Ortofon is a very old Danish cartridge manufacturer that refused to believe that vinyl was dead -- and now the company is healthier than ever. In Stockholm, they demonstrated a number of cartridges in the same system -- a great opportunity to hear the different sounds of different cartridges. The turntables were from Pro-Ject, the speakers from Danish company Audiovector.
The Magic, from Simply Black, is the latest turntable design by Miroslaw Stasilowicz, who was born in Poland but has been based in Stockholm for as long as I can remember. The tonearm is the Simply Black Cantus, based on an idea from the late, legendary Bo Hansson -- a founder of the Swedish record label Opus3.
The Klutz Design CanCan headphone stand is really good looking. Now there’s the Auralic Gemini 2000 Headphone Dock -- a CanCan containing a high-resolution DAC, a class-A headphone amp, and an SDXC card reader. Really clever!
Marten, based in Gothenburg, Sweden, demonstrated their Bird line of speakers with MBL electronics. The Birds come between Marten’s entry-level Django line and their top speaker models, the Coltranes. Their room was, as usual, acoustically very well treated.
The venue for HEM 2014 is at the very center of Stockholm. The view behind the Audiovector speaker is the Stockholm Town Hall, where the famous Nobel Dinner is held each year. This is a fitting venue for an excellent audio show.
. . . Sven Bilén