TechDAS Air Force Zero in Hong Kong AV Show 2019

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#1
Since I have not noticed there is any coverage of this event, I would like to make a brief report. Hong Kong is undergoing an unrest time, probably not many participants had the interest to post it.

I have been to AF0 event in Tokyo in April and Munich in May. The one in Hong Kong was as good as if not better than the previous two events. The speakers were Wilson Audio Alexandria XLF and Thor's Hammer driven by CH Precision M1.1 amp. Phonostage was two CH P1's and X1. Nishikawa san played similar LP's in all his demos. I found no deficiency in the sound. Everything was just right.

All the people I had talked to after the demo, there was not a single one said he was not impressed. The Hong Kong AV Show, as usual, was fairly crowded. That made it difficult to play classical music with quiet passage as the room was noisy. Apart from that, all pieces played were very good.

TechDAS continued to fine tune AF0. The turntable was slightly different in every show. Nishikawa san said a lot of improvement were made in the electronic components. The actual production will start in October. 10 pieces will be made. Three are going to the United States, (one buyer actually moved to UK recently, so that one will eventually ends up in UK), three will be sold in Japan, three will be shipped to Thailand. The last one is for self use.

Tango, are you having one? IMAG2849.jpg
 
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Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
2,955
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Bangkok
#2
Since I have not noticed there is any coverage of this event, I would like to make a brief report. Hong Kong is undergoing an unrest time, probably not many participants had the interest to post it.

I have been to AF0 event in Tokyo in April and Munich in May. The one in Hong Kong was as good as if not better than the previous two events. The speakers were Wilson Audio Alexandria XLF and Thor's Hammer driven by CH Precision M1.1 amp. Phonostage was CH P1 and X1. Nishikawa san played similar LP's in all his demos. I found no deficiency in the sound. Everything was just right.

All the people I had talked to after the demo, there was not a single one said he was not impressed. The Hong Kong AV Show, as usual, was fairly crowded. That made it difficult to play classical music with quiet passage as the room was noisy. Apart from that, all pieces played were very good.

TechDAS continued to fine tune AF0. The turntable was slightly different in every show. Nishikawa san said a lot of improvement were made in the electronic components. The actual production will start in October. 10 pieces will be made. Three are going the United States, (one buyer actually moved to UK recently, so that one will eventually ends up in UK), three will be sold in Japan, three will be shipped to Thailand. The last one is for self use.

Tango, are you having one? View attachment 56001
Dear TLi,

I dont have 30 years audio experience like ddk, gian, MikeL. My previous purchases were to "learn" and gain living experience with top equipments. Only this past year I have found "my" truth and approach in sound. If the AFzero were coming out earlier I would probably buy it. Now there is something about a "simple" sound and simple living aspects of the AS2000 that bring peace in me with tt. I know where two of the three coming to Thailand goes to. The third one I am not sure who is a fortunate owner.

Kind regards,
Tang
 

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
854
419
63
#3
Nishikawa san played similar LP's in all his demos. I found no deficiency in the sound. Everything was just right.
Thanks for your report, TLi. Do you recall some of the LP highlights? With this top-of-line system I'm curious about the music chosen to show it off.
 
Likes: bonzo75

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#4
Thanks for your report, TLi. Do you recall some of the LP highlights? With this top-of-line system I'm curious about the music chosen to show it off.
The usual favorites are Belafone at Carnegie Hall, Miles Davis, Teresa Teng and some Japanese singers that I am not familiar with.

I hope the photos can give some hints.
 

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Likes: tima

XV-1

Well-Known Member
May 24, 2010
1,877
265
83
Sydney
#5
Hmmm. It has been previously communicated that Tech Das would manufacture 40 Air Force Zero units. They could only source 40 of the Pabst motors.

Now I read above that only 10 units will be manufactured with 9 customer orders.

Looks like Tech Das really did jump the shark with the crazy high price.

Sales flop with 22% take up of the 40 planned AF0 tables?
 
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TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#6
Hmmm. It has been previously communicated that Tech Das would manufacture 40 Air Force Zero units. They could only source 40 of the Pabst motors.

Now I read above that only 10 units will be manufactured with 9 customer orders.

Looks like Tech Das really did jump the shark with the crazy high price.

Sales flop with 22% take up of the 40 planned AF0 tables?
The intention is to produce 10 AF0 every year for 4 years.

Nishikawa san wants to install every AF0 on site by himself and his engineering team. That means a lot of traveling for an 77 year old man. He still has to run his dealership business in Japan. There are orders from Hong Kong and mainland China that I know of waiting to be filled.

If one wants to order AF0 now, I expect it will be installed in 2021 the earliest.
 
Sep 10, 2012
45
0
6
#7
Nishikawa san is looking good and healthy for a 77 year old, he is clearly doing this because he loves it. Lets hope it is not his last design brought to market.
 

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#8
Nishikawa san is looking good and healthy for a 77 year old, he is clearly doing this because he loves it. Lets hope it is not his last design brought to market.
I had dinner with Nishikawa san during the show. He wants to design a tonearm system to go with his turntables. It is going to be a high tech system. Since it is still on drawing board, he doesn‘t want me to tell too much about it. One thing I can said is it uses air bearing which is natural given his Air Force series turntable.
 
May 30, 2010
15,444
670
113
Portugal
#9
Since I have not noticed there is any coverage of this event, I would like to make a brief report. Hong Kong is undergoing an unrest time, probably not many participants had the interest to post it.

I have been to AF0 event in Tokyo in April and Munich in May. The one in Hong Kong was as good as if not better than the previous two events. The speakers were Wilson Audio Alexandria XLF and Thor's Hammer driven by CH Precision M1.1 amp. Phonostage was two CH P1's and X1. Nishikawa san played similar LP's in all his demos. I found no deficiency in the sound. Everything was just right.

All the people I had talked to after the demo, there was not a single one said he was not impressed. The Hong Kong AV Show, as usual, was fairly crowded. That made it difficult to play classical music with quiet passage as the room was noisy. Apart from that, all pieces played were very good.

TechDAS continued to fine tune AF0. The turntable was slightly different in every show. Nishikawa san said a lot of improvement were made in the electronic components. The actual production will start in October. 10 pieces will be made. Three are going to the United States, (one buyer actually moved to UK recently, so that one will eventually ends up in UK), three will be sold in Japan, three will be shipped to Thailand. The last one is for self use.

Tango, are you having one? View attachment 56001
Thanks for reporting. Just one detail - do you know what cables were being used? There is very little information around on Wilson speakers being driven by CH.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
11,709
1,493
113
London
#10
Thanks for reporting. Just one detail - do you know what cables were being used? There is very little information around on Wilson speakers being driven by CH.
Gian's neighbor has the X2S2 driven by a full CH stack. Replaced a full viva stack
 

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#11
Thanks for reporting. Just one detail - do you know what cables were being used? There is very little information around on Wilson speakers being driven by CH.
This year it was Crystal cable for the front end. The speaker cable was from Transparent cable.
 
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May 30, 2010
15,444
670
113
Portugal
#12
This year it was Crystal cable for the whole system.
Thanks - curiously I am currently using a complete loom of Crystal Dreamline in my system! I would not mind listening to the Absolute Dream. :)

Just read they were alo using a STROMTANK power device.
 

Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
2,955
1,744
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Bangkok
#13
Nishikawa san wants to install every AF0 on site by himself and his engineering team. That means a lot of traveling for an 77 year old man.
This is actually what I am most afraid of. I wrote once before and now again. Complicated heavily engineered tt does have much more chance of breaking down. My Kronose and AF1P went funny many times. Enough times to get frustrated and they are no where near complicated. Product like AFZero you dont even think of having a dealer support. You need a direct assistance from the designer himself. Call Nishigawa san when speed goes funny? or everytime you want to move the tt? Tbh I almost bought an Apolyt before deciding AS2000. Practicality and reliability are among top criteria for me deciding what to buy. I could bear the un practicality of heaviness at most.

Tang
 
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Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
2,955
1,744
113
Bangkok
#14
Thanks - curiously I am currently using a complete loom of Crystal Dreamline in my system! I would not mind listening to the Absolute Dream. :)

Just read they were alo using a STROMTANK power device.
What they used were influenced by what their dealer were carrying. If ddk were selling Techdas you will be seeing Ching Cheng.
 

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#15
Thanks - curiously I am currently using a complete loom of Crystal Dreamline in my system! I would not mind listening to the Absolute Dream. :)

Just read they were alo using a STROMTANK power device.
CH M1.1 certainly has enough power to drive Alexandria. If you look at the photo Stromtank is on the right hand side driving the preamp and phono.
 

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May 30, 2010
15,444
670
113
Portugal
#16
Gian's neighbor has the X2S2 driven by a full CH stack. Replaced a full viva stack
I have often questioned myself how the M1.1 would match the typical tube preamplfiers such as the ARC REF40 , cj GAT or VTL 7.5. The M1.1 has 94 kohm balanced input impedance, electrically it would be perfect.
 

TLi

Active Member
May 27, 2016
113
113
43
#17
This is actually what I am most afraid of. I wrote once before and now again. Complicated heavily engineered tt does have much more chance of breaking down. My Kronose and AF1P went funny many times. Enough times to get frustrated and they are no where near complicated. Product like AFZero you dont even think of having a dealer support. You need a direct assistance from the designer himself. Call Nishigawa san when speed goes funny? or everytime you want to move the tt? Tbh I almost bought an Apolyt before deciding AS2000. Practicality and reliability are among top criteria for me deciding what to buy. A could bear the un practicality of heaviness at most.

Tang
I also had some malfunction with the power supply of my AF1P. They replaced the whole power supply with the latest upgraded footers in less than a month. TechDAS even did an investigation into the original power supply and told me they didn’t find any failure in all components. They concluded I put my power supply too close to the PS Audio powerplant which is fairly hot. The heat caused the air to thin out and reduced the air pressure.

Now I rearranged my rack and there is no further problem. I found the service from TechDAS is second to none.
 
May 30, 2010
15,444
670
113
Portugal
#18
This is actually what I am most afraid of. I wrote once before and now again. Complicated heavily engineered tt does have much more chance of breaking down. My Kronose and AF1P went funny many times. Enough times to get frustrated and they are no where near complicated. Product like AFZero you dont even think of having a dealer support. You need a direct assistance from the designer himself. Call Nishigawa san when speed goes funny? or everytime you want to move the tt? Tbh I almost bought an Apolyt before deciding AS2000. Practicality and reliability are among top criteria for me deciding what to buy. I could bear the un practicality of heaviness at most.

Tang
Well, owning a TechDas AF1 premimum makes me feel the opposite. Everything looks logical, extremely well built and under control in this turntable. Once we understand the driving concept - simple quality air pumps for the bearing and suction and a two phase driven synchronous motor we can rest. I could easily operate it without the electronic boxes. And the complete setup and operation manuals are by far the best I have ever read.

I have no doubt that the Nishikawa san visit is more a courtesy to owners than an absolute need. Such products always have a complete team with great expertise behind them.

I should add that knowing that many SX8000's (or my Nakamichi XR7) are still playing in perfect conditions after more than 30 years also helps my confidence. :cool:
 
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Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
2,955
1,744
113
Bangkok
#19
Well, owning a TechDas AF1 premimum makes me feel the opposite. Everything looks logical, extremely well built and under control in this turntable. Once we understand the driving concept - simple quality air pumps for the bearing and suction and a two phase driven synchronous motor we can rest. I could easily operate it without the electronic boxes. And the complete setup and operation manuals are by far the best I have ever read.

I have no doubt that the Nishikawa san visit is more a courtesy to owners than an absolute need. Such products always have a complete team with great expertise behind them.

I should add that knowing that many SX8000's (or my Nakamichi XR7) are still playing in perfect conditions after more than 30 years also helps my confidence. :cool:
;)
 
Likes: bonzo75
May 30, 2010
15,444
670
113
Portugal
#20
This year it was Crystal cable for the front end. The speaker cable was from Transparent cable.
Did you notice which was being used between preamplfier and amplifier?
 

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