Chicago Performance Schedule
Listeners' Experiences Waveform Studio Monitors
Understanding Room Reverberation New York Show Report

Chicago Performance Schedule

Mach Solo:

Wed. 2 - 4 pm
Fri. 12 - 2 pm
Sat. 12 - 3 pm
Sun. 12 - 2 pm

Mach MC:

Thu. 12 - 4 pm
Fri. 2 - 5 pm
Sat. 3 - 5 pm
Sun. 2 - 4 pm

Mach 17:

Wed.   12 pm -   2 pm   and   4 - 6 pm
Thu.   10 am - 12 pm   and   4 - 6 pm
Fri.   10 am - 12 pm   and   5 - 7 pm
Sat.   10 am - 12 pm   and   5 - 7 pm
Sun.   10 am - 12 pm   and   4 - 6 pm

There will be no changing of this schedule even if the room is empty, as there is a good deal of work to switch systems 3 times each day. Our speakers have never been known for their light weight and the Mach Solo is positively a non-cooperative dead body. I encourage those of you wishing to attend the show to bring along a few of your favourite & demanding discs to try out on our system as well as some of our fellow exhibitor's systems. Each of our systems will be capable of switching instantaneously from stereo to 5 channel surround for music only, as we have decided not to drag along a big boob tube. :-)

With the MC 5+2 system you will get to hear our impedance matched MC.1 passive subs (they are mono subs so you need 2) along with the Mach MC's on the MC Towers. True 20Hz to 20 kHz frequency response for normal people at realistic levels. They employ the same 10" woofer as in the Mach Solo. A real sub satellite system totally dedicated for low frequency corner enhancement and high frequency mid-floor imaging placement. At this stage I have yet to decide to do 7 channels as allowed within the Lexicon protocol (Logic 7). I could bring along the Bryston BP-60 to provide the rear channel power. 13 loudspeakers in one room; anyone really superstitious?

Waveform will use 2 hard to get Bryston 9B-ST's (we need 9 of the 10 channels offered and the remaining one is there to spook the kooks :-) along with a just arrived Lexicon DC-2/AC3/DTS/THX processor and a Panasonic DVD A-310 player. A Panamax 1000 + will give us a common ground to avoid hum gremlins. I have spent about 30 hrs. so far with the 9B and it is the quietest amp I have yet set up. A real treat! IF a listener has a very quiet room and IF he has some good DDD releases that clearly are naturally recorded, he should hear a -bit- more detail and all the other accoutrements that go along with a lower noise floor. This is a plus for anyone to really determine differences in the coming new 96/24 audio standards, . . . if there are any. I guess I started something, eh? :-)) Take it to a newsgroup.

We will be shipping more Mach Solo's and Mach MC's the week following the show when our feet are back at ground zero. We have successfully completed 2 sales with one in Greenville, SC and the other in Thousand Oaks, CA. The new web site renovations are behind schedule and it will be later on before they are complete, along with photos of all veneer finishes, prices, technical specifications and reading materials. The new site will be best viewed on a 17" monitor with a screen resolution set for 800 x 600. We've just spent a hard day in a photo studio producing 4" x 5" large format transparencies and I want them viewed at the highest resolution possible.

Hope to see many of you next month in the windy city. For those interested, after show close Friday night the first drink's on me.

No $30 cognac guys; working class beer or wine only. :-)) Posted May 4/99


Several months have transpired since last I did a NEWS posting. You must all think that I am beginning to adopt Peter Aczel's methods of work. Actually, after nearly two years, issue # 25 of the Audio Critic is out and once again it makes for interesting and enlightened reading. Remember Peter is approaching his mid-'70s. What publishing a magazine and building a loudspeaker line have in common, is that both functions would best be served within an organization, where one could delegate responsibility. But we're speaking here within an imperfect world, where a needed kind of magazine and slightly better loudspeakers can find receptive audiences. If there was a genuine greater emphasis on performance instead of politics, boutique companies like The Audio Critic and Waveform would be unnecessary. Back to the real world . . .

The first announcement is that Waveform will exhibit at HI-FI '99, Chicago at the Palmer House Hilton Hotel in room # 10120. The show dates are Wednesday May 12th. through Sunday May 16th. Consumer days are Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Closer to the show dates, Waveform will publish a performance schedule, which will see us demonstrating music only with the Mach 17, Mach Solo and the Mach MC, both in stereo and surround sound for music and in different combinations. Judging from the list of exhibitors who have so far signed up, this doesn't look at least at this time, to be a very big show. Time will tell however.

The *special show rate* for a room reservation for exhibitors is $198/night in the Palmer House. In CDN $$ that's over $300 ea. night for the 8 nights we will need to perform. WOW! We're staying at a B & B for $78/night. We get the same clean sheets, the same dry towels, the same hot water, breakfast included, some company with the lord of the manor present and free parking with only a 3 mi. stroll to the downtown exhibit area. Downtown Chicago parking is at least $25 per day. Now if the high end didn't have to promote comically priced $20,000 CD players and loudspeakers costing as much as a BMW, to every investment banker on two legs, they might be able to host a show like this at a more reasonably priced hotel. Then Stereophile could get more exhibitors, *and* where the exhibitors would be allowed to bring their own equipment to the site for off-loading. The transportation of gear alone will cost an additional $1,200 to $1,500. In total, this show will cost Waveform nearly $14,000 CDN by the time we are through. I'm told by the ever genial Ken Nelson, that no ad can replace the ears on listening experience. I hope to meet many of you there.

Waveform has been extremely busy since last October. We sold and delivered in December all eight pairs of Mach 17's that had been under construction. Our record is still zero as far as requests for return of money and requests for return of deposits due to back orders. Speaking of back orders, we have received deposits for seven Mach 17 systems already for 1999. An order today just came in from Montreal, our first sale of a Waveform speaker in la belle province. Thanks Joe! We've also received deposits for the Mach Solo and Mach MC. Thanks to Jack, Larry, Bill, Tom, Robert, Bryan and Christopher. Waveform will only build 15 Mach 17's in 1999, that leaves eight remaining. It is not easy to schedule production but we will do our best to ensure that everybody who wants a Waveform Loudspeaker will get one, sooner or later . To further delineate the back order situation as of this writing, Waveform is now over 20 loudspeakers behind. Every single one of these sales and back orders are Internet based! My friends all tell me success is a nice problem to have. My reply is usually: "If you think my customers waiting for speakers are patient, I am as patient as anyone. After all, it's only taken 14 yrs."

The Waveform website is undergoing its first major redesign and renovation since April of 1996 when we went online. The look will remain the same with gold text on a black background. If the text you're viewing is orange, adjust your monitor. The site will more than double in size with many new features of interest to everyone including a search engine. There will be a major Q & A section divided into different categories; a greatly expanded Product section including accessories. New sections entitled the Process and the Promise will be added. The Promise will detail our 30 day money back guarantee as well as the ten yr. warrantee and our general marketing policies. The Process will be heavy on graphics combined with text, to depict the construction, finishing, quality control and measurement procedures required to build a Waveform loudspeaker.

There will also be a section called the Papers, whose primarily focus will be on explaining technical procedures that Waveform employs. I will also discuss and post from time to time topics of general interest.

Of even greater interest, will be the Listening Network. There will be an outline map each for Canada and the United States, showing the provinces and states only. There will be hot buttons wherever there is a Waveform owner who wishes to open his home to provide demonstrations of Waveform products. We will do the prequalification first before we send the email address to an owner. It will be up to the owner to further qualify the prospect before he lets him or her into his home. And yes, we now count a member of the fairer sex as we have our first lady client in Graham, Texas. All of our owners receive finder's fees for helping to locate potential clients. I believe my company must be one of the few fingers on a broken hand, doing this sort of thing in the world. It would be better of course to have dealers and go through a distributor, but the marketplace has been closed to us for years. "Who needs more loudspeaker manufacturers" is what stores generally postulate? So then why are direct manufacturers like Waveform held with such vitriol for bypassing the accepted way of selling? By using a schedule of finder's fees, we can pay the people who deserve it, owners who have put out their are hard earned capital to own what many consider to be the most natural and realistic loudspeaker made today.

In the future, Waveform plans to host a Loudspeaker forum at our site, which again I believe has not been attempted anywhere else. I stand to be corrected. It will be moderated by a third party and each post will have to be approved. The letters section in our current site will be changed to become the People. It will feature a changing series of client testimonials. If clients send in photographs of their listening rooms, we will post them in this section on a rotational basis. We hope to have the majority of these changes in place by May 1st. of this year.

This Tuesday we will be paying a visit to the anechoic chamber at the NRC, to perform the final measurements for our three new acoustic products; the Mach Solo, Mach MC and Mach .1, our passive subwoofer which will augment the Mach MC in a stereo or multi channel configuration. A listener will use 2 Mach .1's as they are designed to be used only in conjunction with the Mach MC and on a single stereo amplifier. I suppose if we had an organization, things would happen a little faster. Since we don't have that in place as yet, I'm very pleased for everyone's patience. When it comes to selling out,(Gail tells me: "When you're 75") I guess the drawback of buying my mind, is that the new owners will have to take my mouth along with it. A somewhat dubious proposition don't you think? :-))Posted March 7/99

Listeners' Experiences

"John, you are the ultimate elf! The sound of angels and heavenly choirs, HE must monitor with Waveforms."

Krista M. Snow and Dr. Rusty Goodman.
Markham, Ontario

"I really enjoyed the presentation you did for the Audio Society of Minnesota. You set very high standards of loudspeaker performance; by the sound I heard, you have succeeded! Many members told me this was the best sound we have had at the Pavek Broadcast Museum. Thank you again for braving the weather to address our group!"

Chris Ossanna,
President ASM

"At the Boston Audio Society venue, the sound coming out of the Waveform was extraordinary... because the Mach 17 sounded like music."

Franco Vitaliano
21st Tone web zine

"The system had great dynamics! It could play loud and clean without taking on an offensive edginess. The midrange and treble were first rate. Vocals were natural and uncolored, treble was smooth and extended..."

Bruce Beaton
The Detroit Audio Society

"... designing excellence... I will not hesitate to recommend Waveform... Waveform fares well along great systems like B&W 801s and the KEF 105s and 107s..."

Joe Prahler
Southeastern Michigan Woofer and Tweeter Marching Society

"The members of the Boston Audio Society thank you for your excellent presentation to members of the society on January 21, 1996. You did a good job of explaining why your loudspeaker is exceptional. You have a fine product, with an unusually good dispersion pattern, and we wish you success. Let me know if you ever decide to become a loudspeaker professor. I will be among the first to enroll in your course!"

Alvin Foster
Corresponding Secretary
Boston Audio Society

"In town with an all new speaker, we in 'Vegas were treated to a superb demonstration of recorded music via the Waveform Mach 17. ...All I need to say now is that my audition revealed a loudspeaker capable of superb dynamic contrasts and excellent dispersive characteristics. Oddly enough, one of my CD's that sounded great on the ESP Concert Grands didn't come off all that good with the Waveform's. On the other hand, some CD's sounded great. If you're in the market at the price, an audition is more than recommended, it's a must. Some of the top recording studios in the world have already jumped on board with Waveform."

Martin G DeWulf
Bound For Sound 1/96

"On March 17, 1996 John Ötvos treated us to his latest loundspeaker creation, the Waveform Mach 17. These ably transported down to Atlanta by van over a 25-hour period-one way. Talk about dedication to audio and music! Apparently, this was the furthest afield that Ötvos had ever road traveled for an audio society presentation or any other that we know.

"To some listeners, the Mach 17's provided; "excellent off axis image, lifelike dynamics, can't judge because of unfamiliar room or recordings,...good tonal balance, given a better room these have great potential,...speakers practically disappeared in broad soundfield, authoritative bass, excellent definition especially with Jazz" and so ranged the variety of comments...plenty of opinions, all in good audiophile tradition.

"All in all, the Mach 17's was an eye and ear opener that provided a memorable listening and learning experience. Hats off to John Ötvos for his time and effort to conduct this presentation, and to his dedicated search for the ultimate in music reproduction via the Mach 17's that are easily 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of others that pretend the crown."

Flight of the Mach 17
Artistry in Wood and Sound
By Chuck Bruce
The AAS Journal Summer/Fall, 1996

"Dear John,

Last December, when you invited us to your home to audition the Mach 17 speakers, you said we would be in for a treat. I was not prepared for the wonderful acoustic display in such relaxed surroundings! I have never experienced this degree of naturalness from a stereo system. The calming effect it had on my wife and I was overwhelming. This system was the most transparent and utterly revealing of differences that I have ever heard in over 20 years of playing with hi- fi. My task now is to figure out which bank to heist so I can get a system sooner rather than later.

This sonic experience must have been like the Avro Arrow with the Iroquois engine installed. The best of luck to Waveform in the New Year, and you will be hearing from us again."

Joseph Simchuck
Toronto, Ontario

"But what does the Waveform Mach 17 sound like? ... In a word, awesome! This is a speaker that reproduces everything equally, its bass reach and control the peer of any system I have ever heard, and its midrange and treble clarity the equal of any speaker of any design I have ever heard. The crossover adjustments allow just the right amount of tweaking to the room, particularly in the bass, with the midrange and treble able to be moved backward and forward to achieve the best tonal balance. This is a reproducer that makes one forget the notion of different felicities of planar, electrostatic or dynamic types. It has the virtues of all of them, with none of the drawbacks. There is almost limitless dynamic range, extremely flat response, and an ability to portray both macro and micro dynamics with great accuracy and subtlety.

"The fact is, there are few full range systems at two or even three times the price of the Mach 17 that will even come close to its bass extension and power. If the slogan Flatline Fidelity applies, it applies in spades here. As the graphs show, these speakers are flat to 20Hz...

"During the week or so I lived with the Waveforms a number of interested professional listeners dropped by, including contributing editor Jim Hayward and mastering engineer Clive Allen. One of the qualities we all noted was the realism on centered voices, either speaking or singing: there was simply a presence and naturalism that's heard from few other speakers.

"Stereo imaging, too, was so complete that one couldn't think of it as being layered or deep; it was all just there...

"...There is no denying that it is one of those few speakers that, with its ability to reproduce organ or orchestra at realistic levels in a large space with remarkable accuracy, deserves to be called a truly complete design. Priced at under $10,000 CDN with a state-of-the-art electronic crossover thrown in, the Waveform Mach 17 is also an astonishing value in high end, high accuracy audio."

Andrew Marshall's
Audio Ideas Guide
Winter 1997, pgs.36 & 38

  • A very positive report has been published in the April, 1996 issue. Visitors interested in reading the full text can find it on page 86, Volume 19, No. 4.

  • A positively glowing account of the Vegas public unveiling of the Mach 17 by John Marks of John Marks Records can be found in the May, 1996 issue, Volume 19, No. 5, page 99.

  • Did Larry Greenhill say that the Waveform Mach 17 was his choice for best sound at Hi-Fi'96? Some people feel that Dr. Greenhill's testimonial to his own experience in Rm 602 was not only the most definitive but also the most enthusiastic of any Stereophile reporter's comments that have appeared in print. Find out for yourself in the October 1996 issue, pg. 91 # 10.

    Watch for Mach 17 Advertisements

    in the current and back issues of...

  • The $ensible Sound
  • The Audio Critic
  • High Performance Review
  • Andrew Marshall's Audio Ideas Guide
  • Bound For Sound
  • Sound and Vision
  • Stereophile . . .
  • Dec '95
     Jan '96Page 196
     Feb '96 Page 156
     May '96Page 146
     Oct '96 Page 184
     Nov '96Page 162

    Perhaps the best reference of all...

These five recording companies, internationally renowned for their commitment to the highest standards, use our speakers as studio monitors. Why should an audiophile settle for less?