Several TAS editors and writers attended CES 2009 in Las Vegas. Each was asked to select his choice for “Best Sound at CES.” Following are their selections:
Robert Harley: The Magico M5 loudspeaker ($90,000) driven by Soulution electronics through MIT cable was easily the show’s best sound, combining electrostatic-like transparency and resolution with the body and weight of a dynamic loudspeaker.
Jonathan Valin: The Magico M5. With the Wilson MAXX Series 3 (in both the Boulder and Lamm rooms) coming in second, and the Vandersteen Model 7, the Da Vinci Virtù, and the Perfect8 Technologies The Source tied for third. This said, there really wasn’t a loser at this CES.
Neil Gader: Call me clueless, but even at eighteen-large, the Magico V2 might actually be a bargain. For the smaller room however, the Joseph Audio Pulsar has knockout potential.
Jim Hannon: The Magico M5 system could easily get the nod, but the Herron Audio room (Herron electronics/prototype 2104A speakers, VPI front-end) came as close to capturing the sound of the recording venue as I heard.
Chris Martens: I heard jaw-droppingly great sound from two systems at CES: the revised Aerial 20T loudspeakers driven by Boulder electronics, and the Von Schweikert Unifield 3 loudspeakers driven by Moscode electronics.
Alan Taffel: IsoMike SACDs played through EMM Labs decoders, Pass amps, and TAD Reference One speakers. The show’s only multichannel music was more natural, involving, beautiful, and transporting than any stereo contender.
Steven Stone: Jonathan Valin and I love to disagree about cameras, but when it comes to audio his assessment of the new Magico M5 is right on. Easily the best sound at the show. Period.
Dick Olsher: Four-way tie: Kimber Isomike demo; TAD Home Audio room featuring the CR-1 monitor; Analysis Audio’s Omega ribbon speaker driven by the Spectron Musician amp; the LAMM Industries room.
Extensive coverage on these and other products will appear in The Absolute Sound.