Musical Fidelity Experts needed..

I'm curious how many people have heard the new Musical Fidelity gear. Apparently it got rave reviews in the last Stereophile. Is it really as good as they claim? Refering to the 308 line. Also, is the Tri-Vista 300 limited to like 500 units? Is this meant to compete with the big integrateds. ie levinson, rowland and the like. Do we know cost on this piece? Last, does anyone know how to get a hold of Antony Michaelson? Thanks
I've limited to NO experience with the Musical Fidelity line myself. However a friend of mine who's very into high end gear, said a friend of his has a $5k MF integrated that sounded as good or better than just about anything he's heard to date! Infact he raved about the sound.
Might be worth looking into the line for sure. Good luck
The limited production units are "Nu-Vista" not Tri-Vista and they are limited because they use these small tube-like Nu-Vistors thatare much easier to take care of and last for 10 years or more. They have one set of replacements saved for each unit sold. And yes these units sound VERY good and can certainly stand up to Levinsons, BAT, etc. You should also check out their solid state gear from the A3 line which uses the same circuits pretty much, but without the Nu-Vistors. I use an A3cr pre and power amp myself and love them.
Fineberg, there is also a Tri-Vista line, to which Seth alludes. They make an Integrated and SACD/CD player currently under this line and a pre and power amp to come in 2003.
I compared the Nu-Vista integrated to the Rowland M-112 power amp and MF preamp and the Rowland blew the MF away. The MF while being very musical does not have the details that the Rowland had (which I prefer) and the Rowland sounded a lot faster. The Plinius new 102 was also better in the same regard. I have heard the Nu-Vista CD player and it is as good as other players in the same price range like Cary or ARC they are each a little different sounding, hard to tell unless you compare them side by side. The reviews of the MF gear is generally pretty good so you can read them and get a feel for what they do and don't do.

At a shop in Vancouver, BC, I spent some time with the CDP/pre-amp combined on one chassis (called CD-24 [?]) and the new Tri-Vista integrated. This fed a pair of Sonus Farber Homage floor standers and a sub. Apparently, the Tri-Vista amp was new--and it did not sound good--but the dealer did not tell me about its lack of break in at the time.

Two weeks later, the same amp sounded much better: smoother, able to handle crescendos, less brittle, stage depth opened up, more musical. The CDP this time was the matching Tri-Vista CDP. Cabling: Pierre Girard (sp?) IC, and Harmonic Tech Pro-9 plus speaker wire. The total cost converted to$USD for power cords, stand, cabling, sub (?) everything was $34k.

Sound: Good, but nothing special. A lot of money for rather mediocre performance. I would like to take the Tri-Vista CDP home for an audition sometime--the amp as well. For some reason, the combination of gear just sounded kind of flat and boring without much detail or refinement. It was not a matter of HiFi vs. emotional involvement either. The system as configured did neither well.

For a full half that $34k, I have heard systems that do everything better: more life like over all, cover the HiFi bases better (imaging, s staging, details, frequency extension, etc.), and are far more interesting to listen to on a pure musical/emotional engagement level.

This only means that better system integration; a better setup (stand?) or improving room acoustics could solve much of the sound--for all I know. Sometimes, far humbler systems well set-up sound better than higher-end ones in poor conditions.

As heard, I would consider that system a poor use of funds. With time and careful tuning, it could perhaps play like Nadia Solerno-Sonnenberg: with soul, passion, eminently serving the music. Who knows?