RMAF 2010

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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 15, 2010 Published: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Win Analog’s S Series-833 100W monoblock power amplifier (in the rear of this image) was designed to be “a statement product, both sonically and visually,” sales director John Dark explained. The amps measure 18” x 24” x 19” and weigh 200lbs. Its aluminum chassis panels are CNC-milled, 0.375” thick. That colossal tube in the center of the chassis is an RCA 833, originally employed as a radio transmitter. Dark says it was chosen here for its “very, very liquid sound.”
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Sjofn HiFi made a big splash at our Home Entertainment 2007 show with the Guru loudspeaker, and the company hopes to attract greater attention with their new monitor, “the clue.” I walked into the room just as a thunderous bass note was struck. “Whoa,” I thought to myself as I took the last remaining seat in the packed demo. The little Sjofn speakers ($999/pair) were partnered with electronics from Norway’s impressive Hegel: CDP4A CD player ($4500) and the 200Wpc H200 integrated amplifier ($5000). The system was small, but it produced nothing but big, room-filling sound. There was that well-controlled, thunderous bass and startlingly quick transients.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
DSPeakers are active designs with built-in Anti-Mode room correction. We listened to the smaller Servo 300 speaker ($3500) with a Resolution Audio CD player, and, just as in Montreal, I was surprised by the small system’s big sound and bold bass. Also on display were DSPeaker’s standalone Anti-Mode correction units, the 8033 C ($350) optimized for home theater applications and the two-input 8033 S ($450) for stereo systems.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
The newest Zu loudspeaker is the Omen. I don’t know much about it. The product literature says: “Omen is the right loudspeaker for every concert fanatic, music junky, skater fool, and snowboarding dirtbag; splitting your cash between your lifestyle outside and your lifestyle inside just got a whole lot louder!” So, Zu has a specific audience in mind. At just $999/pair it is also Zu’s most affordable speaker.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Philip Bamberg's Bamberg Audio was playing the Series 5 TMW ($8800/pair) and displaying the Steries 2 TMM ($4800/pair) when I entered. The 5 is a 3-way design with a 375W active woofer, parametric EQ, and separate monitor. It is said to descend flat to 25Hz, and down to 18Hz –6dB.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Oct 16, 2010 0 comments
Lest anyone think that we at Stereophile don't pay attention when manufacturers speak, take a look at Stephen Mejias, virtually mesmerized by Luke Manley's energetic and ever-enlightening prose. Also pictured, Steven Rochlin of Enjoythe Music, Peter McGrath of Wilson Audio, and the empty chair and scattered detritus of the photographer-in-action.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 15, 2010 Published: Oct 16, 2010 2 comments
Win Analog's audacious amplifiers are made to be played in the dark.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 15, 2010 Published: Oct 16, 2010 8 comments
James Harrell’s Jumping Cactus Loudspeakers are high-efficiency designs (94dB) with isolated aluminum enclosures. The speaker’s front panels are finished in Bubinga wood, while the aluminum portions feature a nice satin black power coat. All three drive units are from Eminence. That’s a 10” paper cone woofer, a 6” paper cone midrange unit, and a 1” phenolic dome tweeter. The midrange and tweeter are secured atop the woofer enclosure via Velcro, and can be angled or moved back and forth. A passive Butterworth 1st order crossover is in its own enclosure and is velcro’ed onto the back of the speaker.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 16, 2010 1 comments
Here we see the Vitus Audio SIA-025 integrated amplifier ($20,000; 100Wpc running class-A/B) and SCD-010 CD player ($20,000) and Amphion’s Krypton 3 loudspeakers ($20,900/pair). Amphion is now distributed in North America by VMAX Services. This system was very easy to listen to. Even at low volumes, there was no lack of drama, scale, or drive. It was a pleasure catching up with VMAX’s Richard Kohlruss and meeting Vitus’ Hans-Ole Vitus, who tells me he’s got a new phono preamp that Michael Fremer will love.
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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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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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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 6 comments
I wonder who will be greeting guests at the Stereophile booth. Will it be every audiophile's favorite booth babe, Rosemarie Torcivia?
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 14, 2010 0 comments
Some savvy exhibitors, such as Audioengine (seen here), have announced their presence at Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2010 with banners hung across their balconies, so everyone knows where the party's at.
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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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