HE 2006

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John Atkinson Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
For the fourth year in a row, the Home Entertainment Show was the venue for a raffle organized by analog specialty distributor Musical Surroundings. Shown here with the grand prize, a Pathos Classic One integrated amplifier is winner Stanley Moore (center), with Musical Surroundings' Garth Leerer (left) and Stereophile's Michael Fremer, who pulled the winning entries from a box in the time-honored, double-blind manner. Our congratulations to all the winners.
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Fred Manteghian Posted: Jun 03, 2006 Published: Jun 04, 2006 2 comments
Dr. John brought down the house Saturday night at HE 2006, where the crowd brought him back for an encore.
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Wes Phillips Posted: Jun 04, 2006 5 comments
I always enjoy Ray Kimber's IsoMike demos more than almost any other HE Show demo. It's not the room full of pedigreed high-end gear, although he always has that. This time he demoed with four B&W 800d loudspeakers, two pairs of Pass Labs X350.5 power amplifiers, Genex Audio GX9000/DSD-BNC interface, and four channels of EMM Labs DAC8 MkIV DSD feeding EMM Labs Switchman (four channels worth, natch), not to mention a whole bunch of Kimber KableD-60, Kimber Select KS-3038, and Word Clock D-60 cables. Nor is it the meticulously recorded music that Ray has captured with his IsoMike process.
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
Proving that you could create beautiful music within the confines of a cement hotel room, AAA Audio was showing off their new disc player atop the Critical Mass Systems isolation platform.
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 04, 2006 1 comments
Leonid Korostyshevski, who hails from Saratov Russia and has written for the Stereophile web site in the past, checks out headphones and some music. When asked what he liked best about the show, Leonid said "everything."
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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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Wes Phillips Posted: Jun 04, 2006 2 comments
Just got back from the John Atkinson/Bob Reina/Allen Perkins jazz trio concert and it was great! Especially when you consider that these guys only play together once a year at the HE shows.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
Can a show report have too many pictures of oil-cooled tube amplifiers? I don't think so.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 0 comments
Flying Mole Electronics is the whimsical name of a company that makes some compact, relatively inexpensive, and, from what I heard in their room, very good-sounding audio electronics. How compact? Well, just look at the picture of their CA-S3 integrated amp, with a CD box next to it for scale. The amplifier is described as "proprietary bi-phase PWM," with an output of 20Wpc, and sells for $850. The larger—but still compact—CA-S10 ($1500) puts out 100Wpc. Both are claimed to have a tube-like sound. The little CA-S3 did a good job driving both a custom system based on JBL components and a more conventional bookshelf-sized speaker from Von Schweikert.
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Robert Deutsch Posted: Jun 04, 2006 3 comments
Horns’n’triodes go together like...well, horses and carriages—and those who view both horn loudspeakers and tube electronics as antiquated technology might say that the simile is particularly apt. Although I would not want to argue that the way to sonic bliss is obtainable only by pairing horn loudspeakers with triode tube amplifiers, the combination can be magical, as was the case with the Acapella Audio Arts speakers and Wavac Audio Lab electronics on demo at HE 2006.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 04, 2006 1 comments
Saturday’s first taste of the real thing for this writer came in the form of midrange truth. The location was the third floor Santa Cruz room put together by Optimal Enchantment, a Santa Monica-based high-end retailer whose 25 plus-year history in the business perhaps grants it the right to so audacious a name. The amps were Audio Research REF 610 monoblocks, each of whose twenty glowing 6550 output tubes help account for their 600W output and $40,000/pair price tag. Speakers were an industry given, the Vandersteen 5As, the cable Audioquest, and the turntable a Basis Debut Signature ($10,900) outfitted with a Transfiguration Orpheus cartridge ($5,000) and Basis Vector Model 3 tonearm ($3750).

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