I walked into Usher's room, where the $8000 (USD) Dancer II Beryllium held pride of place. I thought the sound was a little small and every so slightly forced, but I loved the rhythmic tautness and drive. "Not the best sound I've heard today," I thought, "but not too shabby."
"Tannoy is updating its line without abandoning its strengths," the suave Tannoy rep explained to me. "Listen to this recording of Salvatore Accardo. It's an old analog recording and it may be a tad too warm, but you could listen to it for hours."
For the 40th anniversary, B&W is introducing the limited edition Signature Diamond, a $20,000 floorstanding two-way featuring the Diamond tweeter and B&W's kevlar 7" mid/bass driver. The flared port is tucked into that wedge-shaped cut-away on the bottom. Only 500 pairs will be made.
The $2000 (USD) Prestige ST-200 super-tweeter has a vapor-deposited gold 25mm dome driver that has a -6dB downpoint at 54kHz (and only -18dB@100kHz). The two drop-in connectors on top establish crossover (14kHz, 16kHz, abd 18kHz) and sensitivity (89.5dB, 90.5dB, 92dB, 93.5dB, and 95dB). It integrated so seamlessly with the Glenair that I was initially convinced I was hearing only the concentric driver.
Cayin was showing the stunningly retro SP 105i table radio, which had me drooling. Nobody here knew what US importer Sze Leung was going to sell them for, but having seen the show sample, it's not what I thought I remembered, obviously. Importer VAS is still trying to determine a price, I've now been told.
I'm a lummox of an American and I have to admit I get confused when dealing with multiple currencies. On this trip, I've been juggling USD, HK dollars, and RMB—and that really makes the going rough. So when I asked Peter Chang how much this Audio Art Jasmine Model 3A integrated amplifier (9Wpc) would cost in the US, I was sure he'd gotten confused too, when he said $42,000.
This is Ping Gong, one of my hosts and my fellow traveler. At breakfast this morning, he explained to me how he became an audiophile. "It was the Cultural Revolution," he said. "We weren't allowed to study, so we played music and talked. I had a big Russian turntable—mono! And one speaker, of course.