Welcome to Galibier

Thanks for visiting us.  

Galibier was born of our turntable designs at the turn of the  millennium.  

Over time, we've evolved into a full-service vinyl front end company ... and more!

We feel that our  design experience uniquely positions us to evaluate and recommend the right product for you - whether it be a cartridge, a tonearm, a turntable (and not only from Galibier), or a phono stage.

Galibier Design - Thom Mackris

The select, few manufacturers we work with have long track records of quality, serviceability, and integrity.

We make some bold claims – claims that we believe can only be understood through shared experience.

When a customer first contacts us, we like to establish a common framework – your musical tastes, as well as the the hi-fi gear which has either worked or not worked for you.

At the end of this discussion (assuming we’re in philosophical alignment), the only question in your mind should be whether we can deliver the goods.  We’re confident that we can!

Quite a bit of our history and design philosophy was covered in an interview we gave with Dagogo magazine.  You can read a transcript of it here.

Thom Mackris
President, Galibier Design, LLC

Our Guiding Principles

Products We Endorse

The products we endorse rarely appear on the secondary market.  

Our customers tend to be long-term owners, and we take this as the highest form of compliment for both our designs, as well as the products we represent.

With respect to our turntables, the majority of changes are implemented "under the hood".  You won't find market driven cosmetic changes to make your Galibier product "obsolete".

You'll find similar stability in the lines of all of the products we represent.

Whether it's a turntable from Feickert, Kuzma or Galibier, the seven cartridge lines and seven tonearm designs we represent, we've explored them extensively, and fully understand their optimal application.

It takes time to perform a thorough evaluation, and our product line has expanded slowly over the years in order to dedicate the time necessary to do this.

The Customer is NOT Your Beta Tester

How many times have you had the sense that the product you just purchased was a pre-production prototype?

At Galibier, we hold the products we carry to the same standards we hold our turntable designs.

While you can't dictate your product release strategy to other companies, you can reasonably infer their approach from their historical record.

Companies we work with, hold back releases until they have something musically significant to say.  You will not see endless “.1” releases whose sole purpose is to generate cash flow for the manufacturer.

Support Doesn't End at the Sale

We're here to establish a long-term relationship with you.

Every turntable we deliver comes with a complete setup report (currently over 50 pages).  Subscribers to our mailing list receive a download link to a sample report (complete with tips, tricks and a tool guide). 

Support doesn't stop with delivery however, and we're with you for the long haul.

How long will it be before an ordinary manufacturer stops supporting you, either by planned obsolescence or for other reasons? 

We can't control the release strategy and business practices of other companies, but we can infer their support practices based on past performance.

You can will our turntable designs to your heirs.  Take a look at our museum, where you'll find that most every major upgrade can be performed to the very first turntable we sold in  2001.

As you view the functional look of our early models, and compare them with our present day turntables, consider their common DNA in the same way you might compare a 1956 Porsche against a present day model.

Serviceability and Reliability:

The same applies here - for Galibier products as well as those we represent from other manufacturers.  

A product can be perfect in every other respect, but if it is either difficult to service, or not easily maintainable, we won't endorse them. 

Quality

Quality begins at the design stage, because you can’t fix a bad design with state of the art manufacturing.

Having said that, the U.S. machinists who fabricate our turntables are ISO certified to manufacture satellites for NASA.

Again, our design experience gives us unique insight into evaluating products from other manufacturers.

Expand Your Collection

Expand your record collection

Do you find yourself pulling a record out and then sliding it back in the shelf?  What’s that about?  Is it that you aren’t in the mood for that piece, or … is it that you remember that it didn’t sound very good the last time you played it?

  • A hi-fi system should not limit your musical choices.
  • Our products will have you enjoying all of those recordings you once considered unplayable.
  • This is not about "sweetening" the music or rounding off the edges in any way.
  • We don’t sacrifice resolution in order to achieve this.

When you audition at Galibier, bring some of your unlistenable recordings, as well as music that you don’t necessarily gravitate to.  We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Auditioning

Time and Space Travel

An interesting thing occurs when our clients audition a system assembled by us. They stop using hi-fi jargon and start remarking about what the performers are doing ... in the present tense.  A world-class system is a space-time machine.

We couldn’t have said it better than Lynn Olson did in his timeless essay: Illusion Engines (opens in a new window).

Trust your knowing

The audio press can't tell you what to like.

Step back and observe both the language you use to describe the music and the language of your body - how it responds.  Music is both cerebral and physical.

Trust your knowing and realize that your reactions will tell you a lot. Don’t trivialize them.

Iconoclasts?

You might conclude that we're disparaging of audio reviewers.  That's not our intent.  We want you to to recognize however, that their language is just that ... words and nothing more.  It's all we have.

While a reviewer can't tell you how to experience the color red, or a Beethoven Sonata, they can lend insight into their musical values through metaphor.  Use it to your advantage.

Learning the rudiments of music (its language and syntax) will take you a long way toward recognizing a system's faithfulness to the music.  Terms like "soundstage" and "pace" will take on new meaning.

Ask questions

“Is this bringing me joy?”  “Do I feel as if I was invited to an after hours, private jam session where some special music was created?” 

Use your awareness and you’ll create questions that are relevant to you.   These are just examples.

If you shed the audiophile jargon, you will free yourself to trust your knowing and you will recognize when a system is making magic - for you.

The above may seem obvious, but we're all vulnerable to group-think induced by confirmation bias. The only people your system needs to satisfy are you and members of your household.  It's your money and time invested and not that of an "expert" who posts on a forum.

The Music - Giving Back

People talk about live music and reference systems.  We’ve found no better way to keep our musical priorities straight than to support the vibrant local music community by sponsoring house concerts.

Shown here, is the energetic, joyfully inventive, and incredibly talented band  Gipsy Moon, performing in front of our reference system.

What better way to give back to the music community while sharing great tunes with good friends - all the while, resetting your priorities in the listening room where your auditioning takes place?

Galibier Design - Gipsy Moon Band

Gipsy Moon Band in Concert at Galibier Design

Never miss a good story!

 Subscribe to our newsletter to receive a copy of a setup report we created for a customer.

Subscribers also receive discounts on all accessories, including Audiodesk, Feickert and AnalogMagik


This report is in 3 sections:  


15 pages packed with general setup information - tricks you may not have seen before

Documentation of the customer's setup

A tool guide - how to specify a USB microscope and build your own azimuth gauge


Click the photo below, to subscribe.

Galibier Design - Setup Tools and Charts (Composite Photo)

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