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Montreal's high-end audio show wows audiophiles

Stereophile magazine sponsors Festival Son & Image high-end audio show in Montreal.

High-end isn't always expensive, check out these $250/pair Scandyna Micropod SE speakers. Stereophile/Robert Deutsch

Stereophile magazine sponsored the Festival Son & Image show in Montreal, Canada, that ran from April 3 through the 6th. The show was the largest ever, with over 120 brands represented. True, most are unknown outside of audiophile circles, but that's part of the appeal. These small companies aren't trying to dumb down their products to reach a mainstream market, no, they just build the best sounding speakers, amplifiers, CD players and turntables they can. Many are hand crafted, lavishly designed products. Point is, in a world where true quality, as opposed to marketing hype, is the rarest commodity, high-end audio is the real deal. If you love music and want to hear it like never before, check out the wares on Stereophile's show report. There's nary an iPod in sight.

Yes, a lot of high-end audio is expensive, but after looking at this week's New York Times Magazine's six page spread on high-end watches--the Patek Philippe Nautilus goes for $25,000--you might conclude the bling market knows no bounds. Actually, there's a lot of relatively affordable high-end audio covered in Stereophile magazine, and as I've pointed out in this blog before, audio is a much better investment than video. Anybody want to buy an $800 HD DVD player, cheap?