RMAF 2016: Day two with DeVore Fidelity, Roon Labs, Burwell & Sons and Noble Audio

The day started off with a visit to Noble Audio to shoot video with co-owner Brannan Mason, and a listen to one of his flagship in-ear monitors, the Katana (a first for me).
Brannan Mason discusses the future for Noble Audio.

To say I was impressed with the depth, huge space, and tonal balance that the Katana presented – even just through an iPod Touch – is an understatement. If you haven’t had a chance to try out some of Noble’s many offerings, do yourself a favor, and get some in your ears.

Sounding so smoooooth…
 The sign said “Room Treatment” and, after I tried one of them I thought the Burwell & Sons demo at Rocky Mountain Audio Festival sounded absolutely phenomenal… I would recommend this tweak to anyone thinking of splurging on cables, isolation footers or acoustic paneling. They work that well (wink, wink).
Rob Darling and DJ from Audioquest.
Day two in Denver also saw me running down the Marriott Tech’s long halls, having my manliness called into question after ordering porridge, and fruit for breakfast, and trying to photograph as many rooms as I could between shooting video, and running into friends like the magical Charles King, and recording guru Rob Darling of Roon Labs. Darling is a great guy, and recently connected me with Vincent Brient of totaldac for a playback experience that has changed my listening habits drastically, but more on that another time (I owe you Rob!).
VPi Avenger commanding the room at Burwell & Sons

The Burwell & Sons room was sounding better than ever in my humble opinion (and looking gorgeous as always), no doubt helped by the killer front end courtesy of VPi with an Avenger handling vinyl duties. The Mother of Burl loudspeakers are incredibly communicative of what they’re being fed, and seemed to be well-satiated with what the Avenger was feeding them.

Gordon Burwell Sr.’s speakers complimented by VPi…
Rocky Mountain Audio Festival coverage brought to you by Noble Audio: https://nobleaudio.com/en

I was developing a headache from what I think was a combination of dehydration, and altitude when I hit the Tone Imports room where another two of my favorite people in the music business (or any business for that matter), John DeVore, and Jonathan Halpern were spinning some sweet folk, and tribal tunes on the always pleasurable Well Tempered Labs Amadeus ‘table.

EMT cartridge tearing out beautiful music from vinyl grooves.

With my head pounding as I saw them outside, I asked if either of them had any Tylenol, as the three previous people who I asked all replied “No” but then offered me a joint (Colorado you’re awesome), and while a spliff would have certainly helped my head, it also would have put me to sleep, so I declined (Thanks peeps, you know who you are!).

DeVore O/93 being juiced by Sugden kit: beautiful combination.

I could only stay in the Tone Imports room for a short time as I had to head to another floor for a meeting, but I’ll be back… I’ll BE BACK!

Jonathan Halpern cues up the Well Tempered.

That’s a wrap for me on day two in Denver, but check back often as the Part-time Audiophile crew is here in full force, and was seen accosting many hi-fi manufacturers for the sweet-spot seat in various demo rooms. Huzzah.

–Rafe Arnott

About Rafe Arnott 389 Articles
Editor of InnerFidelity and AudioStream

1 Comment

  1. I wonder if that DeVore speaker has spruce on the front, it certainly looks like it. Which makes me wonder is it a veneer (I assume so) and was that inspired by guitar tops? I wonder what a solid spruce front would sound like; I also assume it would feedback too much and would be a huge waste of time, but maybe an interesting folly nonetheless. 🙂

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