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TAS: Van den Hul Crimson XGW Stradivarius and Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius

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  • TAS: Van den Hul Crimson XGW Stradivarius and Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius

    Van den Hul Crimson XGW Stradivarius and Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius
    -Two High-Flying Birds

    Equipment report
    by
    Andre Jennings

    "A.J. van den Hul has created two very good, high-performance cartridges in the Crimson XGW Stradivarius and Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius. They both produce an expansive (in all directions) soundstage—partially due to excellent channel separation. Both cartridges will play back instruments with vigor and near-maximal dynamics..."


    The TAS Report is now available online here : http://www.theabsolutesound.com/arti...-stradivarius/
    A.J. van den Hul has created two very good, high-performance cartridges in the Crimson XGW Stradivarius and Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius...
    **************************************************
    Every day is a good day to play analog.
    - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
    - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
    **************************************************
    Every day is a good day for live music.
    **************************************************

  • #2
    Glad to see TAS finally put your review up online! Great job comparing and contrasting the two cartridges! Must have been tempting to add another Colibri to your cartridge collection! 🎰
    Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
    Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
    ________________________________________

    -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
    -cj 40th Anniversary ART300 monoblock amplifiers
    -Merrill Audio Elemente 116 monoblock amplifiers
    -cj GAT preamplifier Series 2 preamplifier
    -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
    -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
    -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
    -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
    -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
    -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Allnic cables, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, MG Audio, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies Power Cords
    -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

    Comment


    • #3
      Great work, as always Dre. I enjoy your detailed insights.👍

      Comment


      • #4
        Regretfully, I missed A.J. van den Hul’s Cartridge Clinic seminar at Chicago Axpona last year... I sincerely hope this was not a once in a lifetime opportunity.

        It is a delight though to read your impressions of these two more than capable audio retrievers. Truly, high art and craftsmanship still exist amongst a capable few.

        The thoroughness of your review process and insight is equally, highly appreciated.
        Listening/Living room 25.5x14.5x8.5, modestly live & dynamic, Brinkmann Balance w/RöNT II PS, HRS, Reed P3-12, Miyajima Zero, Avid Acutus SP, SME V w/Kondo fairyhair silver litz, Lyra Kleos, Linn Sondek LP12 w/Ittok LVII, Nakamichi ZX-7, SCD-XA5400ES, Aesthetix Calypso & Rhea Signatures, Nordost TYR Norse 2 XLR IC, Silent Source Music Ref mains, Atma-Sphere MA1 Mk.3.4 OTL Silver Edition monoblocks, Elrod EPS-3 Sign power cables, Coincident PREt, PS Audio Premiere, Yamamoto racks, SMARTractor

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Gusf View Post
          Great work, as always Dre. I enjoy your detailed insights.👍
          Thanks GusF. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

          Originally posted by DetroitVinylRob View Post
          Regretfully, I missed A.J. van den Hul’s Cartridge Clinic seminar at Chicago Axpona last year... I sincerely hope this was not a once in a lifetime opportunity.

          It is a delight though to read your impressions of these two more than capable audio retrievers. Truly, high art and craftsmanship still exist amongst a capable few.

          The thoroughness of your review process and insight is equally, highly appreciated.
          Thanks Rob. I'm happy you liked the format of that report.





          **************************************************
          Every day is a good day to play analog.
          - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
          - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
          **************************************************
          Every day is a good day for live music.
          **************************************************

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by MylesBAstor View Post
            Glad to see TAS finally put your review up online! Great job comparing and contrasting the two cartridges! Must have been tempting to add another Colibri to your cartridge collection! 🎰
            Thanks Myles.

            It's always tempting to add another cartridge.

            Interestingly, the Crimson XGW Stradivarius is the one I was most tempted to add.

            Of course, I'd also consider swapping my very low output Colibri XGP for the Coibri XGW Signature Stradivarius in the process.

            Dre
            **************************************************
            Every day is a good day to play analog.
            - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
            - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
            **************************************************
            Every day is a good day for live music.
            **************************************************

            Comment


            • MylesBAstor
              MylesBAstor commented
              Editing a comment
              Decisions, decisions. Or a tapestage?!?!

              🤪

            • Dre_J
              Dre_J commented
              Editing a comment
              You know me well.

          • #7
            I really liked your comparative description of the two cartridges and I certainly appreciate the amount of work that went into this review. Anyone who is in the market for either of these two cartridges will surely benefit from the information you provided in your review.
            SP-10 MKII table with custom power supply designed and built by Peter Noerbaek with an SME 3012R with Dyna XV-1S cartridge, VPI Avenger table with rim drive and JMW -12-3D arrm with Lyra Etna SL cartridge, ARC Ref 3 phono stage, Otari MX-55 tape deck, Ampex 350 repros, Roon Nucleus Plus server, PS Audio DSJ DAC, ARC Ref 6 pre, ARC Ref 75 amp, JBL 4345 speakers with a pair of Def Tech Ref subs.

            Comment


            • #8
              Originally posted by mep View Post
              I really liked your comparative description of the two cartridges and I certainly appreciate the amount of work that went into this review. Anyone who is in the market for either of these two cartridges will surely benefit from the information you provided in your review.
              Thanks Mark. I'm happy you like it. It took a bit more effort but I think it worked out well.

              **************************************************
              Every day is a good day to play analog.
              - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
              - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
              **************************************************
              Every day is a good day for live music.
              **************************************************

              Comment


              • #9
                Andre,
                Nice write up on these two. Very interesting flavor differences, well described. As I remember your system being dynamic as all get out, the Coibri XGW Signature Stradivarius must have been a real barn burner.

                Comment


                • astrotoy
                  astrotoy commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Stirling, great to have your contributions to AN. Larry

                • MylesBAstor
                  MylesBAstor commented
                  Editing a comment
                  👍👍👍

              • #10
                Originally posted by stirlingtrayle View Post
                Andre,
                Nice write up on these two. Very interesting flavor differences, well described. As I remember your system being dynamic as all get out, the Coibri XGW Signature Stradivarius must have been a real barn burner.
                Stirling,

                Thanks for the comments.

                Yes. The Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius was very expressive during its time in-house.

                When you visited, we briefly listened to my Colibri XGP. So, you have an idea of what that sounded like in my setup. What I mentioned in the TAS report about the additional attributes the bigger Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius brings to the table, were on full display here.

                One thing to be mindful of is the comments about tonearms and good bearing designs. In ones that are not well designed, the results can be less than desirable.

                Dre
                **************************************************
                Every day is a good day to play analog.
                - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
                - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
                **************************************************
                Every day is a good day for live music.
                **************************************************

                Comment


                • stirlingtrayle
                  stirlingtrayle commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Andre,

                  I remember your XGP very well. It was certainly dynamic and I fully understood why you were so enamored with it. I am too! But the XGW would have been nice to hear in contrast. More dynamic..impressive. I'd love to hear some big Mahler from it.

                  I would think that any area where a tonearm is even mildly deficient in controlling energy, especially the bearings, both of these cartridges would wreak havoc with it. Which is far from the case in your situation.

                • Dre_J
                  Dre_J commented
                  Editing a comment
                  That is very true about a deficient tonearm, Stirling.

              • #11


                Stirling,

                Thanks for the comments.

                Yes. The Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius was very expressive during its time in-house.

                When you visited, we briefly listened to my Colibri XGP. So, you have an idea of what that sounded like in my setup. What I mentioned in the TAS report about the additional attributes the bigger Colibri XGW Signature Stradivarius brings to the table, were on full display here.

                One thing to be mindful of is the comments about tonearms and good bearing designs. In ones that are not well designed, the results can be less than desirable.

                Dre
                That gorgeous Basis Super Arm certainly didn’t hurt!
                Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
                Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
                ________________________________________

                -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
                -cj 40th Anniversary ART300 monoblock amplifiers
                -Merrill Audio Elemente 116 monoblock amplifiers
                -cj GAT preamplifier Series 2 preamplifier
                -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
                -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
                -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
                -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
                -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
                -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Allnic cables, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, MG Audio, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies Power Cords
                -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

                Comment


                • Dre_J
                  Dre_J commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I can agree with that.

              • #12
                Recently got in a Crimson Stadivarius to try out. Have about 30 hrs on it now. Sounding excellent.

                Comment


                • #13
                  bump
                  **************************************************
                  Every day is a good day to play analog.
                  - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
                  - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
                  **************************************************
                  Every day is a good day for live music.
                  **************************************************

                  Comment


                  • #14
                    I’am thinking about replacing my Ortofon MC Anna with a Crimson XGW strad or a Colibri XWG strad. I’m listening almost exclusively classical music and a little bit of Jazz Music.
                    Does somebody here has some experience with both Anna and Colivri or Crimson ?

                    Comment


                    • Tango
                      Tango commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Never heard both the Crimson and Colibri XWG Sig Strad. But I have both the Colibri Master Signature Strad and Anna. The Colibri is in a total different league to the Anna.
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