T.H.E. Show Newport
Beach (The Home Entertainment Show) 2013
Here at T.H.E. Show Newport Beach 2013 we have
a room with Vandersteen, Audio Research, HRS and Basis. Their So Cali dealer is
Optimal Enchantment and they put on a fine demonstration. What stuns me is they had no room equip listing printed, no memory stick like European show exhibitors are smart enough to have prepared... nothing. Reminds of Friday's Meet The Editors conference where I tried to drive home that this industry could use some good marketing. With $400,000 of gear in their room one would think they'd…
nevermind. Can't preach to the deaf it seems. Then again the room ‘only' had $400k of gear in it so maybe they are on a tight budget? Can you deeply feel and truly understand my sarcasm here?
Tenor Audio Line 1 and Power 1 ($75,000 CDN) is a dual chassis mono design. It took four years and a cool million to bring to market. There are 15 coats of lacquer on the woodwork and wiring is contained away from the like one would fine within an aircraft. Overall gain is selectable 14 or 20 dB and frequency response is from 2 Hz to $100 kHz.
Channel D brought their entire line up, which is easy when some of it is great software for your Apple computer. Also in the room is
Lynx Studio Technology's Hilo Reference A/D D/A unit ($2495). There is a built-in headphone amplifier with its own dedicated section for D/A conversion. The company says the benefits include "exceptional clarity and noise specifications". Another factor is the internal 32 channel mixer(!) allows for any input to be routed to the headphone stereo output. Thus separate mixes for headphones and main analog outputs.
McIntosh 275 is a wonderful old-school 150 watt vacuum tube amplifier many of us have grown to know well.
In the Audio Summa room, a So Cali dealer, they had the new
Silverline Audio Prelude Plus tall floorstander and Minuet Supreme Plus ($1995 and $699 respectively). The small Minuet Supreme Plus bass reflex speaker mates a 1" silk dome tweeter with a 3.25" pulp paper cone midrange/woofer driver. The finish was stunning for the low price too.
For turntable duties in the Audio Summa room they had the new
Kuzma Stabi M table with Kuzma 4-Point tonearm ($18,500 and $6375).
Cool Pioneer vintage reel-to-reel unit!
NuForce's Home Reference Line units start at $595 at and are very compact units. The top-line unit is their DAC100 and has headphone provision and the lower unit is their HAP100 preamplifier, with the silver STA100 power amp that produces 160 watts.
Awesome hospitality suite at T.H.E. Show
Newport Beach 2013! There is no doubt in my mind the Los Angeles Orange County
Audio Society, for which i am a member, is Cali Cool!
Chapman Audio Systems had their T-7AE ($12,000) that has evolved from the original design produced back in 1981. It rings all the right audiophile bells with a 1" soft dome, low compression design tweeter, 7" enclosure ported composite paper/carbon cone and 10" polylaminate fiber woofer. Crossover is made with tight tolerance 1% air core, select
dielectric capacitors mated in pairs and OFC wire.
Python Sound model Ultima ($23,000 with tonearm) has a massive 60 lbs platter and overall weight is a two person job at 170 lbs.
Benchmark DAC2 D ($1795) is a 24-bit/192kHz DAC without any analog inputs or a 12V trigger section for those who do custom home installations/automation, etc. Isolated inputs ensures jitter is kept low to begin with, then the company's new UltraLock2 jitter attenuation system takes over. A 32-bit processing and conversion is said to aid in providing 3.5 dB of headroom above 0 dBFS. There are four balanced 32-bit D/A converter summed for each balanced output. Both balanced via XLR and unbalanced analog RCA output is provided for. Digital inputs include two S/PDIF on RCA and two optical TosLink.
PBN Audio showcased their KAS2 and Olympia AX ($38,000 and $22,000 each). The KAS2 includes 1000 watts of amplification internally that drives
both woofers. These are some might impressive speakers and worth checking out!
So far the best sound of the day is the Affordable Audio room with
King Sound. They were using the Prince III full-range electrostatic speakers,
Wells Audio Innamorata amp and Triode model TRX-1 pre ($9995, $6500 and $3200 respectively). Being an electrostatic speaker, the Prince III goes down to an impressive 40 Hz though bring a hefty amp as it is 83dB/W/m sensitive at 6 Ohms.
In the Triangle Art room is their Reference SE and Signature turntables ($20,000 and $12,500). Also here is the NAT amplifier and Eventus Audio speakers round out the system.
Here is another turntable pic.
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