Sound+Image - - Contents - Jez Ford, Editor www.twit­ter.com/avhuboz

Our Editor thanks you for your feed­back at the re­cent Show, but he’s ig­nor­ing you, just for now.

At the re­cent Aus­tralian Hi-Fi & AV Show, one kind Sound+Im­age reader stopped by our stand to put in a re­quest for “more re­views”. And I’m with him — I love re­views, al­ways want more of them. Mind you, go­ing through our back is­sues in prepa­ra­tion for this spe­cial 30th An­niver­sary Sou­venir Edi­tion of Sound+Im­age, I was struck by the fact that back in the permed-hair blue-jacket era, you’d be lucky to find five or six full re­views per is­sue, whereas some­times these days we hit 20 in a busy is­sue, and twice a year we pub­lish our sis­ter pub­li­ca­tion Best Buys Au­dio &

AV, which has ab­so­lutely noth­ing but re­views (bar a few ex­tended fo­cus pieces and the usual rant from me at the front). But OK, we’ll try for even more re­views!

This cur­rent is­sue, how­ever, is ex­empt from that, be­cause it is no or­di­nary is­sue. We are look­ing back on 30 years of au­dio and AV, mainly by way of an Ul­ti­mate 30 col­lec­tion which picks from the last three decades for an eclec­tic set of ‘wow’ mo­ments, vi­tal forks in the road of hi-fi, beau­ti­ful bends in the AV river, ahem. Most of the 30 are prod­ucts; some are whole cat­e­gories of prod­ucts; one is just a com­pany; one is just a per­son. The ti­tle en­cap­su­lates them all, and they will for­ever be our Sound+Im­age Ul­ti­mate 30. (Even come the day we pick an Ul­ti­mate 40, these will still be our Ul­ti­mate 30.) We held an event dur­ing the re­cent show and were pleased to present many of the win­ners with awards (pics above) by which they can take pride in our recog­ni­tion.

Now clearly with any picked list, it’s sub­jec­tive, and there may be many who say ‘What’? or ‘You should have picked this…’ So to test the wa­ters of dis­sention, on the pre­sen­ta­tion night I fash­ioned a ‘You For­got’ box, with pens and ‘You For­got’ slips for the in­dus­try in­vi­tees to write down any glar­ing omis­sions. Spoiled bal­lots aside (there were sev­eral), the one clear men­tion was for Hal­cro, and its dm58, per­haps the first Aus­tralian high-end am­pli­fier to gain world­wide recog­ni­tion, in­clud­ing a US Stereophile cover call­ing it “The Best Am­pli­fier Ever”. So I shall now of­fi­cially de­clare the Hal­cro dm58 as be­ing num­ber 31 in our Ul­ti­mate 30, with our con­grat­u­la­tions, but un­for­tu­nately get­ting no cigar, or in this case, no golden plaque on rather fetch­ing ebony-ve­neered chip­board.

Mean­while I hope you en­joy our an­niver­sary di­ver­sion of Ul­ti­mate 30 and com­pany his­to­ries, the lat­ter of which were cre­ated largely by our ed­i­to­rial team in league with the his­tor­i­cal re­sources of the com­pa­nies in­volved, some of which were mag­nif­i­cently cu­rated, while oth­ers had only a mis­placed fil­ing cab­i­net which might not have any­thing inside any­way. So the pri­mary re­search in these cases was of­ten an ed­u­ca­tion.

Nor­mal ser­vice will re­sume next is­sue, and I would di­rect any­one fac­ing re­view with­drawal to seek out the cur­rent Best Buys Au­dio & AV, or to suck down some of our mas­sive and ev­er­ex­pand­ing re­view ar­chive at AVHub.com.au. Un­til next time, then, it’s a big thanks for all your sup­port and read­er­ship, and here’s to an­other 30 years of great music and movies de­liv­ered through real hi-fi and im­mer­sive AV sys­tems!



From top left: Gareth Weller for Cam­bridge Au­dio; Don MacKen­zie for Krix; Brian Rodgers and Dr Martin Gos­nell for Richter Au­dio; Nigel Ng for KEF; Jackie Pugh for Ak­tiMate; Nigel Macara for Mu­si­cal Fi­delity; Mark Döh­mann; the Ky­ron Au­dio team; An­gus Fis­cher and John Martin for B&W; Steve Bur­ton for NAD; Heather Reid for Sennheiser; Chris Mur­phy and Dan Poul­ton for Naim Au­dio, Saman­tha Mikhael for LG; and Ge­orge Poutakidis for Astell&Kern.

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