is that time again. It is the audio 'season'. In the past, when nights drew in
and people stopped enjoying the Summer sun, they used to think of nothing
better to do than to curl up in front of a nice warm valve amp and listen to
some fine sounds on their fine hi-fi. From September to March, the stores were
full of people buying audio equipment and seemingly every week another
manufacturer or six would pitch up at a hotel and run a mini-show.
Those days are over. There's much less seasonality in
audio buying these days. But those six months of the year when nights are
longer still attract a disproportionate number of audio shows around the
world. The seasoned audio rep might see his kids go to their first day back at
school and not see them again until Easter, living out of a suitcase for weeks
at a time.
The UK's big season event is just around the corner. The
National Audio Show 2012 will take place once again at Whittlebury Hall,
Northants, on the weekend of September 22nd and 23rd. And as ever, we will be
there. This time we will be chairing an 'Ask The Experts' session where
the combined brain power of audio's greatest and good will be assembled to an'wer your questions. Our combined IQs must stretch to beyond 100, so
be surprised if we come up with a touch of genius.
There will be lots of first-rate audio on demonstration at
Whittlebury Hall, but the one thing that might not be there in great numbers
is upgrade paths. It's heroically difficult to demonstrate a series of
upgrades in a show setting. Typically, the only way people do this is through
timed demonstrations. But this month, we've caught upgrade fever. Not only
do we walk you through the whole systematic equipment upgrade path from the
most basic integrated amplifier to a complex pre/power supply/power amp
system, but also we take you through the latest – and free – changes to
the excellent Devialet D-Premier.
It is with great sadness that we have to announce the
passing of Enzo Natali. Founder of Audio Natali in Italy in 1959, Enzo was one
of the most important early exponents of high-end audio in Europe. He was
pivotal in bringing brands such as Audio Research, Krell, MartinLogan and
Wilson Audio to a wider, international market and thereby ensuring high-end
audio values extended far beyond the boundaries of the USA. Although his
declining health meant he passed the running of the company over to his sons
Luca and Marco, Enzo was always a strong influence in Audio Natali. He will be
fondly remembered as one of audio's true gentlemen and sorely missed by all
those who knew him.
Alan Sircom, Editor Hi-Fi+