Disorder was the order of the day as everyone and their father ogled and chatted about the VAC Statement 450i iQ integrated amplifier ($150,000). During my relatively brief visit to this free-for-all space, in which demonstrations alternated between two systems, there were up to six people standing in front of the one I tried to hear. At one point, someone blocked the speaker on one side while a company rep chatted it up with someone on the other.

Initially, the sound was far too quiet to appreciate, but when it was turned up, I discovered a midrange-strong system, albeit with a somewhat flat top end, that seemed to be playing a string of classical blockbuster extracts. As I had no opportunity to hear the equipment at its best, nor to sample vinyl, it seems best to simply list the other key components: Von Schweikert Ultra 9 loudspeaker system ($200,000/pair) with V-12XS Shockwave subwoofer ($11,500); Esoteric’s Grandioso P1 CD transport ($38,000), two Grandioso D1 monoblock DACs ($19,000/each), and G-01 clock ($20,000); Aurender A100 streamer/server/renderer; Critical Mass Olympus V-12 Luxury rack ($61,500 total), and Masterbuilt Signature cables.