Munich High End Show 2024 Full Report!

Alas, the eardrum-melting Munich High End Show 2024 has come to an end. The Weißbier taps have run dry, the scent of bratwurst and worn socks has faded, and those unruly Germanic winds have ceased to tingle our Eastern European beards. But the auditory experiences we had there will linger in our memories for quite some time.

Us? Hell yeah, it wasn’t a solo mission! Who travels to an audio show alone like some hermit crab? The real magic happens in the camaraderie, the shared joy of sonic discovery. Back in 2019, a comrade-in-arms joined me on this wild ride. In 2022, right as the post-COVID world was blinking back to life, two brave souls hopped on board. Last year, our crew grew by one more intrepid audio warrior. And this year? Four musketeers pledged All for One and One for All. Before we dive into the nitty-gritty, I want to give a heartfelt shout-out to my fellow audio adventurers for the laughter, the comradery, and the questionable late-night decisions. And a massive thank you to all of YOU – the random high-fives and fist bumps from fellow enthusiasts out there. You made this show unforgettable.

Now, about the show itself. Our plane touched down at 8 AM, but adrenaline propelled us to the showgrounds by 10:00 sharp. The High End Show welcomed us with open arms, a steaming cup of coffee and salty pretzels made us stronger than ever. Last year’s show was already a behemoth, and while some rooms felt like a time warp, there was a treasure trove of brand new gear waiting to be explored. Three full days of sonic overload, and not a dull moment… well, except for those few instances when exhibitors mistook us for woodland creatures with their bizarre playlists (I’m looking at you, Nagra and Tannoy).

With over 1500 brands, 550 exhibitors, and 22,000+ attendees, we had to strategically prioritize our targets. Some exhibitors immediately charmed us with their genuine passion and down-to-earth personalities. I was eager to reconnect with old friends and meet new ones, and it’s got me even more amped for the upcoming Audio Video Show Warsaw 2024 coming in October.

We didn’t come for the unobtanium gear; we came for the shared experience, the inside jokes, the foamy liters of beer, and the never-ending quest for the perfect bratwurst. Swinging camera gear for three days was a workout, but thanks to the generous souls who provided much-needed sustenance (Blaz, your energy tonic is a game-changer) we could continue shooting for rest of the day. We took hundreds of photos for you to enjoy, but it was the positive energy and good vibes that truly kept us going. The most wonderful thing about the show is that everyone speaks the same language – sonics and album releases combined. We had plenty of surprises this year, a few “wow” moments, and very few face-palms.

So, grab a drink, settle in, and get ready for a two-part show report, one for stereo heads and another for headphone aficionados. Let’s start with all things stereo.

I. Stereo Setups

1. Best Of Show

The Gold Note booth. On the third day, out of the blue, I received a message from Tom Dolfi of Gold Note, inviting us to visit their booth located at the Drivers & Business Club across the street. While we had tried three Gold Note pieces at our headquarters, we hadn’t yet experienced their high-end electronics or the beautiful XS-85 loudspeakers. Tom began explaining the meticulous craftsmanship and attention to detail that went into creating their system to ensure optimal performance. Before the music even started, I felt goosebumps rising on my arms. We were all surprised, but I couldn’t control it. When something is done right, my body reacts. And then… the music started playing. After a few minutes, Tom asked if it sounded good, but I mumbled something incomprehensible in response. The music continued, spanning various genres – rock, drum solos, electronic vibes, all the good stuff. People often associate “The Italian Sound” with a mellow, melodic, and warm embrace. While this system was indeed melodic, the speakers were incredibly nimble, fast, punchy, and impactful. The drum solo lasted for over nine minutes, and I was already sweating. This system had it all! Dynamics, fast transients, every technicality you could wish for, and most importantly, it left me eager for the next track.

I didn’t want to leave the room, but Maurizio Aterini, the company’s CEO, wanted to meet us. Reluctantly, we moved on to explore their upcoming gear. Otherwise, I’d probably still be head-bobbing and toe-tapping, as I usually do when things click into place. For me, this was one of the best systems at the show. Not only did it sound fantastic from every perspective, but I couldn’t find a single flaw. Maurizio’s passion for their upcoming releases surprised me. He explained not only how they were doing things down to the smallest detail but also why. I won’t spoil the surprise, but in Q3-Q4 2024, they will release at least one product that will shake up the headphone market without requiring you to sell a kidney. Their down-to-earth and humble personalities earned our respect and, of course, our prestigious Best of Show award. A job well done indeed!

Audio Group Denmark (Børresen Acoustics, Ansuz Acoustics, Aavik, and Axxess). We visited Audio Group Denmark’s factory in November 2023 (you can find our factory tour here), and even before arriving in Aalborg, we knew these Vikings were crazier than most audio tinkerers. However, we didn’t grasp the full extent of their audacity until we heard their ideas firsthand and saw the finished products.

Just before departing, a few unfinished boxes bearing the Axxess logo hinted at the imminent release of affordable electronics. Little did we know that they would unveil not one but eight brand-new speakers in just six months! Yes, eight! Pause for a moment and let that number sink in.

Before you ask, these are not your run-of-the-mill speakers. These are some of the most technically advanced speakers you’ll find at any price point. If you’ve never experienced their speakers, I urge you to take a leap of faith and dive in. I can almost guarantee you won’t find anything as immaculately clean, otherworldly transparent, and resolving.

From the most affordable L3 floor-standing speakers ($5,000) to the extraordinary T5 behemoths ($200,000), which borrow much of the technology from their flagship M5 ($520,000), all three Audio Group Denmark booths sounded exceptional from every angle.

While I anticipated that their new C and T series would make waves in the audiophile world, I didn’t expect to love the L3 so much! $5,000 for a pair of loudspeakers designed by Michael Børresen? Sign me up for two pairs. These will sell like hotcakes, and I’m thrilled that such a price point was achievable, as it will allow people to finally understand what all the fuss is about. I could go on and on about their innovations. It wasn’t just about the loudspeakers; they also brought new electronics and cables. From the affordable Axxess Forté 1 to the super-advanced Aavik U-588, Audio Group Denmark brought out the big guns. I have a feeling they are only gathering momentum. The true Blitzkrieg is yet to come.

Raidho Acoustics booth (Raidho speakers, Simaudio MOON electronics, Nordost cables). I have a confession to make: I own the Raidho TD 2.2, which I purchased with my hard-earned money. I have no affiliation with Raidho; I simply adore their sound profile and the philosophy behind their creations. It’s truly challenging to outdo them at their own game. Their team is always accommodating, and even though the star of the show was the brand-new X2.6, I still yearn for the larger-than-life sound of the TD6. I must say, they consistently deliver a sonic awe once the music takes over. I closed my eyes, and in no time, my imagination soared. It’s difficult to articulate in mere words, but when everything aligns in perfect harmony, my mind runs wild.

Last year, Raidho impressed us with their slender X2T speakers, which seemed to defy the laws of physics. But what about the latest X2.6? Well, let’s just say I didn’t encounter a bigger-sounding speaker at the show with a similar enclosure. Raidho masters soundstage like no other; they are true virtuosos in this realm. And the dynamics? I was speechless. The only thing left to do was to bob my head along with the Techno Viking on the show floor. My friend Catalin owns the TD1.2 bookshelf speakers, and he vowed that upon returning home, he needs to try the X2.6 in his own listening space. I have nothing to fault the X2.6 for; they sound perfect to me. And no, I don’t have even a tiny bit of bias. These are genuinely extraordinary speakers, which will have little to no competition at $15,000. I mean that with every fiber of my being.

2. Honorable Mentions

STEIN Music Booth (STEIN Music TOPLINE BOB L & BOB M speakers & their TOTL electronics). I must confess that horn-loaded speakers aren’t always my cup of tea. Many have a powerful echo, a longer note decay than usual, and mediocre resolution. They can impress with the scale of the music, but not so much with technicalities – unless you own STEIN Music horns. The BOB L completely shattered my expectations, but truth be told, I was already captivated by them last year and couldn’t wait to hear them again. These were easily some of the biggest-sounding loudspeakers I encountered at the show. The sound enveloped you; the soundscape wasn’t in front of you, you were part of it, immersed in the action. Sounds emanated from behind, like a Dolby Atmos experience at an IMAX theater. Besides the scale, the sheer dynamics won me over. The low-end rumble, in particular, had to be heard to be believed. My body was bombarded by notes; you could literally feel the music with every cell. It was a visceral experience that engaged most of my senses. All the usual cons were absent in the BOB L. The sound was fast, impactful, highly dynamic, and had impeccable timing, impressing both music lovers and discerning audiophiles. I eagerly anticipate hearing them again next year.

Mytek Audio Booth (Mytek electronics & Børresen X3 speakers). This wasn’t a flashy setup. Sure, the Empire streaming DAC and Empire Monoblocks resemble art pieces, but the total system cost was well below $50,000. Yet, the sound possessed a dynamic kick that I hadn’t experienced in several million-dollar rooms. The tonal balance was spot-on, nothing felt out of place, and the X3 speakers were pumping serious doses of dopamine into our bloodstreams. While it didn’t try to compete with the top-tier setups, I thoroughly enjoyed this system. It was visually beautiful and sonically engaging. I hope to experience this modest yet impressive rig again at the Audio Video Show in Warsaw in a few months.

CH Precision Booth (CH Precision Electronics & Wilson Chronosonic XVX). This was one of the few rooms I didn’t want to leave. Moments before, we had been listening to the Marten booth, which honestly sounded overly damped, closed-in, and compressed. The moment we entered the CH Precision room, I exclaimed, “F#@K YEAH.” The contrast between the two rooms was overwhelming. The sound was nothing short of spectacular. It had no boundaries; the sonic landscape felt twice the size of the room. The dynamics rattled my bones, and yet there was so much finesse and effortlessness. The sound was both organic and incredibly technical. I couldn’t fault a single thing, and for the rest of the day, I yearned for that sound. I hope to see and hear them again next year.

TOTEM Acoustics booth (TOTEM Acoustics speakers & ARAGON electronics). When we entered the room, the tiny LOOM monitors ($1,299 per pair) were playing, driven by a modest single-box streamer/DAC/amplifier. The sound immediately captured our attention. It was snappy, quite punchy and alive, with spot-on timing. Honestly, I don’t remember grooving to the rhythm of music with such an affordable pair of speakers. I liked them so much that we’ll try to get a review sample back home and put them through their paces against the usual suspects. If WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) is important to you, these will be unbeatable in a living room. A few minutes later, we tried their Element Metal V2 small-sized floor-standing speakers, and our jaws dropped once again. We were floored by their naturalness, refinement, timing, and snappy attitude. The control over the drivers was flawless, but what truly impressed us was their 3D soundstage and holographic imaging, filling the room with sound in microseconds. Wow.

Dynaudio Booth. While we were impressed by the Contour Legacy speakers with their incredible flow and overwhelming naturalness, the true David that battled much bigger Goliaths was the Confidence 20A active stand-mount speaker. It was the showstopper for me, and the ingenuity of the team? Priceless. These are active speakers, and due to space constraints in the cabinet, all the electronics are hidden inside their stands, with controls on the back. All you need is a streaming DAC, and you’re ready to rock! I’ve owned several Dynaudio speakers, and I distinctly remember that in terms of midrange purity and naturalness, few can match them. The Confidence 20A immediately showcased their sweet and melodious grace. The sound was incredibly refined, nuanced, natural, and organic. The first three tracks impressed us with their soundstage and pinpoint location of notes. As we had hundreds of other booths to visit that day, we began to move on to the next room. Fifteen steps later, a bass-heavy track started playing. We stopped, exchanged surprised glances, and returned – and I’m glad we did. How they manage to move so much bass and control it with an iron grip, we’ll never know. But from that moment on, I knew exactly what I needed for the holiday home. If you lack space for floor-standing speakers and hefty electronics but still crave a bottomless bass delivery, the Confidence 20A might be your ticket to audiophile nirvana.

3. Disappointments:

  • Way too many booths put excessive faith in their electronics while neglecting their speakers. There needs to be a balance.
  • Way too many booths put excessive faith in their speakers while neglecting their electronics and cables (I’m looking at you, Focal).
  • Way too many booths put excessive faith in their systems while neglecting room acoustics.
  • Way too many million-dollar booths forgot that we came to listen to actual music, not the sounds of nature. A cowbell ringing for 5 minutes straight? Really, Nagra? Birds chirping for 9 minutes? Really, Tannoy?

II. Headphone Gear

1. Best Of Show

Cayin U-170HA headphone amplifier. Without a doubt, the true star of the show for me in terms of headphone listening was the Cayin U-170HA. I own some of the best headphone amplifiers ever made, and my headphone collection is constantly growing. I can differentiate between good, great, and end-game. The U-170HA plays in the end-game category, even though its price doesn’t reflect that. My reference headphone amplifier costs twice as much as the U-170HA, yet I found it just as punchy, dynamic, alive, and holographic as my Trafomatic Primavera. The HiFiMan Susvara transformed from obedient to dopamine-pumping creatures. Forget everything you know about the Susvara because the U-170HA made them punchier, more dynamic, and more engaging than anything else I heard at the show. This amplifier will be a hit, and I plan to spend a day emailing left and right to secure a review sample for thorough testing, not only with headphones but also with passive loudspeakers, as this beast pumps out around 30 watts per channel into 8 ohms. I love everything about it, and I predict it will sell extremely well. Cayin, you’re doing a fantastic job, and I think the price will make it a formidable competitor against amplifiers costing twice as much. The power output felt limitless, as did the soundstage width and depth, on top of legendary dynamics that were kicking the sh!t out of the HiFiMan Susvara. This amp excited every cell in my body, and I’m sure you’ll feel the same when you listen to it.

Meze Audio booth. The coolest booth at the entire show was Meze Audio’s, not only because you could try all their headphones and IEMs, including the latest releases, but also because they had the absolute best headphone rigs available. The best DACs from Rockna, DCS, Ferrum, Cayin & Chord Electronics, plus the best headphone amplifiers ever made, including the SparkoS Aries, Ferrum OOR, Cayin HA300 MK2, Auris Headonia 30th Anniversary, dCS Lina amp, and many more. If you visited their booth, then you’ve already experienced 90% of the headphone rigs worth listening to. Two new products were also unveiled: the Meze 105 open-back, which I feel solved the only downside of the 109 PRO (a slight peak in the treble), and the show-stopping ALBA IEMs. We tried them all, and then Vlad and Antonio asked us to guess their price. I guessed around $800, Catalin thought they should be around $900, and Dan and Radu thought they sounded like $1,000 IEMs. We were all right! They did sound like $800 to $1,000 IEMs, but none of us guessed their actual $150 price point. 150 bucks?!? You’re kidding, rrright? These won’t just be massive hits overnight; they might shut down the Chi-Fi IEM market for good. That’s how impressed we were. I’ll be getting three of these; my son and wife will thank me later.

Auris Audio booth (Headonia 30th Anniversary, Lyre, and ULTIMA). The ones that caught my attention were the ULTIMA and the Headonia 30th Anniversary. We are well-versed in tubes and transformers, and I must say that from design, looks, specs, and ultimately sound quality, all of these sounded spectacular in every way. The Headonia 30th Anniversary, in particular, felt like the most powerful amplifier we heard at the show. I don’t know its maximum volume, but at position 6 out of who-knows-how-many volume steps, the Meze Elite were already way too loud. It felt like touching infinity stones and gaining overwhelming power instantly. The dynamics, the physicality of the sound, and the limitless soundstage were all exceptional. It costs a pretty penny (I believe $12,000), and it definitely plays in the same league as the Trafomatic Primavera, which I have next to me. Needless to say, I will try to get a review sample and put it through its paces.

2. Honorable Mentions

Ferrum Audio & Camerton Audio Headphones. It was on the third day when we visited this booth, and I was already running low on energy. I could barely stand, let alone converse with these guys or crack a joke. However, thanks to the hospitality and much-needed beverages that Ferrum Audio always brings, I could listen to these beautiful headphones with a beer in hand and a smile on my face. We’re already well-acquainted with the Ferrum Audio stack, and you can find dedicated reviews for their Wanda, OOR & Hypsos on our site. So, I’ll focus on the Binom ER 2024 headphones, which will set you back €5,500. These are not your typical isodynamic (planar) headphones. They possess the physicality, resolution, and control of planars, but the sound feels considerably more effortless, stress-free, and easier to listen to. They’re highly energetic and punchy in the low end, with an impressive tonal balance that never leans too bright or dark. The effortlessness and naturalness were overwhelming, and who knows, maybe we’ll review them someday. Hint hint

T+A Solitaire P & Solitaire T headphones driven by the T+A HA200 DAC/AMP combo. To my ears, the Solitaire P were the absolute best-sounding headphones at the show. Full stop. The soundstage felt limitless, the depth reached Mariana Trench levels, and the resolution and transparency were the best I’ve ever heard. Usually, when you have such a massive soundstage, you sacrifice visceral impact and bass, but that wasn’t the case with the Solitaire P. The bass was tight and impactful, even with acoustic music. I think I might like these even more than the HiFiMan Susvara, but I’ll need to borrow a pair to be 100% sure, which I plan to do in the coming weeks. I couldn’t find a single flaw with them. I found them fun and incredibly technical – exactly how headphones should sound. As for the Solitaire T closed-back wireless headphones? Let’s just say that the Sennheiser Momentum 4 and the Sony WH-100XM5 will feel like mid-fi headphones after experiencing the Solitaire T. These might just be the very best wireless headphones I’ve tried, and yes, I’ve tried them all. Needless to say, I want them both, and I’ll do my best to deliver in-depth reviews in the coming months.

RAAL 1995 Magna & Immanis. The Magna costs €5,399, and the Immanis costs €7,899. If you add the interface/stand and a fancy Star-8 cable, the prices become €7,699 and €9,999, respectively. With the Immanis, right off the bat, I could feel a higher resolution and transparency than what I usually get at home from the HiFiMan Susvara. The sound was incredibly technical – probably the cleanest sound I’ve ever experienced through headphones. I wasn’t surprised by their technical performance, as RAAL ribbon speakers have a similar sound signature. However, I was surprised by the low end, which reached subterranean levels. The frequency response was complete from top to bottom, as was their immaculate technical performance. However, I suspect these won’t be everyday headphones. They demand your full attention and might induce some listening fatigue over time. They won’t be forgiving of less-than-perfect headphone rigs and stereo recordings, demanding the very best of both worlds. So, prepare your listening space before ordering these beauties. I didn’t have enough time with them to fully experience their sound signature, but perhaps we can secure a loaner sample to complete two in-depth reviews in our usual fashion. Needless to say, they impressed me to the core, and I look forward to trying them again.

3. Disappointments:

  • Grado GS1000X and GS3000X headphones. The cables are as stiff as metal rods and still non-detachable. If you damage the cable, you’re in trouble. The sound? Mid-fi at best, with little to no bass oomph or definition. When you turn up the volume, distortion becomes excessive. Twenty years ago, these might have been cool, but today? Not so much.
  • You Are Not Invited. Those who know, know.

III. End Words

Wrapping up my report for the High End Show Munich 2024, as usual, we didn’t have time to visit every booth, sample every type of wurst, or taste every Weißbier. But hey, we’ll fulfill some of those goals next year! There was simply too much to listen to and digest. Maybe next year, we’ll have an even bigger team and stay for an extra day. We already miss the friendly people, the vibe, and the beautiful city.

Before you go, Catalin has a lot to say about his findings, which you’ll find below. Immediately after that, hundreds of pictures await your viewing pleasure. Until next time, folks, Sandu’s signing out!

– Cătălin’s Highlights –

A new year brings a new High-End Audio Show in Munich. This year was fantastic! We were thrilled to meet familiar faces, share laughter and joy, and reconnect with old friends. This experience was priceless, as it’s not just about the gear but about the love for music, passionate people, positive energy, smiles, laughter, discovery, and hope. It is something to remember during the year and share and talk about.

One of the most striking aspects of the High-End Audio Show is the genuine humility and eagerness to share knowledge displayed by industry professionals. Each year, I am humbled by the opportunity to meet the true heroes of the audio world, individuals who have achieved great things yet remain modest and approachable. It’s a powerful reminder that true strength lies in humility, not in wealth or golden awards.

We talked for hours, learned so much, and discovered the pure humanity of all these people. We ate, drank, laughed, and left Munich High End with our hearts healed and our souls full of hope. We still live on an incredible planet, and there is so much beauty in humanity, after all, even with all the bad things happening in the world. We just need to believe in each other and do our best, and good will triumph. That is the feeling after three days of wandering in the vast crowds. And this is the best feeling of all.

After Sandu’s comprehensive report, I was left only with my show highlights. Let’s not waste any more words and jump to what impressed me the most, with huge apologies to whomever I forgot. It is not about what sounds best but about the people and their beautiful ideas.

Rockna and Trafomatic Room

Rockna did it again this year. After last year’s prime-time show of their Wavelight Server and Streamer and Audiobyte’s new desk systems, it was time to announce and present their flagship, Rockna Wavedream MK2 DAC. Wavedream has been their statement for so many years, so they had to go beyond expectations: improving the chassis and internal layout for shorter critical traces and tighter impedance control, adding a touchscreen and updating the graphics, integrating a high-performance network renderer, and refining the algorithms that define the sound signature, redesign the R2R modules for more bits, less distortion, and a lower noise floor. Writing MK2 on the Wavedream had to be special; it had to unveil the soul of a digital source to conserve the analog physicality of music. The opened interior looked more refined, with many technical improvements and excellent components. Another unit was playing in the Rockna booth, and even in the noisy environment of the show, the sound was great.

Trafomatic powered the room system with their gorgeous and quite unique 300B SET amplifier, the Rhapsody power amplifier. Yes, you got it right—it started as a limited edition last year, and because of such high demand, the Rhapsody integrated is now available for more people. It also has a sibling, a power-only amplifier. Being one of the most powerful 300B integrated on the planet, with high-quality components, parallel single-ended (class A), and impeccable finishing, Rhapsody is here to stay, a pinnacle of decades of experience developing state-of-the-art valve amplifiers.

And if that was not enough, I encountered Trafomatic Glenn Mono Power Amplifiers in metal and glass. Again, 300B, parallel single-ended, incredible machines. That remains in my memory, and I am crying already because I know what will happen. Glenn is even more generous than Rhapsody, being able to touch even 26W from the most potent modern 300Bs. This amplifier can be used with all kinds of 300B tubes available on the market, bringing you the most universal 300B power amp ever built. Even the negative feedback can be adjusted between 0 dB and -3 dB in steps of 1 dB, which makes it the most complete 300B amps money can buy. And I am still crying…


It was not a specific booth. It was present ubiquitously and almost in every uber-high-end system — and I mean everywhere. Their top-of-the-line Oladra server and streamer were truly state-of-the-art pieces recognized by the industry. It was a revelation of Munich High End 2024.

Later, I ended up in their presentation booth, where only the product line was shown. I also met Mark Jenkins, Antipodes CEO and founder. I am so grateful! I listened for more than half an hour with my mouth opened to a complete description of their philosophy from Mark Jenkins himself. The idea stuck in my mind—”Emotion is the purpose of sound and the only reason for technology.” What a beautiful concept.

Of course, I learned about Antipodes many years of research to refine a proper switching mode power supply capable of delivering instantaneous clean current, their reclocking technology that goes great length, the carefully tuned motherboards in not less than two separate computers, processor tuning for the slightest noise possible, multiple processing stages involved and careful selection of all components based solely to optimize the music’s ability to evoke emotion.

It was a truly revelatory experience for me. I am passionate about DIY, and I was owed how much the industry evolved. I also discovered again how complex the digital reproduction of music is to achieve exceptional results. Antipodes is one of the field’s pioneers, with genuinely spectacular achievements. All I wish for is to have a chance of hearing one of their products in my system.


SOtM is launching something new and exciting this year. I have owned a few of their products and have always been delighted by the quality and refinement. Soon, an impressive new product will definitely make waves. The new sMS-2000 is built based on SOtM’s very reputable qualified PC audio components, sMB-Q370, tX-USBx10G, and sNI-1G; these primary sources are all clocked by the superior performance of the sCLK-EX. Since the release of the sMB-Q370, there have been a lot of demands to fill the vacancy of the server device, and it’s finally time to show it up. Stay close as we are planning to review the new SOtM server.


Every time I look through the transparent top panels inside each product, it’s a wow moment. Aurender really knows how to show the interiors of their beautiful products. They show them like that, totally open, because they are so nicely built and precisely organized. This year, they were Roon certified, and their servers and streamers will run Roon as an option. This is just great! You know I am a big fan of Roon…

I never had the chance to listen to their streamers outside of the shows, but I hope that will change now. Their product line is highly comprehensive, and the entry models are priced reasonably. The look is quite stunning from top to bottom! And their sound is a reference from any angle.

Meze Audio

They nailed it again. They nailed it even harder than last year. They had the most elaborate and well-put-together listening systems for their headphones. Something from which many glorified manufacturers will have a lot to learn. Best headphone booth, hands down! I have never seen such complete systems with uber-high-end amplifiers or perfectly organized streaming systems anywhere. And all that showed the scalability of their headphones. It is not just the most musical, perfect ergonomic, most accomplished design, best materials, and finishes, but it is also one of the best-sounding headphones of the whole show. Powered adequately, Meze headphones showed state-of-the-art sounding capabilities. It is primarily a beautiful sound signature that is unique to Meze. I know it sounds like a cliche or not even rightfully for their work, not mine, but I was so proud that these guys reached so high and are from Romania, Baia Mare. Congratulation! You did it at the highest level.


I still vividly remember the Warsaw show from last November. I still think LampizatOr was the best room at that show and from all the shows I have ever attended. Their Poseidon DAC showed so much beauty in the sound, effortless dynamics, and incredible extension that it was truly addictive. I dreamt of it, and I still hope, deep down in my soul, for a chance to listen to it in my system. It was that good!

This year, LampizatOr partnered with Taiko to enhance the I2S interface of the Taiko Olympus server by building a direct proprietary high-end connection based on the HDMI connector. They also had three rooms at the main show demonstrating Poseidon DAC. I am pretty sure that in autumn, we will see many more systems using LampizatOr Poseidon as the reference DAC. It is that good!

LampizatOr also showed a very special system at the Munich Marriott HiFi Deluxe show near MOC. The room presented Destination Audio Nika horns, Destination GM70 SET amps, and a Poseidon DAC. Rumors were that it was a phenomenal sound! Best of all show, no doubt about it, Poseidon is that good!

I still knocked my head off because I did not have the time to go there, so it would not be fair from my side to declare it again the best-sounding room. But, I tell you, it was a well-known fact in Munich High End this year. My only consolation – the upcoming Warsaw show later in the year and the hope that my dream will come true and maybe someday I will touch and hug tight the Poseidon DAC 🙂

Audio Group Denmark

The beautiful, crazy gang is crazier than ever. In less than six months, they launched eight (eight) new speakers, from the most friendly prices to the “maybe in another life” ones. They have the same sound signature: highly detailed, fast, punchy, big, spectacular. It is proofing their technology again and again. It is incredible how they successfully scaled down the best of this tech to fulfill the desire of the humblest audiophile out there. And keep the core sound quality. This is astonishing.

They also kept up with the electronics. Friendly-priced products, from all-in-one amplifiers to switches, power distributors, or cable suites, are now built on the same awarded technology. And it sounded impressive. Their rooms, not less than three, were always crowded with people mesmerized by the beauty of sound and extreme musicality. If I were a serious player in the industry, I would have been scared to death by these guys. They are coming big, with elegance, extreme technologies, and affordable prices. They are here to stay and conquer! The Vikings are knocking at your doors…


Mike Lester was present again this year with Puritan‘s range of products, demonstrating the filtering capabilities in a well-known, impressive way. A total gentleman, he explained their technology’s qualities and perfectly audible effects to us. We saw a lot of good reviews during the year, and it is time to look closer now. We all need a proper power source for our components, and Puritan does a better job filtering the power without impacting dynamics. This a very promising product range. We promise to test it attentively and let you know everything in an in-depth review.


Well, my dear friend has already told you about the impressive Dynaudio Hall. It was more than a booth. Each year, they have a larger space for showing their products and a proper timeline for demos. I was lucky to have listened to two of their newly launched products this year.

Dynaudio Contour Legacy, a gorgeous stand mount powered by Moon, impressed me with its sweet and musical sound. Following in the footsteps of the highly acclaimed Heritage series, the new Legacy is even more accomplished and full-range sounding. With only 1.000 pairs available worldwide and a not yet confirmed price of 12.000 Eur, it uses Dynaudio’s top-level 28mm Esotar 3 soft-dome tweeter (including the Hexis resonance-defeating inner dome); dual 18cm woofers derived from the classic Evidence range (then tweaked and souped-up to an even more amazing level); plus a beautifully elegant crossover packed with select premium components. It sounded fabulous, full-bodied, sweet, detailed, and highly musical.

Confidence 20a — Active Standmount Speakers is another new speaker from Dynaudio. The Confidence 20A is designed to be discreet, with the amplifier hidden inside the stand and the settings controls on the back. It has analog and digital connectivity via XLR. It’s a super-sleek way to get to the apex of Dynaudio’s listening experience. Pascal provides the speakers’ amplifiers, which are also used in Dynaudio’s Core professional reference speakers. This gives Confidence 20A a solid line right back to the source in the studio. On the DSP side, listeners can configure room-boundary compensation filters, input sensitivity, tonal balance, and more. And it sounded big, huge. The same sweetness and musicality of Dynaudio but with much more impact, a true force of nature. Its promise is – the ultimate and very discreet complete sound system for minimalistic interiors without any fuss of matching equipment, at the highest sound quality.

Grimm Audio

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Grimm Audio presented the new PW1 phono stage, LS1c, its flagship active loudspeaker, and its music players MU1 and MU2. Many words were spent in numerous reviews acclaiming Grimm’s MU1 first server/streamer, and much more will be spent on behalf of the relatively new MU2 (which now includes a DAC). We will be delighted to test MU1 and maybe MU2 during the year.

With the MU1, the goal was to set a new benchmark in music player design. The Linux-based computer system brings solid data integrity. The in-house-designed FPGA interface board, which forms the heart of the MU1, offers breakthrough performance levels in format conversion and receives automatic updates whenever Grimm Audio pushes the boundaries again. The MU1 features the trademark ultra-low jitter clock. This is a music player worthy of the name Grimm Audio.

In The End

I could write about many other beautiful brands and their wonderful human creators. It was a great experience, and I recommend trying it at least once in your lifetime. I am so grateful for the chance to meet so many great people. I recharged my batteries with joy, art, and humanity. And with hope!

Last but not least, hundreds of pictures await your viewing pleasure. Check them out 👇

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