Full Report
January 8th-11th, 2007


* product carried by Audio Federation

Copyright Audio Federation, Inc.. All rights reserved.
All pictures in this report are freely copyable and distributable.





The, uh, Joe! I forgot what this was! Something like a 'ground enhancement' device?

OK, here is the scoop:

"That thing is an Acoustic Revive Grounding conditioner, or virtual ground.

Basically it draws noise off of the circuit and directly from the environment of the component and dissipates it as heat. It will work without the cable, but works better with as it is able to draw noise directly off of the circuit that way."



The WAVAC Audio, Covenant Audio room. With Venture speakers and Caliburn turntable.





























The Miu-tech room [sorry, forgot to photo the sign].




















The Kondo & Sibatech, FAL, Mactone, Simon Yorke room. *Audio Aero Capitole CD player.

This room sounded decent, and was quite musical in fact. Nothing outstanding, during my short visit, but just being decent puts it into the top 10-15% at these shows.












The venerable *Audio Aero Capitole CD player which needs a good bath.




















The Sound Application, Silicon Arts, Precision Audio Video room.








The Concert Fidelity CF-080 preamplifier.




The rear of the Concert Fidelity pre.




Some Sound Application line conditioners.




Some Sound Application line conditioners in use.




Another Sound Application line conditioner.




The Kondo room [sorry, again I forgot to photo the sign]. This year is the first time in a long while that we've seen a 100% Kondo system at CES.

This system was going for, IMHO, Magic first, Emotion second, then Enjoyability and Real, leaving Sophistication and Impressiveness for last.

Yes, I think that is the correct order.












The Kondo Ongaku.

Neli tells me the Kondo crowd went down to our room to hear the Audio Note Ongaku.

What did they think? Ask I.

I don't know, says she, they just spoke in Japanese.

The amps, to my ears, have diverged quite a bit sonically over time - but it is really hard for me to tell how the Kondo amp sounded in this all Kondo system - since all of it is so unfamiliar.








The Kondo Ongaku.




The Kondo KSL DAC.




The Kondo Ginga turntable (prototype).




















The outboard crossover for the loudspeaker. Very minimalist enclosure, with chained plastic ties to hold the components in place. And looks like silver wiring to me :-)
















The *Acoustic Dreams, Ayon Audio, Blue Pearl Audio, Lumen White room.








A Lumen White loudspeaker.







The Blue Pearl turntable.




The Ayon 52 B Classic monoblock amplifier




The *Acoustic Dreams equipment rack.




























The Music Culture room.








The Stillpoints, Exemplar Audio, Power Modules, Sentient Acoustics room.








The Scaena Loudspeakers, Nova Physics Group, Memory Player room.

The were not playing music in this room while I was there - so nothing to report.
















The Memory Player - which reportedly loads the entire CD into memory before playing it. Similar to the old Chord approach of caching a large amount of a CD in memory. OK. But who will take the next step?




















The *Edge, Pranawire, Avalon, Nola room [again, I forgot to photo the sign].

Me? I like the Nola system better than this one, with the Avalon Ascendant speakers, which I found to be thin overall and abrasive in the upper mids. I don't know, lots of people liked this system. And that certainly is not the trademark Avalon sound, nor the Edge sound for that matter - in fact both are known for their musicality and lack of aggressive treble.

The speakers are only $9K, and the Edge components all 'G' series, so this was very much the less expensive system in the room.




The Japanese Stereo magazine. Makes ours look like low-fi trailer trash. What can I say?




The main photo there is of the Edge NL Reference 'pyramid' amps, which we have enjoyed here for several years.




























The larger Nola-based system. I just heard this system during various tunings and adjustments. I think they were trying to point the speaker downwards towards the listeners a little bit [see that little blue thing under the rear of the left speaker?].

I thought these sounded great, although I was standing up. Big, open, rich, missing the last word in micro-dynamics and resolution, but who cares? This is a show and musicality is in short supply.












The GTT Audio and Video, *Kharma, Kubala-Sosna, Vyger room.

This room sounded good, as always, although like the other rooms here, I thought the sound, of the same or similar system, was better at RMAF.
















The reflection of the cheap carpet in the MBL logo just made me laugh. How ironic.




The Vyger turntable. Although I heard the Vyger table for quite a while, I find myself unable to gauge its overall quality. Same for the wonderful Blue Pearl turntable in the Acoustic Dreams room, and the Redpoint and Caliburn turntables.

All of these turntables sound pretty good, but I cannot say definitely which is the best.

Which just goes in the bin of evidence that the differences between turntables are some of the smallest differences, per dollar, between single-purpose components in this hobby.

And, well, just look at these things. Yes, of course we want them all. But, face it, a lot of what a person pays for comes down to build-quality and the over all 'aesthetic' of the 'table.

But, hey, YMMV.
















































The little Vyger, at about $7K.






* product carried by Audio Federation

Copyright Audio Federation, Inc.. All rights reserved.
All pictures in this report are freely copyable and distributable.


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