Home  Hi-Fi Audio Reviews  |  Audiophile Shows  |  Partner Mags  Music News       

  High-End High-Performance Audiophile Review Magazine & Hi-Fi Audio Equipment Reviews

  High-Performance Audio Reviews
  Music News, Show Reports, And More!

  Celebrating 29 Years Of Service To Music Lovers




Montréal Audiofest 2024 Show Report


Part 6: Montreal Audiofest Chronicles 2024
The Lower Level, Montreal, and Westmount Rooms.
Montreal Audiofest 2024 Show Report By Rick Becker


Part 6: Montreal Audiofest Chronicles 2024 The Lower Level, Montreal, and Westmount Rooms. Montreal Audiofest 2024 Show Report By Rick Becker


  Before heading down to the lower level I revisited the ASONA room to listen to the new Dan Clark E3 closed-back headphones driven by a Pathos headphone amp. It was a very impressive experience – near-flagship performance for $2k USD from a premium headphone manufacturer. The Pathos amp is a very classy amplifier as well.



Somewhere on the upper level was a sleeping room with a Cabasse Rialto all-in-one system playing. I had marveled at these speakers with all the system electronics built into them at last year's Axpona show. The display there was not nearly as optimal as in this room in Montreal. They sounded great at AXPONA and were even more spectacular here. Priced at $4k USD, it sounds a lot more expensive and plays a lot deeper in the bass than you would expect with a rear-firing woofer in this diminutive cabinet. The key here was the serious speaker stands and proper positioning out away from the front wall. When you consider what you save on expensive audiophile cables with this rig it becomes a flat-out bargain. I'm sorry I missed this on my first go-around on the upper level.



As cold as it was overnight, the snow was beginning to melt on Sunday morning. There was just a light fog above the swimming pool as a couple of young ladies were enjoying the hot tub near the sauna. As much as I would have enjoyed a few laps, my fear of getting my ears clogged with water kept me on track for the business at hand.



Montreal Large Rooms


Descending the escalator I was confronted with the Motet Distribution display of FiiO personal listening devices.



The folks there were so excited they couldn't contain their enthusiasm for their products.



Room M1  DR Acoustics


Daniel Robidoux was quick to greet me as I entered his usual room at the end of the short hallway on the right side of the Montreal block of rooms. The Polynice ($4955, with a show price of $4495) is both a power conditioner and active ground block – yet another company taking grounding seriously. DR also makes power cables and ground cables to go with it.



The ground posts are like speaker binding posts so they will take beefy spade connectors or standard-size banana plugs. Of the four ground posts, the Vg post wiring is silver for use with your power amplifier so you don't over-damp the dynamics The other three ground posts are wired with C1000 pure copper and are for preamp, DAC, and turntable. He claims -6 dB for the turntable with the power conditioning and the ground cable alone for the turntable will add another -2.5 to -3 dB drop in noise. That should be quite noticeable. Daniel said he has 105 units in use now and has zero returns under their 30-day return policy. And he promised more good news from a new product, possibly for the Toronto show.



M2  Bliss Acoustics


Bliss Acoustics' smaller version of this speaker with just the two woofers below the vertical white cylinder-shaped nearly full-range driver was among the Best Rooms last October at the Toronto show. In this much larger room, they added two additional woofers on top of each speaker. Switching from blue woofers to white gave them a commanding presence in the room. Note the sound-absorbing Stillpoints panels ($1300 ea., rack $975) to the outside of the right speaker which seemed too close to the plane of the speaker to be at the point of first reflection for the seating area in this photo, but my video notes suggest it is possible.



In the audience was a group of young people who were nominated by local schools to attend, free of charge, to give them exposure to high-end audio. This program was announced at the Industry Banquet and sounds like a great idea.



The speaker system is modular and can be configured or sized to fit your room. Notice the two different-sized woofers – a strategy used by Wilson – used here in a D'Appolito configuration. This larger configuration was rated at 92dB/W/m efficiency and goes down to 17Hz while the smaller version upstairs had 89dB/W/m efficiency and goes down to 25Hz, having just the smaller of the two woofer sizes shown here.



This was my first time to hear the new Nagra Reference Anniversary turntable ($232,500). It is certainly massive with suspension in the corner pillars. It plays at 33 and 45 rpm. On the shelf below it was the Nagra phono stage ($115k) with cartridge loading from the front panel. Notice it appears to have a suspension system in the corner pillars, too. The Nagra Reference cartridge was $24k.

There is a smaller version of this turntable at $170k according to Rene LaFlamme, who worked on the development of the turntable and phono stage. Rene says he is still based in Montreal.



On the black Modulum rack, I suspect the two lowest components are power supplies for the turntable and phono stage as the black beast between the racks is the new Gryphon Diablo 333 integrated amplifier ($34,280). It had plenty of power to drive these speakers even in this large room.

On the white rack was a Nagra 4S/QGB analog tape recorder ($37,550), a Playback Designs MPS-8 SACD player / DAC ($33,750), and an Aurender N20 Network Player ($17.5k). On the bottom shelf was a Computer Audio Design GC 3.1 Ground Control unit.



On the back side of the rig was a loom of Luna Cables Rouge Series, priced from $1350. Oh, my. Wouldn't I love to have that much space behind my rack.




---> Next Page.
















































Quick Links

Premium Audio Review Magazine
High-End Audiophile Equipment Reviews


Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Superior Audio Gear Reviews



Show Reports
HIGH END Munich 2024
AXPONA 2024 Show Report
Montreal Audiofest 2024 Report

Southwest Audio Fest 2024
Florida Intl. Audio Expo 2024
Capital Audiofest 2023 Report
Toronto Audiofest 2023 Report
UK Audio Show 2023 Report
Pacific Audio Fest 2023 Report
T.H.E. Show 2023 Report
Australian Hi-Fi Show 2023 Report
...More Show Reports


Our Featured Videos


Industry & Music News

High-Performance Audio & Music News


Partner Print Magazines
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
Sound Practices
VALVE Magazine


For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics





Home   |   Hi-Fi Audio Reviews   |   News   |   Press Releases   |   About Us   |   Contact Us


All contents copyright©  1995 - 2024  Enjoy the Music.com®
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.