Lamm’s updated ML1.1 monoblocks ($22,690/pair) were on static display, the mighty ML2s driving a pair of Wilson Audio WATT/Puppy 7 speakers. vhttp://www.shows.soundstagelive.com/shows/ces2003/dly_jan09.shtml
The next stop proved there is more than one way to float the boat. Lamm Industries showed off their ML2 amplifier and L2 preamp to great effect. Lamm coupled them with some enormous vintage horn speakers, and Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata on vinyl washed over me with grace and beauty, causing me to re-evaluate my aversion to tube- and horn-based systems. American Sound constructed the turntable, a prototype, from blocks of solid steel. Despite its compact dimensions the base alone weighs in at 400 pounds! http://www.ultraaudio.com/features.shtml
THE EXPO 2003 and WCES’2003
Lamm Industries has setup at both the CES and T.H.E. Show to proudly display their products including one with the original Vitavox corner horns model CN191 driven by the Lamm single-ended ML2 amplifiers. Another setup will feature the original Siemens Bionor loudspeakers driven by a pair of the Lamm Industries ML2s. Both T.H.E. Show setups will use the American Sound turntable model AS-1000X with the SME model 3012-R pick-up arms as a source. Lamm’s CES rooms will have the critically acclaimed Wilson Audio Watt/Puppy 7 loudspeakers while the other room has Kharma’s Ceramique Reference Monitors. http://www.enjoythemusic.com/ces2003/preshow/
Going vintage are some Klangfilm Seimens Bionor hornspeakers from January 1960. Still mighty fine sounding decades later.
OK, so it isn’t a commercial product, but the Siemens Bionor horn loaded cinema speaker made by Klangfilm in Germany and dating back circa 1960 was for me a fantastic experience. Kudos to LAMM Industries Vladimir Lamm and distributor David Carmeli for going to a lot of trouble in order to display one of the greatest speakers of all time. Visitors were treated to glorious horn sound with stupendous dynamics and unbelievably tactile voicing. Relative to a modern audiophile favorite such as the Wilson Audio Grand Slam, the Bionor is of course a different “cup of tea,” but if I had the room and could find a pair, that’s what I’d be drinking.
Associated equipment included the LAMM ML2 power amplifiers and L2 Reference preamp. The LAMM LP2 phono preamp and American Sound turntable fitted with a SME 3012-R tonearm comprised the analog front end. The Weiss Medea DAC and CEC transport made up the digital front end.
Dick Olsher www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0303/olsher/
One of the biggest rooms at T.H.E. Show housed the Most Outrageous Loudspeakers, namely the eye-popping Siemens flat-front horn theater loudspeakers, powered by Lamm electronics sporting the tri-tipped 6C33C vacuum tube. These were rare, original 1960 speakers with about a 6-by-8-foot frontal area. The sound was quite enjoyable, and it was fun to watch the reaction of Clark Johnsen and many others to both the appearance and sound quality of these honking big mothers. Pictured [is]Vladimir Lamm.
Dave Glackin www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/0303/glackin/page2.htm
The Lamm room had their ML1.1 ($22,690, front left) 90-watt monoblock amplifier. Cabling for the system consisted of the Stereovox SEI. www.enjoythemusic.com/ces2003/saturday/
The Absolute Sound
LAMM Industries replaces the ML1 with the ML1.1 at $22,690. The user-friendly changes include a simplified procedure for idle current adjustment and balancing the output tubes, and a top-mount fuse holder for easier replacement. Other incremental changes are modified transformer and improved speaker posts.
[The Absolute Sound, issue 141 April/May 2003, page 57]
The Audiophile Voice
At the last hour I ran into Vladimir Lamm, the creator of the famous amplifiers by Lamm Industries. Since I was way behind schedule, I was in a hurry. Luckily for me, he would not have any of that. He politely guided me into the sweet spot, and had me sit and prepare to listen. At that point, knowing Vladimir, I realized I was in for a treat.
He put on an old Connoisseur Society LP of Ivan Moravec doing Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, and he had me. Captivated, amazed, and intrigued. Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered.
How come? You see, I was listening to 42-year-old speakers! They were the Siemens Bionor Loudspeakers. A two-way system, it consisted of a horn-loaded mid-range and tweeter unit and a horn-loaded cone woofer. Not too unusual…except that each side was seven feet high, a good 10 feet wide and at least five feet deep right behind the drivers.
What was bothering me was that I was listening to a decades old product and I was absorbed and involved. I had really expected that much more progress had taken place in the intervening years. It also occurred to me that, given the progress in amplification and playback, the designers of this speaker probably never got to appreciate just how great their accomplishment really is.
[Arnis Balgalvis, The Audiophile Voice, Vo. 9/issue 2, page 18]
Jeff Day (A) on January 12, 2003 – CES’2003 show impressions
You might be wondering what speaker stood at the very top of my personal podium at this years show. For my tastes it was the vintage 1960’s Siemens horns in the Lamm (http://www.lammindustries.com) room hands down. These big horns were about ten feet tall and fifteen feet wide each! There are a lot of small auditoriums that don’t have that kind of stage width! They had two 12” or 15” (not sure) drivers in each bass horn, paired with a mid-range / tweeter horn to cover the rest. They are a smaller version of the horns they used behind the screens in movie theaters back when, scaled down to fit in a home – a big home at that. They were discovered in Japan by David, purchased at a moments listen to just one of the speaker’s bass horn, and then taken apart and shipped over from Japan and set up for the show with a dedicated room which was specially built into a San Remo conference room to demo them to the show goers lucky enough to come into the room. The planned Vitavox corner horns they were going to use remained in a corner unheard. Maybe next year huh guys? Nothing in the speakers has been altered from their original manufacture, and with the Lamm gear they were absolutely stunning and played music better than any other system I have ever heard. The tonality was so natural and true to life it was enough to make a person weep and I nearly did—my eyes literally teared up listening to the majestic beauty of the big Siemens. Witnessing these Siemens speakers tells me that speaker building hasn’t advanced at all since 1960, in fact if you consider most speakers it has regressed considerably. Even Terry Cain, who makes extraordinary horn speakers, told me at Bob Crump’s after hour’s AA party that he thought the big Siemens were the best sound of the show. That’s extremely high praise coming from the normally reserved Terry, and he knows his stuff. I just want to say thanks to David and Mario for making it possible to hear these musical monsters, it was truly a Herculean effort to build a room and assemble the Siemens in them. The trip to CES was worth it just to see these speakers. Wow! If anyone was to make modern versions of these things, and you had the room to put them in (I don’t), I can’t imagine you would ever leave the house again. Hey, maybe the CAR guys or Terry Cain would like to take a crack at a reproduction? They’re probably the only ones in the USA that would have a chance of pulling it off. Whew! I am totally blown away! I ran into David and Mario in the coffee shop of the San Remo on the way out to catch a plane on Saturday and they invited me to New York to do some more listening. New York’s a long ways from Washington State but it would be worth it to hear these amazing speakers again!
Edp (A) on January 14, 2003 at 12:09:00 – CES – Hits and Off Targets
Hit – Lamm Seimens Bionor
The complete opposite of the Halcro/Wilson. Ease, emotive, technically flawed, audiophile gymnastics deficient, but it played music that had the ability to connect with the listener instantaneously. Could it do DynoStomp/Organ pipe bass – nope. Could it do the SACD 30Khz zing – nope. Could it present a realistic sized concert grand piano with tonal consistency across the entire scale – yep. Could it full output without compression/clip of a Soprano aria – yep. Could it do a Ellington big band live rendition of A Train with the full sized presentation imaging, not the scaled down micro sized razor thin version, – yep. Could it make you forget about stereo and multichannel, ditch it all
and go mono. yep. Great kudos need to go to the Lamm folks for the supporting electronics and the willingness to share the unusual gem. To me it spoke through the decades of speaker designers who knew something that has either never been learned or forgotten by many present speaker builders, myself included.
justacoder (D) on January 18, 2003 at 02:51:33
Lamm/Wilson room – Alexis Park
Lamm ML2 (sometimes) and Lamm ML1 (other times), L2 preamp, Stereovox cables, CEC transport, DCS upsampler, Wilson Watt/Puppy 7s. Surprise. The Wilsons sounding… musical? Very. The 7’s are known to be a definite improvment over the 6’s, by which it is usually meant that they have all the positive attributes of the ‘Wilson sound’ and won’t bite your ears off. In the Lamm room they sounded very nice – perhaps a little tame, missing a little bit of the Wilson slam and effusive detail, but keeping that Wilson refinement and putting the whole package to good use: making music. Neli says: “Lamms made the Wilsons sound gOOOooooOOOOd!”.
Lamm/Klangfilm Bionor ballroom-sized horn speakers
Lamm ML2, L2, CEC transport, American Sound turntable . These speakers are each approximately 10 feet wide by 8 feet tall. What can we say: huge sound, able to render big band sound in a realistic size and seperation. Very real and powerful with an ease that I had not heard before. But, I do not know what Neli was thinking but what I was really thinking was that this looked like it came out of an old movie theater and that if we had a room big enough in our house, I could put these speakers along the front wall, put a front projection video screen between them, and recreate Count Basie, Glenn Miller, Miles Davis on demand. OK, it was the last day of the show and I was tired. I thought it really showed a love of the hobby for these people to go to the trouble to bring in these HUGE speakers (they had to disassemble part of the external wall just to get them, still in many pieces, into the room), pay for a room to set them up in, and play tunes so that we can all share this experience.
Best of Shows:
Lamm room: Lamm ML2/ML1 amplifier, L2 preamp, CEC transport, DCS upsampler, Wilson Watt/Puppy 7, Stereovox cables.
Kharma room: Lamm ML2 amplifier, L2 preamp, CEC transport, DCS upsampler, Kharma 3.2 speaker and cables
Lamm/Klangfilm room: Lamm ML2 monoblocks, L2 pre, CEC transport, DCS DAC and upsampler, Stereovox cabling (most awesome demonstration system)
crisduro (A) on January 19, 2003 at 17:25:55
Lamm: with Kharma 3.2, without doubt one of the best sounds in all the CES. It is true that perhaps it only diminishes to 35Hz, but for me the important thing is not the quantity but the quality. And guys, this systems does things very, very well. MArk:9,5/A-