TAD, Bel Canto, Argento, Harmonic Resolution Systems

Once again TAD has had a part in a Standout Demo, and once again the company has used a new speaker to accomplish the distinction -- this time the Compact Reference, which is a very large minimonitor that will cost around $30,000 per pair when it's available. The electronics were all from Bel Canto -- Reference 500 mono amplifiers ($2495 each), CD-2 CD player (used as a transport, $2995), and DAC3 digital-to-analog converter ($2495), which also provided volume control. The cables were all Argento Serenity, with the SXR rack provided by Harmonic Resolution Systems.

The sound was finely detailed and rich with ambience, satisfying even those listeners seated to one side or the other. We especially enjoyed playing our own demo cuts here, comparing and contrasting their sound with this system to the way they sounded with other collections of equipment. Our verdict: This was one of the very best-sounding systems at the RMAF. [www.belcantodesign.com]


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