Rivaling Mass Market Doo-Doo?
Toward the end of Day One, I encountered my Bay Area Audiophile Society buddy Jeff Wilson in the hallway. Jeff, a true music lover and long-time audiophile whose ears I trust, is about to open a showroom with Bob Kehn in Oakland, CA that will feature Magico, VAC, Silversmith, and other top-quality brands.
As a new dealer on the prowl, Jeff drew me to the Audiomagus room. There, the combination of extremely inexpensive Kingrex electronics (T-20 amp $250, preamp $360), Trends TA-10 Marquis Edition ($325), Lotus Acoustics DAC ($325), and teeny John Blue speakers ($600) was making far better sound than a lot of the stuff non-audiophiles pick up at chain stores. Of course, when Cain & Cain "Ben" speakers ($6700/pair) replaced the John Blues, the presentation rose to another dimension. Rather than revealing flaws in the inexpensive electronics, the double Cains enabled the system to sound so much better. The room also featured a lot of other extremely inexpensive electronics, not heard at the time of my visit. If they can approach the sound quality of the Kingrex gear, watch out!