This years Headzones at NAS 2015 was located in the entrance hall to the show, in the Brooklands Suite and was sponsored by High End Headphones, part of the HiFi Lounge audio consultancy based in a beautifully converted granary, Dunton Bedfordshire.
This year brands on show included Astell & Kern, Altas Zeno (headphone cables), Audeze, Audio Quest, Burson, Chord Electronics Dave DAC, Final Audio, HiFi Man, MFA, Gik Acoustics, Mcintosh, Mr Speakers, Oppo, Nordost, Pioneer, Schiit, Sennheiser, Stax and Unison Research. Also on display items from Fostex, Audio Technica, ADL, Harmon Kardon and Snugs.
As I mentioned in my main report it was nice to see that Headzones was given pride of place this year at the beginning of the show, rather than tucked away upstairs as it had been in previous years.
Thanks go to Mark ‘Ynwan’ and HiFi Lounge for providing the images to cover this part of the show.
The Exhibitioners Prologue – High End Headphones/HiFi Lounge.
The following images show Paul and Wendy of HiFi Lounges, arrival and set up of Headzones, in the large Brooklands Suite area. It certainly looks like a lot of hard work went into setting this part of NAS up.
In previous show reports I always liked to include a mini mostly photographic snap shot of one or two exhibitors setting up, just to show what is involved in exhibiting at an audio show and the following set of images does that well.
HiFi Lounge say this about themselves….
‘The thinking behind HiFi Lounge was to create a listening environment much like you would have at home, not to create a retail shop with demo rooms. We believe when demoing HiFi you should have the opportunity to hear the equipment as close as you would at home. We understand that all rooms are different but hopefully we have fulfilled our original goal as best we can.
We are almost trying to turn the clock back at HiFi Lounge to a time when the customer always came first, to a time before retail parks and the internet.’
and High End Headphones, their specialist headphones section of the business ….
‘When we launched HiFi Lounge towards the end of 2012 we decided to take a gamble and to use the smallest demo room as a headphone room, we started of with 6 pairs of Grado’s and to be fair it got off to a very slow start and I really thought that it wasn’t going to work, undeterred we bought on some more brands and slowly but surely the headphone room really did take on a life of its own with people coming from all over the country for a chance to compare some of the best headphones currently available today. In the end the headphone room has become one of the busiest parts of HiFi Lounge so we took the decision to move the headphones into their own building and to start Highend Headphones so that we can expand it further and to give it room to breath outside of HiFi Lounge.’
‘The quality of headphone rigs now really is quite amazing with some stunning set ups possible that cost a fraction of the price of a traditional hifi system but will surpass it quite easily on pure sound quality, ok so it won’t have the scale and soundstage of a speaker system but for pure sound quality we really believe that headphones are tough to beat, the main area where headphones win is that they totally eliminate the effect the room has on sound quality, the room is pretty much one of the biggest parts of any traditional hifi rig so with headphones you are tapped straight into the recording, there really is no better way to listen to music as the artist intended than on a Highend Headphone rig.’
HiFi Lounge/High End Headphones – http://www.hifilounge.co.uk/
Headzones 2015 – The Brooklands Suite
Chord Electronics new DAVE Dac and headphone amp.
Scottish Cable company Atlas was exhibiting their new Zeno headphone cables, this is their first foray into the after market headphone cable upgrades market – http://www.atlascables.com/
(Images above HiFi Lounge Copyright 2015)
(Images below Mark ‘Ynwan’ Copyright 2015)
Also exhibiting in the Brooklands Suite
Loricraft – T2
All things Garrard both vintage and new (Loricraft own the Garrard name) were on display on Table 2.
Loricraft – http://www.garrard501.com/
Ammonite Acoustics – T8
Hugo of Ammonite Acoustics was showing off his range of Jelco arm modifications and AA mounting collars at Table 8
Hugo says this about what AA were doing
‘We’ve got the Jelco collars and spacers, Jelco Tonearms, JSA Headphone Conditioners. Vinyl tunes are on offer via a naked Kenwood KD-990, digital via Naim DAC-V1 – both demonstrating what the JSA Conditioners do for headphone listening’
I have dealt with Hugo on a personal basis and obtained one of his replacement Jelco arm mounting collars, which are vastly superior to the supplied item. I would go so far as to say if you own a Jelco arm get one of AA’s collars, its a no brainer, as its the most secure way of mounting a Jelco and achieving correct vertical mounting.
Ammonite Acoustics Jelco mounting collars and spacers.
Ammonite Acoustics – http://ammonite-acoustics.co.uk/home/shop/
© All Text Copyright 2015 Adventures in High Fidelity Audio, bar highlighted quotes, Copyright belongs with those quoted. Photos Copyright HiFi Lounge and Mark ‘Ynwan’ where indicated.
NB No part or portion of this article may be reproduced or quoted without prior written permission.