Electronic Visionary Systems is a creation of myself, Ric Schultz. I have been an avid high-end enthusiast and tweaker for over 30 years.

Back in the mid 70’s I came across two gentlemen that changed my way of dealing with audio. Until then I knew how to solder and had assembled a Heathkit receiver but I had never made my own equipment from scratch.

Trevor Lees came from Australia with a wealth of tube and tweak knowledge. I met him after he had taken the phono stage from the highly regarded Bruce Moore designed Paragon 10 preamp and put it into a Dyna PAS 3 chassis with a better power supply and no line stage. This simple phono stage kicked ass. My first audio job was stuffing the circuit boards for his PAS mods. Trevor was the first person I have ever heard of that played with wire, paralleling switches (lower contact resistance), car batteries for heater supplies and most importantly he pushed using just one half of a dual triode (something that makes a big sonic difference that practically no one has done since). Trevor showed me that you can take a simple circuit and get big results if you take it far enough.

Sieg Modes lives for perfect sound. His wideband solid state amp in the 70’s was the cream of the crop. His 60 watt per channel stereo amp had a 700k bandwidth (about 7-9K open loop bandwidth), was fully regulated, completely DC, had non-inductive emitter resistors and no inductor in the output. He spent countless hours making this wide bandwidth amp stable. Sieg had at one time the World’s best head amp (30 meg bandwidth!) and the World’s best interconnect (a litz cable design that he was given while on the astral plane in a dream). This man loves bandwidth! Sieg taught me about taking the time to take something to the nth degree and thinking theoretically as well as doing listening tests. Sieg is currently working on making the World’s best audio transformers for his already highly modified Soundlab A4 electrostatic speakers. By the way, his amp is in its zillionth incarnation and currently has a 5 meg!!! bandwidth.

In the early 80’s I worked for Monster Cable, Audible Illusions and MFA. In 1988 I started to make my own passive preamps for people and in late 1989 came up with the idea for a volume control (the shunt attenuator) that has just one fixed resistor as the series element and uses a switch with resistors for the shunt element. My Stepped Attenuators and Ultimate Attenuators were reviewed in July 1990 by Robert Harley in Stereophile Magazine. They were class A rated for 7 years. The Ultimate Attenuators are still in production. The shunt attenuator is used today by Reference Line, BAT and others. Selling the attenuators for 17 years I have only about 3% return!!!

In 1995 I designed a DAC using the best parts and execution that I could. I used the UltraAnalog input receiver, the HDCD digital filter, UltraAnalog DACs (covered in copper foil and Mu-metal), and had no output filtering or output buffering. The balanced version has five 56 watt transformers, 17 regulators and two power cords. All parts are the world's best and are all hardwired/handwired directly together with 6 nines copper wire, Wonder wire, etc. The very limited edition totally hotrodded Hand Made DAC-1 is still thought of as one of the most transparent DACs ever made.

My goal has always been to sell/make/modify gear to be the most transparent I can. I will not sell any component if there is a better product at a similar price. I try to treat each customer as if they are myself. I want every person to have the best sound system that their budget allows. If I don't have the best products for someone, I tell them who might or does.

It appears to me that most audiophiles are very confused about which equipment to buy. There are so many choices and most reviews either have none or only one comparison. Back in the mid 70’s my small group of audiophile friends owned at least one of all the best components there were. We could bring our equipment over to our neighbors and know for sure what was best. There was only a handful of top preamps, amps and speakers to choose from.

Another perennial problem is that there is no real race track in high-end audio. If a formula one race car goes around the track faster than the competition then all the other companies go out immediately with their spies and infrared cameras to see what made that car so fast. Once a high-end audio company has a good product, then all they have to do is make it a little better every year and we will all buy new equipment. Anyone can do scientific listening tests to evaluate most equipment. All wires, amps and preamps can be straightwire bypassed to see how they differ from neutrality (absolute transparency). With the exception of Peter Moncrief of IAR and an occasional reviewer who will drive their DAC directly into their amp and then put in a preamp) I know of no one else doing this. Wires can be added in series with a reference set of wires and preamps can be added between another preamp and the amp. Amplifiers can be also listened to as a preamp (if it cannot drive the high impedance of a power amp linearly than how could it drive a low impedance speaker any better?).

Philosophically, I would call myself a purist. What I want is live breathing musicians in my listening room. I want to feel the emotion and delicacy of this wonderful thing we call music. I design equipment to have as little signature as possible. I don’t want tube sound, I don't want transistor sound, I want the component to disappear. I believe that the signal path should be as short as possible (I have not used a line stage since 1979!). I read everything I can find about tweaking and have talked to countless audiophiles who continuously educate me. In my mods I use the world’s best parts and execute them in the best ways I know. I design strictly for sound. Purity is the goal. Every part and every power supply must be made as linear as possible.

Enjoy the website!

Ric Schultz