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Reviewer: Marja & Henk
Financial Interests: click here
Sources: PS Audio PWT; PS Audio PWD; Dr. Feickert Blackbird/DFA 1o5/Zu DL-103; Phasure NOS1 DAC
Streaming sources: dedicated XXHighEnd PC; iTunes; Devialet AIR
Preamp/integrated/power: Tri TRV EQ3SE phonostage; Audio Note Meishu with WE 300B (or AVVT, JJ, KR Audio 300B output tubes); Yarland FV 34 CIIISA; Qables iQube V1; Devialet D-Premier; Hypex Ncore 1200 based monoblocks; Trafomatic Kaivalya; Trafomatic Reference One [in for review]; Trafomatic Reference Phono One [in for review], Avantgarde Acoustic XA pre and power amplifier [in for review]
Speakers: Avantgarde Acoustic Duo Omega; Arcadian Audio Pnoe; Vaessen Aquarius; Vaessen Galaxy Ultimate [in for review]
Cables: complete loom of ASI LiveLine cables; full loom of Crystal Cable cables; Nanotec Golden Strada #79 nano 3; Nanotec Golden Strada #79 Special and SR; Nanotec Golden Strada #201
Power line conditioning: Omtec Power Controllers; PS Audio Powerplant Premier; PS Audio Humbuster III; Commino Powerline Harmonizer H 3.1 [in for review]
Equipment racks: ASI amplifier and TT shelf
Sundry accessories: Furutech DeMag; ClearAudio Double Matrix; Nanotec Nespa #1; Exact Audio Copy software; iPod; wood, brass, ceramic and aluminum cones and pyramids; Shakti Stones; Manley Skipjack; Franc Audio Accessories footers [in for review]
Room treatment: Acoustic System International resonators, sugar cubes, diffusers
Room size: ca. 14.50 x 7.50m with a ceiling height of 3.50m, brick walls, wooden flooring upstairs, ca 7 x 5m with a ceiling height of 3.50m, brick walls and concrete floor downstairs.
Price of review item: €4.440/pr before VAT

It's not happened often that over a relative short span three different loudspeakers from the same new manufacturer have been reviewed in these pages. Yet after Srajan’s report on AudioSolutions' top model Rhapsody 200 which even resulted in a personal order from the Lithuanian company, Wojciech Pacuła followed suit with his impression of the stand-mounted Rhapsody 60 and now it's our turn to do the honors for the Rhapsody 130. For details on the company’s background and its proprietor Gediminas Gaidelis we happily refer the reader to the earlier reviews here and here so we can get straight to the nitty gritty.

Our review pair did not come directly from Vilnius but via a Grecian detour where the speakers had performed at the Athens HiEnd Audio and Video Show. The pallet the speakers were stacked on was too large to clear our front door so we had to unload on the terrace. Unlike the massive wooden crates Srajan's Rhapsody 200 came in, the smaller 130 had to do with a simple single cardboard box. Though one of the two boxes showed a large scary large gash and some of the inner Styrofoam spacers had cracked, the contents were remarkably unharmed. Shippers aren't known for subtlety where fragile cargo is concerned no matter how many stickers or warnings are put on the package. Gediminas assured us that he has reinforced packing materials accordingly since.

Another danger to cargo is moisture. Once unpacked the speakers were damp to put it mildly. We decided to give them some time to get acclimatized to our 60% relative humidity before attempting to get any music from them. Like all Rhapsody floorstanding models, the 130 come with a separate plinth that not only enlarges their footprint for extra stability but accepts three spikes, two large ones upfront and one small one in the rear to create the speakers' desired rearward tilt. Presumably somewhere between Vilnius, Athens and our place the washers spreading the torque of the plinth’s mounting screws had gone awol. Some digging in the tool shed netted replacements and soon the loudspeakers were sitting on their very sharp spikes and protector discs on our wooden floor.