NY Audio Show 2013

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 |  Mar 30, 2015
Go to Tidal now! to watch their live broadcast on the future of TIDAL.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
This is exactly how you get more people involved in hi-fi (from the Audio Arts room)

I would call the NY Audio Show a great success by near any standard. The New York Palace Hotel was crowded with show goers of all ages, sexes, shapes, and sizes. There was plenty to see and hear, I would say the rooms generally sounded just fine, and there were many interesting and informative seminars to take part in. Apparently not everyone feels that there are too many hi-fi shows, least of all the many attendees, which should come as good news to the business interests.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
MBL and NY dealer Sensorium AVR teamed up to put on what can only be described as The Big Show. Complete with ticket-holder only entrance, this room provided one compelling answer to the question—how can we get more people interested in hi-fi.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
the McIntosh D100 Preamp/DAC ($2,500) in the DeVore Fidelity room

As was the case last year, a few NY dealers chose to forgo the show and hold their own. While I can see both sides of this story and generally steer well clear of the hand wringing and in-fighting that can accompany the pros and cons of said behavior, I had a perfectly lovely time when I visited Stereo Exchange on Sunday afternoon.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
Jennifer Atocha of Atocha Designs and their lovely Record Cabinet

Camped out in the main entrance room of the show, officially called the Holmes Rooms, a number of dealers and show sponsors were setup to greet the arriving masses. During my drive in on Saturday, I heard an ad for the NY Audio Show on show sponsor WBGO always cool jazz radio program which is a great way to reach a wider audience.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
NY dealer Ciamara was showing the Viola Audio Laboratories line of electronics including their Crescendo Preamplifier/USB DAC ($22,500) that sports a USB input that can handle up to 24/192 data, 3 XLR Balanced inputs, 3 RCA Unbalanced inputs, 1 XLR Balanced Output, and 1 RCA Unbalanced Output.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
NJ-based dealer and near-neighbor GTT Audio was showing the YG KIPOD™ II speakers ($49,000), Veloce Audio Saetta Lithio 400W monoblocks ($18,000/pair), Veloce Audio LS-1 Lithio linstage ($18,000), with the Luxman DA-06 USB-DSD DAC ($5,990) handling the digits.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
Brooklyn, NY based dealer Wes Bender Studio provided the NY debut of the new E.A.R. SACD DAC and Transport (projected price $5,000 Transport and $8,000 SACD DAC). The SACD DAC, as its name suggests, can handle a DSD stream from the Transport's I2S output when playing back SACDs or you can stream DSD via its USB input. There's also an analog RCA input, Coax S/PDIF (RCA and BNC), and AES. DSD capability maxes out at 64x DSD and the SACD DAC upsamples all PCM data to 24/192.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
France-resident Jadis Electronics was showing their latest DAC the JS1MKIV ($17,000) that offers a tube output stage based on pairs of 6DJ8s and ECC82s. The JS1MKIV offers 4 digital inputs including Coax S/PDIF, AES/EBU on XLR, optical on ST Fiber, and USB. The USB input can accommodate up to 48kHz data but if you can wait until the end of the year a HD-capable USB input will be available.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
Edison NJ-based dealer Care Audio had the Calyx Audio Femto DAC ($7,000) on display. The Femto DAC offers a variety of 24/192-capable inputs including 2 Coaxial, 2 Optical, 2 AES-EBU, USB, and XLR and RCA output pairs. Of course the Femto DAC also sports a femto clock for claimed super-low accuracy and jitter.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
from left to right: Art Dudley, Robin Wyatt, Jonathan Halpern, and Herb Reichert

Stereophile's Editor-At-Large Art Dudley did a wonderful job hosting a panel discussion titled Virtues of Vintage: Audio Gear from the Early Days of High Fidelity. Panelists included Robin Wyatt of Robyatt Audio, Jonathan Halpern of Tone Imports, Herb Reichert one of my favorite writers on hi-fi, and Jeff Dorgay of Tone Audio Magazine. The first half of the 1-hour session consisted of Art asking the panelists questions and the second half opened up the Qs to the full to overflowing crowd.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
Todd Garfinkle of MA Recordings and Woo Audio are way ahead of the headphone listening at shows curve. They've been plying their trade for years, offering up a number of listening stations where people can sample their wares including some of the sumptuous-sounding and musically delightful MA Recordings. If you've never heard any of Todd's CDs or high rez files including DSD delivered on DVD-ROM, you owe it to yourself to give some a listen.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 16, 2013
The always gracious Philip O'Hanlon was using the Luxman DA-06 USB-DSD DAC ($5,990 and I have one here for review) to spin some rare DSD treats. The DA-06 can handle up to 24/192 though its AES and S/PDIF inputs, and up to 128x DSD via USB. I was treated to some A/B type listening first comparing a SACD rip of a Rachmaninoff symphony via the PlayStation method to the same track obtained via download. And the downloaded file sounded much more open, airy, and nuanced. Next we compared a DSD download to the exact same recording but this time the B-version was the raw, unedited mix. Again the latter sounded more open, less compressed, and there was generally a greater sense of unrestrained dynamics. And we're not talking subtle differences.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 15, 2013
NY Dealer Innovative Audio had two rooms at the NY Show filled with gear & music. For the Stanford Room, I totally messed up the photo of the MSB stack of digital components in use so I'm showing instead the D'Agostino Momentum Ultra-Analog preamplifier with power base ($32,000). If you could see the MSB stack, you'd see the Diamond DAC IV Plus ($27,995), with the FemtoSecond Galaxy Clock (4,995), Diamond Stepped Attenuator ($2,995), USB2 Signature 384kHz Input ($1,395), Pro I(sup)2S Input ($995), the MSB Diamond Power Base ($5,995), Signature Power base ($4,995), and Platinum Data CD IV ($3,995).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 15, 2013
Distributor Rutherford Audio displayed a Burmester/Genesis/Vertere system that retails for $425,000.

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