Agreed guys in that the sound quality in the rooms we went into was very good indeed and shows it can be done at exhibitions. The trick to seeing things was to go get tickets and try to organise room visiting but some central organisation would have been better.
The Krell/Montis was too quiet and very tame, where were the dynamics? We followed this with the Constellation/Magico system and it was miles ahead; 3D, dynamic, very natural with a great sense of realism. The perspective was a little more distant than I like but it was an excellent system. Next was the Wilson set up demonstrated by Peter McGrath from Wilson. He brought one of his recording which sounded super. The whole system was exceptional and whilst the bass demo was a bit 'gee whiz' it did go deep. It was the best/2nd best.
The Naim/Focal system was the best I have ever heard from Naim or Focal. The Focal speakers cost six figures. The power, scale 3D dynamics were excellent but they had little light/shade and were a bit 'full on' all the time and may be waring after an hour or so. They will impress your mates but not sure they impress me at the prices.
The TAD room was superb and the little monitors gave a great, natural sound. The presenter (not Tony, good to see him though) was a natural and very empathetic with the audience. Although expensive it was one of the best. The larger speakers tended to over power the room but very similar. The Yello track really got things going.
On the second floor there were another set of rooms. We got in after Elanor McEvoy (tickets all gone on weds last week). The Fact 12 speakers sounded very good. They are an excellent monitor style speaker without all the rough sound that comes with studio monitors. The bass was tight powerful and filled the room up well. I was surprised as PMC speakers have sounded relentless and aggressive in the past. The Chord room was weird, they had a reasonable sized set of speakers but they produced very little bass. Then we went into the trilogy room; wow. They were using the Sonus Faber Guaneri(?) speakers with their amps. They sounded superb. No real deep bass or top end but what was done was done exceptional. The Estelon and Avalon rooms were great, real 3D, natural sounding.
There was another building that meant braving the elements to get there. This was much more compact. Unfortunately the sound quality was not as good, the Van den Hul room was OK if crowded, the Elac room produced a really good sound from some tiddly speakers but with a really nice tweeter. Not impressed with the Tune set up.
Food was good and £6 for a lunch bag.
If this occurs again then they should put a few road signs and exhibition signs up, a timetable for room demos, a few more open rooms and a lower price. Otherwise very good and a nice way to hear £1M worth of hifi !!!!!!