Danish Audio Design látogatás - hajsza a legjobb hangért

Az újdonság varázsa

2022. március 6., vasárnap, 21:20

DAD audio hifi erősítő hangfal DAC lemezjátszó high end Blue Cat sztereó erősítő high end hifi high end hangfal high end erősítő Danish Audio Design

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Danish Audio Design tour - chasing the best sound

The charm of novelty

River Danube could be filled with high end companies, yet only a few of them are allowed into the living rooms or dedicated music listening spaces, owned by most demanding, maximalist users with a "money does not matter" approach. Jan Harbo Jakobsen, world-seen eccentric Danish businessman had to realize in vain: all hifi equipment he purchased, despite the sky high prices, were not able to give him back that organic sound of a live event. So he decided to found his own high end company. We were among the first to give a visit at DAD's headquarters, located in Denmark. It was an experience tour, full of musical journeys and inspiration. For all highlights, keep reading!

Danish Audio Design

Best of everything

Founded in 2017, so we could call them young, compared to other companies. However, DAD's team includes several employees, who have decades of experience from this industry. Despite its young state, Danish Audio Design (aka DAD or Blue Cat) is growing fast, as their portfolio proves.

Danish Audio Design

They make preamplifiers, unbelievably over-specified class AB power amps, an integrated stereo amplifier (75 integrated), and a D/A converter with built-in streaming function as well. There is also a CD-transport, weighing around 60 kilograms (The Blue Cat Drive). But in the near past, a phono preamplifier (The Rose Phono Stage) and a turntable (The Cat Tale Turntable) has also arrived into their product range.

Danish Audio Design

Besides that, they make monumental loudspeakers too. While writing these lines, customers can choose from five speakers, but these folks always keep working on something new. The products that we found subjectively as "most important DAD devices", will be detailed soon, in the "Best moments" paragraph.

Danish Audio Design

During our visit, Jan was kind enough to have a short video interview with us. Please check out this inspiring short film, starring Mr. Blue Cat himself!

Arriving at the house

Jan couldn't deny his Danish origins, since he greets us already with a wide smile. Traveling to his place, he keeps sharing the beauties of Danish life, filled with nice humour. The more than 400 sqm building that serves as DAD's centre, can fulfill several functions without interfering with each other. The house lies within an idyllic environment. It's fundament shapes a circle and all rooms open towards its central. As you look up from the bottom, windows from top middle let in natural light from the sky. Energies can flow uninterrupted, so the person who enters, will be cheerful all the time. Jan does not hide his buddhist identity, cleverly placed statues all around the house refer to this. But if someone isn't interested in eastern doctrines, can also rest his/her eyes on one of the paintings, Danish designed furniture or dog Harbo, the guard of this building. This animal could soften anyone's heart within a second.

One of the pictures contains red fishes. In contrast with the many red fish, a green one is heading in the opposite direction. "My friend Aleksander gave this to me, he said, I'm the green fish. I know what he means" - smiled Jan.

Danish Audio Design

Where the work goes

On the lower level, electronic engineers Steffen Zacher and Ricky Shultz are continuously assembling something. Steffen looks into his microscope and puts together circuits with his own hands. Behind us, from wall to wall, heavy duty shelves are fully packed with 60 kg transformers, beer can-sized capacitors, Van den Hul cables and so on. Everything is given to make yourself comfortable if you are a true hifi lover.

Danish Audio Design

Meanwhile, in the next room, Torben Mikkelsen loudspeaker engineer is about to finetune the prototype of a next generation The Blue Diamond 4-way floor standing flagship model. Please note that we didn't photograph the final edition, several changes may come in the future. When these photos were taken, Torben was about to set the bass drivers into opposite polarity.

Danish Audio Design

As we arrive back from dinner, he has already finished leveling the new crossover. We can see a much more even and balanced curve on his laptop screen and the left speaker unit is already standing, ready for a stereo listening test. The Blue Diamond delivers amazing transparency and clean bass that is not dominant in any bad way. Quite remarkable, considering room vs. loudspeaker size!

Danish Audio Design

The building contains another, big and bright swimming pool room with high ceiling height. Jan enthusiastically tells us that this whole place is going to be rebuilt and acoustically treated for dedicated music listening purposes. Even the roof structure above the pool is going to be redesigned to reach optimal acoustic properties.

Danish Audio Design

Best moments

On day 1 of our visit, we spent most time in the living room, listening to music from lunch to dinner, testing the capabilities of Jan's enormous anthracite grey speaker, The Black Diamond. The magic of this loudspeaker wasn't just focusing towards our couch, but for other spots of the house too. For example, standing at the bottom level, down at the stairway, it felt exactly like if an actual jazz band would play. To drive The Black Diamond speakers, two The One power amplifiers were used, 1600 W at 8 ohm each. Even after an intensive, 8 hour music listening session, the devices did not produce any heat. Literally, nothing. They did not even become lukewarm.

Danish Audio Design

When switching to harder musical genres, the prestigious bass drivers were shaking the floor and our sitting furniture sensibly. In terms of dynamics and powers, the performance was overwhelming, although we could receive a bit more stage depth. Later we found out how to get better staging: on day 2, instead of TIDAL streaming (we used streaming only on day 1) we switched to the turntable and received all the awaited depth. The system was a thousand times more sophisticated with LP, compared to internet-based media. No surprises. We felt lucky for this second round with all of Jan's well known LP discs: Diana Krall, Mark Knopfler, Pink Floyd, Eric Clapton, Pat Metheny... lots of popular names were spinned and we could chat with each other, sharing our favourite experiences or memories, regarding the music that was played.

Danish Audio Design

The most surprising turn was the moment, when we switched from The Black Diamond to DAD's smallest loudspeaker, The Pink Diamond. The rectangular, trapeze-formed boxes despite the huge visual difference compared to The Black Diamond, gave more speed and bass control, at least to our taste. Cheapest loudspeaker of DAD brought us amazement, because drum solos were just as tight, tough and quick, as a live concert should be. We listened to several music tracks with actual concert-level sound pressure yet not experienced any headache or fatigue in our ears or any similar side effects.

Danish Audio Design

Making of drive units

Danish Audio Design's speaker drive units are being made by a company called SB Acoustics, whose centre is located not too far from DAD HQ. Jan was so kind to offer us to visit their office and of course, we didn't hesitate.

SB Acoustics gyárlátogatás

Philosophy of SB Acoustics kind of resonates with the same goals that motivate Jan: to create an alternative in the high end speaker business. 16 years ago, Danesian Audio, full of industrial veterans and the Indonesian Sinar Baja Electric manufacturing facility became united. Since then, they make all kinds of speaker drive units, in all sizes and categories, not just for home, but professional sectors as well.

SB Acoustics gyárlátogatás

The danish centre of SB Acoustics is responsible for supporting the whole european market, developing new products and cooperation with other loudspeaker companies are all happening from this place. They have decades of experience, hence provide OEM development for other high end manufacturers too. They can be called mature, no wonder Jan chose them as well.

SB Acoustics gyárlátogatás

The Only One

Finale of our visit was the moment when we could get an insightful look of Jan's most extreme creation, The Only One power amplifier. The thick top plate of this device is already heavier than most of the integrated amplifiers we reviewed earlier. Suction cup handles and four hands are needed to remove this panel, attached by invisible screws. After getting off the hood, for many silent minutes, we were just staring and trying to realize the view. For inside padding The Only One, hefty copper plates and teflon insulations were used. 8 pcs of puffer capacitors, each the size of a beer can. The finger-thick wiring, the tin can sized parts mounted on its sides, everything was the best and biggest available. We just could not believe our eyes.

Danish Audio Design The Only One

After visiting several international exhibitions, we already saw amazing amplifier creations, but nothing was even close to this monster. The left and right channels were supplied by separate toroidal transformers, 60 kg each, the size of a cheese roll. Industrial wheels were applied at the bottom, in order to move almost half a ton of weight. The side panels, serving also as heat sink, were milled from one piece of aluminium block, thick as our upper arm. For each panel, it takes 12 hours to get the final shape.

Danish Audio Design The Only One

The name of this device refers to Jan's wife, Bitten. "I would be nowhere without her. For me, Bitten is the only one. Of course she is not this big. She is a small, but very strong lady." - mentioned Jan, with his usual enthusiastic expression. We just kept on staring at the inside of The Only One. The work of a man and his team, who did something within less than five years, that most hifi manufacturers wouldn't even try after half a century. Of course it takes some challenges to become owner of The Only One, money for instance. But there are some people out there, willing to pay the price, because they can be happy if only the best is in their setup, and they appreciate that Danish Audio Design is that particular green fish in the picture.

Danish Audio Design The Only One

Final thoughts

We would like to thank Danish Audio Design for their cooperation and exemplary hospitality. It was a visit full of experiences and memorable lessons! To purchase or schedule a personal music listening with Blue Cat products, please contact Mr. Aleksander Smidt, his availability can be found at the end of this article and of course, for more information go visit Danish Audio Design website!


Danish Audio Design International

Diagonalvejen 48, 7323 Give, Denmark


email: jan@dadbluecat.com

web: dadbluecat.com

Sales Manager:

Aleksander Smidt


email: aleksander@dadbluecat.com


További cikkek:


Zsóka Krisztián
email: zsoka.krisztian@av-online.hu

telefon: +36-30-2272035


Future Life Kft.
Future Life Kft.

3535 Miskolc, Fényesvölgyi u. 16. 1/3.



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