LATEST ADDITIONS

Jana Dagdagan  |  Jun 08, 2017  |  8 comments
One of my greatest personal discoveries at the LA Audio Show this past weekend was that I absolutely love Harbeth speakers. I adored every system I heard them in. In the Gene Rubin Audio/Fidelis Distribution room, there was a beautiful pair of Harbeth Monitor 30.1 two-way speakers ($5495/pair), driven by an LFD NCSE Mk.II Plus integrated amplifier ($6795), with the source being an Acoustic Signature Challenger Mk.III turntable ($4995) with an Acoustic Signature TA 2000 9" tonearm ($2395) and a DynaVector 20X2 cartridge ($995), through an LFD LE/SE phonostage ($1790).
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jun 08, 2017  |  8 comments
Having visited the Aurum Cantus loudspeaker factory in China in 2009, and experienced every stereotype of shoddy Chinese manufacturing practices destroyed by what, to these eyes, were meticulous production practices, keen concerns for worker health and safety, and comprehensive testing, I am always delighted when Roger DuNaier of Audiophile Direct brings Aurum Cantus speakers to shows. Here, the Aurum Cantus V30M 2 stand-mount with aluminum-ribbon tweeter ($2600/pair) joined the Wells Audio Majestic 150Wpc integrated amplifier with phonostage ($14,000), Sound Science Music Vault Diamond music server ($4995), Benchmark DAC2 DX DAC ($1995), and assorted Dana Cable products to produce "the kind of sound that makes you happy."
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jun 07, 2017  |  22 comments
"So how did it sound?" they like to ask as I'm walking out. If I enjoyed the sound, I'll be honest. But what if I didn't?
Stereophile Staff  |  Jun 07, 2017  |  1 comments
Saturday June 10 at 3pm, Kyomi Audio (4454 W Berteau Avenue, Chicago, IL) is having a Jadis event while from 1–6pm, Esoteric Audio (111 W. Monroe Street, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ 85003) is holding an event featuring the Moon by Simaudio 888 Mono power amplifiers, and a surprise from Grand Prix Audio.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jun 07, 2017  |  10 comments
Grand Prix Audio, whose attractive isolation racks, amp stands, turntables and other products featured prominently in multiple rooms at LAAS, debuted their less expensive Grand Prix Audio Parabolica turntable ($16,500). Here shown with TriPlanar 2SE tonearm ($7500) and Lyra Etna cartridge ($8995), the Parabolica rested on a Grand Prix Formula shelf upgrade ($2495) to the 4-shelf Monaco Modular isolation system ($10,250) that was supported by Apex Feet with levelers ($1320). I was told by the company's Jesse Luna that the Grand Prix Parabolica, which is based on the Monaco 2.0 turntable ($37,500), has a direct-drive system with factory-sealed hydrodynamic bearing that never needs servicing.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jun 07, 2017  |  0 comments
One of the several rooms from Audio Plus Services at LAAS was headlined by the Musical Fidelity Nu-Vista CD player ($9999) and Musical Fidelity Nu-Vista 800 integrated amplifier ($11,999) driving Focal Sopra No.2 loudspeakers ($13,995/pair) via Crystal cabling. Solid Tech's Rack of Silence ($5795) and assorted IsoAcoustics Iso-Pucks completed a chain whose electronics—even the loudspeaker—had less than 24 hours of break-in. Hence, beyond saying that the timbres were beautiful, I shall refrain from critical comments that most likely would not apply had the system been show-ready.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jun 07, 2017  |  5 comments
After a forgettable lunch (the food at the Sheraton Gateway hotel was mediocre at best) a change of pace was required. It was time for a mid-day treat: compact horn-loaded speakers. Greg Roberts of Volti Audio and Pete Grzybowski (nicknamed "Triode Pete") seem to consistently know how to produce good sound in hotel rooms.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jun 06, 2017  |  8 comments
At first-time show venues with hosts of unknowns, some exhibitors luck out, while others unwittingly end up with unmanageable spaces. Alas, to retailer Brian Berdan of Audio Element in Pasadena did fall the distinct dishonor of two larger 2nd floor rooms with the noisiest, constantly-on air conditioning I have ever encountered at an audio show. Perhaps to compensate for an environment destined to repel rather than attract, Brian tilted the Wilson Audio Yvette loudspeakers ($22,500/pair) upwards, so that people who didn't even bother to sit would get more of a sense of all they can do.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jun 06, 2017  |  2 comments
The LA Show was my first time aboard the (appropriately) hyped Magic Bus! A one-of-a-kind audiophile-mobile custom-built by Sony contractorJon Whitledge, the Magic Bus is a rare feat.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jun 05, 2017  |  81 comments
Industry veterans EveAnna Manley (left) and Mary Cardas (right) were in a particularly ebullient mood when I encountered them in the second-floor hallway. "We just got mansplained," laughed EveAnna. "Whatever you do, man, don't mansplain us," she continued, as the two women recounted the tale of entering an exhibit incognito—they were judges for the "Alfies," the LAAS awards—and discovering some salesman talking down to them.

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