Lee Jin, China

Origarde or Avantis

I thought that this would be an apt name for what I have given that my system consists of Bert's Oris 150 horns and AvantGarde's 217 subs. The driver used is a Lowther DX3. I have this system for more than a year now and have been very delighted with it. When I first decided on getting the Oris system, the thought was to go for the Onken sub that Bert provides. However, at that moment Avantgarde was coming up with the seal box sub and many owners of the Avantgarde horns were upgrading. Since at that point, I wasn't much of a DIY person, the Avantgarde sub provided me with a neat solution and I got them. Besides, the price was right.

System overview...

I read that the PM4A Lowther or the AERal version is the best but I went for the DX3 just to make sure I didn't sink too much money on a system I have never heard. I have been very happy since. In the beginning, the DX3 was shouting a little but as time went on, coupled to the Oris horns it became very delicate, sweet and try as I would to listen to what others describe as "Lowther shout", I couldn't really hear it or it never bothered me. (I am a first time Lowther user, and have no experience with Lowther or other single driver speakers). Perhaps this is also due to my front end which I believe is quite clean.

I have a little collection of records and once I took out one of the (1970's ?) Japanese direct cuts. It was a Beethovan piano sonata by a Japanese lady pianist. And you know Beethovan's piano sonato's have those astonishing dynamic and quick openings. The Oris systems reproduced it with all the finesse and dynamics. Startled. Never heard piano reproduced that way before, almost like a live piano in the home.

So the Oris horns are very transparent, dynamic and lovely to listen. There is a delicacy, sweetness and presence that compels one to listen to it. The superiority of the Oris horns is very evident. Once I hooked up Linn's Classik integrated amplifier not expecting any reasonable good sound but I was surprised. It was very good which showed me that both the Oris and the Linn Classik were up to the task. So perhaps those on a budget should get the Oris horns, drive it with a Linn Classik (or similarly good integrated) and upgrade to flea powered triodes when funds allow.

Used equipment...

Having heard a lot about the Medallions, I bought the plans from Tony Glynn and built myself a pair, just to see and compare, using the DX3s. The Medallions are very good but did not measure up to the Oris. Oris had more of the "thereness", the presence and delicacy. If I could describe it, the Medallions are more dull (only relatively speaking). So the Medallions are in storage now and will be used as a second pair with DX3 when I upgrade to drivers to the PM4 variant for the Oris. I move from Singapore to Shanghai China last year and taxes are punitive. So I will do it when I figured a good way to bring in the drivers at a reasonable cost.

So here I am, a happy lark of an owner of Oris 150 even with the DX3 drivers. Highly recommended to all.

My system, for the record:

  • Digital - CEC TL2X belt drive transport AudioNote 1.1x non oversampling modified with better grade silver trans. (This is the gem....and can be modified endlessly) Low end Sony SACD player, to explore SACDs. (Psst...even on this 2nd from bottom player, SACD is better then many top end CD players, I think)
  • Analogue - Mitchell Gyrodec with QC fitted with SME V and Lyra Helicon. Phono Stage is EAR 834P
  • Amplification - AudioNote M2 tube preamp, AudioNote Quest 300B monoblocks, Homebrew 2A3 on duty sometimes Cabling are AudioNote silvers throughout. (Like them because they sound good and are flexible. Pet peeve are those monstrous thick garden hose size cables