Tanskanen and Olavi Eloranta
This was a second time Hifihuone arranged this event in Tampere, and the place was again a peaceful manor house in Hatanpää. Because of the great experiences of last year’s event I really wanted to be there again. But things will not always happen as expected. My family got a terrible abdominal influenza and I was never able to depart to Tampere. After some calls I managed to get Olavi Eloranta as a substitute. Naturally this also meant a report being much shorter than it would have been after my own visit.
The environment was exactly the same as last year, and why not, because it had so many positive features! Although this year’s event was again a great success, the atmosphere was not too dense. You can guess that this is a big advantage when compared to ordinary hifi and high end events! Additionally the presentators had studied their lessons after the last year’s event. Now they had taken more care of room acoustics and sound leaking between the rooms! These improvements made it possible to achieve much more enjoyable listening sessions than we have used to have in the events like this.
How did the show go? Well, last year there were approximately 400 visitors, now 550! Ari Niemi from Hifihuone told me that feedback had been very positive. So, it seems that Tampere High End was again very well arranged and now it can be easily evaluated as the best high end event in Finland, so far. Hifihuone and the other presentators deserve all thanks for continuing this great idea! I really hope I’m able to be there next year.
It is time for photos and short comments. All the sound quality descriptions of each system are based on the information Olavi have given to me. Olavi missed the Genelec stand and he apologises that.
This stage deserved to be presented first! The setup was Pro-Ject RPM 9.1 vinyl player with Ortofon Kontrapunkt cartridge and Pro-Ject RIAA, NAD M5 cd/sacd player, NAD M3 amplifier, PSB Synchrony One speakers and Van Den Hul cablings. The sound was open and clear-voiced, great in one word! This system had very likely the best price/quality relationship in the show.
Audelec’s stage consisted of Musical Fidelity A1008CD CD player, Musical Fidelity A1008 amplifier (a separate power unit!), Mark & Daniel Ruby speakers and Wharfedale Opus floor-standers. Although the system had celebrated components the sound didn’t specially inflame my personal feelings.
New Gradient Helsinki speakers were also presented. The front end was Mc Intosh MCD-201 CD/SACD player and Mc Intosh MC-275 tube amplifier. This system delivered clear but a bit thin sound. Speakers would have very likely worked better in a smaller room and/or with more massive walls.
Hifiguru’s stand had actually two setups. The cheaper setup consisted of Bel Canto CD2 CD player, Bel Canto Ref1000 monoblocks, Epos M22i speakers and Transparent Ultra cablings. The more expensive setup was Burmester Reference 069 CD player (Separate transport and A/D units), Burmester 036 monoblocks, Sonus Faber Elipsa speakers and Transparent Reference cablings. Although Bel Canto/Epos set sounded very acceptable the Burmester/Sonus Faber set was far better! The traditional SF benefits were again easily noticeable: very good tonality and tremendous performance especially when classical music was played. The best set of the show!
The host’s (Hifihuone!) room has very robust system as well. Lindemann 820S CD/SACD player, Mc Intosh C2300 tube preamp, Mc Intosh MC501 2x500W monoblocks, Marten Bird speakers, Nordost Thor power filter, Nordost Vishnu & Brahma & Valhalla power cords, Nordost Odin interconnects and Nordost Valhalla speaker cables. The sound was naturally excellent but the low register was a bit too prominent, and probably because of this and tube front end parts some softness was recognized (a surprise?). Despite of these slight flaws the sound was impressive and this system deserved to be the second best in the show.
Of course Santtu was there again! He played a lot of vinyls with varying success. The listening room was quite big and it seemed that the speakers suffered from that. The sound was quite aggressive and thin. The analog front end was SME Model 10 vinyl player with Model 10 tonearm (included SME’s oil damper), Benz Ruby3 cartridge, Benz Lukaschek RIAA and Cello cablings. The other parts: Lindemann 822 CD/SACD player, Lindemann 832 preamplifier, Lindemann 850 amplifier, Marten Miles III speakers, Ensemble interconnects, Ensemble power filter, IsoTek power cords, Nordost Valkyrja speaker cables.
Soundata’s system consisted of Denon DCD-SA1 CD/SACD player, Denon PMA-SA1
Tannoy Kensington SE speakers and Audioquest Jaguar cablings. Acoustics was probably the weakest in this room, but despite of that the sound seemed to be ok and at least the upper register worked very well. Because I could listen to this setup very short time and from a quite bad position, any deeper analysis wouldn’t be relevant.
This was a special room! Probably because there has been lately (again!?) a lot of discussions and doubts about cable effects in audio, the arrangers had decided to show some audible differences of the Nordost cables. The guy behind the test was Mr. Lars Kristensen from Denmark! The test arrangements were well done and audible differences were more than obvious for me although the electronics was quite ordinary.
Live music was used again as a part of the event. Great! This time Gilda and Jazztet took care of it. Unfortunately no pictures were taken.
That’s all this time, seeing you there next year!