PJayden Fasss -#beatniks
I’ve known Paul Baker for approximately 3 years when he approached me in my record store and told me of his repair work. I had been looking for a repair guy to do the bulk of the work in store that was beyond my capabilities! Paul’s first job for me was a Vintage 1963 Fender super reverb guitar amplifier which had noise in the clean channel. He repaired it the day he took it away and brought it straight back the next. I knew right then that Paul was our repair guy! Since then we have developed a strong relationship with all things audio related. He has repaired and built for me turntables, stereo amplifiers, music equipment, speakers and even a vintage 8 track in car stereo.
I recommend Falls Audio and Paul for his professionalism and quick turnaround without cutting corners to get the best work done for myself and my clients. Thanks again Paul for your fine work.
Paul James: Falls Audio 205D Line Stage
Before I contacted Paul Baker of Falls Audio I already had fine line stage. It did many things well, it had great dynamics and produced effortless sound, it wasn’t constricted or dull. I did however realise that better performance was available yet I wanted to put an end to the ‘upgrade merry go round’. When I commissioned Paul Baker to build a 205D valve based line stage line stage the aim was to have a piece of equipment that I would savour and enjoy all my life. That was a very ambitious aim especially given the active speaker system I use which means there is no were to ‘run and hide’ any flaws and imperfections won’t be hidden as people who have heard my system also note
The Falls Audio line stage breaks the dilemma of trade-offs. This is you get one or more things at the expense of others. For example better warmth, liquidity and tone, but the dynamics are recessed. Minising, or little to no tradeoffs is very difficult as a result it rarely achieved. I mention this as I set Paul Baker a huge challenge in designing and building a 205D based line stage as I wanted it all, I wanted timbre, resolution, wanted life like whack, crack, wallop and power and immediacy of live concert and and heavenly life like vocals. I wanted ‘my cake and eat it to’. Paul Baker achieved the remarkable feat of making a line stage that a real way does it all. The fact that he accomplished this goal demonstrates to me that he is master builder and inspired me to launch another project with Falls Audio a push pull 45 valve amp. I own many amps including vintage Tango, Shindo and VAC. These amps are no slouch, yet I was stopped in my tracks when hearing Falls Audio 245 amp. Vocals were amazing real, the sense of presence is amazing. This is not a regular amp and on Pauls open baffle speakers the 245 amp really shone. I wasn’t planning to get yet another amp yet after hearing how amazing the amp was I commissioned Paul to also build me a 245 amp.
To say I am happy with the line stage Paul made is an understatement. I can’t see myself having the need or wanting to ever part with it. This a line stage to last a lifetime. it would take something incredible to better what it does overall, and it fully justifies the use of the very expensive original 205D western electric valves. Music is so much more lifelike and vivid with this line stage. Paul has achieved everything I hoped for and more, he has even exceeded my high expectations. The line stage I was using before had good dynamics and openness, though the Falls audio line stage operates at entirely different level. Indeed without extremely capable speakers you would only starch the surface of what it can do. The falls audio line stage would compete and I suspect leave even many stratospherically expensive line stages way behind, it is a world class line stage.
My enjoyment and engagement with music has increased significantly since I started using the falls audio line stage. It’s a cliché but on a stella recordings you can have the ‘you are there experience’ you forget yourself and are transported there into the performance like the singers are right there in front of you. As a result you really appreciate an amazing artist and how great the difference is to a more ordinary performer. Nina Simone at times sounds nothing short of magical; the emotional colours of her performances are fully evident. I urge you to consider the Falls Audio difference, obtaining a Falls Audio product will be one the best decisions you could make and the products are designed and made in Australia.
William Susiardjo:Falls Audio 45 Single Ended AMP
I have been aware of Paul Baker's creations for quite some time. His creations are known to be great sounding, fully customised and high quality builds with point to point wiring construction. I have always wanted to own one but couldn’t afford it until recently. Like most things in audio, if you want to get the best quality equipment they usually cost a lot of money. But if you want the ultimate, then you have to spend lots of dough. Having said that, Paul Baker’s creations are relatively cheap when you consider what you get. I have experienced his superbly built Western Electric 205d preamp, push-pull EL34 amp, valve output stage reel to reel preamp and of course my own single ended parallel 45 amp. Dare I say, go on and compare them to ANY gear in the world and you’ll be surprised how his creations simply better them in almost any areas. I have listened to some of the most expensive gears out there like Shindo, Audio Note, Cary, Bryston, Pass Labs, Krell, etc and I always prefer his gear. I have owned my 45 amp for almost 3 months now and it’s giving me the best musical enjoyment from almost any amps I’ve had listened to. The amp simply sounds pure and surprisingly has enough juice to power medium sensitivity speakers. I run it with my friend’s vintage JBL speakers. I have no doubt when I hook it up with my main speakers, Goodmans Axiom 80, it will be sublime. What I like the most about this amp is that I can hear low level details coming through the speakers effortlessly, it’s just so relax and natural. Listening to this amp is like drinking fresh mountain water in the heat of sunshine. It’s so fresh! It’s got correct tonality, beguiling and very involving. Once the music is on, it’s really hard to get away from my system. That’s probably the best I can describe about the amp as I’m not a reviewer and I prefer to keep things simple.
If people want to listen and compare this amp to any amps out there, do let me know. My number is 0434390373, contact me and we’ll make an arrangement to listen to this amp. I have always said to everyone I know that Paul Baker needs to get more recognition for his works and also more importantly people deserve to get the best sounding equipment for their hard earned cash. I work so hard for a living and when I get home to listen to this amp, I know that my hard work have been handsomely rewarded. This amp will stay with me until I am not here anymore in this world.
Disclaimer: I have no business relationships with Paul Baker nor will I get discount for my next purchases.
Andy Moore: Leak Amplifer and other general repairs
I have known Paul Baker for a number of years and he is one of only a few people I would let work on my equipment and the only person I would go to, to have an amplifier or preamplifier built.
There are many technicians around today that can work on and build valve audio gear, but very few that do it well. By that I mean the equipment they build allows music to come through in all its natural glory, not some cardboard facsimile. Gorgeous tone, great texture and natural timbre and dynamics are all there. This is in an age when specifications rule but no one listens to what they make, Paul is a breath of fresh air. Pauls build quality is excellent but his knowledge of how to build wonderful sounding gear is rare. The difference between the same money invested in one of Pauls creations compared to modern commercial offerings is substantial. he 205D preamplifier he built is a work of art and the best preamplifier I have heard bar none. The domestic audio industry needs more people like Paul Baker and less marketers and accountants.