rather ride up.
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Donnie
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #32 - 10/06/18 at 13:24:53
 
Time to get ready for another day at the 'Fest.
So far it has been real fun, Anniversary amp, DNA 2's, room with no back walls, Boom Box off!
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Dominick
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Still like that old
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #33 - 10/06/18 at 14:36:49
 
Last nights cigar was smooth.  Thanks Steve!!  

Finally got some breakfast this morning and much needed black coffee.   Grin.
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Palomino
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #34 - 10/07/18 at 16:12:35
 
My time as the fest was short again this year.  Friday night was mostly spent BS'ing.  Saturday morning I got up early to hear the 25th Anniversary amp paired with with the DNA 2s.  I find it hard to really evaluate an amp with lots of commotion going on.

I found the 25th to live up to its billing.  Its a very refined amp and when paired with the DNA 2s, it was pretty magical.  Very smooth, nicely detailed and what impressed me most was the way it put together such a coherent picture of the soundstage.  Instrument separation + micro detail make for a very engaging and enjoyable soundscape.

I listened to two voltage regulator tubes.  One sounded very "dreamy" in its presentation but the one I liked the most was the middle tube in the additional tube set (sorry, can't remember the type).  This gave me the detail I like.

I have always wanted a Zen amp so I figure this one might just be my birthday present.

I thought the modified ZMA also sounded very very good.  In fact, I had a hard time telling it apart from the 25th except that it could drive the speakers louder.

I mostly heard the DNA 2s but also thought that the HR-1s sounded great as well.  Unfortunately, I wasn't around to hear the other end of the room but I heard it on the live feed and could tell it was special.

I had Shazam going and will post my picks for best music.  Some are already added to the CDApS playlist.  Ziggy had my vote for best playlist.  You should figure out how to post that Bob.

For you guys who are interested in attending CDApS, please PM me and I'll be sure to let you know when the next one will take place.  I figure mid December will be the right timing.  Bad Wolf may have his 25th by then and we shall celebrate.
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Dominick
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Still like that old
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #35 - 10/07/18 at 19:29:28
 
I just want to thank Steve for his warm hospitality and for making my first Decfest a great experience! I will definitely be coming back next year!

After listening to the live feed for the past 5 years, it was awesome to be there in person to finally hear the magic.  I was amazed on how detailed and fast the 25th Zen sounded with DNA 2s.  The ZMA was just as impressive...and the added headroom was nice for listening to rock music at elevated levels.  After much consideration along with Roger’s help, the ZMA will most likely be my amp selection.  

Bob....thank you for spending some time with me to talk about my Err’s and for giving me a ride back to the hotel.  I’m glad the antics with my wife watching the live video feed, made for  some comic relief.  And yes....I plan to leave spare tubes scattered around my house for some suggestive hints on buying my new Decware amp when the time comes.  

Roger:  It was truly a pleasure.   All of your input was a huge help with me narrowing down which amp would with be the right choice for my situation.  

Randy:  I’ll email you the info on the Harpist.  I can’t believe how clean and detailed she sounded in the Zen room...Wow!!  It was a pleasure to meet and talk to you as well.  

It was just an all around great time.  






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Randy in Caintuck
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #36 - 10/08/18 at 16:00:07
 


Wow ..... I can't believe another Decware Fest has come and gone .....

As usual, the hospitality from Steve, DeVon and Bob was exceptional ..... as well as from the hard work of the rest of the Decware team that goes on behind the scenes.

The Anniversary amp, updated ZMA and new DNA speakers are for real.
Anyone who had some time to hear them when the "distraction factor" was low will attest to that .....

When the room was "flipped" and the SO Imperial bass bins were playing, I think it re-calibrated a few folks understanding of what bass really is ..... especially after our friend John discovered that somehow one of the speakers was wired out of phase .....  

It was a true pleasure to see many old friends and make quite a few new ones this year.

Lots of good new music to add to my library .....  

Friday and Saturday were both well attended and there was a good vibe and "audio buzz" that made the entire event a lot of fun.

Looking forward to Decware Fest 2019 .....

Happy listening,
Randy

 
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #37 - 10/10/18 at 03:20:28
 

As Randy suggested, and I would agree, this years fest was the best ever!  There was great energy all three days and the place was packed with happy people!

Bob and Randy came early like last year to prepare.  Randy brought some new Betsy Baffles that just look killer good and will be replacing the model that has been on the site all year.  Look for the new model around Halloween.

Bob updated his HR-1 speakers with a brand-new top driver that is for the first time completely crossover-less!  The update has shoved the sound quality up a whole plateau.  Driven reasonably well by the 25th Anniversary Zen Triode amplifier... I should say driven perfectly up to a normal listening volume without clipping but not a single dB more.  The ZMA and TORII's were simply magical with these new speakers.

Friday started early (as usual) and I had the new 25th Anniversary Zen Triode amplifier warmed up and paired with the new DNA2 speakers.  The combination was so compelling that unlike all previous years, no one asked to hear anything else until almost 12 hours later when the ZMA finally went in.  It is the ultimate testament to how great the amplifier is.  

Actually, the DNA2 and the updated HR-1's were almost the only two speakers played on Friday.  We also had a nice fire on Friday (and Saturday) night, and some tunes in the soon to be new wood shop.  With tons of rain in the forecast, we saw very little.

One of the fun things we did was play track one from the Squirrel Hillbillies first album on CD, which was quite good, and then I played a master tape of the same song that I made only days before when they were here and literally stood in person between the speakers in the Decware listening room and sang it. This made very clear the difference between 16/44 digital and analog master tape. Not only was there nearly 10dB more dynamic range, but the imaging was natural and believable. It sounded basically completely real.

There were also many great LP's played on my vinyl rig which I have to say is just stunning with the changes I made last year to the Fidelity Research silver coil cartridge. Some direct to disc 45 RMP masters sounded as good as the master tapes (if not better due to the glorious colorations of the world class moving coil cartridge). Listening to it turned a whole room of chatter-boxes into silent statues until the entire LP was finished, not once but eight times over the corse of a couple hours. These were played with the DNA2 and 25th Anniversary Zen Triode amplifier and then later on the ZMA and HR-1 combo.

The sound of these LP's is so powerful and dense that the entire experience sounds twice as good as literally everything else that preceded it all day... which is saying a lot because not a bad sound came out of the room all day. I was secretly cheesing big time!

So to have some fun, I thought I would blow some minds and I slipped Randys Open Baffle speakers in there in place of the DNA2 loudspeakers and dropped the needle on the record once again.  The sound was glorious.  Just as rich and big as the DNA2 and the look on people's faces was nearly priceless.  Of course the fun didn't stop there.  Randy of Caintuck Audio was in the adjacent hallway listening through the doorway and conversing with attendees and didn't notice that I had switched speakers to his own. I asked, "Hey, Randy... do you know which speakers are playing?" He replied "No... which ones?"  "Yours!" I stated, and the the look on his face suddenly matched everyone else's!

Dan, a world-class chef brought chicken for dinner and of course everyone had the same thought after tasting it which was how the hell does someone make plane chicken without any coatings taste 10 times better than regular chicken?  His food is just nuts...

The last solders staggered out of the room sans about 3:00 A.M. and the morning team was in around 5:00 A.M. to get some alone time with the 25th Anniversary Zen Triode amplifier.

On Saturday the place was packed. We ran out of parking again, just as we did on Friday. The bulk of the day was spent listening to the 25th Anniversary Zen Triode amplifier driving different speakers and then as the evening set in we flipped back and forth many times between these same two amplifier and speaker pairings.  Never before has the fest NOT been continuous and I mean continuous speaker and amplifier swapping all day and night.

Both of these amplifiers that occupied 97.4% of the fest are in a league that transcend anything we've ever offered in 25 years.

It's so sad that the gentleman who was hear on Friday, who wanted to hear serous bass didn't come back on Saturday!  Holy Crap, did we have a bass demo!  One of the guests and his lovely wife had very expensive gear with elaborate subwoofers and confided in me that he was still unhappy with the bass.  He hates boom, and loves deep tight bass that would be able to move the earth...

I thought, great... I don't have a demo set up to accomplish this just off the cuff.  I couldn't even in the pressure of the moment think of a good recording for the demo.  What demo...?  Imperial SO subwoofers.  A pair of 28 cubic foot folded horns at the west end of the decware listening room, for which the entire room and building was engineered to accommodate for flat node-less bass response down to 20 Hz.

In the panic of the moment I asked for suggestions and ended up with electronic bass music and then used it with the SE84UFO3 two watt mono blocks connected to the Zen Open Baffles parallel with the Imperial SO Horns.  This is an impressively musical demo that has captured the room in past years, so off we go...

After about 5 minutes of that, I could see we were demoing a modest volume, musically extended setup when this guest was really hoping to feel his balls shake. Thank GOD for Randy of Caintuck Audio!!!  Saved my ass again... slipped me a CD of Bela Flecks Hungry Hippo track.  An exquisite 6 string bass, keyboard, banjo track that both the amplifiers and the speakers liked enough to completely change the mood from failure to extreme success!

Everyone was marveling that a 2 watt amplifier can have such deep bass that you can feel in the concrete, as though there were a 500 watt subwoofer(s) staged around the room.  Then someone made the comment based on how outrageous this just was, that they would hate to hear what the ZMA would do on the same speaker setup!

Instead of dragging the ZMA across the room I suggested we just hook up the Zen TORII 60 watt Mono-blocks that were already setting right there next to the 2 watt amps.  30 times the power ought to be fairly obvious... and believe me it was!!!

I got it all hooked up and turned the amplifiers up just past 1/2 way and pressed play.  The first note of this track starts with a crack that felt like someone backed their car into the building. Then the incredible tone and texture of the bass just blew our minds now that it was easily 10dB louder than with the 2 watt amp, and as Randy said, the entire room just got a new reference for low bass.  It was perfectly linear as it dropped and so clean and rich and natural and glorious.  Frankly I've never even heard bass sound that good before, so when I looked over at my guest and his eyes were twice as big as the smile on his face, I knew we had hit a home run : ). God bless Imperial Folded Horns!

Besides the DNA2 and HR-1 the only other speakers that were played were the Omegas and the Zen Open Baffles, and the ERRx.

I have to say, that it is quite an honor to host such an event, and very humbling when so many people travel from all over, in several cases thousands of miles, just to hear in person what the Decware sound is all about, or what is new! Seeing nearly a hundred adults of all ages become kids again when they get here is not something I take lightly and is frankly why I can push myself and our products to continuously improve... it's where the energy and the commitment comes from, so for that I thank you all dearly.

Sunday after a nice breakfast, we spent some time listening to the ZKIT60, our solid state kit amplifier located in the DIY section of the Decware web site.  It sounded great paired with Bobs HR-1s and I am sure took several people by surprise.  Dan K., the designer has updated the chassis and was here to demo it all three days!

Another thing to watch for is a bluetooth ready portable rig that you can set outside when you camp, party, or just relax around the fire pit.  It has a sub and stereo speakers and sounds simply fabulous! It's so damn refreshing to hear a frequency balance where bass is the foundation to the music and the music is not played loud.  It's inviting, and pleasant.  If you read my rant on the General Audio section of this forum about Radios, you know what the alternative is and what I think about THAT sound.  Anyway it was a serious success and will be available on Etsy soon.  

I think of all the deep conversations that took place during the fest, from non-terrestrials to religion, cars, stereo, and music.  Just wonderful!  Thank you all so much for coming and happy listening!

Steve, DeVon and the entire Decware crew.










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BadWolf
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #38 - 10/10/18 at 21:57:43
 
My photos from the fest.

https://flic.kr/s/aHsmtA6XTC

This year I used a Widelux F7, Hasselblad SWC, and a Nikon FM2, all film cameras and entirely mechanical.

This fest really did have a great vibe. Thank you very much to everyone that made it possible!
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #39 - 10/10/18 at 22:38:21
 
Many thanks to Steve, DeVon, Bob, Randy and the Decware team to a most enjoyable first Decfest.  Thank you for the warm hospitality, great food, and just jaw-dropping listening experiences.  It was great getting to meet many regular forum posters and gaining insight from experience.

After listening to the live feed for several years, it was nice to experience things in person. As Dominic (fellow Jersey guy) noted, I was amazed on how detailed and fast the 25th Zen sounded with DNA 2s.  The ZMA w/ 25th Anniversary mod was just as impressive...and the added headroom was nice for listening to rock music at elevated levels.  

I got a chance to listen to the Omega speakers at length with both the 25th Zen and modified ZMA.  While the Zen is a truly special amplifier, the mystery amp was simply a better match for these speakers.  This surprised me given the high sensitivity of the Omega speakers, but it's not all about sensitivity.

So, I'll be sending in my ZMA amplifier when Steve gets delivery of the Nichicon capacitors, hopefully early in 2019 Wink

Dominic, I enjoyed our conversations.  Amplifier decisions are not easy, but I've been so damn happy with my ZMA I have no problem recommending it to others.  I wish you well with your audio/theater room build.  I encourage you to tap into folks here on the forum for guidance, they have a ton of knowledge.  

Randy and Bob, it was a real pleasure meeting two very talented speaker designers.  The DNA2 and Betsy's are both great speakers. Paired with the 25th Zen they make amazing sound.  Randy, please keep us all abreast on availability of the Wild Burro alnico drivers in your Betsy speakers.  Something tells me that they will be very special.

HK
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #40 - 10/10/18 at 22:45:45
 
Very nice photos, thanks for sharing.
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #41 - 10/10/18 at 22:56:12
 
Bad wolf,

Great pictures...Thank you for posting, love the B&W, always have.

Best Scott
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #42 - 10/10/18 at 22:59:31
 


Thanks Steve for the kind words about the Betsy baffles .....

I thought that they sounded good too, but it's always best to let someone else comment on the sound.  The fact that they were even sitting in the same room with the DNA2 speakers made me happy.

The DNA2 speakers are world class by any standard .....

Just a slight correction on the Bela Fleck bass tune ..... the name is "Flight of the Cosmic Hippo", not "Hungry Hippo" ..... although truthfully, I like Steve's name for it better than the original .....

As Steve mentioned, there will be some new two tone Betsy baffles available in the near future.  I brought a couple of the prototypes to the Decware Fest and will provide a sneak peak of what a few of them will look like.

When I sat them on the shelf at the Fest, someone referred to them as the "Three Amigos" .....



I am planning to have something that will fit in with almost any decor.
There are about ten different options on the drawing board and I hope to have them all available before January 2019.

As much fun as the 2018 Decware Fest was, the only way to improve it would have been to make it a week long event .....

Happy listening,
Randy

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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #43 - 10/10/18 at 23:05:28
 
Thanks BadWolf, now I can prove that I was actually there to my wife and not running around with East Peoria hussys like she has been suspecting.
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #44 - 10/11/18 at 00:40:55
 
BadWolf, thanks for the pics!  How about some captions so we know who everyone is.   Cheesy
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #45 - 10/11/18 at 01:54:00
 

Badwolf, those are simply killer images!  Every one makes it look like the event happened 100 years ago in 1918.  Sweet!

Thanks so much for taking them!

-Steve
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #46 - 10/11/18 at 21:06:33
 

I absolutely *love* the film photos! with as low light as we had, I'm impressed so many of them came out as well as they did! Well done!


Thanks again, Steve and family for letting us invade the shop! It was such a casual, relaxed weekend which I needed very badly. Amazing turn out even on Sunday!  Great food, thanks Dan!  Great conversations as always with the "extended Decware family", new faces and old.

I'm glad so many people got to hear the 25th Anniversary amp - I've been saying how special it is since Steve experimented on my little Zen. I can't say enough about how great this amp sounds and how you can dial it in from dreamy to detailed just by swapping out the regulator tube. I didn't hear a bad thing out of that amp all weekend, she put on a great showing. I was pleasantly surprised to hear how many people had already ordered them, even *before* Decfest!

The modded ZMA sounded great too, I didn't get as much time with it as I wanted, but from what I heard it did what I expected...it had some of the purity that the 25th Anniversary Zen has, but the horsepower and consistency the ZMA is known for. Trusting Steve when he says the ZMA is much closer to the 25th now, (even before hearing the modded) I brought my Mystery amp in and set it at his feet and said "please sir, make mine sound pretty too!". I didn't need say anything as Steve had a knowing grin as soon as he saw me huffing the big case in the shop. You really can't go wrong with either amp, and they still do their own thing so I'm very glad I'll have both Zen and ZMA!

When I go to Decware, either to visit Steve, pickup/drop off gear, or for Decfest, I tend to (try to) not pay too much attention to speakers, as I'm very happy with my MG-944 and El Camino speakers. But this Decfest it couldn't be helped!

Speaker wise, I was very, very pleased with the sound of the updated HR-1 speakers (or HR-1.5? or HR1R? whatever Bob's going to call them).  They sounded faster and fuller and matched up with both the Zen and ZMA well, though the ZMA of course had the horsepower to warm them up properly.  I suggested to Bob to maybe see if he likes the sound of the tweeter he uses in the El Camino speakers in a pair of updated HR-1, as I have a feeling that will sound really good with a different dispersion pattern and maybe smoother at the top end.  Overall, the updated HR-1 just sounds like it was made to handle the detail of the updated amps!

I've been spoiled by having heard the DNA2 for a while now, since I've visited Steve a few times this year, so it was no surprise to me that they sounded so effortless and clear. I'm glad others got to give them a good listen, because to me they are just another evolution of that Decware speaker sound. I don't think there was any doubt that they sounded better than the DM947 (monoliths). It had me asking Bob how I could possibly get a pair, especially since I like detailed two way speakers.

Then there is Randy's Betsy Baffles - as usual, punches way over it's pricepoint, and somehow the most musical speaker in the room. While I'm a detail fanatic that loves super high frequency extension and spatial cues that go along with it, I kept wanting to hear more of the woody musical tone of the Betsy Baffles.

Basically all three speakers were very enjoyable, each doing their specialized thing, and I was wishing I had all three sets at home! Ugh.

I did get to hear the Imperial SO for a bit, and it still boggles the mind the sound they get.

There was a bit where we listened to the venerable Corner Horns, and while they always sound amazing (at one point the bass was like BIG fireworks off in the distance where you eagerly anticipated the wump......BOOM), I felt that the latest iteration of speakers available at Decware kept me from scheming about how to build my own pair. That surprised me since the corner horns were always those unicorns you wished for but could never have...and now I was starting to feel like they were neat, but I'd rather have the current lineup!  

Anyways, the people and conversations were really what make the weekend, and this weekend was a great one for sure. It helps that the gear across the board was just all above and beyond exceptional...which certainly gave us a lot to talk about!
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #47 - 10/11/18 at 21:16:07
 

My Non Fancy, cell phone photos can be found here:

https://lonelyraven.zenfolio.com/p107696868

Here are a couple of highlights.

My brother texted me to ask what I was doing, and I sent him the below photo...he asked..."are you in church?".  Of course I responded "church of audio!"



























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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #48 - 10/11/18 at 21:36:28
 
Lonely,

Great pictures, Thanks for posting, wish I could have made the event.

Best,
Scott
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Re: Decfest 2018
Reply #49 - 10/11/18 at 21:55:23
 
Going back to Steve’s post ++1 on the boom box.   I have built 5 or 6
of these and none had the bass of the unit at the fest.  I did not think you could get that kind of bass outdoors and at a low volume.  It was very enjoyable.  I even built one with a subwoofer cabinet integrated into the box and still didn’t get that sound.
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