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Northwest Audio Show UK 2022 - Stereonet UK
I always look forward to visiting Mian Distribution's room at shows as I can guarantee that Andy will have a few “non-standard hi-fi show tunes” prepared to confuse and delight in equal measure. The main feature, however, was Leema's new Quantum range of products, including the excellently-named Neutron and Graviton pre/ power combo.
The Neutron is a DAC-equipped pre-amp that also benefits from an onboard MM/ MC phonostage and balanced/ unbalanced inputs. The Graviton power amp is a Class A/ B design rated at 150W per channel. Sources were the Electron CD player, which is kitted out with a SABRE ES9018-based DAC and boasts a headphone socket, and the Positron streamer, which was a 'stunt double' at the show as it's not quite ready yet.
These were treated to being output through a pair of Serhan Swift Mu2 MkIIs that had been previously sat in my reference system only a few days earlier. Without giving any review spoilers away, somehow, the Antipodean magicians have managed to improve on the original, which was already outstanding. These white versions looked stunning on the white SolidSteel stands, too.
Northwest Audio Show UK 2022 - HiFi Pig
Andy at MIAN represents a good few brands that we have a great deal of respect for here at HiFi Pig Towers with us using Italian rack and speaker stand designer, SolidSteel, to support out main rig and stand-mount speakers, as well as Leema Acoustics’ Libra DAC having been in permanent residence as our reference for a few years now. MIAN also distribute the excellent Sehran and Swift loudspeakers from Australia and we reviewed their MU2 speakers here.
MIAN were showing off the new QUANTUM range products by LEEMA, the Welsh company headed up by a couple of ex-BBC sound engineers, in the form of their Neutron and Graviton pre/power combo. The Neutron is actually a fully fledged DAC and Pre that benefits from an onboard MM/MC phonostage, multi input DAC, and balanced/unbalanced inputs. The Graviton power amp is an A/B design pumping out 150W a channel. The final piece in the LEEMA jigsaw is their new Electron CD player that has an onboard DAC based around the SABRE ES9018 chip and has a headphone output.
The new LEEMA kit looks like HiFi looked when I first go into it and I thin this is no bad thing at all. Prices are expected to be around £1600 a box when they are fully launched.
I said I’d not comment too much on the sound in the rooms at Cranage but I just have to say what a fantastic sounding room this was. Andy played us Personal Jesus and it sounded really fabulous – loud but not distorted and with a bass response that went very low considering the size of the speakers. This bass response for me was just what I love – tight and fast! I knew this track was going to really test the system, and, particularly, the room, but it just sounded brilliant with my notes saying that it was definitely one of the sounds of the show and not unlike the presentation I heard in the BrianandTrevors room earlier in the day. I was a bit gutted when we walked in and Andy cut The Jam’s Mr Clean as it remains one of my favourite tunes of all time and the system really got across Bruce Foxton’s underrated bass playing superbly. Anyway, once the Depeche Mode track got going I was a happy bunny!
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