RMAF - Loudspeakers that you don't want to miss

Heaading from Tulsa, OK to my first RMAF this week. I was hoping to listen to some Rockport loudspeakers, but from the RMAF website, it looks like Rockport may be a no show this year unfortunately.

Who all is going and what loudspeakers should one make sure not to miss for an audition?
Not sure if you have heard them, but the MBL room always pleases my ears, but eludes my budget. I am looking forward to another show, and hope to try some headphones for my self and look at some phono stages.
Have fun!
I am a Tannoy lover, and they apparently will not be at RMAF this year either. However, Rockports are awesome and a local Omaha dealer, Sound Environment, is a Rockport dealer and can demonstrate Aviors and Altair 2's. If your schedule permits
afterwards, it is worth your while to check them out.
Personally I'd love to hear more Rockport (they impressed me when I heard them) as well as the Raidho speakers. I'd like to be able to hear Raidho, Rockport, Magico and Vandersteen 7's all at the same show. Right now, I've heard them all separately and liked the Vandy 7's best. Just the most musical as well as doing everything right. The others have sounded pretty awesome too. That would be a blast even though the electronics and rooms are all different, but to me it's up to the company to show their products in the best light. I buy systems now, not just components. JMHO
No MBL at this show, pulled out last minute so I was told. Suppose I'm fortunate because I can listen to mine anytime :-)
I will be attending as well for the 2nd time in 5 years. There doesn't seem to be nearly the speaker selection I was able to audition the first show I attended.

Living in Omaha for many years I am familiar with The Sound Environment. Some of the staff are a little too opinionated for my taste although in general they are quite knowledgeable. Their pricing structure seemed to be on the high side as well.
For the last two years I think Nordost has demo'd with Raidho speakers on the mezzanine. Amazing sound. There is always an Ayon rig that is not to be missed. I also always seek out any and all Dynaudio rigs, some years they have had Confidence lines there. Focal Grand Utopias. KEF Q series this year also, I think.
It is true a lot of my favorite brands aren't there, like Empirical, but I think D'Agostino will return this year, his room two years ago (or 3?) was absolutely stupendous, both in music selection and sound.
I think you should hear the Sanders Sound Systems 10D/11D electrostatic speakers.
The Volti Audio Vittora was superb sounding speaker http://www.voltiaudio.com/vittora.shtml - a must listen.
Another must listen is the Classic Audio speaker http://classicaudioloudspeakers.com/cgi-bin/index.pl?fs=2&upper=27&content=28. usually played with Atma-Sphere electronics.
Of course, make sure you visit the Odyssey Audio room - Klaus himself is always there & happy to engage in a conversation. He often gets the best sound of the show or something very close to that.
Make sure that you attend the 30-minute closed-door session at Wilson Audio. If nothing else just the choreography of that dog-and-pony show is terrific - not a hair out-of-line, all speakers (people) stand to attention when Dave Wilson calls out their name to take the stage, hell, the son even shed some crocodile tears thanking his father for everything & professed that when he grew up he wanted to be like his Dad! You have to see this show.....

(This year neither Green Mtn Audio (time-coherent, 1st-order x-over speaker) nor Lansche are going to be present. They were present last year (2013) when I attended & I heard both speakers - simply terrific sonics.
Another manuf who's not attending is Sceana Speakers - last year they were in the Hilton across the street & their line-array speaker was very, very good sounding.
Audio Physic was another speaker I enjoyed - not there this year.
Brodmann Acoustic was another speaker I enjoyed - not there this year.)
Will the DIYers be there? Its always an eye and ear opener to hear what they can do for practically nothing.
Bombaywalla, you're misinformed in the case of Lansche of which Brian Ackerman of Aaudio Imports will be showcasing the 5.1 loudspeaker in his big room.
I'd love to hear people's reactions to 'full range' type speakers in the $2k-$4k range. Specifically, narrow boxes like the Revel F206/F208, Sonus Faber, etc., as that's the type/size that will work with my listening space placement issues. Driven w/135w/channel into 8 ohms solid state amp in a lively listening room. My room is described as "challenging" here:

Monitors in the same price range that would work well w/subs ok too, but I'd really prefer to only use my subs for very low freqs (or not at all) for 2-channel, and, of course, the home theater side.

High WAF mandatory! Thanks!
This is my first time to attend. Was looking forward to check out MBL. Its so disappointing they backed out.
This year, I go to RMAF ready to make a purchase. Last year Vapor Audio made me rethink not only what is possible at a price point, but what's possible period from a loudspeakers. We'll see if it was a fluke or not, but hearing whatever they bring is my personal "must hear".

There are a few other contenders, but they either go beyond my budget, or have compromises I'd prefer not to accept.
thanks for the correction Linkster. The Lansche speaker I liked was the Lansche 7.0 - some 7' tall. Even tho' the Lansche 5.1 would be smaller, it should be a great listen....
Yes, its up to you rich young guys to keep us poor old ones
who can't get there up to date.
Wondering why Avalon has not been present at any shows in the US that I can tell in the last year or so. Especially RMAF knowing it is in their back yard. Anyone know why?
I can't attend but hope someone could listen to the Verity parsifal ovation in comparison to the Acoustic Zen crescendo and Magico S3 if showing. I heard that Rockport won't be there so I guess an Atria comparison is out.
Assuming Avalon is still thriving (don't know offhand), my take is these shows tend to benefit smaller vendors with more limited distribution channels, or those who sell direct to customer via internet the most. Brands that are more easily heard live already at dealers say in larger metro areas at least would seem to have less to gain. Maybe Avalon just decided its not worth it for them in that they seem to be pretty well established with dealers.

Now if a dealer shows there, then maybe they show Avalon as well as other lines they want to push. Maybe.
I completely agree with Bombaywalla's urging to check out the Classic Audio room. I heard it a few years ago with Atma-Sphere electronics and it was an amazing experience.

While the speakers have the look & feel of the 1950's (with true craftsmanship associated to years gone by), the sound was absolutely cutting edge. If I had a massive room, and the budget to recreate that system - I'd do it in a heartbeat.

I loved it.

Vapor is showing my Joule Black build that will be shipped to me after the show. If you get a chance, take a listen and let me know your impressions

Yes, Classic Audio and Atmasphere always an eye opener for many that can appreciate good sound, a different approach, and retro aesthetics.

Will Audiokinesis be there? How about HHR Exotic Speakers, German Physics, Morrison, Ref 3A Duevel, or Larsen? THose are a few off the cuff I have never heard that I would like to. Cathedral would be another worthwhile listen for horn lovers if there. Or if any large GOTO horn setups, definitely check that out. Awesome stuff!
Odyssey Audio, don't let the affordable price fool you, they always sound good at shows
Be sure to hear dc10's Kabuki paired with Audio Tenka amps heard them at the Newport hifi show I was impressed! I brought my own drum solo recording on CD which a took all over the show to compare I am a professional drummer and know how live drums sound. This was the best I heard at the show and was dead on kick drum and cymbals were so real! They also has some Japanese Taiko drums on reel to reel which was great too!
Dpatterson, it's late so I'll keep it short. To be succinct, WOW! The Joule is the prettiest speaker I saw today, both looks and sound. Honestly they're in a class of their own.

I'll be back for more tomorrow.
2-4k range you need to hear the Vandersteen's. When set up properly (hardly anyone's speakers seem to be set up with the right system and not properly for their rooms is my take over the years) they are about as good a buy dollar for dollar as you can get. They also stand behind their speakers and offer upgrade paths for original owners as Richard really doesn't like seeing his stuff on the used market. He honestly wants folks to love their purchase and always be happy.

Green Mountain is a speaker I want to hear. Too bad they won't be at the show. Something strange is going on at Avalon. I have loved their speakers over the years and at one point felt they made the best speaker I had heard (years ago in Pasadena at a dealer). I was told by a large store that they dropped their line after some problem...He didn't say what the problems were though. Same thing with Wilson Audio IRT 'problems'...I could have been both didn't want folks selling Magicos or Rockports or Vandy's as they hurt their own sales.
Sorry but we will not be attending RMAF this year. Our focus will be on the Newport CA, Munich, and Warsaw shows.

Vaughn loudspeakers will return with their true reference level Plasma Tweeters. None better. Hear for yourself....pt
Funny as I have been told by a few in the industry that they don't like the Vapors. Polarizing maybe, lol. That now puts them on my must hear list!
Rose75, all of your posts are pretty much trashing Vapor for two years now. Hmmm
DPatterson, that Vapor Joule Black was one of my favorite speakers of the whole show. You are a lucky man to be taking ownership of them.

That's great to hear. The speakers are being crated and prepared for shipment. I will repost my system and impressions after things get settled in.


I live in State College, PA. If you are ever in my neck of the woods you would be welcome to come and have a listen.

Don, did Vapor raise their prices, like, two days ago? I swear that the Nimbus was $6700 on Tuesday and is now north of $12K. If I was the manufacturer of a $40 or $60K speaker, I would feel very threatened by Vapor Audio.
I have heard the MBL 101 Extreme speakers on maybe $100k in MBL front end electronics... sounded horrible. I much prefered the Sonus Faber speakers at a FRACTION of the price with McIntosh front end. You could buy a decent car and take a vaction with the difference in cost.
The Nimbus MSRP was not $6,700; when I wrote the review of the Nimbus White for Dagogo, which I now own, it was $9,895.
10-17-14: Audiofreak32
I have heard the MBL 101 Extreme speakers on maybe $100k in MBL front end electronics... sounded horrible. I much prefered the Sonus Faber speakers at a FRACTION of the price with McIntosh front end. You could buy a decent car and take a vaction with the difference in cost.

What does this senseless post have to do with the 2014 RMAF show? Try to keep on topic.
Thanks for the clarification on the Nimbus, Doug. Now they're $12,895, alas. If Vapor has the orders, I can't blame them for letting the market influence the pricing. Nothing wrong with trying to stay in business.
Mapman, yes, AudioKinesis was there, demonstrating the Zephrin 46s driven by an Atma-Sphere S-30, and as one of their dealers I spent some time in the room. I drive my pair with M-60s.
wow, that's a lot to raise prices. Personally that's a red flag for me for any company. If you are offering a special, then call it that. To raise prices that much just rubs me the wrong way. Price it fairly to begin with I guess. I also hate it when companies LOWER the cost of something that much as it devaluates what other have invested in. Most companies will raise prices a bit or in the case of Vandersteen over a thousand for the new CT Treo's....he raised them because they have a much more expensive tweeter made from carbon fiber. That made sense an he still offered the ceramic tweeter for those who didn't want to spend more or couldn't.

Hope this post was on topic as it's a feeling about the original post about the cost of the speaker. Do you find that at a show like this, they offer major savings on products? Oh well, back on topic....is there a list of speakers that showed?
Hmmm a 30% price increase for the Joules? I wonder what cost could have increased that much, or perhaps it's all profit.