ULTRA 11 AXPONA Premiere Retrospective

Sep 15, 2016
44
84
85
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#1
(Please note, links are displayed in BOLD. Enjoy!)

MOST COVETED PRODUCT at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by The Absolute Sound - Greg Weaver

MOST SIGNIFICANT PRODUCT INTRODUCTION at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by The Absolute Sound - Jonathan Valin

MOST SIGNIFICANT PRODUCT INTRODUCTION at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by The Absolute Sound - Greg Weaver

BEST OF SHOW at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by Positive Feedback - Maurice Jeffries

BEST OF SHOW (COST NO OBJECT) at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by The Absolute Sound - Greg Weaver

THE BEST OF SHOW at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by Enjoy the Musiccom

BEST OF SHOW - AUDIO OASIS AWARD at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by Positive Feedback

BEST SOUND: COST NO OBJECT at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by Part-Time Audiophile - Lee Scoggins

BEST OF SHOW (I'M NOT WORTHY AWARD) at AXPONA 2017
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by Part-Time Audiophile - John Stancavage

TOP SYSTEMS at The 2017 AXPONA Show
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by The Absolute Sound - Jonathan Valin

BEST OF SHOW - GOLD AWARD at The 2017 AXPONA Show
Awarded to the ULTRA 11 by AVShowrooms

It was three years ago this weekend that we unveiled our current flagship loudspeaker, the ULTRA 11. Since then, we've introduced two additional award winning flagship designs to our ULTRA Line of products; The ULTRA 9 and ULTRA 55.

In addition, we've recently introduced our newest reference loudspeaker design the Endeavor Special Edition (SE) which was to be our show focus for 2020. Last but not least, we've trickled down our newest engineering advancements to the E-3 MkII and E-5 MkII.

This would be a monumental "endeavor" for any high-end audio manufacturer and as the CEO of our organization, I can't thank the team enough! They've put their blood, sweat and tears into such a large task in such a small time frame and I will forever be in their debt. But the first among peers is my friend, business partner and our Chief Design Officer Mr. Leif Swanson. It's been my honor and sincere pleasure to work with you all these years my friend!

And my thanks to all of you who've supported this company over the decades either financially with your significant investments in our products or simply with your enthusiasm for this hobby we all love. All the best!

Damon von Schweikert

Special thanks and congratulations to all the contributing manufacturers in this system who share in these awards: VAC / Valve Amplification Company, Kronos Audio, Aurender, J-Corder Custom Reel to Reels, MasterBuilt Audio, LampizatOr, Artesania Audio and Acoustic Sciences Corporation.

Last but not least, here's comprehensive coverage of the North American premiere of the ULTRA 11 by Greg Weaver at Positive Feedback, enjoy!
 
Last edited:

Steve Williams

Site Founder, Site Owner, Administrator
#3
Damon

IIRC I was the first civilian to hear the Ultra 11 as the first pair rolled off the production line at your factory. I remember even under far less than stellar listening conditions how well that speaker sounded. I knew that great times would lie ahead for you and Leif.

I am so happy to see all the fruits of your success

Kudos to the both of you. Your room is the first I search out at audio shows


https://www.whatsbestforum.com/thre...n-afternoon-of-aural-bliss.21831/#post-420338
 

tony22

Active Member
Nov 4, 2019
126
36
28
59
#4
Damon, I’m glad I got to hear (and buy!) the Endeavor SE before this unfortunate situation befell us all. I hope the SE in the near future will have an opportunity to thrill new potential VSA owners. It deserves to be seen and heard!
 

Mobiusman

Well-Known Member
May 25, 2010
591
188
455
Jersey Shore- waterside
#5
I am retiring from my psych and addiction medicine practice on 4/30 and still have a lot to do, BUT I made the "mistake" of sitting down to listen to my system at 10 am yesterday and other than about 2 hours of calls, as I writing this I am still sitting listening at 1:20 AM and nowhere ready to go to bed, listening to my system is so gratifying. Every improvement to the overall system is revealed by the speakers and manifest by them sounding even better than before whatever the most recent system improvement is. My system keeps sounding better with every change to the point that I have no idea what's the actual the limit of my speakers!

Granted my $235, 000 Ultra 9's should sound good for that amount of money, especially considering the electronics and cabling driving them, but I keep forgetting that my greatest listening pleasure in my 60 years as an audiophile that is occurring during this lockdown and pending retirement (very anxiety provoking because it means letting go of what has been my life for the past 45 years) is being wonderfully removed from my thinking by albeit a great multi $100k electronics and cabling system playing through a $9,000/pair of Von Schweikert/ Endeavor 3 Mk2's that are standing in for the Ultra 9's until Leif can get back to my house to visit and to install a couple of replacement parts that an unexplainable mega voltage surge that took out my Furman Pro 20IT (no easy task) and the 1000 watt plate amp for the 15" subwoofer and the 15" driver on one of my 9's.

The key point of this post is how good the Audio DNA of VSA is that an entry level speaker is doing just fine as stand in until big brother Ultra 9 is back up and running is as I will explain in the next paragraph and after the next extremely long run-on sentence. Given the same great carefully chosen electronics and cabling playing through Ultra 9's which makes it one of the best systems you may have ever heard, and clearly better than even the VSA, VAC, MB, Kronos, ETC multi "best of show" winner systems, because my system has many of the same components driving it, and in my opinion a few that are better, but most important is it is not in "show conditions", which makes an amazing difference. Said another way, if you have heard the VSA, VAC etc. Mega Show systems and loved them as most do, despite weird rooms and no time to settle in, I can state without hesitation, that once in your home and allowed to settle in and be tweeked as us audio propeller heads are want to do, you'll see that there are at least several levels of even better sound to be had in your home than what you may have heard if you go to shows.

Amongst those tweeks, that I now consider essential and no longer "tweeks", are the Center Stage footers throughout my system which make an amazing difference that is hard, if not impossible, to believe. Unfortunately, their break-in time takes too long to stabilize for a show, and thus would probably be worse than nothing until stabilized. I also have a full loom of MasterBuilt Ultra IC's, PC's, speaker wire and most important their Ultra USB cable, which brought the rest of the loom from great to a definitely better, almost unbelievable level that make VSA's tag "the sound of reality" undeniable.

In addition I have a fairly acoustically friendly environment compared to the rooms where these mega demos have been held at shows. , While my room will ultimately be tweeked and improved by acoustician, Bonnie Schnitta of Steve Williams fame, and hopefully sound. even better than what I have now, I could easily live with what I am listening to currently for the rest of my time, with the $9000. E3Mk2's as speakers

Another benefit my current "standby" system is I have it in a fixed location, with every tweek that I believe helps and the time for all of the pieces to settle in and to become their best, complete system (in some cases 100's of hours of break-in, if not longer with the speakers and cables. Yet on the sonic DNA front I am currently not listening to my VSA Ultra 9's, but rather listening to VSA E3 Mk2's at $4,500 per side that overall produces sound that is better sounding than just about, if not literally any exhibit I heard at Axpona 2018 or 2019 with regard to listening pleasure and total involvement. If that was not true, there is no way that I would have listened for about 14 hours yesterday because it was so enjoyable and put me in a great mind set despite all that is going on in general, and n in particular as I am about to retire.

Once again bravo to all of the key players that make my system what it is and their ability to work together as they each pursue their goals of the ultimate in high end audio and, yes, upper midfi, at least with regard to the VSA E3Mk2 speakers.

I know that some of the claims I made are hard to believe, especially about the E3Mk2's, but then you are welcome to come and judge for yourself.
 
Last edited:
Sep 15, 2016
44
84
85
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#7
Damon

IIRC I was the first civilian to hear the Ultra 11 as the first pair rolled off the production line at your factory. I remember even under far less than stellar listening conditions how well that speaker sounded. I knew that great times would lie ahead for you and Leif.

I am so happy to see all the fruits of your success

Kudos to the both of you. Your room is the first I search out at audio shows


https://www.whatsbestforum.com/thre...n-afternoon-of-aural-bliss.21831/#post-420338
Steve, it was our great honor to have you as our first "outside" listener. I remember the day very well, thanks for taking the time to come visit us ;)
 
Sep 15, 2016
44
84
85
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#8
Damon, I’m glad I got to hear (and buy!) the Endeavor SE before this unfortunate situation befell us all. I hope the SE in the near future will have an opportunity to thrill new potential VSA owners. It deserves to be seen and heard!
Tony, I'm glad we found the right fit for your system and just in time for some extended listening no less. We were very fortunate to receive the cover of Image HiFi (the largest German speaking HiFi magazine) with our first review but we have another on the way and hope to see it in print soon.

We're so excited about the Endeavor SE and look forward to playing it for as many music lovers as possible just as soon as we can.
 
Sep 15, 2016
44
84
85
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#9
I am retiring from my psych and addiction medicine practice on 4/30 and still have a lot to do, BUT I made the "mistake" of sitting down to listen to my system at 10 am yesterday and other than about 2 hours of calls, as I writing this I am still sitting listening at 1:20 AM and nowhere ready to go to bed, listening to my system is so gratifying. Every improvement to the overall system is revealed by the speakers and manifest by them sounding even better than before whatever the most recent system improvement is. My system keeps sounding better with every change to the point that I have no idea what's the actual the limit of my speakers!

Granted my $235, 000 Ultra 9's should sound good for that amount of money, especially considering the electronics and cabling driving them, but I keep forgetting that my greatest listening pleasure in my 60 years as an audiophile that is occurring during this lockdown and pending retirement (very anxiety provoking because it means letting go of what has been my life for the past 45 years) is being wonderfully removed from my thinking by albeit a great multi $100k electronics and cabling system playing through a $9,000/pair of Von Schweikert/ Endeavor 3 Mk2's that are standing in for the Ultra 9's until Leif can get back to my house to visit and to install a couple of replacement parts that an unexplainable mega voltage surge that took out my Furman Pro 20IT (no easy task) and the 1000 watt plate amp for the 15" subwoofer and the 15" driver on one of my 9's.

The key point this post is how good the Audio DNA of VSA is as I will explain at the end of the next extremely long run-on sentence,. Given the same great carefully chosen electronics and cabling playing through Ultra 9's which makes it one of the best systems you may have ever heard, and clearly better than even the VSA, VAC, MB, Kronos, ETC multi best of show winner system, because my system has many of the same components driving it, and in my opinion a few that are better, but most important is it is not in show conditions, with weird rooms and no time to settle in, plus I can use Center Stage footers which make an amazing difference but take too long to stabilize for a show. I on the other hand have a fairly acoustically friendly environment that could be improved by acoustician, Bonnie Schnitta of Steve Williams fame. Plus, I have a fixed location, with every tweek that I believe helps and the time for all of the pieces to settle in and to become their best, complete system. Yet on the sonic DNA front I am currently not listening to my VSA Ultra 9's, but rather listening to VSA E3 Mk2's at $4,500 per side that sounds is better sounding than just about, if not literally any exhibit I heard at Axpona 2018 or 2019 with regard to listening pleasure and total involvement. If that was not true, there is no way that I would have listened for about 14 hours yesterday because it was so enjoyable and put me in a great mind set despite all that is going on in general in in particular as I am about to retire.

Once again bravo to all of the key players that make my system what it is and their ability to work together as they each pursue their goals of the ultimate in high end audio and, yes, upper midfi, at least with regard to the VSA E3Mk2 speakers.

I know that some of the claims I made are hard to believe, but then you are welcome to come and judge for yourself.
As always you very kind my friend. But to your point, one of our favorite demonstrations and we've done this at shows around the world is to ask the audience if they have any interest in hearing our $9K E-3 MkII on the same system we've run the ULTRA 11 with. The answer is always yeas and the immediate shock and at times vocal expletives when we turn it on never fails to make me smile.
 

mullard88

Well-Known Member
Jun 5, 2010
915
37
178
#10
I agree with what Mobiusman says about the Endeavor E3 speakers. I enjoy rotating equipment into my system but I have not had any urge to ratate the Endeavor E3 speakers out of the bedroom system yet.
 

tony22

Active Member
Nov 4, 2019
126
36
28
59
#11
I also agree with Mobiusman regarding the E3’s. Anyone looking for speakers at that price point, and even a bit more, would be hard pressed to find anything more musical.
 

Steve Williams

Site Founder, Site Owner, Administrator
#12

JackD201

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
11,710
693
660
Manila, Philippines
#14
The hardest part of the lockdown for me is being away from Big Blue :(

I had to forego a lot of things to be able to acquire a pair of U11s but I will say with full certainty that I have absolutely no regrets. Seeing them on the VSA website playing the role of supermodel makes me laugh too. Awesome. I wanna go home!
 
Likes: Leif S

Leif S

Industry Expert
Feb 14, 2015
759
144
255
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#15
The hardest part of the lockdown for me is being away from Big Blue :(

I had to forego a lot of things to be able to acquire a pair of U11s but I will say with full certainty that I have absolutely no regrets. Seeing them on the VSA website playing the role of supermodel makes me laugh too. Awesome. I wanna go home!
Get ready for the ULTRA 7's my brother!
 
Likes: CKKeung

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
2,082
1,348
535
Hong Kong
#16
Get ready for the ULTRA 7's my brother!
Please share with WBF members some photos and info of its new features.
Thanks a lot!
:)
 
Likes: Leif S

Leif S

Industry Expert
Feb 14, 2015
759
144
255
California
www.vonschweikert.com
#17
Please share with WBF members some photos and info of its new features.
Thanks a lot!
:)
I will as soon as I can. Damon is very particular about showing products not in their complete production form and I understand that. Will post as soon as I can.
 

JackD201

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
11,710
693
660
Manila, Philippines
#18
I'm biting my lip so hard it might bleed LOL

It will be Goldilocks CK :D
 

JackD201

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
11,710
693
660
Manila, Philippines
#19
You look good beside big blue brother. Glad the photographer came in before you shipped 'em out. Did a dang fine job too!
 

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