CES 2018

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Jon Iverson  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  0 comments
Paul Jayson, president of Viola Audio Laboratories, New Haven, CT was on hand to demo the company's new Chorale Integrated Amplifier. Price is still to be determined, says Jayson, "but we are looking at around $19,000, and plan on shipping in March."
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  2 comments
Rune Skov, sales director for Dantax Radio, manufacturer of Raidho, directed me over to the XT-5, explaining that it is the latest addition to their extensive line of speakers. "And as you can see, it is a type of a line source because we are using multiple drivers. In the X series we normally use ceramic drivers, but for the XT series we are using titanium drivers instead."
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  0 comments
Emotiva's new DR series (as shown in the above photo) is a configurable amplifier that can go from one to three channels. "These are capable of up to 600 watts per amp module," says the company's Damon Steele. "However due to how the power supply works, as you add more modules the power drops a bit. So with two in the chassis, they run at 550 watts each. If you do three, you get 440 watts per channel."
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  1 comments
Both Andrew Jones, who designs Elac loudspeakers, and Peter Madnick, who is responsible for Elac's Alchemy series of components (the successors to the Audio Alchemy brand), were on hand to demonstrate a system that sounded equally wonderful on both of the "Red Book" files I heard there. I loved how beautifully this system captured the seductive midrange of David Roth's voice on "Before I Die" as it conveyed his music with captivating warmth and lovely layering. Timbres on Count Basie's 88 Basin Street were also natural and compelling.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  0 comments
Etymotic's Albert Arends was showing four models of the company's earphones. The Etymotic ER3SE (Studio Edition—$179) has a flatter response than the ER3XR (Extended Response—$179), which has "a bit of a bass lift" in the 100Hz-1kHz region. One major difference between these models and the higher level ER4 SR (Studio Reference—$349) and ER4XR (Extended Response—$349) is that only the latter are channel-matched to within 1dB.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  0 comments
"The 5 Series stared with Arnie Nudell in 1993 and the Genesis V," says Gary Koh, from Seattle's Genesis Advanced Technologies. "Then there was the G500 and then the G501, G5.2, G5.3 . . . Now I've given up numbers and we have the Genesis Maestro." Retail price is $30,000 a pair and they are available now.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 15, 2018  |  0 comments
There was a brief back and forth as to whether they wanted to release information on the new cables (seen above in prototype form), but eventually Ray Kimber said yes. Kimber's Lonny Gould described these as "a carbon-infused eight wire cable." No pricing or release dates are set yet.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  0 comments
Beautiful and warm sound, gorgeous midrange, absolutely quiet surfaces with silence between the notes—these were some of my impressions upon hearing Natalie Merchant's performance of "The Butcher's Boy," from the LP version of Kronos Quartet's Folk Songs, on this brightly backlit, hard to photograph system from Musical Surroundings.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  13 comments
This is hands down my favorite new "Concept of Show". Here is a small powered speaker coming out of Sweden that has some surprising tricks up its sleeve. You can see from the photo that these are not big speakers, but they have a unique method of overcoming this limitation.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  4 comments
"All products in the Heritage Series are built in the Klipsch factory in Hope Arkansas," the company's Kerry Geist begins. Klipsch has chosen to only demo the Heritage stuff here in the Venetian, with the bulk of their contemporary line back at the main convention center. And the room is quite crowded, so they clearly understand their demographic.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  0 comments
Paul Barton of PSB was on hand to demonstrate the RoomFeel technology he uses in his headphones. "Headphone listeners listen to recorded music that was designed to be heard in a room," he said. Therefore, his RoomFeel technology adds a simulated room response to music.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  1 comments
Esoteric's N-01 network player ($20,000), which debuted at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in October, is now equipped to decode MQA. It was part of a system that produced very direct, fast sound and that, on LP, rendered Ray Charles' voice with exceptional clarity.
Jon Iverson  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  1 comments
Richard Vandersteen, hailing from Hanford, California, was on hand to show off his new creation, the M5-HPA monoblock amplifier. Vandersteen notes that this is a high-pass amplifier, not intended to go full-range, for a system that would also include a subwoofer. The selectable high pass settings are 20Hz, 40Hz, 80Hz, 100Hz or 200Hz. The 80 and 100 Hz settings are optimized to work with Vandersteen subwoofers.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  0 comments
With Dali and PSB—not to mention NAD and Bluesound—all distributed by Lenbrook, at CES the white Dali Callisto System active tower loudspeakers with SoundHub (target base price $5500/pair, available by early May) sat beside black PSB Imagine T3 speakers ($7499/pair). The Callisto system with SoundHub offers wireless HD audio transfer to the speakers, has numerous inputs including Bluetooth AptX-HD—"you can connect anything" is the claim—multiple outputs, two modular expansion ports, auto sensing source select, and Bluetooth remote control.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 14, 2018  |  3 comments
In the room sponsored by distributor Musical Surroundings, I spied Clearaudio's new Concept Active turntable ($2600 to $4400, depending upon choice of three plinths, three tonearms, and three cartridges). The version I saw was $3200 in black and silver with Concept tonearm and Concept MC cartridge. This all-in-one, ready-to-play system incorporates a high quality internal phono stage and headphone amp.

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