Audio Gourmet show. The second part of my impressions at the Audio Gourmet show. Held at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Vilnius, Lithuania, 2015. It was more of the interesting and not so common items which are called High-end!
Audio Gourmet show
The second part of my story will look at average priced systems. Which are available for a person starting off on his journey into the crazy world audiophiles. Many people end up as audiophiles because everyone is always looking for a change!
At the show, the rooms were very different in terms of shape and size. And this was the main reason why systems did not sound good. Many systems were unable to give the listener a true impression of what they were really capable of. And this was a great pity.
However, they all had one thing in common. The carpet on the floor, which gave good insulation per-venting floor vibration. When a person becomes familiar with audio you will hear the term “spikes”.
These are small items placed under the speakers to prevent floor vibrations. These can also be fitted with equipment components, to prevent vibrations. You would be surprised how effective they are and a system can sound completely different by simply adding “Spikes”.
Every person has a different understanding when it comes to talking about the size of a speaker or the size of a system. And a person tends to forget all about the room size. The room size is the item that is important. Also what the listening room contains. There are many interesting videos on YouTube that can explain room and speaker size.
The Audio Gourmet show was very interesting for me. I would like to add, that with audio there is a place for everyone. There are very big systems. We have the medium size systems. And we have very small systems. They all have their place in the audiophile world and you can upgrade at any time!
Due to the advancements in technology, a very small system can really sound very good which was demonstrated by a few companies. One item did catch my eye when shopping for a coffee. This system looked like a one-eyed red beast and great to hear!
It was good that some of the dealers had a wide range of equipment so people were able to compare the difference in speakers. Also the difference in price. As I said earlier the sound will be completely different than in a home listening environment.
The ranges on display were very good and well laid out. They were aimed at the comparison. But it was a comparison of speakers only as of the source and amplifier in most cases was not changeable.
It would have been nice to be able to compare a certain speaker with a certain amplifier. But remember this was only a demonstration. A person can visit the dealer during the show and request a home demonstration after the show. Because the purpose of the show is just to make the public aware of items that are available.
When listening to a system, it is also important to look at the type of interconnect that is being used. This is from the source machine to the amplifier and plays a very important role in what you are able to actually hear.
The power cord supplying the power to the system is again of great importance. A poor quality power cord will not allow the system to perform as intended. The loudspeaker cables are another factor to contend with.
Because there are so many different types in the market today. This again will affect the sound to which you finally hear. The system must be matched with every component in every way possible.
There were many different amplifiers and I was very pleased a Luxman on display. This is one of my favourite amplifiers. I actually owned the same model last year. Luxman was created in 1925 when radio broadcasting started in Japan and has long been offering great equipment to the world.
As we move up the ladder in terms of size and price we always get to a price point when a person says ‘that is a crazy price to pay’. And things like ‘I cannot really hear the difference so what am I missing’. Welcome to the world of audio!
As we reach “Hi-end” audio we get to a point where it cost so much in terms of build. Adding quality components is expensive. And we end up paying many times more just to hear a small difference in quality. At this point, you have to ask yourself is it worth it because the difference is really very small. I know because I have been up and down this road for many years!
So after all the looking and the listening what would I say was the best overall sound. Now, this might surprise you because it was actually right at the very end of the show. It was on the way out and this was a real change. Nine watts of power is all that took for me to say “Now, this is good”
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