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AXPONA 2016: The Show and the damage done

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My stomach after an opening night of whiskey and bourbon with the boys.

Ahhh… nothing like waking up to a pounding bass line bleeding through the concrete walls of your hotel room as the two demonstrators my bed is sandwiched between powered-up their systems at AXPONA for what’s sure to be a very busy Saturday. At least it was Daft Punk on one side, and Radiohead on the other, so I approved of their morning wake-up calls.

I was feeling iffy after heading out for a whiskey, and bourbon-soaked night on the town in Chicago with Part-Time Audiophile Majordomo Scot Hull, Audio-Head Brian Hunter, and Noble Audio‘s Brannon Mason (thanks again for a great night, gents!).

I was desperate for coffee, and as I queasily fumbled about my room trying to find matching socks I remembered foolishly telling Scot I’d post something online in the morning… so here it is.

Let me start by saying Chicago is an incredible town by any global standard, and I can’t recommend it highly enough. The scenery, art, restaurants, and drinking establishments are truly world-class, and you will not be disappointed with the city or the wonderfully friendly people who call it home.

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The Bean!!!

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Blowing in the wind on State Street.

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Roger Wilco.

The show itself is located at the O’Hare Westin, about a 30-minute Uber ride from downtown, and for AXPONA the hotel is packed with audio crazies and their strange, third-order harmonic loving groupies. There’s a lot of serious gear loaded-up on several floors, and I’m hoping I can slash-and-burn my way from floor-to-floor to bring you as much coverage as any sane audiophile can stomach in this modern age of digital reporting.

I’m going to be concentrating almost exclusively on analog rigs, and anything to do with vinyl or tape-based systems because that’s what drives my personal mania in this hobby. So please come along for a slightly-bent ride with me in the coming days as I, along with my PTA writing comrades deliver our take on what will be AXPONA 2016.

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AXPONA coverage brought to you by Underwood HiFi, Exogal and Emerald Physics

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About Rafe Arnott (317 Articles)

Editor and Creative Director for Part-Time Audiophile & The Occasional Magazine.