Florida Audio Expo 2022 Awards and Show Report

Reviewers View Florida Audio Expo

The Infigo Audio Room featured the Infigo Method 3 monoblocks and Method 4 DaC/Pre with a pair of AudioKinesis loudspeakers. We played Leonard Cohen’s “Boogie Street” and the sound was magical. The vocals emanated from the most quiet background this listener has ever heard. That is the magic of the system, a startling low noise backdrop that enables the music and ambient information between the notes to literally pop out at you. An extraordinary achievement from Infigo Audio!

The Matterhorn Audio Group room one featured the Kroma Audio Elektra, Julieta and Mimi loudspeakers from Spain. The speakers were powered by the Creek Audio Voyage I20 integrated with a Creek Audio Voyage CD Player as the source. Cabling by Ansuz and High Diamond cables from Italy. Power distribution by Ansuz Mains 8. The beautiful clear rack is by Lucidium. We played Leonard Cohen’s “By the Rivers Dark” on the Elektras and the sound was hauntingly realistic and organic. Extraordinary imaging and presence! These are gorgeous looking and sounding loudspeakers!

Black Ice Audio featured the Fusion F360 preamplifier with enables you to control the frequency range, depth, width and height of the soundstage. The main amplifiers were the Fusion F100 monoblocks driving the B&W 805 D3 loudspeakers. The Fusion F11 was driving the rear channels. We played Kraftwerk’s “Robots” and the sound was explosive filling every square inch of the room. It was if you were at a live Kraftwerk concert! Spectacular sound from a small format system!

House of Stereo featured the TAD Evolution One TX, the largest speaker in the TAD’s Evolution range. Amplification by T+A, the PA 3100 HV integrated. The server is the new Wolf Audio Red Wolf 2SX. Analogue by a VPI Avenger turntable, Grail phono stage by Van den hull and the Analogue Relax cartridge. Tape by “Let There be Sound “. The system was cabled by Synergist Research Galileo SX. We played Buddy Guy’s “Ain’t no Sunshine When She’s Gone” Buddy was standing right there with his guitar. When Tracy Chapman comes in, I was amazed by her realism and palpability. A stunningly refined audio system!

Convergent Audio Technology was featuring the CAT SL 1 Legend linestage fronted by an Oppo Audio cd player Areo classic. The amplifiers were the awesome CAT Statements. A CAT JL5 was on hand for comparison. The turntable was the VPI HW 40. The speakers were the outstanding Magico S5s. Cables by CAT. We played Buddy Guy’s “Ain’t no Sunshine When She’s Gone” and it was one of the best rooms at the show featuring this track. The sound was articulate and organic with gobbs of presence. Amazing system!

Acora Acoustics was featuring the SRC 2 loudspeaker mated with the outstanding VAC Statement 452 monoblocks. Acora was also showcasing their new racks and platforms made from solid granite. The VAC Statement linestage was the heart of the system. The turntable was the J.Sikora Standard MAX turntable with the True Glider tonearm and DS Audio optical cart and power supply phono stage. The streamer was the IDEON Absolute Stream and Absolute DAC. The system feature the United Home Audio Ultima 4 Deck with OPS. Cabling by Cardas. The room was a large ballroom.

I could not believe hho good the system sounded, one of the best systems I’ve ever heard. The Acora’s looked like little specks in such a large room, BUT the sound was AMAZING! It was like being at Lascala or Philadelphia’s Academy of Music! We played Chasing the Dragon’s Bizet’s Carmen Master Tape copy and I was floored by the realism and the ability of the Acora SRCs to FILL the ballroom with music. Startling sound that I will never forget! We then played Anne Bisson’s “Fly Away” and I was brought to tears for the first time at an audio show. The video will blow you away!

High End by OZ was showing the mighty Borresen Silver 05s and 01s with Ansuz DTC cables, and the new Aavik 580 Series amplifier, preamplifier, DAC and Streamer. The system is cabled with DTC cables and power distribution. The system also features the UHA Deck! We played Anette Askvik’s Liberty and the sound was hauntingly realistic. The saxophone was huge and enveloping. Fantastic sound!

Ted Denny from Synergistic Research was showing the new Tranquility Rack system with UEF technology which is actively grounded to the Galileo Ground Block. We demoed the new SR Ethernet UEF Switches, the new SR Carbon Tuning Discs and then Ted had a real treat for the viewers… you will see it in the video. We A/B’d the new products many times playing Leonard Cohen’s Boogie Street. The system was amazing sounding no matter what was in or out, but when a removed product re-entered the system you could hear a profound improvement. Outstanding system!

The Destination Sound Group System featured the new state of the art Lampizator Horizon DAC and Gulfstream Streamer, both world premiers! The system included the Outstanding VAC 450i iQ integrated amplifier and the Tobian 12 FH loudspeakers from Switzerland and Final Touch Cables from Serbia. We played Leonard Cohen’s By the Rivers Dark and I’ve never heard such natural detail from this recording! Every nuance in the recording was presented in a natural non-fatiguing delivery. Stunning is the word for this world class audio system!

Suncoast Audio featured the Vivid G1 Spirit with external crossovers with the 200 watt per channel Block Audio monoblocks and the battery powered Block Audio Linestage from the Czech Republic. The MSB Select 2 DAC and MSB Transport with the Aurender N30SA completes the digital front end. A vintage Studer A10 and VPI Prime Signature table add to the front end. We played Buddy Gay’s “Aint no Sunshine When She’s Gone” and the sound was warm and explosive. I thought it was one of the palpable systems I heard at the show!

Classic Audio Loudspeakers featured the T1s and Hartsfield Reproductions. Atma-Sphere, Triplanar, Purist Audio Design and McIntosh complete the system. We played Dead Can Dance Spiritchaser’s Song of the Stars. This was the best Classic Audio room I’ve ever heard. The Macs on the T1s were explosive. The soundfield was layered and holographic. Stunning!

High End by Oz’s Thrax and Vitus room featured the Thrax Lyra speakers and Maxima sub bass and support towers, Yatrus Turntable, Ares Integrated modular amplifier and the Vitus SCD25 Cd Player and Ansuz Cables and power distribution. We played two tracks, Vanessa Fernandez Humans and Buddy Guy’s “Ain’t no Sunshine When She’s Gone.” This was most Holographic presentation of these two songs I have heard. Pin point imaging and superb micro dynamics fooled you into believing the artists were in the rooms. Outstanding!

Tenacious Sound and Fidelity Imports were featuring a $5,000 system. Q Acoustics Concept 30 bookshelves and the Q Acoustics Concept 50 floorstanders with Cyrus Audio Electronics. This amazing system competes with many $100,000 systems! We played Leonard Cohen’s Rivers Dark and the sound was enveloping, punchy and organic. Amazing value, amazing sound!

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