Bob Silverman wowed a select but enthusiastic audience Friday with a concert that consisted of two Mozart sonatas (K303 and K300) and three Brahms piano sketches. He was playing a Steinway parlor grand that sounded wonderfully Mozartian.
Art Dudley and I didn't so much enter Hyperion Sound Design's room as get dragged in by our ears. Standing in the Hyatt's hallway, we heard some close harmony quartet singing that sounded mighty darn real.
Omaha was showing this nifty little 10Wpc No.OD-300B integrated amplifier ($1400), which was driving Omaha's Omaha Speaker (price tbd). Do I need to say that the No.OD300B uses a pair of 300B tubes? The system sounded warm and spacious. 10Wpc may not sound like much, but the Omaha speaker seemed comfortably driven. Fit'n'finish were impressive.
A tradition at HE SHows is the "bazaar: in one of the hotel's ballrooms, where record companies and accessory manufacturers do a brisk business. Here, Marcia Martin of Reference Recordings shows off their latest release Serenade, a recording of the same vocal group, the Turtle Creek Chorale, as in their best-selling Rutter's Requiem CD.
Outlaw Audio had a press conference, at which Peter Tribeman talked about all their new products in a way that effectively combined modesty with a not-inappropriate touch of blowing your own horn. He freely admitted that there are a number of companies making excellent speakers—naming several that he admired—but suggested that Outlaw Audio’s new speakers stand comparison with these industry standards. He said their aim was not to sell a boatload of speakers, but to use the best components and designs, tweaking the crossover of each speaker to produce true audiophile results. The speaker he’s holding up here is the prototype of their LCR ($700), which can function as a center-channel speaker in vertical or horizontal orientation, with switch-selected modification of the crossover, hence lobing pattern, to take into account orientation. All of Outlaw's speakers will be made in the USA.
If a long line at registration is an indication of a show’s success—and it’s certainly one indication—then Home Entertainment 2007, held this weekend at the Grand Hyatt in Manhattan, could be pronounced a success by an hour after it was open to the public. The line was long enough that some people were grumbling—but their complaining stopped when they got in and had a chance see and hear all the neat stuff at the show. Exhibitors John Atkinson talked to at the end of the day seemed very happy with the turnout.
The press conference that I personally found the most exciting on the Show's first day was by Ralph Glasgal (left) on his Ambiophonics system. I knew about Ambiophonics (a signal-processing system
designed to cancel out interference between a pair of loudspeakers,
creating something akin to binaural listening but from speakers instead of headphones), but somehow I’ve never heard a demonstration, or at least not a convincing one. The demo setup at HE2007 was rather unusual, with a pair of giant Sound-Lab electrostatics at one end of the room, and another pair of floor-standing TacT speakers at the other end, the setup intended to demonstrate how the system works with these two types of speakers. I only heard the demo with the Sound-Labs, but I must say I was quite blown away with the huge soundstage, precision of imaging, and sheer ease of the sound. The Ambiophonic processing was performed by the latest TacT RCS 2.2 XP ($6000) which also functions as a full-feature preamp, a digital room correction device, and a D/A converter. Tact’s President and Designer, Radomir Bozovic (right), was also on hand to answer questions about the Tact system.