Ken Micallef

Ken Micallef  |  Apr 28, 2022  |  0 comments
A newcomer from Denver, Colorado, Erwin Jesudason's Sadhan Audio made its debut at AXPONA, presenting its new preamplifier, cables, and loudspeakers. Though humble and homey-looking, this minimalist system was sweetly transparent, its largish floorstanding speakers imaged beautifully and practically vanished, casting a wide, deep soundstage. Some more expensive systems lack the Sadhan Audio system's effortless reproduction and natural tone, which made a CD by Edgar Meyer, Bela Fleck, and Mike Marshall a toe-tapping wonder. (The late Art Dudley often said if a system got you bumping and dancing, it's onto something good). I could have plopped myself down in this room and never moved.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 28, 2022  |  0 comments
Upstate New York manufacturer Alta Audio debuted its new The Adam floorstanding speaker ($17,000/pair in piano black, $18,000/pair in rosewood or beech) at Axpona, in two separate rooms.

The Adam features a 5.75" neodymium magnet ribbon tweeter, 6" midrange driver, and an 8.75" woofer "whose tuning parameters are coupled to the unique cabinet design for its infrasonic (floor-moving) bass and for refined cohesion between The Adam's XTL (Extended Line Transmission) and its pure aluminum ribbon tweeter," stated the company's website. That's potentially copious bass created from a transmission-line approach.

Ken Micallef  |  Apr 27, 2022  |  4 comments
If you're a regular attendee to audio shows you'll notice one constant, and that's a lack of consistency. At one show, Acme Turntables represents with Manny, Moe, & Jack's speakers. The next show, Acme has taken up with Beverly's speakers, and MM&J is now with Mr. Big's turntables. It's downright incestuous.

Into this audio polygamy come the good men of Volti Audio (Greg Roberts), BorderPatrol DACs and amplification (Gary Dews), and Triode Wire Labs cabling (Pete Grzybowski). These gentlemen have been hosting hi-fi rooms as a single organism since 2005!

Ken Micallef  |  Apr 27, 2022  |  0 comments
It was Sunday afternoon, and Nick Doshi (Doshi Audio), Jeff Joseph (Joseph Audio), and Jeff Fox (Notable Audio, J. Sikora, Command AV) were relaxing. It was all smiles, jokes, and laughter with this crowd. I scanned the room for illegal substances. Then legal substances. Nothing. Nada. Finally, I got it. It's the music!
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 26, 2022  |  1 comments
Industry veteran P.J. Zornosa and Vancouver, BC turntable designer John Stratton brought a compact system that made sublime sounds to one of Axpona's smaller rooms.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 26, 2022  |  1 comments
I've been a fan of European Audio Team electronics since I reviewed the fantastic E.A.T. E-Glo I integrated amplifier in the December 2020 issue of Stereophile. Unfortunately, that mighty tube treat wasn't present at AXPONA, but Vana Ltd. importer, CTO Roy Feldstein, told me to chill. He had more E.A.T tricks up his sleeve.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 26, 2022  |  9 comments
If you're like me, when attending audio shows you have your go-to joints, those rooms where the presentation will be engaging, the conversation interesting, and the good vibes effortless. Consistency frames the visit, like a homecoming where nothing has changed, where friends (and their hi-fis) welcome you. At the risk of sounding like a hawker, Credo Audio Switzerland—at Axpona's Nirvana B ballroom—has become one of my go-to joints.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 24, 2022  |  0 comments
A consistent player both at shows and in the hi-fi world, Linear Tube Audio's Nicholas Tolson brought smart, sparse rigs to two AXPONA rooms that played great music.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 24, 2022  |  2 comments
Trends come and go. Manufacturers lose their shirts and pull up stake. This year's hot design trend becomes tomorrow's price knockdown. Amid the hype and ballyhoo often found in high end audio, Audio Note (UK) remains an oasis of beauty, purity, and simplicity, and at affordable prices. A legacy brand that doesn't feel the need to change designs, when, after all they make music, Audio Note (UK) offered lucidity and great music at AXPONA.
Ken Micallef  |  Apr 23, 2022  |  0 comments
Bill Duddleston brought not one, but four of his Legacy Audio systems to Axpona, where he mixed and matched components, but each system was largely unique, especially in the loudspeaker complement.