AHB2 & Martin Logan ESL 11A - Axpona 2018, PartTimeAudiophile.com

May 21, 2018

AHB2 & Martin Logan ESL 11A - Axpona 2018, PartTimeAudiophile.com

"A well-curated sound system"

"Audiophiles like smoothness. Audiophiles don’t like rough edges, bumps or dips in frequency response, falloff in off-axis listening, hot treble, or exaggerated bass. Linear playback without attention being drawn to any particular part of the bandwidth is the hallmark of well-designed components, and a well-curated sound system, one that works well together as far as I am concerned."

"That’s what Benchmark Media had put together in Chicago for AXPONA this year in room 670 at the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel: a smooth, curated system... to showcase their AHB2 power amplifier, running here in bridged-mono mode and being directly driven by their DAC3 HGC DAC/headamp/preamp.  "

"At 91dB efficiency, and four ohms nominal impedance, and powered bass units, the ESL 11A presents a unique challenge for amplifiers in the way the signal is handed off, since the bulk of the work is going into making sure those big curved ‘stat panels are being given not only the watts they need to perform best, but the current as well. Here the AHB2’s linear amplification design excels, as a pair running in bridged-mono delivers 480 watts into six Ohms, and 29 A (peak) of current/channel."

"Whether there was rock, jazz, classical, or even electronic playing while I was in the room, the Benchmark DAC/Pre/Power combo had a way with digital files that seemed to never put a foot wrong, and maintained a balance between resolution, dynamics, and believable acoustic warmth in instruments, and vocals."

- Rafe Arnott, PartTimeAudiophile.com

Read the entire review →



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