Looking back over this post, I realized that about half of it simply vanished between writing and publishing. Apologies — the joys of online publishing are filled with many unexpected delights. Anyway, let me try again.
I thought this room was extremely good — it was also one of the first I wandered into. A friend and I managed to transect the show on slightly different orbits, and on our periodic collisions, we swapped notes — the Perfect8 stayed with him as a Best in Show. I found the room integration to be exemplary and the overall “punch” to be very satisfactory, but this was seating-dependent in the way that side-firing woofers tend to be. Detail, speed, and tone were very “on” — this was a great way to start CES!
The thing that didn’t make any sense, at least to my baggage of audiophile preconceptions, was the construction. Glass? Really? That can’t work, can it? Okay … so it did. Fine. So … why does it cost that much, then? I simply can’t make that math work.
The BAlabo gear is very bling. What looks like gold inserts set into Corian trim adds a fun touch. I think the total price of the set (amp, pre, and player) was ~$200k.