Waterfall Audio Victoria Evo and Niagara at CES 2014 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 01-14-2014, 12:51 PM - Thread Starter
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What if I told you about a pair of rectangular tower speakers with dual 6-inch woofers and a dome tweeter, with the amazing capability to play from 42 hz to 28 khz? What if I told you that these astounding speakers even include a passive radiator that fires straight down, and on top of that are 89dB efficient and can handle 450 Watts of peak power! Interested? Well, the price will just blow you away, because these speakers cost a mere $7000!

 

Speakers that closely resemble aquariums, and they are even made of the same material

 

Can you sense the sarcasm? I hope so. The Victoria Evo is made out of some sort of glass. The salesman, who I met at another demo, dragged me down one floor to the Waterfall demo room. He told me that the latest versions of all Waterfall speaker cabinets use safety glass, unlike the old version of the flagship "Niagara" that is listed for sale on Amazon and is supposedly made of "High Density Diamond glass." Evidently safety glass is even better than Diamond Glass.

 

I was tired of all the classical music I'd heard at the show. I asked for something electronic, with bass. Thanks to Daft Punk's popularity, Random Access memories is a go-to album for such requests, and I've listened to it enough that it can serve as a reference.

 

Don’t get me wrong, the Victoria Evo did not sound terrible, like a pair of white-van speakers. It's just that they did not quite rise to the level of a decent pair of $700 tower speakers. Unfortunately I can’t see why such speakers would ever cost $7000, because glass is not exactly the most expensive material.

 

The brochure tells you everything you need to know about the Victoria Evo:

Quote:

-Optimum performances considering dimensions and price.

-Flexible to all music types and programs

-Strong power handling

 

Of course I couldn't leave the demo before I had a chance to hear the Niagara—Waterfall's flagship tower—after all they cost more than a new Cadillac! What I heard probably came close to other speakers I've auditioned over the years—ones with dual 8-inch woofers and horn-loaded tweeters. The main difference? Those sort of speakers cost about 75X less than the Niagara, which goes for about 50 grand—depending on who you ask.

 

Caveat emptor, folks.

 

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post #2 of 5 Old 01-14-2014, 01:15 PM
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I really did not know what to make of these.

Glanced at them... okay they are glass of some sort... they are expensive as all get out... and they sound... decidedly "ok". The drivers look to be high quality and workmanship looked good, but if I were to pay 7k for speakers they would have to be life changing and these looked to be more of something some rich guy in Miami would have in a Scarface house to go with his statues and not necessarily focused on actual audio performance/value. smile.gif

Looking forward to your "review" of some of the other... fun... offerings at the Venetian. Or maybe I've missed some. wink.gif My girlfriend about choked to death when I told her a set of speakers we were listening to were like 110k. Sounded fine but not 110k fine.

I did however enjoy the Martin Logan electrostatic demo, where as you did not? I'm not sure if it was the same speakers/demo you heard. They were like... $6700/pair and I think the demo was running them in 4-5 channel all stereo (I'd have to refer back to my pictures to say for sure). Expensive, but I loved the sound and the feeling I got during the demo. All of the instruments and sounds seemed to be in space melding in my head, I could pick out individual instruments very easily... well set up and impressive demo IMO.

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post #3 of 5 Old 01-14-2014, 02:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Done Deal DR View Post

I really did not know what to make of these.

Glanced at them... okay they are glass of some sort... they are expensive as all get out... and they sound... decidedly "ok". The drivers look to be high quality and workmanship looked good, but if I were to pay 7k for speakers they would have to be life changing and these looked to be more of something some rich guy in Miami would have in a Scarface house to go with his statues and not necessarily focused on actual audio performance/value. smile.gif

Looking forward to your "review" of some of the other... fun... offerings at the Venetian. Or maybe I've missed some. wink.gif My girlfriend about choked to death when I told her a set of speakers we were listening to were like 110k. Sounded fine but not 110k fine.

I did however enjoy the Martin Logan electrostatic demo, where as you did not? I'm not sure if it was the same speakers/demo you heard. They were like... $6700/pair and I think the demo was running them in 4-5 channel all stereo (I'd have to refer back to my pictures to say for sure). Expensive, but I loved the sound and the feeling I got during the demo. All of the instruments and sounds seemed to be in space melding in my head, I could pick out individual instruments very easily... well set up and impressive demo IMO.

The Matrin-Logan Motion prototype I listened to was not an electrostat. I think ML electrostats sound great.

 

I did not have the time to spare to go look for another overpriced underachiever—not sure I would find anything that could beat the Waterfall in that category, not matter how hard I tried.


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post #4 of 5 Old 01-14-2014, 02:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post

The Matrin-Logan Motion prototype I listened to was not an electrostat. I think ML electrostats sound great.

I did not have the time to spare to go look for another overpriced underachiever—not sure I would find anything that could beat the Waterfall in that category, not matter how hard I tried.

Ahh okay, that makes sense then.

The electrostatics definitely seem to be ML's forte, and I was initially surprised when I thought you were that displeased with them given the demo I went through (I ended up sitting there for 20 minutes or so, longer than I spent listening to any other demo). From what I gather it's possible the speakers I was listening to were actually the 10k/pair Martin Logan Montis series and not the 7k/pair Ethos. More than I'd probably ever spend but they made some beautiful noise either way. I was worried I'd find a set that made me regret my choice in speakers (Klipsch RF-7 II's), but for the price I didn't see much of any competition there, at least for me.

I'm going to Audiofest in Denver in November, there should be tons to listen to there... good or bad.

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post #5 of 5 Old 01-16-2014, 03:05 PM
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I had a good laugh at those. What knucklehead would actually buy a pair, unless they have some sort of glass fetish? ;p

I'd go for a pair of the new Triton's though - now that is bang for the buck! Anyone else listen to those? BTW my setup at home is comprised of BG Radia LA800 mains and CC500 center, plus two bag-end 18" infrasubs. My previous setup was a pair of Genesis 6.1's and matching center. In short, my system is all about sound stage. and these Tritons at a measly $5k MSRP/pr still greatly impressed me!


A/V Gear: Elite 70" display, Theta CBIIIHD processor, Theta Intrepid amplifier, Oppo 95 BD, BG Radia LA800 mains, BG Radia CC400 center, four BG Radia R18i surrounds, dual 18" Bag End Infrasubs, two Fuhrman P1800PF AVRs, Synergistic Silver Reference active cables & interconnects. 

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