Floor Four

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest

Sunday October 12th, 2007

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Wish I'd paid more attention to the details of the sound here. I like the idea of active speakers.









Now why does this turntable look familiar?





Little Esoteric player.



















Harmonic Technology cables on display.




This room had two signs. What is up with that?




This is Steve Davis of HiFi Farm's new dealership, which is also bringing back Beverage Audio




The sound... just listened to one song, but these had a less finesse, delicacy, and microdynamics than Soundlab*, and the bass was seemingly not as good as Soundlab's single driver approach, even with the subwoofers there.

In my opinion, Soundlab has nothing to worry about - but I can see why our friend from Arizona did not want to switch from his Beverages to Soundlab, they are more similar than not [especially compared to, say, Avantgarde :-)]. Hey Avantgarde wasn't there this year! Either was Sound Applications [missed you guys!].




The equipment, including the Emm Labs SACD.




The subwoofer.








The Joule amplifier. The sound was not as luscious as I would have expected from the Joules. Well, next time we will play our own CDs - the exhibitor was entertaining guests and we were just happy to here these at all.








A company making desktop gear. Not many rooms had their curtain open. What a nice view of the atrium. Down there the Zu Audio speakers are playing.




A close-up. Fuzzy, I know.








Hmmmmm... OK. They were demonstrating their mods here. But they were doing it on Mirage speakers? Hmmmmmm.....

I also heard that they also were not SPL matching the before and afters very well....




I heard, and it looks like from the photo, that they had modded Emm Labs gear [they were not playing music during the time I was here. Actually, they were not in the room. Perhaps Jim, who was, will post what his impressions were?].

For me, I do not have good enough ears to be able to hear if they, say, increased dynamics and removed all microdynamics on speakers of that caliber. Or messed up the harmonics. But hey, who cares about that piddling stuff? [Not a heckuva lot of people - but they should if they are at the level of the Meitner - its what they are paying the big bucks for: Attention To Detail].




One of the Mirage spakers.




A last look at the badly photographed equipment rack.








These guys are at every show it seems... hi guys!








I was disappointed by the sound in this room. Esoteric makes some great stuff, but this room was just kind of here to as a showcase.








YG Acoustics with their equipment roped off. Sometimes I wonder if they see me coming down the hall and "Quick, setup the barrier!"

These are obviously not the best speakers on earth - there is no such thing. But they are very neutral and with a remarkably flat response.

The mating with the Krell and DCS, both also very neutral, was an interesting choice. The result was very clinical, detailed with good transparency, but little warmth or 'truth'. For all those who bought Wilson with Krell? This is THAT sound done correctly, without the tipped up midrange and bass.

As some of you know, YG Acoustics is very aggressive when people offer the slightest criticism of their speakers. They don't just smile and 'thank you for your feedback'. They don't just politely defend their product.  They don't just angrily defend their product. The aggressively attack the person making the comment. Check out Audio Asylum, people who have called the factory, and our blog for examples.

Beyond that kind of scary quirk, they do make great speakers, and this was one of the better sounds of the show.




Another photo from center.




We were listening to the front speakers :-).




The DCS stack and Krell pre.




One of the big Krell monoblocks.








Didn't get to stay for long, of course, but my impression was that these big boys did not have quite the charm of their smaller brothers. Then again, Reference 3A seems to benefit from very careful setup - I've heard their speakers sound completely different at different shows.








Again, we have to complement the room on their choice of Emm Labs* as their digital source. ;-)




The Antique Sound Lab Cadenza amp in a darker photo to show the tube glow...




A little brighter photo of the amp.




The Reference 3A Grand Veena








A home theater setup using Avalon loudspeakers and what may be Ayre equipment.








We are getting to the end of floor 4! Will Neli kill me when I get back [I've been gone about 4 hours doing the Mezzanine and floors 5 and 4 - which all told is about half the show].




No, she didn't kill me, she just handed me the keys to the room (aka remote) and took off to explore the show herself. Actually, she didn't hand me the remote and it took me awhile to find it. And then I kept losing it until I handed it to Kevin and asked him to be responsible for keeping track of it :-)








Sonicweld was the last room. I am not sure what they sounded like. I have reported on them from previous shows. I think I am getting better at photographing them, though.




OK, everybody, on to type up the best of show. What a show.

From what I read on the net, it is clear that most people only see a small fraction of the show. Which is too bad. Even listening to rooms you do not like helps educate your ears - and educate your brain about EXACTLY what it is you do and do not like.


'Till next year! Take care of yourselves.





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All pictures in this report are freely copyable and distributable.

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