The Cappucino was d e l i c i o u s!!! The (more than one) cookies too. The news that Doppio Espresso (who prepared my cappuccino and is also established in Hilversum) was just about to change their choice of decaf beans to an even better quality, was also good news. The daily quantity of coffee I take is simply too “exciting” for the body and the mind.
The Rhapsody team made it a very Italian happening. Lots of good atmosphere around the building with Doppio for the coffee, Varga’s Fine Wines for the “miracle” glasses of Prosecco. Miracle because the glasses had no feet, fitted only in your hand and were always full. Not to forget the Fiat 500’s old style and new style, the beautiful Alpha and Ducati’s. Last but not least, the weather was as good as the cappuccino!
The audio … I am sure it won’t surprise anybody if I say “I am going to buy the Aida’s in white for my private use”. Great stuff. But if I say that the demo’s with the Venere 2.5 were absolutely stunning, you might ask yourself -like I did- “Is he going crazy”? I asked the most known Dutch audio reviewer, Werner Ero, who visited the show -before me-, if I went nuts, but he answered back “No, you are not crazy. I also found it extremely good”!
Werner Ero: “Tsja, Herman. What can I tell you more about this day. It was a “triumph” for Rhapsody and your products as this was their best and most natural sounding demo of the last 5 years! Actually everything was TOP today. The weather, the beautiful presentation with excellent coffee, Prosecco, the Italian car and motor entourage and not to forget 2 sets which both really excelled. I regret I did not see all my collegues from the audio press. OK, it is weekend, but this was all so scary good that’s it is a pity for everybody, certainly for pro audio people, who has not experienced this. Both systems really impressed me. The Aida demo was spectacularly unspectacular and I could not hear the system doing anything wrong during the full demo. The spatiality was perfectly layered with a 3D “peepshow” effect. Bass, mid, highs were absolutely totally in balance and I could not notice that actually we were listening to a very complex built loudspeakersystem. Hats off for the design team because I think this is the least hifi-sounding high-end loudspeaker I know. But … the big surprise were the new Venere loudspeakers. Wow, what a finish, what a choice of material ánd what a sound … for so little money! Of course it is not the same level as the 90.000 Euro costing Aida loudspeakers, but for sure there are quite a number of similarities and also in this system good sound without any audible errors. Sound and cabinet design were both of the same level. This was completely SUPER and all together a very nice day!”
Well … at the end of the show we packed the speakers with the intention to bring them to the warehouse to be picked up for the next distributor, but Richard said “No, I take them home and I am going to test them myself tonight”! My daughter Petra, his girlfriend, looked up to heaven and said “Oh no, we already have so much stereo stuff in the house”…
The last news is that Richard was already trying to convince one of his neighbors to buy his current Sonus faber loudspeakers (Concerto Domus) or otherwise to move the current living room speakers to the attic for his second or third system … 🙂
Of course everybody listening to the systems was asking “what’s the price”? We always mention the price per pair, like with shoes, because that’s how you buy this material. But not every distributor is doing that. Anyway, upon mentioning the price of the Venere, people were amazed, and even more when we mentioned after a short pause … per pair! Most people really thought we were talking piece prices. So I believe that “per pair” was my most used words during this show.
With the Venere speakers, Sonus faber really has been raising the bar for the full speaker industry quite a bit! Of course we were very pleased that these Sonus faber beauties worked so well together with our PrimaLuna products. Maybe we should have played as a Grand Finale “I was made for loving you baby, You were made for loving me” by KISS?
The D’Agostino Momentum Stereo amplifier in combination with the Dartzeel NHB-18NS were the other stars in the team and did very well. Thanks to Michiel for renewing the Dartzeel Battery Supply and update the internal software. Great improvement again where we thought we already reached the “end”. :-). It’s probably like the Universe … there is no end to quality as long as you search for it.