Acora, Audio Research, Transrotor, Dynavector

(All prices are in Canadian funds, unless otherwise indicated.)

Who knew I would meet Paul Simon—the Paul Simon, pop star, the shorter half of Simon and Garfunkel, at the Toronto Audiofest? I wasn’t expecting it, but he was there, singing to me. I also met Satch, aka Louis Armstrong. Both were in the room belonging to Acora Acoustics, manufacturers of loudspeakers made with natural granite loudspeakers.

Okay, these musicians weren’t really there, but you could have cheated on me! Such was the system’s ability to convey the tone of the instruments and the tiny inflections and breaths that give the voices an intimate, nuanced, fleshy and moist presence. The room was occupied, or personified, by one of the nicest guys in the business, Acora Acoustics founder Valerio Cora; Cora was demonstrating the company’s SRC-2 speakers ($ 47,000 / pair), a pair of Audio Research 750SE monoblocks ($ 91,000 for both) and the Ref 10 phono stage of the same. company ($ 42,900), all powered by a Transrotor Massimo turntable ($ 14,875). equipped with a Transrotor SME arm ($ 5,450) and a Dynavector mc DRT XV-1t cartridge ($ 9,800).

The sound was soft, dynamic, with drive. Also on display (but inactive when I was there) were an Esoteric Grandioso K1 CD / DAC player ($ 40,000), an Aurender N30SA network player, and other Acora speaker models including the SRC-1 on stand (36 $,000) and the revised freestanding SRB ($ 19,000, which you can use with the company’s SRS-G speaker stand ($ 6,000), also in granite.

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