SCROLL DOWN FOR GALLERY
If there is one thing that can be said about the HiFi Industry, it is that it is a resilient one. Through supply chain struggles, chip factory fires, beached cargo ships, and price hikes across the board, the pursuit of perfect sound lives on.
The showing was strong last year at AXPONA, as we all emerged from our home listening rooms to mingle with our peers. This year was no different. In fact, a record number of exhibitors and attendees alike flocked to the convention center in Schaumburg IL to share their love of gear and music.
Upon entering the building, the distant rumble of sub-bass was a sign of good things to come. To the left, the largest and most spectacular of listening rooms, to the right 11 floors of smaller and more intimate rooms featuring gear and technology from all over the globe. And we can’t forget the Head-Fi room directly behind registration. But where to start?
A quick trip down the hall and up the escalators towards the elevators brings the booming presence of DALI’s flagship KORE Speakers that were interestingly set up in a wide-open area of the lobby, surrounded by 6 story walls and windows.
Speaker placement and room treatment be damned, the DALIs drew in people with their stature and volume but kept them firmly planted on the couches with their precision and accuracy, and sounded way better than they had any right to, considering their location.
Thousands of eager audiophiles filtered through the halls all three days of AXPONA 2023. Soon there were mumblings and excited conversations on the elevators about what new gear was gracing each floor.
Some of the biggest brands in the game took the opportunity of having so many ears in one building to premier new products. Lines formed outside of rooms to be the first to see MoFi with their Sourcepoint 8 speakers, Aurender and their AP20 integrated amplifier, KLH and their Model Sevens, ModWright with their KWA 99 Monos, and many many more.
There are always rooms and brands that are guaranteed to be showstoppers, the Estelons, Focals, and Boulder Audios of the world for example. These big showrooms offer some of the most astounding experiences year after year, which is why they are so loved by everyone in attendance. However, a unique experience that every audio show offers is the hunt for something special, new, and unique. These kinds of gems are not hard to find for those willing to look.
Whether you are looking for speakers that sound transparent, speakers that are literally transparent, a boutique tube amp, or the perfect pair of headphones, AXPONA has something for everyone, every year.
CLICK ICON IN BOTTOM LEFT FOR FULL SCREEN
(Photos by Larson Baird, ©The Music Room. All rights reserved.)