January 6 – 9, 2015
Our gratitude: A big thanks to my good friends: Bruno Putzeys of Mola-Mola, for bringing his remarkable prototype DAC, Laurence Dickie and Philip Guttentag of Vivid Audio for their unfailing support, and Caelin Gabriel of Shunyata Research for going the extra yard to help us achieve absolutely first class sound with the best of the best amongst his staple of cables at the Venetian Hotel. Special thanks to Jayson Lloyd of Audio Elegance for helping with the set up of our rooms and Peter Ledermann of Soundsmith who lent us his absolutely superb Hyperion flagship moving-iron phono cartridge for our Luxman PD-171 turntable. This Soundsmith / Luxman combo produced some excellent sound which smoked the digital files in our listening rooms, in case you were wondering! Last, but certainly not least, a big thanks to Steve Rochlin of EnjoyTheMusic.com who streamed a live broadcast for us at the show. Continue reading
“Importer On a Higher Note, over which presides the genial Philip O’Hanlon, a man with impeccable and seemingly universal taste in music, had two rooms, the larger of which showed off the capabilities of a fine system featuring Luxman’s exceedingly cool, retro PD-171 turntable and integral tonearm ($6400) with a Soundsmith Hyperion moving-iron cartridge ($7500), the Mola-Mola Makua preamplifier ($13,400, optional internal phono stage adding $2,500, internal DAC’s price not determined) and Kaluga mono power amps ($18,000/pair, 400 watts each), Vivid Audio’s Giya G3 speakers ($40,000/pair) and Shunyata cabling and power conditioning/distribution. Digital was sourced from O’Hanlon’s laptop.
When I first stopped by, Philip was playing a marvelous version of Illinois Jacquet’s “Birthday Party Blues” from the Groove Note 45rpm LP. I listened casually for a couple of minutes and was slowly but surely drawn in to giving the music my full and undivided attention. This happened with everything I subsequently heard through this system. Nothing jumped out, but the basic rightness of music through it inevitably took the day. The word captivating comes to mind. Continue reading
“… I can tell you that these amps should drive anything. They are rated 400 watts into 8 ohm, 700 watts into 4 ohm and 1200 watts into 2 ohm. These amps are dead silent and the noise floor is nonexistent. A tiny little button in the front turns it on and all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the music, which I did even though they are not tubes. They are about as neutral as anything I have ever heard and the dynamics are beyond unbelievable. Continue reading
“I mention all of this because not only was the On A Higher Note room one of my favorites of CES 2015, Philip O’Hanlon had an interesting A/B comparison in store for us, as usual…” <more>
“Go hear Tower of Power,” said Jon Iverson, “on the 35th Floor of the Venetian. See Philip O’Hanlon and tell him I sent you.”
“What is the Tower of Power?” I asked.
“You’ll see when you get there,”he said.
“I found Philip O’Hanlon in the ‘On a Higher Note’ exhibit room…The sound was fast, detailed and rich in timbre. The preamplifier (Mola-Mola Makua) had a new internal DAC designed specifically for that unit by Bruno Putzeys…” <full article>
Philip O’Hanlon & Mola-Mola’s co-founder & designer Bruno Putzeys tag team in presenting the On a Higher Note room at CES 2015 with all the exciting gear, news & music for the two systems.
Tune in to hear Bruno talk about Mola-Mola’s revolutionary Makua preamplifier ($13,450) with optional phono stage, DAC, PCM & DSD tone controls…
Scott Warren from Advanced Home Theater in Texas was one of the first dealers that helped his customer purchase a set of Mola-Mola preamp and monoblocks combo. Michael Lowe gave us the above testimonial and started a couple threads in our friend, Steve Williams’ What’s Best Forum discussing these components.
Here are the two threads he sent us for those who are interested in joining in on the conversation:
January 7 – 10, 2014
Mirage Penthouse Suite # D44
Venetian Hotel # 30-317
This year marked the 13th anniversary of our participation at CES. A moment of truth came to me about what “A Higher Note” means. We also conducted the “Quietest Demo” in history to prove a point about Eclipse TD’s speakers to the press and that demo definitely made an lasting impression. We unveiled Luxman’s new 900 series and Vivid’s Baby Giya, the G4’s. Mola-Mola’s showed its prototype DAC and the press had fun fidling with it. We also announced our new relationship with Einstein Audio as their exclusive distributor for North America. Details of our show report and the above are here.