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Florida International Audio Expo 2023 Show Report

FLAX 2023: My First Show In Decades!
My wife and I enjoy our fun Florida International Audio Expo 2023 adventure.
Show Report By Rufus Smith


FLAX 2023: My First Show In Decades My wife and I enjoy our fun Florida International Audio Expo 2023 adventure. Show Report By Rufus Smith

Steven R. Rochlin & Wife Heather, Rufus Smith & Wife Julie, And Chuck Bruce. 


  The 2023 Florida International Audio Expo (FLAX) marked my return to an audio show for the first time since the late 1990s. I was looking forward to seeing old friends, making new ones, seeing impressive systems, and discovering new music. Making this trip more enjoyable was that I was not responsible for a show report, allowing me to explore leisurely. Arriving in Tampa Thursday night, my wife and I connected with Steven R. Rochlin and his lovely wife, Heather. After the hellos, Steven informed me that the writer who was supposed to cover the show could not make the trip and asked if I would cover the show in his place. Of course, I agreed. After a hearty breakfast the following day, my wife and I started our adventure with the Scott Walker Audio Room.




Scott Walker Audio, Synergistic Research, Von Schweikert, And VAC
This room featured the cable and enhancement products from the mind of Ted Denny and Synergistic Research, coupled with the Von Schweikert Endeavor SE loudspeakers. Amplification was the Master Preamplifier with built-in Phono Stage, and a pair of the Master 300 IQ Power Amplifiers run as monoblocks by Valve Amplification Company / VAC. The analog front end consisted of a VPI Turntable fitted with a Lyra cartridge. The digital source was a Berkeley Audio Design Alpha Reference Series 3. The server/streamer was provided by Synergistic Research but is still in the development stage.




I could only listen to digital during my visit and several more throughout the weekend. As I stated, I was looking forward to hearing VAC equipment and was not disappointed. The Master pre-amp and power amplifiers easily handled everything thrown at them. Have not listened to a pair of Von Schweikert loudspeakers in several years, and fell in love with the combination of the Endeavor SEs as played through VAC electronics. Even though the room was on the small side, the overall presentation was delightful. I never got any feeling of fatigue.




Triangle Art
This room featured a full complement of equipment supplied by Triangle Art. The room featured the Metis 5 loudspeaker. Amplification comprised the L200 Mk 2 tube line stage, the P200 tube phono stage, and the M100 tube Monoblocks. This analog-only system featured the Master Reference Turntable fitted with the Osiris Diamond 12" tonearm and the Apollo Moving Coil cartridge. Cabling was the RHEA power cords, interconnects, and speaker cables, with the RA Ultimate AC Power Filter providing power conditioning.




Now, I am not usually a great fan of horn speakers. I typically find them to be very fatiguing. It was not the case with this system. I found it to have a very emotional presentation. Every time I listened, I felt myself getting lost in the performance, which is the way I love to listen to music. Kudos to Tom Vu and the rest of the Triangle team for a job well done.




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