Alma Audio, a dealer in the San Diego area, hosted two rooms at AXPONA 2023. Both rooms featured Technics, but I made a bee-line for the room with the gorgeous $20K Technics SL-1000R turntable. I love that thing–it’s one of my winning-the-lottery vinyl rigs. By the time I left the room, however, I couldn’t stop thinking about those incredible Boenicke speakers.
Words and Photos by Marc Phillips
This Alma Audio system was quite simple–the SL-1000R, fitted with an Air-Tight Opus One cartridge ($15,000), the Technics SU-R1000 integrated amplifier ($9,999), an Innuos Zen Mini Mk.3 music server ($1,499), all connected with Kubala-Sosna cabling. Then there’s those speakers, the Boenicke W-8 SE loudspeakers ($15,500/pr). They’re some of the smallest tower speakers you’ve ever seen, and they provided some of the biggest sound at AXPONA 2023.
As I collected all the show reports from the PTA writers, nearly everyone had the same reaction in the Alma Audio room. “Those little speakers were so small! And they sounded so big!” The photos of the Boenicke W-8 SEs don’t seem to capture their diminutive size. For instance, the first photo above looks like I’m hanging from the chandeliers, but I’m just standing over them, looking down.
The other Alma Audio room was very heavy on Technics, highlighting most of the current lines including the newer products such as the SL-1500C turntable in white ($1,299) and the SU-GX70 networking amplifier ($1,999). And I’m a HUGE Technics fan these days. But those little Swiss speakers with the big voice might have stolen the show. If you make the effort to hear them, you’ll be amazed, too.
If you would like to hear even more coverage from AXPONA 2023, check out our recap report and highlights from our audiophile-oriented show The Occasional Podcast. You can stream the episode direct from the embed below, or from your favorite podcast platform including iTunes, Android, Google, Deezer, Spotify, iHeartRadio and more.
Also don’t forget to check out our collaboration to commemorate the event with our solid bronze record weight available only for a limited run. This 800 grams of solid bronze features the PTA roundel on the top with also acts as a 45 adapter. You can purchase direct from the PTA Approved Store here on the site.
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