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Hi-Fi News' Hi-Fi Show & AV Expo 2002

Hi-Fi News' Hi-Fi Show & AV Expo 2002



  Looking ever so seductive and sounding very promising is the Eclipse TD minimonitors (£2,000/pr including stands). A 12cm glass fiber driver is mounted in a specially designed egg-shaped enclosure. While the design of this loudspeaker looks deceptively simple from the outside, the driver itself is firmly attached via an inner metal support arm to the enclosure to reduce resonances. Frequency response is 40Hz to 17kHz (-10dB) with a sensitivity of a very low 81.5 dB/W/m at 6 ohms.


Avantgarde Acoustics has just announced their new integrated stereo amplifier (£2,500). Producing 30 watts per channel, providing five inputs and high quality loudspeaker binding posts, the faceplate features very interesting "matchstick" display.


Vinyl and turntables could be seen in full flight in many rooms as here we see the Nottingham's Space Acoustic turntable.


There seems to be a theme beginning with ever-smaller components and loudspeakers at attractive pricing. The Sudgen Audio room were proudly using their DAC and transport (£1,249), Headmaster pre-amplifier (£599) and their new Music Master stereo amplifier (£1,250). The new Music Master operates in pure "Class A" singe-ended, DC coupled, and produces 16 watt per channel.


...and how wrong could I be as soon after Sudgen Audio came the FSM room with their Magnet Vintage 990 loudspeaker that stands approximately six feet high (£25,000). This two-box system includes an active side-mounted 24" ElectroVoice driver (bottom box), and a 12" aluminum cone woofer, 5" midrange and 1" tweeter (upper box). Overall power handling is 1,000 watts while frequencies from 14hZ to 80kHz are reproduced.


The new Loth-X Troubador (£3,990) features an 8" driver in a folded horn design. Loth-X also makes some extremely impressive electronics as their Silbatone pre-amplifier won the Enjoy the Music.com™ Product of the Year Award for 2002.


Stepping into the Wayback Machine was an old Leak (Croft modified) Stereo 60 amplifier as it was driving the aforementioned Loth-X loudspeaker. Naturally old Quad, Tannoy, and various versions of the LS 3/5 are quite popular here in the UK.


Source material in the Loth-X room was being produced by their Aida turntable (£4,400) with Nottingham Analogue "The Foot" tonearm. It appears that someone has a wonderful sense of humor at Loth-X.


Audion in on the move as their X25 (£2,499) single-ended stereo triode amplifier and Sterling Plus (£1,399) now appear in all new chassis and have encountered some fine-tuning in the process. Now in the Mark II series, they both feature 100% point-to-point wiring in a lovely new red-topped chassis.


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