Time and again, The Rocky Mountain Audiofest continues to raise the bar. First rate entertainment, enthusiastic innovations such as the "affordable" exhibits and the ongoing technology and design breakthroughs by manufacturers.
Volunteers and friends and family of Marjorie Baumert, director of RMAF, toil tirelessly to achieve the very best every year and succeed.
This year at RMAF, the highlight, for me, was very, very good sound on the second and third days of the show. Here are the AVShowrooms' picks (in no particular order):
Wilson Alexia's, D'Agostino's electronics and Brinkmann turntable with the Lyra Atlas cartridge. Every component connected, delivering the perfect storm of a sound. Big and robust with startling detail. Far and above any Wilson loudspeaker exhibit room I've heard at any audio show I've attended.
GTT Audio. State-of-the-Art. Bill Parish, as always, had a visually stunning exhibit room with some of the best audio products on the market. Bill, a very talented businessman, music lover and audiophile, knows just how to set up a room for optimal sound.
He carefully chose Audionet electronics, the Kronos turntable, YG Acoustics loudspeakers and Kubala Sosna Cables well aware of the buzz it would create at the show. It did, and spinning vinyl in the GTT room was sonic nirvana. Clean, uncolored musical sound.
VAC - Valve Amplification Company - exhibited with the new VAC Signature 200 iQ power amplifier ($14,000 MSRP). Definitely something worth checking out along with the new VAC Master preamplifier MkII.
Peter and Myles both loved the sound in the VAC room. I, unfortunately, was guarding the door during the video shoot and did not get to listen. My loss, I know, because Kevin Hayes is another who always delivers exceptional sound.
Zesto Audio - really like the Kharma/Zesto pairing. George and Carolyn Counnas introduced their new and very impressive Eros 300 mono block amplifiers. Warm sound but properly etched. Be sure to watch the video! All wired up by Wywires including their newest Diamond series speaker cables and Diamond interconnects. Very impressive. I lost myself in Vanessa Fernandez's "Here but I'm Gone".
Sutherland Engineering - Ron Sutherland's room with his new Sutherland Engineering Monoblock Argentum MM/MC phono preamplifier and Avantgarde Duo Mezzo loudspeakers. The whole added up to be a deep musical sound with lots of clarity. Very relaxing, and at the same time, involving.
Graham Engineering, Inc. - Simpatico. The combination of the Audiomachina loudspeakers, Tech Das Air Force 2 TT, Graham tonearm, and Einstein electronics, once again, took this listener's breath away. Imaging and tonal quality were unrivaled at this year's RMAF.
RMAF 2015 was, unsurprisingly, three days of fun, discovery, entertainment and camaraderie. Thank you to everyone who makes this show possible.