Fine Sounds Group has gotten so big that it really offers less live sessions and more power demonstrations. Power deriving from the fact that it holds nothing less than four or five of the most prestigious audio brands of this industry, namely Audio Research, McIntosh, Sonus Faber, Wadia and Sumiko. They have headquarters in Europe, the States and Asia with distributors in all continents with the exception of the Antartic .… How’s that for global presence?
Each year, they book a huge space to show it all off — and if those brands were not enough, they bring in amplifiers from Dan D’Agostino, electronics from Micromega (a new Devialet-like integrated amplifier), EAT turntables, and more that I have probably missed in all this high-end frenzy.
Is it a good thing for the audiophile market, having a giant like this? Probably, yes. Take, for example, the new Sonus Faber Chameleon and Principia line of speakers, consisting of 2 and 3 ways, stand mount and floor standers plus central channels for those in the home theater thing. The fit and finish of these two lines is something to be measured with at this price bracket and up to several times more. The Principia for example ranges from $549 for the small 2 way bookshelf model and goes up to $1499 for the biggest 3way floorstander.
Cannot say something more about the sound, the room was crammed with people from opening till closure, but it sure looks like mass-production is helping audiophiles on a budget to make their entrance to this crazy hobby of ours.
For those looking to spend a small fortune, here are some pics of the more exclusive Sonus Faber speakers along with gorgeous D’Agostino Master Audio Systems electronics.