Las Vegas 2013 Best Sounds - Part One | T.H.E. Show

15.01.2013..

This time ReMusic has flown over the ocean to attend two events concurrently held in Las Vegas, January 8 through January 11, 2013. In fact, The High End Show, better known as T.H.E. Show, comes up besides the biggest consumer Show in the world.

 

I want to tell it right away: it has not been easy! Together with the precious Silvia, I have to strive in a very exhaustive tour de force in order to cover all the listening rooms and... we apologise, but we have not been successful. We had to choose. The first choice has been dedicating two days to each Show. The second one has been to visit first T.H.E. Show held at the Flamingo hotel, an event for sure less important than the CES, but, in our opinion, better fitting to ReMusic’s standards. We were right.

 

T.H.E. Show has not to be considered as the CES of the have-nots, of the companies that have not been able or that could not afford the huge expenses required for what is considered the most important event worldwide. On the contrary, it has to be considered as a strategic commercial decision by who wants to keep in contact "out-and-out" with the enthusiasts of the true High-End.

Actually, the most part of the latest products or, in any case, of the best sounds, were at T.H.E. Show. But, to be thorough, we have also to report that, unfortunately, during the two days that we have saved for the CES, we have only covered two of the four floors dedicated to the high performance audio.

 

T.H.E Show

In our opinion, the rooms at the Flamingo’s and the audio systems of T.H.E Show were better performing. Thick and soft fitted carpeting covered the floors and the insulation between the listening rooms was, without any doubt, more effective. In brief, we have had some difficulties in selecting what was more suitable under the audiophile point of view. Anyhow, we have made a selection.

The following list is not by merit and we do not follow an alphabetical order.

All the listed brands and systems have somehow attracted our attention and curiosity as enthusiast audiophiles. Hence, it is not a classification, but a tasty and refined overview of the best sounds.

 

KEF

We want to reward the technological commitment and celebrate with KEF the 50° anniversary of this prestigious and famous English company. We have spoken for a long time with KEF’s manager and he has described, with uncommon warmth, decisively far from the typical British aplomb, all the technical properties of the Blade loudspeakers. The KEF sound is unique and the perception of the homogeneous sound image is amazing. A punctiform aspect, here brought to the extreme, defined the musical picture.

 

Voce Audio

This Californian loudspeaker has deeply convinced us. The designer and manufacturer has the music in his blood as he used to be a tenor singer. The Scan Speak drivers, blocked in a thick and heavy wood cabinet, can produce strong listening sensation but, at the same time, very refined. The response in temporal phase is very well-finished in its alignment and generates a compact and well mixed soundstage. We have heard the Voce Audio with the Wells Audio Innamorata power amp and the splendid class-A MSB Platinum M 203 power amps. We have to congratulate the exhibitors for their excellent work in finalizing the room.

 

Audio Power Labs

Certainly original and well performing were these imposing mono power amps from Ohio with the 833C tubes. The name 833TNT says it all! 200 undistorted watts and 72 kilos of muscles. Wadax electronics and Fono Acustica cables completed the audio system. All the components, included the prototype of the very interesting loudspeakers, rested upon anti-vibration Stillpoints supports. Lots of dynamics and detail, very involving sound.

 

Voxativ

A new transducer for the Ampeggio Due loudspeakers that presents a wood cone about which we cannot say very much. Unfortunately, Inès Adler has not given us many details. Matched with the P130 preamplifier and VA320 power amp by KR Audio, the Ampeggio Due have Shown the usual grace but with a real improved tonal aspect. Suitable for who is looking for the delicacy of the natural sound and not for the power.

 

Absolare

We declare Absolare as the best presence at the two Vegas Shows. Great sound performance, rich in power, detail and timbric. The lot, in an engaging and involving scenic contest. In sum, not only a well performing tube system, but also aesthetically very good. The Passion preamp and the Passion 845 power amps are leather-coated in multiple colours. The other components were the interesting analog source Kodo and the Rockport Technologies Altair II loudspeakers connected with Echole Obsession cables.

 

Magnepan

Maybe we do not have to underestimate the importance of the DWM Bass Panel whose presence during the listening session we have barely notice: it looked like a coffee table but was able to strong intervene on the sound output with more controlled bass frequencies and also giving a deeper image.

 

Kharma

A dreaming room. The famous Dutch Kharma was presenting the Exquisite Collection amplification series, the P1000 preamp and the MP1000 mono power amp driving a pair of splendid Elegance DB9. In the photo also the Extreme top series cables. Do we have to tell you how they were performing? (N.d.R. Yes, Rob, do not be lazy... :-)

 

PranaFidelity

Our innate nature of talent scouts in Italy has come out also in the States. Here there are some small companies smelling passion and commitment. Let us start with PranaFidelity that was presenting the Fifty90 loudspeakers: a symmetric two-way system with reflex front port. The drivers are home-made. With 3,500.00 US dollars, you can buy a valuable speaker indeed. We can assure you that we have tortured them with our CD tests but they have performed great without any yielding.

 

ViV laboratory

Evanui Signature III is an absolute eccentric loudspeaker. You pronounce evànui since it is a Latin word meaning "evanescent". It is a one-way, yes, a 4" magnesium horn-loaded one-way. This peculiar transducer is named FDM-V and we have had to signal it. Also in this room, we have found a KR Audio amplification: the Kronzilla stereo power amp.

 

Von Gaylord

In despite of its north-European name, Von Gaylord is a Californian company. We have been struck by the tonal characteristics of the VG-8 speaker with a titanium tweeter and a fiberglass woofer. The Starlet 4 amp is a 50 watt triode.

T.H.E. Show 2013 | KEF Blade
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KEF Blade
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voce Audio
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voce Audio
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voce Audio
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voce Audio
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Audio Power Labs 833TNT
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Audio Power Labs 833TNT
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Wadax
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Wadax
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Audio Power Labs
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Audio Power Labs
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Wells Audio Innamorata
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Wells Audio Innamorata
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voxativ Ampeggio Due
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Voxativ Ampeggio Due
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio P130
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio P130
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio VA320
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio VA320
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion 845
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion 845
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion 845
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Absolare Passion 845
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kodo
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kodo
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Rockport Altair II
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Rockport Altair II
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kodo, Absolare, Rockport
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kodo, Absolare, Rockport
T.H.E. Show 2013 | DWM Bass Panel
T.H.E. Show 2013 | DWM Bass Panel
T.H.E. Show 2013 | DWM Bass Panel
T.H.E. Show 2013 | DWM Bass Panel
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Exquisite Collection
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Exquisite Collection
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma P1000, MP1000, Elegance DB9
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma P1000, MP1000, Elegance DB9
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Extreme
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Extreme
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Extreme
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Kharma Extreme
T.H.E. Show 2013 | PranaFidelity Fifty90
T.H.E. Show 2013 | PranaFidelity Fifty90
T.H.E. Show 2013 | ViV laboratory Evanui Signature III
T.H.E. Show 2013 | ViV laboratory Evanui Signature III
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio Kronzilla
T.H.E. Show 2013 | KR Audio Kronzilla
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Von Gaylord VG-8
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Von Gaylord VG-8
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Von Gaylord Starlet 4
T.H.E. Show 2013 | Von Gaylord Starlet 4
by Roberto Rocchi
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and Silvia De Monte
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