Ken Micallef

Ken Micallef  |  May 30, 2024  |  2 comments
Evaluating a loudspeaker that would become Stereophile's 2011 Product of the Year, Art Dudley, at the time the magazine's editor-at-large, wrote, "The Voxativ Ampeggio went beyond sounding good: More than once, with too many records to mention, I found myself stopping to marvel at its brilliantly good pitch certainty. In terms of being able to simply nail a note, whether in isolation or tucked within a whole string of the little bastards, I've heard few other speakers this accomplished. And while it's one thing to focus on such a characteristic for a moment at a time, it's quite another to bask in it subconsciously—and the Voxativs allowed me to do just that."

"I've now encountered a single-driver dynamic speaker I could live with," Art concluded. "In most audio reviews that's faint praise, but in this one it's a revelation."

Ken Micallef  |  May 28, 2024  |  1 comments
High End Munich continued to unveil new (at least to me) names in the world of hi-fi; amplifier manufacturer hARt Labs was another fascinating discovery.
Ken Micallef  |  May 28, 2024  |  0 comments
Manically energized after watching Dua Lipa’s “Illusion” video on repeat for all nine hours of my flight from Newark to Munich, I was ready for some calming turntable action. The off-white colors of Luphonic Labs’s turntable line caught my attention, their curvy design aesthetic and retro appeal comforting my jet-lagged brain.
Ken Micallef  |  May 28, 2024  |  1 comments
Ypsilon Electronics’ James Michalopoulos seemingly brought the entire Greek-made line of electronics to Munich, beginning with a product the company’s founders, Demetris Baklavas and Fanis Lagadinos, don’t make, from Japanese turntable manufacturer, TechDAS.
Ken Micallef  |  May 28, 2024  |  0 comments
Riviera Audio Labs’s founder Silvio Delfino and designer/engineer Luca Chiomenti introduced two world premiere components at their booth at High End Munich: the APL-1 Tube Line Preamplifier (€22,500) and the AFS-32 Hybrid Stereo Power Amplifier (€22,500).
Ken Micallef  |  May 28, 2024  |  0 comments
Ofra Gershman premiered Gershman Acoustics’s 30th Anniversary Black Swan speakers ($95,000/pair) at Munich, and a fine sight they were. The two-in-one speaker construction come with a specified frequency range of 18Hz–24kHz, 88dB/W/m sensitivity, and 6 ohms nominal impedance and stand 52" high by 15" wide and weigh 145lb each. Who says good things don’t come in large packages?
Ken Micallef  |  May 24, 2024  |  4 comments
German analog powerhouse Acoustic Signature roared into High End Munich with a trio of new products: two feature-packed phono stages and a cutting-edge tonearm. Their booth was a showcase of gleaming AS equipment, from precision tonearms and turntables, including the behemoth Invictus Neo, to meticulously crafted, matte-finish phono stages.
Ken Micallef  |  May 24, 2024  |  0 comments
Just out the hotel door and fully caffeinated, I was blown away by the looks, construction, and performance of Zavfino turntables and tonearms. As 1877Phono Zavfino, the company has for years supplied internal wire to major manufacturers; the brand also offers interconnects, speakers, and power cords to the public.
Ken Micallef  |  May 24, 2024  |  0 comments
Benny Audio, founded in 2017 and based in Gliwice, Poland, produces massive turntables that recall TechDas and Acoustic Signature. BA’s flagship Odyssey model, including 14" tonearm with direct wiring and power supply (€24,000), drew every eye in their Munich room as it spun vinyl with muscularity and deep-earth, saturated tone.
Ken Micallef  |  May 24, 2024  |  1 comments
While the upper floors at High End Munich were densely populated with manufacturer’s full-system demo rooms, smaller but no less worthy players filled stand space in the ground-floor Halles, from Halle 1 to Halle 4. Two such manufacturers were Remton Audio and Fonolab, both from Praque. They brought an array of analog-centric devices that had me drooling.