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Sunday, May 12, 2013

Munchen Hi-End 2013 - The Mysterious Ratio: people or gears?

Yes, folks... audio is - in my humble opinion - a ratio, a formula:

G : M = P : E

Where G stands for gears, M for music, P for people or pleasure and E for enjoyment... mixing these all makes the miracle of "our" incredible passion.

We all know how's soooo nice enjoying a music listening session with best friends... swapping disc after disc after disc, sharing obscure records, learning and teaching and viceversa... definitely having good time, unworried about cables and the like!

I spent two full days at Munchen's M.O.C. and I tasted several very, VERY nicely sounding systems, saw, listened to, caressed, knuckle knocked every kind of sexy gears I could... but... BUT, beside some very nice music I heard, what I appreciated more was... gathering... meeting old pals, close and not so close friends, and audio pals I only knew from emails... years and years of emails... old and new friends were the bonding force of this IMPRESSIVE audio fair.

Crowd is crowd, as everywhere at any audio show, but as the offer is REALLY awesome and Munchen's show isn't held at an hotel in some shitty room with bed "shadow" on wallpaper, but in a very nice place with rooms of different size, there is a nice turnover and rooms and booths seems always unstressed places where it's possible to properly enjoy music and ask for informations about this and that.

Yet, P and E are the keys of Munchen's success... at the end of the day my legs were so tired and heavy I felt ten years more... but I felt so light-hearted, folks and... happy, yes... I met friends like Thomas Mayer and Thomas Schick, Frank Schroder, Holger Barske, J.C. Morrison, JROB... I've been so pleased to know you in person, dear Joe... yes, Joe Robert, the man that - with Jean Hiraga and La Maison de l'Audiophile - began "it" all, decades ago with his "Sound Practices" magazine and my pal Laurence, a truly unexpected pleasure to meet him, at last, thanking Peter's hinting at Silbatone's; had a GREAT time with Serge Schmidlin, for me a truly special persona, sharing a seldom experienced, bonding empathy and friendship and Roberto and Pierre from Bruxelles and Peter Reinders from Amsterdam... and Axinia Schaffer and her Arche' headshell and freshly brewed superb new arm and Mr. Manho Oh - Silbatone's patron, so generous and kind with his sharing those seldom heard Western Electric's Mirrophonic and great, classy amps and preamps... and Manolis Proestakis' Tune Audio Anima speakers from Athens, Greece, at his fourth Munchen's audio show and Rolf Bayer, a great, GREAT friend from Munchen, so warm and cool, who organized with other pals (The Triode Mafia) a fantastic Audio Tasting, years ago... and Christian Bayer, what a pleasure, Chris, meeting you, at last.

... with Joe

... and Graziella, the MOST handsome tube amps ambassadress at the show.

I'm trying to say that, more than the shiny gears faceplates and exotic or huge or super expensive components, it was an experience meeting Akira Nagai-san, the man behind Satri/Bakoon's circuit, the extremely cool and passionate Silbatone's President and Tim de Parravicini and his beard:-)... and all the above mentioned guys, of course.

Most of the above pals and the people attending the show own good to superb audio systems... what an event like Munchen is able to make - IMO - is, more than buying new systems... making old and new friendships blossoming and informations and tips and ideas being shared and suggested: music, technical solutions and chatting, chatting, chatting... as everyone has the friends he deserves... well, I'm so satisfied and happy of the two days I spent with among the best people around:-)... driving in the night with heavy rain, waking up at 4 A.M.... all is forgotten, as, hey... we're a bunch of daredevils searchers, hating... MP3 and, most of all, wall-paper, distract music listening:-)))

Posting here only a couple of gears-free pixes... but attaching this for a TRULY special and professional photographic report of Munchen's event: thanks a lot to Leo Ye.


J-ROB said...

Well spoken,Stefano. Munich is a few intense days (and nights!)of social interaction of the highest order that we all look forward to for 51 weeks of the year.

I spent the week with my best old and new friends on the plant. A very special pleasure indeed! The circles under my eyes are dark as coal and my voice is totally gone but a smile is deeply burned onto my face. This is what life is all about!

J-ROB said...

Well put Stefano! The dark circles under my eyes look like bike tires and my voice is totally gone, but a smile is deeply burned onto my face.

This is what life is all about! A very special pleasure indeed!

Ptp Audio said...

Hi Stefano,
I cannot agree more! It was great to meet you at last and the same goes for Joe, Thomas Mayer and many others. The music and gear were nice but what I will remember are the people.

Peter Reinders

twogoodears said...

Hi Peter... yes, indeed... common interests are bonding us for life;-)
... there will always be "that" outstanding beer;-))) after your soooo nice hauling of my G88;-)))
Next time!
Take super care,