Audio Note Consistency at AXPONA

I'm an unabashed Audio Note fanboy. You got a problem with that? Audio Note lives deep in not only my sonic soul (an Audio Note M2 Pre was my first serious hi-fi purchase), but those of colleagues Herbert Reichert and Michael Trei, Audio Note distributors back in the 1990s, when tubes were cheap and the only thing Upscale Audio's Kevin Deal sold!

Audio Note returned to AXPONA with nothing to new to spring on the hungry (really) crowds, only the same consistency of sound major domo Peter Qvortrup has offered for decades.

Room host, Adrian Ford-Crush, pointed out that the AN room was using the exact Meishu Phono Tonmeister 300B Integrated Amplifier ($15,740) I reviewed in January, abetted by Audio Note's TT Two Turntable ($4287) running an Audio Note IQ MM cartridge ($1248), affixed to an Audio Note Arm Three/II tonearm ($2465).

An Audio Note CDT One/II transport ($4978) released digits to an Audio Note DAC 2.1 Signature ($6662, above). Audio Note AN-E/SPe HE loudspeakers ($12,450/pair, below) sounded good, and looked like, well, like other Audio Note speakers. Cabling? All Audio Note. Box Furniture Modular single width 4-shelf stand, $2210.

I don't care what my hero Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, that "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." There was nothing foolish about the sound of the Audio Note room, which is unerringly consistent, natural, pleasing—and relatively affordable—year after year after . . .