A Visit at TL-Audio, March 21th 2009

by Keijo Tanskanen

After the day’s visits in Tampere and Kangasala we made the last stop in Hämeenlinna, at TL-Audio. Since my previous visit Tapani Lappi had finished his burning-in process for the Sound Lab Majestic 845 speakers, had bettered their placing and the front end of the system. The system had also updated Transparent Reference XL MM2 series cabling. So, it was the time to check out what had achieved and what kind of listening results the system would deliver now.

Sound Lab Majestic 845 speakers
Burmester 069 CD player
Burmester 911 monoblocks (bridged)
Transparent Reference XL MM2 interconnects
Transparent Reference XL MM2 speaker cables
Transparent Reference XL power filter
Burmester 948 power conditioner
Wide variety of Transparent power cords

At the beginning of the session Tapani played couple of impressive live CDs from wide genre of music. They sounded great and delivered really live-like atmosphere. It was not hard at all to notice several features being at the top. Music sounded very, very coherent and had excellent speed, transparency and clarity. Naturally this made most of instruments to be exceptionally natural sounding. For example cymbals and hi-hats sounded even surprisingly great. Vocals and midrange instruments settled also exceptionally well on the other bands. The bass was quite interesting and exiting. It seemed to be the best what I had heard from electrostatic or magnetostatic speakers. It was very powerful and fast. It might even have a snappy nature. The sonic picture was very good but did not quite achieve the best levels what I have heard. In my opinion TL-Audio’s Acapella Triolon Excalibur set-up, couple of Wilson set-ups and my friend’s Burmester B-100 set-up had reached slightly better results. Still on the whole the soundstaging features seemed to be impressive enough. So, the burning-in process and bettered front end and speaker placing seemed to effect quite a lot to the listening results, once again!

After the first session we made a deeper evaluation with my test CDs, but nothing very new notifications were done. The over-all sound was simply excellent and easily delivered the best sound of the day. My feelings reminded a lot what I typically had experienced during the sessions of other reference set-ups. Only the nature of bass, the abilities to deliver micro details and reverberation effects got some more light. The bass had really some kind of panel-like and slightly snappy nature. It just could not reach the last bits of punch, power and tone colours what couple of traditional reference speakers had delivered for me. Please don’t get me wrong here! Still the bass had clearly better speed, control and dynamics than what for example Magneplanar MG 20.1 had delivered. So, on the whole, the bass was still excellent. We got further information from micro details as well. This set-up delivered marvellous amount of low level details. I have experienced this kind of deep view for low level information only in couple of cases, especially in my listening room. At least my current set-up with more monitor-like speaker placing is still a tad ahead in this manner.

Tapani Lappi did it again! He had constructed a new system into reference class. As we know, Tapani likes a big sound, and this set-up delivered it, especially vertically. The sound was also very impressive, clean and natural. Some tiny cons were noticed, but those did not matter much in over-all evaluation, at least for me. The new Burmester front end and Transparent’s cabling seemed to work marvellously. But especially if you are going to have new loudspeakers from 30 kilo euros price class, Sound Lab Majestic 845 should be on the list as an alternative. Go and get your own listening experiences!