Performance Advantage…

With the benefit of hindsight, I shouldn’t have been surprised. The Apex is an extremely effective dissipater and 14 of them amounts to a lot of dissipation. Putting this many between the RXR and the outside world will not only protect the system from mechanical energy induced by the outside world, it will significantly enhance the capability of the rack’s own structure to deal with energy generated internally by the system’s components themselves. So, a lower noise floor and a more linear mechanical environment – it’s no surprise that music sounds so much more natural and expressive.

But best of all, I’d expect a similar benefit on all HRS racks – at least all the racks that use ½” threaded posts for their cones, which is most of them unless things have changed recently. Either way, it’s easy to check and now that the Apex adaptor exists, re-sizing it for a different thread should be pretty straightforward.

The price of performance…

Apex HRS Adaptors are available in sets of eight or fourteen, to which you need to add the (not inconsiderable) cost of the Apex feet themselves. Then of course comes the question of which Apex feet – standard or XL? The XLs offer significantly better musical performance than the standard Apex, but the proximity of the middle front/middle rear feet on the double wide HRS racks means that the XLs won’t physically fit, requiring you to use a mix of XL (outer and centre) and standard footers (middle front and back). With 14 adaptors and some mix of Apex feet, this isn’t a cheap option. I opted for standard Apex feet on the basis that I had the necessary in-house as well as liking the visual consistency, but bought new as a set, that would tip the scales at a shade over $7,600. Step up to the 10 XL/4 standard mix and the price increases to around $8,500. In performance terms I suspect that’s a no-brainer, having already compared Apex XL and standard Apex under the GPA racks, but either way, that’s no small chunk of change. Clearly, pricing is going to vary, depending on whether or not you have already invested in the Apex feet (of either type) and how many feet your rack(s) require(s). I’m sure GPA will be only too happy to assemble and price the parts required.

But what you really need to bear in mind here is that the best investments are those that grow. If you already own a HRS rack, then this is one upgrade that will directly impact every piece of equipment that sits on it – and that makes it one of the most cost-effective (and practical) system upgrades you can make. It simply makes a good product considerably better. System support matters – which is why you bought that expensive HRS rack in the first place. Adding Apex feet is the audio and musical equivalent of earning compound interest (monetary and musical) on that investment.

Grand Prix Audio