Experience Von Gaylord Audio through the reviews of our valued customers.
I was introduced to Von Gaylord Audio by a coworker who I discovered is a fellow audiophile. When I asked him what was in his system he said everything was from Von Gaylord Audio and proceeded to gush over how musical and just “right” all of their products sounded. Curious, I decided to try a pair of Chinchilla interconnects with no expectation that I would want to replace my Audience AU24e cables, which I was quite happy with. The moment I first connected those Chinchillas and hit play proved to be a huge turning point for me. I was stunned. These cables had it all — lots of detail, spaciousness, air, rich tone that was smooth yet amazingly textured at the same time, extension on both ends. Even handed, vibrant but soothing, eminently musical.
Okay, so the interconnects were great, but what about the slew of other components that Von Gaylord offers? Still with a dose of skepticism, I came across a local deal on an LAD-L2 linestage preamp and decided to give it a go. Sure, the Chinchilla interconnects were able to upstage the comparably priced AU24e cables, but at the time I was using a very highly lauded Conrad Johnson CT5 preamp with 6H30P-DR “supertubes”, which cost the better part of $10,000. Could the LAD-L2 even compare to a unit costing nearly double? Well, the L2 is still here and the CT5 is long gone. Did the L2 step all over the CJ as the Chinchillas did to the AU24e? No, not quite. There were a few a things the CJ objectively did better. A little more stage depth, a little larger scale, more macro dynamic punch, but the L2 had the upper hand where it really counted. The music flowed better. It was more fleshed out, simultaneously richer and airier, just more emotive and soul piercing. Simply put, the L2 put a bigger smile on my face.
Fast forward a year and Von Gaylord Audio has replaced nearly every piece of my systems — that’s plural. Pass Labs, Luxman, Sonus Faber, Berkeley Audio Design, Bel Canto, VTL, JPS Labs, Placette, Belles, McCormack, Almarro — gone, gone, gone, gone, gone… The only pieces I haven’t replaced are due to budgetary constraints. The Nirvana power amps truly marry the best of tubes and solid state, and are very quiet with very low heat output to boot! The Legend 7000 power cords and interconnects improve upon the Chinchillas by a pretty substantial margin — I NEVER would have thought that would be possible had I not heard it first hand. The Chinchilla speaker cables trounced the AU24e speaker cables even more handily than the interconnects did. The Uni DAC is EASILY the most turntable-like DAC I’ve ever heard, hands down. The Legend speakers combine the detail, clarity, and imaging precision of Wilson with the sweet, rich tone of Sonus Faber. Everything is just superb, well balanced, and brings the MUSIC out of the sound. I believe there is some kind of Von Gaylord voodoo magic that is injected into every product they sell.
Best of all, the level of service I have received from Ray has been absolutely first rate, top notch. He personally picks up and delivers goods for service and upgrades to my home and sets them up, free of charge. He even brings by goodies just to try them out with no pressure to buy. Really, who does that these days? Any questions and the response is always prompt, friendly, and informative.
I could not be not be happier as an audiophile and a customer. I need to buy my coworker a drink. Many thanks to Von Gaylord Audio!
April 20 2013
This is a long review, but I hope, worthwhile reading. I have always loved the sound from the Von Gaylord
rooms at all the audio shows I have attended. I have been through more equipment changes then I care to
mention but there have been many. While each has had it’s strengths I’ve always lusted after a different sonic
presentation. I purchased some used Von Gaylord equipment on Audiogon to see if I could recreate the magic
I had heard at the shows. Unfortunately, the Pre Amp I purchased had a loose ground so I sent it to Ray at
Von Gaylord. He was very understanding and offered to repair it under warranty at no charge to me.
He also offered me a generous trade in towards the LAD-L2 Signature which I took advantage of. He never
tried to pressure me to upgrade but let me decide. After that I purchased some VG1 speakers and I was
constantly calling and Emailing him to help me dial in the system. I was quite the pest but he was always
gracious and patient with me. I mentioned to him that I would be at “The Show” in Las Vegas and I would stop
by and see him. As usual he had one of the best sounds at the show and that was with a room that was much less
than ideal. He offered to stop by my home on his drive back from Las Vegas. I live in Seal Beach and it was
going out of his way to say the least. I have never felt more taken care of after a sale! He took his time helping
dial in the system and he also brought in the new Legend speakers the Uni DAC and some Chinchilla cables
for me to demo. Wow! It was the best sound I had ever heard in my room. I was clearly able to hear every
improvement because I was so familiar with the room. It is a cliche but the performers were in the room.
I wanted to cut a check right there for everything but unfortunately I was not in a position to do so. I was able
to upgrade to the Legend speakers and the rest will come as finances allow. I am now the proud owner of
the Legend speaker with VG plus the LAD-L2 Signature Pre Amp and the LM Triode Mono amps.
So how does it sound you may ask???????????
In one word FANTASTIC! I have been up till 2 am every night going through my music collection. The sound is
both warm and transparent. This warmth does not come from attenuating the upper registers….exactly the opposite! I have played drums professionally for over 20 years and I can tell you that cymbals have never sounded as real. The imaging is first rate and the speakers disappear into the room. The bass cabinet blends
seamlessly with the monitor and the bass is both deep and tune full. An added bonus is that many of the CDs
I thought were marginal are now pleasant to listen to. Much of the grain that I thought was in the recordings
was from my older system. I cannot tell you how much I attribute the improvement to the electronics or
the speakers as I changed out both simultaneously. All I can say is that in my opinion, Von Gaylord get’s it!
These components should be on everyone’s audition list. In addition, Ray is a pleasure to deal with and he has
pride in the line. I apologize for such a long review but I hope it helps if anyone is still sitting on the fence as
I was. Make the jump to the Von Gaylord family.
January 17 2012
I discovered Von Gaylord after purchasing a pair of interconnects on Audiogon. This was the beginning of a slippery slope to completely revamp my entire audio system to all Von Gaylord components. Once I heard the interconnects, I was immediately hooked by the fluid and natural sound. I quick progressed to other cabling and then was lucky enough to get introduced to Ray.
Ray is one of the nicest and most pleasant people that I have ever worked with. He brought over a variety of Von Gaylord components (speakers, pre-amp, amp) for me to audition in my home. He set it all up to perfection and let me compare against my existing B&W, Lamm, and Allnic system, without ever being pushy or overly salesy. He simply let me enjoy the music and make up my own judgement. Less than a week after I auditioned his components, I bought the whole Von Gaylord system.
The components are amazing and the service from Ray is first-class.
Thanks again Ray.
December 12 2011
I’m a long term customer of VonGaylord audio. I’ve own gears from Audio Research to Levinson to Spectral to Martin Logan, and I have say VonGaylord audio makes some of the most wonderful sounding equipment. My only wish is I discovered them earlier. Thanks guys!!
July 17 2011
My first experience hearing a Von Gaylord audio system was at the Stereophile Home Entertainment Show in NYC I believe in 2001. Up until that point I have heard many audio systems at various audio salons in New York City and thought I knew what good sound was. Walking into the Von Gaylord Room was a revelation- a new beginning for me. It sounded better then anything I had heard before. The system recreated a musical event in the room. The performers were in the room with me! The sound was so real. I never thought loud speakers could disappear the way they did and I learned the true meaning of imaging. I continued to return to the room during the show to enjoy the music and learn more about a company I hadn’t heard of up until that time. While other rooms at the show produced nice sound none produced such a memorable life changing event.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t in a position to afford a Von Gaylord system or I would have taken a taxi home with everything! But I did learn a lot from that experience and compared my memories to a system I could better afford. Never happened!
Fast forward six or years or so and I was in a better position financially and decided it was time to try Von Gaylord Audio components in my home. I called their office in California and spoke to Ray Leung. We had a nice long conversation and he took the time to answer all of my questions. I decided to purchase the Legend loudspeakers. The sound quality was much better then the speakers I was using and I knew I wanted more of that sound I heard at the Stereophile Home Entertainment Show.
During the subsequent three years I was able to put together a Von Gaylord Audio system which now includes: The Uni Dac, LAD- L2 Signature preamp, Nirvana monoblocks (I upgraded from the LM Triodes), Legend loudspeakers and all wired with Chinchilla cables. I can now say my system sounds even better then my memories of the Stereophile Home Entertainment Show!
The system really took a giant leap forward when I recently added the Uni Dac. Everything improved including imaging, sound staging and bass response. But I wasn’t prepared for the incredible improvement in dynamics! This is where the Uni surpasses all other Dacs I had an opportunity to listen too. I didn’t realize a Dac could have such a profound effect on the overall sound of a system. After listening to the Uni Dac I am convinced there is no need for SACD, HDCD or vinyl for that matter. Standard CD never sounded better and I have no desire for other formats.
While I am perfectly happy with Von Gaylord components the experiences I have had dealing with Ray and Necole are even more important. They truly make you feel like family. Ray is always available. Just call him leave a message and he’ll get back to you anytime! I remember the first time I called and left a message on a weekend thinking I would get a call back Monday morning. Much to my embarrassment Ray called me back in a few hours! Try that with any other manufacturer!
It’s the combination of excellent components and even better customer service that I will be a life long customer of Von Gaylord Audio.
November 20 2010
I have been a Legend/Von Gaylord client for over 25 years. I cannot say enough good things about their customer service. The products speak for themselves. Music is very important to me. I am not a wealthy guy but every time I listen to my system I feel like a millionaire. You cannot get a better system for the price and their customer service is second to none. I feel like I have a lifetime warranty.
October 15 2010
“I have saved what for me was the best for last – the Von Gaylord Audio room. I went there looking to eyeball and maybe hear a set of the new liquid-cooled vacuum tube monoblocks, but ended up being ushered into a small, darkened room where a set of 100Wpc Nirvan triode monoblocks wer playing – in combination with a CD and preamp of no particular distinction – into a set of small Legend (Audio) Speakers. I could not believe my ears! This system had it all – dynamic agility and a fair degree of wallop, a convincingly dimensional soundstage, a warm and articulate, seductively sweet midband, and a wonderful sense of air at the top. It is refreshing to see someone put together a system that plays music and gets out of the way so completely, especially at this price.”
-THE ABSOLUTE SOUND April/May 2004
Your CES Exhibit was the most musically satisfying room of the whole show. This was the only room where I enjoyed listening to music and not electronics. I spent more time there than any other room and truly enjoyed speaking with the gentleman who was supervising it.
I was so impressed with your sound that I bought two Legend IV interconnects, two power cords and your preamplifier. It was based upon the combination of the music and his explanations that I made my purchases. He recounted a story of someone who had recently purchased a pair of your interconnects. He had told the customer that he would be in for some late night listening once they were in his system.
This gentleman made a similar prediction for me. This also occurred as predicted. I arrived home approximately 11:00pm from CES. After having listened to music all day long, I was reluctant to put the cables in but did so anyway. I put in only one set, between the Arcam Alpha 5 and the First Sound Passive preamp, and reluctantly removed the Cardas Hex Link Golden Cross interconnects. WOW! The midrange opened up immediately, the imagin snapped into focus, the sound stage improved dramatically, and I was off on a listening odyssey that lasted until 2am.
My wife was in the other room and wanted to know who one of the female vocalists was, one she had heard many times before but had failed to capture her attention. NOW she wants a tape for her car. She wasily recognized the virtues of the new cable FROM ANOTHER ROOM.
Again, I truly enjoyed your CES room and look forward to receiving the rest of my equipment.
June 4 2006
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1050 Riverside Parkway, Suite 100
West Sacramento, CA., 95605, USA
Phone: (415) 328-9572
Fax: (425) 969-9579
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