In most cases Hi-Fi+ show reports are presented in prose form with illustrations, but for this section we will take more of an image-intensive ‘Postcards from…’ approach. Thus, this is not an exhaustive report, but rather presents an annotated ‘photo album’ of sorts that we hope will convey the general scope of the digital audio products seen at the Axpona. If you enjoy these images, by all means visit your local/regional dealers so that you can hear these products in action.
Digital Audio Components
In very many respects the high-end electronics manufacturer Aesthetix was ahead of the curve in creating its original Romulus DAC/CD transport and its DAC only Pandora. Now, however, Aestheitx offers both of these landmark products in a seriously hot-rodded Signature edition. The changes introduced in the Signature models are substantial, including (for both products): an all-new DSP board, true native DSD decoding via a Zilinx FPGA device, an all-new analogue board, upgraded Dynamicaps capacitors, upgraded Vishay Z-Foil resistors, and Harmonic Resolution Systems Nimbus couplers (that is, feet) purpose-built for these models.
Coming soon from the Spanish firm Digibit is the new Aria server, which is really much more than just a server. Depending upon how you order your Aria, the unit can be a ripper, renderer, wireless streamer, fully DSD-compatible DAC, and a server configurable with up to 2TB of SSD storage or 4TB HDD storage. A fully optioned Aria should sell for a still reasonable $7,000.
Oh, and did we mention that Aria will also soon offer an easy-install, drop-in music server upgrade kit for use in the ubiquitous Oppo BDP-105d universal/Blu0ray player? The price of the kit: abo