The Bergmann presentation
The restaurant on the 4th floor features beautiful architecture with a classy interior, a great restaurant, and an absolutely amazing all-around outside view.
A sizable section of the 4th floor was reserved for the Mafico-organized Bergmann presentation.
There were many familiar faces and everybody was in a great mood.
Flanking the Bergmann Galder turntable are the Final Model 7 Hybrid Electrostatic speakers, driven by a Lindemann Musicbook source and power pre- and power amplifier.
The Odin linear tracking air-bearing tonearm was fitted with an Air Tight PC-1 cartridge, feeding an Air Tight ATH-2 Reference step-up Transformer.
The output of the step-up Transformer was in turn fed to an Air Tight ATE-3011 Reference Phono Stage.
Johnnie explains the basics and benefits of his air-bearing designs.
It starts with the air pump. Bergmann turntables utilize a whisper-quiet membrane pump that is decoupled and further isolated within a larger chassis. Johnnie demonstrated the difference between off and on and none of the attendees could hear a difference.
The stylish and seemingly simple Galder turntable’s feet hide a complex aluminum and ceramic ball construction. 3 upper and smaller ceramic balls configured in a triangle, are standing on top of one bigger lower ceramic ball. The construction is such that the feet always maintain perfect contact, even when with uneven surfaces.
The platter is centered by a hard anodized spindle with a hard-wearing low-friction polymer bushing.
The air pump has a threefold purpose. First, it provides air pressure to cushion the rotating platter. Second, it provides a vacuum through the center of the spindle to provide the vacuum hold-down for the record. And finally, it provides air pressure for a linear tracking air-bearing tonearm.
As Johnnie explained, there are different ways to flatten a record and secure that the record has a uniform contact with the record mat or platter. A clamp covering the record label will only keep the center of the record perfectly flattened while a metal ring on the outer edge will only keep the outer part of the record flattened. The best way to flatten the record completely is by obtaining a vacuum between the record and the mat/platter – the vacuum hold-down.
The Bergmann Audio vacuum hold-down is highly user-friendly. The vacuum pump doesn’t need to be turned off when changing the record. The user simply removes the vacuum clamp that is covering the center spindle which releases the vacuum, and the record can easily be changed while the platter is still spinning. After changing the record and the vacuum clamp is reseated, the record is automatically flattened by the vacuum hold-down system.
Incidentally, the Bergmann vacuum pump is designed such that it does not create condensation and thus has no issues with moisture. Moreover, the system is stable in all climates, even moist environments.
Here’s Johnnie, demonstrating a brand-new extra tall and extra heavy stainless steel platter on a Galder turntable.
Even when viewed from behind, this turntable is a stunning beauty.
For horizontally leveling the tonearm carriage, a precision-machined bubble level is supplied that can sit directly on top of the round air tube.
After Johnnie’s presentation had finished, there was time for mingling, and this is when I met Maarten Smits, owner of Final Audio.
Maarten Smits has been an innovator in the development of advanced electrostatic speaker technology for more than a decade during his ownership of Final, a company that was founded in 1989 by him and his brother Michiel Smits. Maarten told me the fascinating story of how Final was founded, taken over, and taken back into his own hands, but that’s something for a dedicated article.
Meanwhile, the catering provided a really nice lunch buffet. Shown above is only a fraction of the extensive buffet and I have to say that based on what was offered as part of this buffet, the restaurant must surely be superb.
Again, would you just look at that view!