T.H.E. Show 2019: Alma Music & Audio impact with MSB Technologies and YG Acoustics

Deep Impact.

Remember that movie?

It came out in 1998 and I still get goosebumps thinking about Morgan Freeman (playing US President Tom Beck) delivering that line “Our missiles have failed. The comets are still headed for Earth, and there's nothing we can do to stop them.”

That’s how I felt kicking back in the Alma Music & Audio room at T.H.E. Show late Friday morning – that feeling that something big was happening and there was nothing I could do to stop it.

Thankfully it wasn’t a planet-killer event, it was just hi-fi, but it was impactful nonetheless (on more than just a prospective buyer’s wallet). The system curated by Fabio Storelli of Alma consisted of the YG Acoustics Hailey 2.2 ($47,900 USD), a Luxman M-900u power amplifier ($15,000 USD), Audio Research Reference 10 preamplifier ($33,000 USD), MSB Technologies SELECT II DAC ($105,000 USD), Innous Statement music server ($14,000 USD), GigaWatt power conditioner PC-4 ($10,000 USD) and was all wired up with Kubala-Sosna cables.

YG Acoustics loudspeakers have the uncanny ability to completely disappear into the room and allow whatever circuit paths are behind them to translate without coloration. Listening to a 24-bit/96kHz download of Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” revealed a deep-V soundstage with solidly-planted imaging of Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and John Bonham as they proceeded to deconstruct the air down to the molecular level between the transducers and my ears. Bonhams high hat and cymbal work had impressive sheen with real ting and no tizz whatsoever. Add in no break-up to Plant’s gated-mic vocals and palpable texture to Page’s and Jone’s playing without slipping into distortion – a real feat for this recording at high volume in almost any system and I was pushed back into my seat with satisfaction. Midrange had slam and impact, with just the right amount of juice to make it chewy without becoming bubblegum.

Speed and attack on notes was worthy of the musical pace of this cut and with all the stereo panning going on, the sound stage is stretched wide and can be disparate, but here the cohesion remained unflappable.

If you can arrange a demo of this set-up at Alma, I highly recommend it. Just remember to talk like Morgan Freeman when those first bars of music hit you.

Alma Music & Audio

bigrasshopper's picture

Alma was the first shop I called to talk about the availability of ordering a Statement. Their in California I think. The receptionist there said that Fabio was out but would call back. I’m really more of a “California” mindset. I waited a day and then discovered that I had changed my mind and called The Audio Doctor in New York. I have read some of his posts on a computer audio website and he sounded very informed and was active on certain threads, though some found him a bit pushy. But I left a message on his machine and he called back within 10 minutes. Long story short I have one on order. Never did have a chance to talk with Fabio, though when my server arrives I do expect I’ll be California Dreaming. So it goes.