Mark Levinson came to RMAF 2017 with their highly-prized preamplifier, DAC, and amplification, plus a very special turntable (made by VPI). Great sound; just wish i had more time to listen.
Tekton, Marantz and Parasound teamed up during RMAF 2017, with the room sounding very 'alive'. What i mean is, live music has great dynamics, speed and glorious liveliness to it. Real musicians sound alive, and great to hear an excellent audio system bring music to life.
Fidelis AV, a longtime and highly respected high-end store and United State distributor of high-end gear, were showcasing Diapason's Adamantes III Anniversary Edition speakers ($5495 per pair). It features fine Italian cabinet craftsmanship so each one is a unique piece of art. Also at RMAF was the Norma Audio Revo IPA-140 ($7795) integrated amplifier that produces 140 Wpc stereo. An optional phono MM / MC board and high resolution USB DAC board are available. Norma Audio Revo DS-1 [$4995) is a versatile integrated digital source, while Acoustic Signature's Triple X turntable in Makassa Black ($5795) handled analog duties. Acoustic Signature's TA 2000 Tonearm 9" ($2395) is said to have a great sounding arm-tube by adding a more rigid and massive bearing housing. Fidelis AV was also showing Vinnie Rossi, a pair of Anniversary Harbeth 30.2 in Silver Eucalyptus ($6499) monitors, and Acoustic Signature Manfred Turntable with a TA1000 Arm and MC3 cartridge ($5795).
AURALiC always brings some of the best digital front-end audio and RMAF 2017 was no exception. Gear dueing the show included:
Van Alstine had a humble, yet very good sounding room with their new DVA 4/2 solid-state stereo amplifier ($3699), Fet Valve CF SLR Preamplifier with optional Vision Q Phono ($2628) and DAC MK5 ($1899). The DVA 4/2 solid-state amplifier is a dual-purpose unit that operates as four separate 125 Watt audio channels, or as a stupendous bridged 350 watt per channel stereo amplifier. The Fet Valve CF SLR is an all tube, fully remote controlled, preamplifier with precision volume and balance controls, five sets of line level inputs, and two sets of line audio outputs. The tube compliment is 12AT7 tubes in the gain stages and 12AU7 tubes cathode followers. The DAC MK5 is a multi-format digital to analog converter. Analog processing is discrete solid state Class A circuits. The DAC MK5 seamlessly supports PCM data streams up to an including 192 kHz, DSD 64 and DSD 128 formats. There are five inputs, including two coax S/PDIF, two optical S/PDIF and one USB input.
Alta Titanium Hestia speaker ($32,500 a pair), a top of the line VPI turntable, the best Soundsmith phono cartridge, and all AntiCable interconnects, speaker wires, and power cords round out another system heard during RMAF 2017. Sweet, sweet music... play on player!