HE 2006

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Stephen Mejias Posted: Jun 06, 2006 1 comments
You could smell the chocolate from just outside the door. Walking into the Moscode room, I was greeted by a bowl of silvery Hershey's Kisses.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 06, 2006 8 comments
And so we say goodbye to the Sheraton Gateway and the City of Angels. Home Entertainment 2006 was a good Show, with some great sounds. I echo Wes Phillips's sentiments below. In talking to people, I had a sense that we were all part of a community of individuals with much the same goals, if not always the same way of reaching them. The Show staff were unfailingly pleasant and efficient. The hotel’s facilities served the needs of both exhibitors and attendees well—and by the last day of the show I actually figured out how to go from my room to the escalators without making at least one wrong turn!
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 06, 2006 0 comments
My first visit on the Show's final day was to the Usher room. After listening to their large BE10 floorstander ($14,400/pair), paired with the 2500 amp, 2200 preamp, and CD player (combined cost $5600) and cables from Shunyata and Stereovox, I was treated to Usher’s new entry-level $400 bookshelf baby. Seen here at the left of their lineup, other Stereophile writers had been impressed. While Usher’s little babies understandably offered less low bass extension than the big floorstander, they delivered far higher sound quality than anyone in their right mind could either expect or hope for at this price point.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 06, 2006 2 comments
Southern California's Brooks Berdan, Ltd. continued to affirm the store’s reputation for high-quality sound in its Ayre/Vandersteen room, which had also impressed Wes Phillips in an earlier blog entry. Listening to the Ayre MXR 300W monoblocks ($16,500/pair), K-1x preamp ($7000), C-X5e universal player ($5950), and about-to-be-released power conditioner, connected to each other and the wood-finish Vandersteen Quatro speakers ($10,700/pair) by Ayre's own cabling, I encountered a soundstage whose height and depth had no right to exist in such a small space. But beyond issues of size and depth, listening to a Channel Classics SACD of the Ebony Band Amsterdam performing the music of Silvestre Revueltas enabled me to enter that composer's phantasmagoric universe in a deeper, more all-consuming way that I had ever before experienced. It was as if I was inside Revueltas' head, haunted by the very demons that drove him to write his extraordinary music. To discover myself so immersed in music in the middle of a bustling show was a rare gift.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Jun 06, 2006 1 comments
I managed to catch Leland mid-dance. I showed him the picture and asked if it would be okay.
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John Atkinson Posted: Jun 06, 2006 0 comments
The Black Swan loudspeaker ($30,000/pair) from Canadian manufacturer Gershman Acoustics is unusual in that it uses a separate enclosure for its woofer section, flanked by extensions of the satellite's side-panels. The speaker's finish was excellent and the sound, with the speakers driven by McCormack universal player and electronics via Magnan cable, was equally excellent, even taking the the small size of the hotel room into consideration.
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 05, 2006 3 comments
While the focus of HE2006 was clearly on consumer equipment, two recording engineers stopped me in the halls to show off a hot professional recording device from Sound Devices. Todd Garfinkle from M•A Recordings first alerted me to the two channel version of the portable recorder, which retails for around $2,400. About the size of a small book, it sports pro inputs and the ability to save to a flash card or host computer.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 Published: Jun 05, 2006 1 comments
Speaker reviewer Bob Reina is actually a classically trained pianist. He's seen here tickling the ivories in a most satisfying manner during the John Atkinson Trio concert at HE2006.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 Published: Jun 05, 2006 0 comments
Immedia's Allen Perkins, the third member of the John Atkinson Trio at their Sunday afternoon concert, is studying with jazz drummer Peter Erskine (Diana Krall, Joni Mitchell).
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Wes Phillips Posted: Jun 04, 2006 Published: Jun 05, 2006 1 comments
The Moscode 401HR driving the Joseph Audio RM25si loudspeakers were sounding mighty fine. I actually thought they had more moxy than most really expensive systems I heard at the Show, particularly with acoustic music, such as Alison Krauss and Union Station. The top end really sparkled in a most believable way.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 1 comments
WLM stands for Wiener Lautsprecher Manufaktur, and their product literature states that the company’s ambition is "to keep the Viennese heritage of music alive." While this might appear to give short shrift to institutions like the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna State Opera, the system featuring WLM Lyra speakers, Audio Aero SACD player and electronics sounded was exceedingly musical in its presentation.
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Robert Deutsch & John Atkinson Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
Former Stereophile scribe (now PR person) Jonathan Scull (left), blogger Stephen Mejias (center), and surround-sound maven Kal Rubinson—plus webmaster Jon Iverson, Ultimate AV's Fred Mantegian, and your humble servant, taking the picture&151;were having a good time, about to go out to dinner. Then, in the cab on the way to the restaurant, Jonathan realized that he had left his new digital camera back at the Sheraton, on the table that you see in the picture. A frantic call to the Sheraton, asking them to look for the camera, was to no avail. Then, after dinner, when we got back to the hotel, as we got out of the cab, we were spotted by Maureen Jenson, Editor of Home Theater magazine, who called out to Jonathan: "Did you get your camera?" It turns out that Maureen found the camera, and had passed it on to one of the Stereophile staff to return to Jonathan. Disaster averted!
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
In the Simaudio/Dynaudio room, the sheer size and weight of the bass commanded equal respect. This was some of the finest low bass extension I have so far encountered at the show. (The bass impact of the new Wilson Watt/Puppy8s also deserves mention). Imagine my surprise when, after my audition, Simaudio’s Costa Kouliisakis told me that he had not yet succeeded in getting the room to deliver all of the deep bass extension the equipment was capable of producing.
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Wes Phillips Posted: Jun 04, 2006 1 comments
Information travels by jungle telegram at these shows, so by Sunday, I'd heard that I had to hear Nagra's set-up about 50 times. As a result, when I walked into the Nagra/Verity Audio/Silversmith/Audion/Sonic Euphoria room, I was startled to see, not one, but two systems—and the pricier of the two was off in the room's corner with its back to a curved bank of windows, leaving the $35,000/pair Verity Sarastros firing into the room at a more acute angle than I'd ever attempt. It sounded good, though. In fact, it sounded fantastic!
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 03, 2006 Published: Jun 04, 2006 1 comments
Sonneteer/Bardaudio's Haider Bahrani holds the $425 Bardone TX wireless audio transmitter. This device can broadcast an uncompressed CD stream wirelessly up to 50 meters (164 feet).

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