RMAF 2010

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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 3 comments
Zu did an outstanding job of transforming their drab hotel room into a comfortable, swanky listening environment, utilizing Flor modular carpeting tiles, a nice lounge seat, and some sweet-looking gear: Zu’s Soul Superfly ($2600/pair), a 16 ohm loudspeaker with a claimed efficiency of 101dB, in dazzling green finish, looks right at home with Luxman’s SQ-38u integrated amplifier ($6000) and D-38u CD player ($4000) and a Peachtree Nova D/A integrated amplifier ($1199). At the time I listened, Zu was using Channel D’s Pure Music front-end software ($129) for iTunes as a source, and there was an easy, laidback feel to the music.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Since my earliest visits to the Stereophile Show, well before I began writing for the magazine, I have always left Jeff Joseph's speaker displays with a smile on my face. This show was no different. Displaying the lovely Joseph Audio Pulsar ($7,000/pair) with not-yet-released-or-priced Pulsar stands, the combo with Ayre electronics (including the QB-9 USB DAC—$2750) and Cardas Clear cabling was a joy.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 6 comments
For many of us in the press, RMAF 2010 began with VTL's well-orchestrated press breakfast launch of the new MB-450 Series III monoblocks ($18,000/pair) and TL7.5 Series III preamplifier ($20,000). Speaking before a full house that included representatives from Stereophile, The Absolute Sound, Positive Feedback On-Line, Enjoy the Music, and many other media outlets, VTL's Luke Manley explained that the Series III is VTL's first fully balanced amplifier.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Attendees were treated to a fine demonstration in the Amarra room. A system featuring Focal loudspeakers and Parasound amplification was used to demonstrate the benefits of the Amarra music player software. On a desk between the loudspeakers and beside a Mac laptop was a screen, and on the screen were slides which contained simple talking points:
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 15, 2010 Published: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
In his Jumping Cactus room, James Harrell has put together a very fun system, and one that promises to be unlike anything else here in Denver.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Jason Victor Serinus got the scoop on Mistral, represented in the US by California’s Napa Acoustic, at the AXPONA show earlier this year. I was just as impressed by the looks of the little 40Wpc Mistral MM-4 SE integrated amplifier ($699). It reminded me a lot of the Shanling MC-30 Music Center.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 7 comments
Photo: John Atkinson
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 19 comments
The sound was so full, so all encompassing, and so natural in the small Magico room (Tower 9022) that I doubt I'll encounter another display at RMAF that will top it. Certainly on the first day of the show, the sound achieved by (pictured, left to right) Tim Marutani of Marutani Consulting (Emeryville, CA), Alon Wolf of Magico, and Maier Shadi of The Audio Salon (Los Angeles) was so satisfying that it topped anything else I heard on Day One by a long shot. A very long shot.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
After years of searching for the right speakers to match deHavilland electronics, Kara Chaffee of Vancouver, WA has happily alighted on the ultra-efficient Sonist line. It's a wonderful match.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
That's sure how it felt when I waded through the mob at the registration table. Graced by the presence of William Togno, a fellow member of the San Francisco Bay Area Audiophile Society, the registration table was swamped a good 90 minutes before the show opened on Friday. There were so many people packing into the elevators to the five floors of exhibits in the Denver Marriott Tech Center Tower that the elevator frequently refused to move; when it finally got up the courage to ascend, it alighted on each floor with a huge thump. Scary.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 0 comments
Things are slowly heating up, as I sit here in the hotel cafe, The Trading Post. In the last few minutes I've spotted Mike Manousselis of Dynaudio, John Quick of Tempo Sales & Marketing (distributors of Nagra, Verity, dCS, and Musical Fidelity), Paul Barton of PSB Loudspeakers, Walter Swanbon of Fidelis AV, Richard Vandersteen of Vandersteen (of course), and Vinnie Rossi of Red Wine Audio.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 2 comments
The Lift, conveniently located outside the Marriott's large, central atrium, is where weary show-goers and audiophiles will raise their spirits with pints of the finest local brews. Some of those fine brews include: 1554, Fat Tire Amber, Blue Paddle, 5 Barrel Pale Ale, Titan IPA, Modus Hoperandi (ha!), Hoss, Avalanche, and Cutthroat Porter.
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RMAF 2010 Posted: Oct 14, 2010 13 comments
Stereophile will be reporting live from the show in Denver!
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 3 comments
That man in the black shirt (to the left of the frame) is none other than Music Hall's rascally Roy Hall—already causing a stir and the show hasn't even started!
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 9 comments
The 2010 edition of the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, occupying parts of nine floors of the Denver Marriott Tech Center, is set to be the biggest and best RMAF yet. For now, guests, exhibitors, and press are enjoying "the calm before the storm." But that will soon change, and this quiet, sun-soaked hall will be one big blur of color and activity. Judging by the show's directory—which is obviously thicker than ever—we're in for some serious fun.

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