Tom F. (February 6, 2016)
" I’ve known Brian for 10 years. I had purchased some pre-loved equipment from him and had him custom modify some of my components to fine affect. My perception is that he is honest, does not cut corners in his design/modification work, and has a sound sense of design decisions that pay off in audio value. I feel there is hardly anything that Brian cannot design or fabricate.I had to have a serious listen when I learned that Brian was going to market his Concerto speaker. I found myself doing business nearby and spent an evening listening to his system and prototype Concertos on both digital and vinyl. I don’t have “golden ears” and I find enjoyment listening to systems of all different designs and price ranges. But, I do feel I am a discriminant listener and I have heard some very expensive systems at various audio shows. Brian’s Concertos were fabulous – dynamic, natural, continuous, with an impressively large soundstage and bass that went as deep and as taunt as one could possibly expect – all without special room acoustics, just a plain, moderately-sized living room. No Lowther “shout” or attenuation at either frequency extreme. I am certain the quality of his custom electronics all contributed to the sound. I left his house that evening thinking what I heard rivaled or exceeded anything I’ve heard at audio shows. I’m putting my money where my mouth is – Brian has a deposit from me on a pair of Concertos.
Here’s some thoughts on my Concertos after living with them for a month
“ I took delivery of Brian’s Concertos over the Holidays 2015. They were delivered in a single box approximately 4’ x 4’ x 8’. The shipping crate was constructed very well, and the speaker components were well protected inside of the box. I had the crate wheeled into my garage by the local delivery company where I could “de-construct” the box and remove the speakers at my convenience. I sent Brian pictures of the crate packaging. Once the crate was deconstructed, the removal and set up of the Concertos into my finished basement listening area was relatively easy. The maple base is the heaviest component of the 3 pieces. One needs two people to move the horn section merely because of its dimensions, but it is not that heavy. Once the enclosures got set up in my listening area, I fished my Kondo Copper speaker wire through the horn enclosure, connected the speaker wire to the DX4 Lowther drivers, and screwed the Lowthers into the horn enclosure with the screws Brian provided. The fitting is precise. It is obvious to my eyes that Brian built great precision into the labor-intensive cabinet construction. The Tractix curves are complicated, the black paint finish flawless (slightly “textured” by design), and, to my eyes at least, the lacquered maple horn surround and support base is a very nice contrast to the black horn enclosure. I had purchased from Brian the Lowthers (8-ohm version) separately, and had been breaking them in for a month before my Concertos were ready, but I could not play them very loud because of family considerations. Still, some break-in is better than none. My electronics paired with the Concertos consist of the Kondo KSL Nieiro 2A3 PSET amp, KSL-M77 pre-amp, KSL DAC, 47 Labs Flatfish (modded by Brian), and a Steve Dobbins Garrard 301 TT/Reed 12” 2A arm/ Koetsu Azule cartridge.These are superb speakers in my opinion. The Concertos are quick, dynamic, resolving, yet tonally rich, with a big sound and excellent sound stage. The highs are extended and natural; the bass goes satisfying low, and my guess is that the Lowthers will give even more as they continue to break in. I feel no need for a subwoofer. Being horns, the bass will benefit from corner reinforcement, however. The Concerto has a full range driver with no crossover; there is no issue with driver integration, the bass being “slow”, or whatever. There is no Lowther “shout”. Repeat…”no shout”. I know many manufactures tout the latest diamond/beryllium/graphene drivers in heroic enclosures. They can sound excellent; I’ve heard some of them and am not new to the high-end scene. The Concertos design, at first blush, seems much less technically advanced. But, the Tractix theory as executed by Brian in the Concertos just works to my ears; compensation for deficiencies elsewhere is not needed. The Concertos, to me at least, push multiples above their price point. The Concertos are truly unique in the market place are an end point for me, personally. I’m done. If you have the room for the speakers and can afford them, talk to Brian and see if you can hear them for yourself. Then compare the Concertos with what a similar sum, or even multiples thereof, buys you in the market place. I’ve personally known Brian for 10 years. He is a perfectionist, has a great ear, ethical, and wants his customers satisfied. That works for me."
HOME OF THE CONCERTO
Steve Farley (June 6, 2016)
"Over the last 45 years I have had the pleasure of listening to many loudspeaker designs. Planar, electrostatic and dynamic. For many years 2-way monitors were my reference account their imaging, soundstaging and coherency but I was curious of full-range single-driver systems. This brought about a visit to Charney Audio in N.J. I auditioned his Companion speaker with Lowther DX-55 driver. At first I admired the build quality of the cabinets. Gorgeous, finished craftsmanship and extremely unique in design. From the first notes of a Pat Metheny live in Europe cd I knew I was hearing the most dynamic, lifelike loudspeaker I have ever heard. Dimensionality, accuracy, tonality, coherency and musicality were all beyond any speaker I have heard. Bass extended into the 30's, treble into the stratosphere and midrange that is so light, fast and alive! This speaker is a sonic tour de force and a Must Hear for all audiophiles to hear!!! Bravo Mr. Brian Charney."
NYAS 2016: Sunday Near the Park With Ken
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