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RMAF 2018: Darryl’s View

By | December 14th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , |

Photo by Paul Elliott

by Darryl Lindberg

Let’s get this out of the way right now:  I love the Rocky Mountain Audio Festival.  I’ve made the trek every year and I’ve never thought, “maybe next year I’ll give it a pass.”  That’s because the vibe at this show is just so pleasant.  And that’s a tribute to Majorie Baumert and all the Colorado Audio Society volunteers who step up to the plate every year to take on this demanding task.  So, speaking as an attendee, I just want say thanks!… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: Lee’s Parting Thoughts and Best Of Show

By | December 1st, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

KEF R Series

I’ve been coming to RMAF almost from the beginning.  Some 14 years later, the show news is that they are moving to the giant Gaylord resort near the Denver airport.  This should be exciting but in many ways I will miss the Denver Tech Center.  It feels a bit like the end of an era in high end audio.  I am sure the new location will take the show to a new level for the hard-working Marjorie Baumert and her team from the Colorado Audio Society.  

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RMAF 2018: Göbel Audio and CH Precision

By | November 29th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , |

What a system this was!  Clarity, huge dynamics, genuinely involving sound.  I hit this room three times.  It was that good.  Elliot Goldman had brought all his top gear.  Okay, honestly he stacked the deck…or should I say they stacked the CH Precision boxes?   There were literally dozens of them.  I’ll explain this is a minute.

We were listening to Göbel‘s Epoque Aeon Reference speakers at $220,000.  The electronic stack was an impressive set of CH Precision gear including:

  • M1.1 power amplifiers at $54,000 each
  • L1 mono preamplifier at $58,000
  • X1 power supplies at $17,000
  • D1 SACD/CD transport at $38,000
  • T1 10mhz Time Reference with GPS at $28,600
  • C1 Dual Mono DAC with streaming at $73,000
  • P1 Dual Monaural Phono stage at $31,000

Supporting gear was also terrific:

  • TW Acustic Raven AC turntable with Anniversary board and three motor drive system at $24,000
  • TW Acustic 10.5 inch tonearm at $5,500
  • Ortofon A95 cartridge at $6,500
  • Miyajima Madake cartridge at $6,000
  • Sonore Signature Rendu at $3,445
  • Sonic Orbitor 10TB at $2,000

Cable was Göbel’s Lacorde Statement series:

  • Balanced Cables 1.2 meters at $7,000
  • Speaker Cables 3 meter pair at $23.000
  • Ethernet Cable 1.2 meter at $5,100
  • USB Cable 1.2 meter at $5,100
  • Digital Cable 1.2 meter at $3,500
  • Power Cable 2.0 meter ay $8.500

System was sitting on Core Audio equipment racks and stands.  … Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: HiFiMAN Introduces the Jade II

By | November 28th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , |

As usual at Rocky Mountain, the CanJam area was full of energy.  I went down there to cover the latest from Pro-Ject before hitting their room in the tower.  It’s a shame I don’t have time to cover as much of CanJam as in the past but I did run into Scot and he asked me to add HiFiMAN to the coverage list so I ambled over to their tables and ran into my friend Adam Sohmer who does their public relations work.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: Eggleston Works, Brinkmann, AudioQuest

By | November 28th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , |

It seems like every time I run into Anthony Chiarella, good sound is present. Brinkmann Audio turntables at the HiFiBuys event in Atlanta?  Good sound. EgglestonWorks speakers with a full Brinkmann stack in Denver?  Good sound.  No, scratch that.  Great sound.

I’ve known that Brinkmann can make great turntables.  Then a year ago I heard the Nyquist DAC.  Oh yeah, that’s very nice.  House sound of Brinkmann?  Analog.  Smooth. Resolving.  Oh yeah, the good sound that’s not “too hi-fi”.  I’ve never seen Mr.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: The Dragon Inspire from Moon Audio

By | November 27th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , |

It’s possible that I’m a sucker for new gear that has that vintage appeal. Which may be why the Dragon Inspire IHA-1 Tube Headphone Amplifier is so appealing. It also might have to do with that crazy-red paint job.

It was the paint that gave it away, actually. For those of you with a two-channel background, this look and feel has “Cary Audio” written all over it. Which makes sense, since the amp is a collaboration between Moon Audio and Cary Audio‘s founder, Dennis Had.… Read the full article

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2018 RMAF: Marc’s Wrap-Up

By | November 25th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

I haven’t attended a high-end audio show as a member of the press in nearly a decade, and I’ve never done a “wrap-up” before, so this will be both an honor and a stroll into the wilderness. The 2018 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest was indeed a thrill–I haven’t been there for the last two or three years and it was a pleasure to return. I had one small problem, however, with getting lost. This was the first time I’ve been to the DTC Marriott since the renovation, and everything was moved around.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: Eric’s Parting Shots, Wrap-Up

By | November 24th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

PTARmaf2018

With only a few hours left on Sunday, the final day of the last Rocky Mountain Audio Fest to be held at the Denver Marriott Tech Center, I become sentimental. I decide to take a moment for myself. I go for a quick stroll through the remainder of the show, I collect a few extra photos, and maybe even take in a song or two.

Here, a photo tour of my last hours at the show.

Bob Sattin’s step-up transformers for Moving Coil cartridges are well known, and their sound: legendary.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: ListenUp and How to Conquer a Hotel Room

By | November 18th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

ListenUp has really built up their presence in the Mountain Time Zone over the last few years—the audio/video dealer now has four locations in Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs and Albuquerque. Perhaps it’s a coincidence that I walked into four separate ListenUp rooms at the 2018 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, each one presenting a great-sounding system at different price points.

Before I launch into all the wonderful equipment ListenUp brought to the Marriott, I do want to discuss one room anomaly found in many of the rooms—one that I’ve dealt with as an exhibitor many times.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: Black Cat Cable Wows with Coppertone

By | November 17th, 2018|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , |

Chris Sommovigo of Stereolab, which makes the Black Cat line of cables, had a table near CanJam showing off his latest affordable cables named Coppertone.  I’ve been impressed with Chris’ designs in the past and was curious what he was now doing with Coppertone so I followed up with Chris after RMAF and he graciously agreed to meet at a nearby taco place.  Chris is an intelligent, deliberate person and he’s always been good about sharing his knowledge on cables and electrical current flow in the past so I wanted to get the full scoop in person.  … Read the full article

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