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  1. For our August club meeting, we are very pleased to have Rick Bond of Lucie Audio present. Rick doesn’t yet have a website. The main source of information about his company is on Instagram and also from Rick’s posts within the Melbourne Audio Club area on StereoNET (see here). The following from Rick best describes what Lucie Audio is all about... “Lucie Audio is a boutique audio [manufacturer] based in Northcote, Melbourne. I established the name last year out of a desire to bring my own interpretation of what I value in a sound system to market, and so far we produce seven products - a pre and power amp combo featuring DSP and room correction, and a range of five loudspeakers including a powered subwoofer.” “From the outset, what I'm hoping to do with the brand is revitalise an interest in good sound reproduction at home, without making the equipment the focus more than necessary - both from a visual and auditory angle. Though we use some cutting edge technology, once it is working on our side, it can become transparent and hopefully it's just about the music and a new level of enjoyment - first and foremost good sound reproduction should forge a deeper connection to music. Ironically technology is at a point where this is as feasible as it has ever been, yet that's often not the case.” “The technical foundations of Lucie lie in room correction and efficient amplification, and their liberation in getting the best out of some fairly unconventional loudspeaker designs. Central to this is the premise that most commercially available speaker designs are based on a series of assumptions relative to the end user's room acoustics and tonal preferences, which are only by occasional chance completely accurate. The uncomfortable fact in sound reproduction is that the listening environment is so often the deciding factor in overall enjoyment of the system, and it is a topic that is seldom addressed when choosing one piece of equipment over another.” And … “The use of DSP allows …. us to achieve the best possible result in terms of tonal balance, soundstage and accurate presentation of instruments and voices.” Details of the system…. The DSP pre-amplifier – “Our pre-amp is built around the capabilities and feature set of the MiniDSP 2x4HD processor board. This gives us the power to process the stereo audio stream in real time to perform room correction and digital crossover functions. Room correction function is powered by Dirac, world leaders in this technology. The Dirac Live platform combines powerful and flexible capabilities with an easy to follow measurement process.” Power amplification – “Our power amps are built on modular designs from Hypex in the Netherlands. Hypex are at the forefront of a new era of ultra high performance Class D amplification. Amplifiers based on their Ncore technology developed by Bruno Putzeys are now appearing in the highest echelon of products.” … “Specifications of Ncore amp modules are superb across the board, and their characteristics focus on neutrality and resolving power.” Loudspeakers – “Our philosophy with loudspeakers is to stray somewhat from established design norms, made possible by harnessing the power of DSP and active crossovers available in the pre-amp, and multiple channels of amplification in our power amp. Central to this is the goal of eliminating phase issues across the midrange, where our auditory system is most sensitive.” Lucie Model One loudspeaker – “The simplest expression of the Lucie loudspeaker philosophy - a single point source driver delivers the full audio signal. Zero crossover distortion or phase errors. A large, light and strong paper composite diaphragm with powerful neodymium motor give neutral and transparent vocal rendition and a precise and vivid soundstage. Excelling at delivering accurate and nuanced midrange, this design is highly recommended where primarily acoustic music is appreciated in a small to medium, focused listening environment.” Lucie Model Two loudspeaker – “A traditional two-way compact loudspeaker with state of the art low distortion drivers from SB Acoustics and Scan-Speak. Extending linear frequency response above and below the Model One, the design physically time-aligns the acoustic energy from the low and high frequency drivers to maintain neutrality and phase coherence through the crossover range.” Lucie Subwoofer – “Built to extend the frequency response of the bookshelf cabinets to the very lowest octaves. The sealed construction and large, low distortion driver give extremely linear bass performance, and the use of a Linkwitz Transform equalisation in the DSP system extends response well below the resonant frequency of the cabinet, giving exceptional performance for a fairly compact enclosure.” “Material options available for loudspeakers: Baltic birch ply or narrow grain carbonised bamboo, solid laminated construction (no veneers used). Finishes: Natural oiled or Black Japan, others possible via consultation.” Rick has just finished up another two-way loudspeaker prototype and he likes it a lot, so he may well bring that too. The design is pretty unconventional with a small full-range mated to a Scan-Speak mid-woofer with an active crossover at 500hz. Source – Oppo BDP-105D multi-format player. The second half of the music sessions will be our popular BYO. Members and guests are welcome to offer music to share with us all. So bring along your favourite music on CD or USB thumb drives (sorry, no vinyl this month). All we ask is that the music and recordings be interesting. We'll ask you to tell us a little about the artist/recording before it is played. Tracks over 6 minutes will be faded out, to give everyone a fair go. Whether you are a novice or a seasoned veteran, you will have the opportunity to listen, learn and share your experiences with others. Feel free to come and hear the capabilities of the system, or to just share the experience with like-minded music lovers in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere. Guests are welcome – we are a very friendly club so you don't need to know anyone to join us for an afternoon of fine music and sound. Venue: Epping Creative Centre, Dence Park Address: 26 Stanley Road, Epping When: Sunday 19th August 2018 Doors open 1pm Meeting starts at 2pm Best regards, Tom Waters President Sydney Audio Club W: www.sydneyaudioclub.org FB: https://www.facebook.com/sydneyaudioclub E: tomwaters@sydneyaudioclub.org.au
  2. Lucie Audio 8pm Wednesday 18th July, visitors welcome. Willis Room, City of Whitehorse Offices Maroondah Highway (Whitehorse Road), Nunawading Melway Map 48 Ref G9 Contact: 9437 1249 When it comes to choosing or designing a loudspeaker there are two rules to consider: Rule #1; There is no such thing as a perfect loudspeaker. Every design is a series of compromises. Rule #2; One has to accept that there will be compromises and decide on a design which reduces these compromises. This month's presenter has developed a speaker system which further reduces the compromises associated with the conventional passive loudspeaker. Rick Bond from Lucie Audio will be demonstrating his speaker system which utilises active crossovers with room equalisation by means of his DSP pre-amplifier. "Our pre-amp is built around the capabilities and feature set of the MiniDSP 2x4HD processor board. This gives us the power to process the stereo audio stream in real time to perform room corrections and digital crossover functions. Correction technology is powered by Dirac Research AB, world leaders in this field". The process maps out the frequency and impulse response characteristics of the speakers in the room in a 3D grid around the listening position. After completing a frequency sweep with a microphone connected to the computer, a desired frequency response curve and an optimised impulse response are measured; the data and a set of filters are generated to map the two together. This data is then uploaded to the unit and stored in one of four configuration slots. This provides great flexibility in that up to four combinations of tonal response, crossover parameters and optimal listening position can be stored and readily recalled via the unit's remote control. "To get the best from the MiniDSP hardware, we developed an active analogue volume control board. Maintaining volume control in the analogue domain provides the best approach to the gain structure". Rick will be demonstrating his system with two sets of book shelf speakers and a matching subwoofer. He has developed these two distinct speakers to cater for the tastes of the listener. The Lucie Model One Loudspeaker is a 6.5" Point Source design. The full range driver is sourced from Dayton Audio for its zero crossover distortion. Excelling at delivering the nuances in the midrange, this design is recommended where primarily acoustic music is appreciated in a small to medium, focused listening environment. The Lucie Model Two Loudspeaker is a traditional two-way compact speaker with drivers from SB Acoustics and Scan-Speak. Recommended and pre-set crossover slopes from the DSP Pre-Amp are set at 6db per octave and centred at a fairly high 4kHz. First-order crossover slopes are chosen for their phase neutrality, made possible by the smooth and extended response of both drivers. This bass reflex (ported) design has a greater power handling and more driver excursion, better suited to bass-heavy music. The system extends the response well below the frequency of the cabinet, giving exceptional performance for a fairly compact enclosure. Cabinet materials are chosen for their high density and sustainability. Narrow grain carbonised Bamboo or Baltic Birch ply are laminated, no veneers are used, precision CNC cut then hand assembled and finished. Due to the laminar sheet construction inner wall profiles are able to be uniquely contoured to minimise internal reflections and cabinet resonances. This will be Rick Bonds first public presentation at an audio event. A relative new-comer to the HiFi scene, this young man has developed a complete active system that puts DSP technology within the reach of many audiophiles. Nick Karayanis Program Co-ordinator Ken Tripp Wise and Wonderful Webmaster Melbourne Audio Club, Inc. http://www.melbourneaudioclub.org.au
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