Dear Caelin and Grant, This is a "follow up" letter and comment to the comments that I had originally left for you about my experiences with the Shunyata HYDRA V-RAY. After I left those comments for you, I had purchased a second V-RAY, so that I could use one for my analogue front end components on a dedicated line and another for my digital components on a separate dedicated line. The improvements in sound were not subtle! They were an order of magnitude better than just upgrading the HYDRA to the V-RAY. I did not think, from a power conditioning standpoint that things could get any better than that!
Was I wrong! I recently took delivery of two Shunyata V-RAY II model power conditioners for my system's front end. (One for analogue and the other digital on separate dedicated power lines.) My expectations were somewhat muted, as what I had before had sounded most excellent, but boy was I wrong! The improvements wrought by your updated design were transpiring! The first thing that I had noted was an increased sense of relaxation when listening to music. This sense of relaxation came from a heightened awareness of the music sounding more like music. The bass is not only more pronounced, but articulated in a more harmonically correct manner. The instruments and voices now also sound more harmonically rich and dense. There is more detail, not etched, but the natural harmonic kind. The vocalist sounds more human singing in the room, a guitar sounds more like a guitar playing in the room, and so forth. Many lyrics that were once obscured are now laid bare. The sound stage is now a bit wider and deeper, and the images on that sound stage are even more focused with a greater sense of ambiance or "air" between the instruments and the vocalists. If I was happy with the sound of my audio system before, I am now on cloud nine!
There are two salient points that I would like to make. The first is that I am the owner of Mark Levinson "Reference" electronics (Transport, DAC, preamp, and amplification) that was manufactured under Madrigal Audio Labs. I love how my electronics sound, how they look, and how they operate "as one" with their ergonomics and interconnectivity. This equipment, which I had purchased new, was and is an investment in pleasure and not as a "flavor of the month" impulsive purchase. I have lived with my current electronics for about a decade and I am not motivated to change. I am very content to live with what I have. Sure, there may be better gear that is currently produced that does one or two things better than what I own, however when I take the whole package into account -- the sound, looks, and interconnectivity, I am remorse to make any changes. This is where your equipment comes into play, not only in my system, but for many audiophiles, especially in these recessionary times, who for whatever reasons, are keeping the electronics that they currently own -- your series V-RAY II allows all of us to enjoy what we currently own and allows our electronics to perform at even a higher level than ever! In this regard, I have viewed my original V-Rays to be the "heart" of my audio rig and that thought solidifies even further with the V-RAY II models that I now own and enjoy! In the rare even that I change my electronics, I know that my V-RAY II's will elicit optimal performance from whatever electronic component that may be plugged into them! Thank you for allowing me to continue to enjoy my current electronics by allowing them to perform at a higher level than I ever imagined!
The second point is that before I took the plunge to the V-RAY II status, I was able to discuss the new & V-RAY designs with Grant, as well as with Chris (The gentleman who built these new V-RAY's for me). My livelihood involves dealing with hand made collectibles, and as such my wife and I have a heightened appreciation for hand made objects and objects of art. Your products fit perfectly into our aesthetic. They are hand crafted. By being able to talk with you have made us feel even more special and appreciate what you have created! I could not imagine doing this with Monster Cable or Sony for example! (Imagine talking to the gentleman who is building your Monster power conditioner! Not only would this be a dream, but an impossibility!)
Everyone likes to feel special and appreciated, your products fit that bill, as it is not only what you are crafting, but the personalities behind them. In these times where everyone lives in similarly designed homes, drives similar looking autos with no more chrome or personality, wears similar clothing purchased at identical stores in all of our "cookie cutter" suburban strip malls and so forth, our audio systems help to make us audiophiles, who play in '"the high end" feel special. Shunyata does that in a big way. Those of us who are fortunate enough to own and enjoy your equipment know and understand a level of enjoyment that is only experienced by a relative small handful of music and film lovers around the globe. You are special -- as designers, and craftsmen, as a result you have special products that as a final result allow the end users to feel very special, both in pride of ownership and pride of unsurpassed performance.
In summation, thank you for your continued research and resultant products that make our entertainment systems that much better and more enjoyable!
PS. I can't wait to try your new KING COBRA and ANACONDA CX power cables in my audio system!