Herb's Rocky Mountain Coda

Sunday afternoons at audio shows are when the good sound is just kicking in. The rooms' components have recovered from the trauma of travel and are starting to purr. Unfortunately, that's when the toys go back in the boxes. That is also when this humble reporter looks like he's been dragged behind a car.

And this Sunday, just when I thought I was done being dragged, I get this mad call from an out-of-breath Jason Victor Serinus, saying, "Herb! Get your ass up to room 1125 (the Parasound-Tekton room). The sound is amazing, and you must listen to this speaker. Hurry up!"

I arrived at exactly 4:00pm (insert big smile emoji). There they were! These weird, medium-big, bright orange Tekton loudspeakers, with their two cone drivers separated by a maniacal circle of seven soft-dome tweeters, were just sitting there, in all their orange glory. Seven tweeters…and a backstory.

Parasound's owner, Richard Schram, had planned to show with KEF loudspeakers, but that plan was a last-minute fail. Not an uncommon exhibitor occurrence, but still a panic moment. Next thing: "Mr. Schram, meet Mr. Eric Alexander, proprietor of Tekton loudspeakers." "Eric, meet Richard…"

Richard had never had never heard of Eric's company. Neither had he experienced Tekton loudspeakers.

On Thursday, the day before RMAF 2017 was to start, the Parasound crew opened the boxes from Tekton and looked at each other dumbfounded. When they saw The Circle of Seven Tweeters, they prepared for the worst: "Oh well, there's always next year." But by Sunday, I had already heard the buzz. I had gotten two texts suggesting I not miss this room. Then, of course, I forgot—until my runnin' buddy Jason reminded me.

It was not subtle. The $1800 Tekton Impact Monitors were doing it all: singing, drumming, shaking the air, drawing me in, and making every CD or LP pure pleasure to listen to. A little soft…but not too soft. Imagine a gentle but guiding touch with a most perfect sparkle—and then firm and impactful when necessary.

They were driven by the $2495 Parasound Halo Integrated (which I reviewed) and a $1000 Oppo BDP-105 CD player. Folks, this was a magnificent budget system—a magnificent budget system generated by fate and chance.

Besides those $500 to $5000 budget systems I rhapsodized about, and besides these orange Tekton wonders and their Parasound partners, there were the people in the halls—young people, and women—more women than I have ever seen at an audio show! And families! I've always wished these shows could be free, and more like a marketplace. I dreamed of whole families coming, looking, listening, discussing, and even buying high-value tools for learning about the world's musical cultures.

At RMAF 2017, I experienced the beginning of my dream. Even more, I experienced the rewards of my dream: love. Everywhere in the Marriott Tech Center, I felt love, and every exhibitor and attendee I spoke with said they experienced it too.

Thank you Marjorie Baumert (and your splendid crew) for bringing music, and gear, and all kinds off people, and love to Denver. Best show ever!

3tecate's picture

this company should be on the 'must hear' list of every reader of this publication

Jceaves's picture

Herb, the different amplification/sources notwithstanding, I’d be interested in hearing your “back of the envelope” comparison of the Harbeth HL5 and Tekton Double Impact monitors.