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Salon Audio Montréal / Audiofest 2023 Show Report

Salon Audio Montréal Audiofest Show Report Part 1
Rick Becker's Montreal Chronicles 2023.
Report By Rick Becker



Room 1221 Cardas Audio And On A Higher Note
I think Philip O'Hanlon keeps this rig in a van and just drives around North America from show to show for an eagerly waiting audience at every stop. Kind of like that song by Lobo from the 1970s... Me and you and a dog named Boo.... And for good reason. It's a very synergistic ensemble, despite (or maybe because of?) the turntable being the most expensive component. The Bergman Modi turntable with Thor linear tracking tonearm and air bearing from Denmark is 17k$.



The Graham Audio LS8/1 speakers at the other end are 9,700$ with the stands, and in a limited edition of 100 in the teak veneer on thin-wall birch plywood (from Great Britain). The MoonRiver Audio 404 Reference integrated amplifier from Sweden boasts 50 watts per channel and offers optional phono stages and DACs. Plus, it comes with a remote control ($5k). This room draws solid crowds of gentlemen who are long past their head-banging days or egoistic need for massive components. It's all about the music and Philip usually puts good tunes on the platter.

In checking my video notes, I see the Artesania Audio rack from Spain at 7300$ incorporates a lot of anti-vibration technology. I'll have to check that out more closely at AXPONA 2023.



Room 1225 Emotiva Audio
The Emotiva room drew an attentive crowd for their relatively straightforward presentation that included material on video as well as an in-person host. The affordability factor of this company is a big factor in its success.





Their XPA Differential Reference series features a powerful, balanced modular design.



Room 1227 Emotiva Audio
A second Emotiva room showcased a more basic rig with stand-mounted monitors.




Room 1231 Art et Son (Art and Sound)
Art and Sound had a very good sounding room which was no surprise given the Neat Acoustic Orkestra speakers (9,999$) powered by Norma Audio Revo IPA 140 integrated amp (11,300$) along with a Norma Revo DAC-1 Reference DAC (7,600$) and Innuos Zenith Mk3 Network Streamer/Server with 2TB SSD (7,699$).



A Melco s100 network data switch (3,395$) was also employed here. Tellurium Q cables were used throughout this rig. I've raved about Norma electronics from Italy powering Rosso Fiorentino speakers at other shows and Neat Acoustics speakers have consistently impressed me over the years with their compact designs and high value.



Room 1232 Le Studio du Son
Does anybody recognize the guys below?



Aperion speakers were driven by this gorgeous Java Hi-Fi integrated amp. Is this the beginning of 21st Century Mid-Century Modern?






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