"A well-curated sound system"
"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. "
"The ESL 11A presents a unique challenge for amplifiers... 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."
HRA System - "One of the most rewardingly clean, natural, and engaging sounds at the show"
"At under $10,000 total, this system offered one of the most rewardingly clean, natural, and engaging sounds at the show."
"From the soup of the DAC2 HGC, AHB2 amplifier, and SMS1 monitors to the nuts of the speakers stands and system cabling, everything in the room was produced and sold by Benchmark. This was my first experience of listening to how the company actually intends their gear to sound."
"AXPONA presented me with my first chance to sit down and listen to something familiar. A neat Bruce Brown reworking of Neil Young’s “Old Man” hit the hard drive, and we took the system for a tear-jerking spin."
"Hearing it all put together makes clear just how massively Benchmark has refined their skills."
- Mal Kenney, Part-Time Audiophile