Montreal Salon Son & Image 2009 Show Report
Clark Hertz - Senior Editor, Canada
For the best sound value in the medium price range I think that the 3A Grand Veena’s ($8,000) driven by Antique Sound Labs Electronics (Hurricane monoblocks at $6,500/pair gets my nod. Neither of these models are new - in fact, they have been around for years, though the Grand Veena's have been recently updated. Perhaps it was just the room, great set up, or the synergy of the assembled products. Whatever it was, this room boasted some of the most musical, living sounds at the show.
For best sound in the lower - mid price range my vote goes to the new high value Micromega components driving the JM Lab Electra 1007s Be speakers. showed their 1007S stand mounted monitor at $3800. The front end was a Micromega CD-30 for $2495 US running into the $2,495 Micromega IA-180 integrated amplifier with 180 Class D watts per side.
For the best sounding desktop system at the show I would have to say it would have to go to the John Blue 3’s driven by KingRex electronics.
Publisher's note: We have reviewed both the Kingrex and the John Blue's. Here are the links:
John Blue Review
If you are intereted in Class T or Damps, you should read this shootout as well:
MINI AMP SHOOTOUT
OVERALL BEST SYSTEM AT SHOW
There were many systems that cost much more, but none played music better than these. In the Dimexs/PS Audio room the Verity Lohengrin speakers were driven by Trigon electronics from Germany. The fully balanced 400 watt Trigon Monolog monoblock uses class AB bipolar outputs and retails for $9000 Canadian. The sound was astounding with no stridency or glare. It sounded better than any demo I have ever heard. You can tell when everything is right because it puts you at ease. This is the North American debut for the line. A notable member of the Trigon family is the half width Snow White preamp which can be paired with the matching Dwarf monblocks. The source used was the excellent new PS Audio Perfect Wave Transport and DAC. This room in my opinion had the best sound of the show.
Publisher's note - Paul McGowan has promised us an early review sample of his new Perfect Wave system and we are pursuing review samples of the Trigon amps.
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