SSI 2013 Montreal HI-FI Show Report


SSI 2013 Montreal HI-FI Show Report - Day Three


The Montreal SSI show is a four day event for industry affiliates, three days for the general public. Unfortunately prior engagements required me to fly home on day 3. I stopped in for one last visit to catch any ones I missed and to stop back in on some favourites.

Blue Circle with LeDoux Acoustique speakers

Blue Circle audio's huge room with the full stack of Blue Circle fed by a Mac laptop (common theme this year) and powering a pair of LeDoux Acoustique speakers with dual subs was my favourite room of the entire show. I had to return to attempt to capture the beauty of the room, alas I was still unable to get a decent pic in the dim room. Fortunately the speakers were on static display in the Canadian pavilion. Check out the beautiful designs and those unique drivers.

Devailet with Focal

Back again to the Devailet / Focal room to capture the beauty of the Devailet electronics. The amp in use was a beautiful white un-assuming D-Premier all-in-one, it has a cover plate to hide the connections, which were better-than-average looking binding posts. The analog/digital hybrid amp comes with a small square remote with a single large dial and one push button allowing control of bass, treble, balance and volume. There was also a silver version on static display. This is an amp, preamp, dac and streamer in one.


When I visited Magico the first time there was only a short snippet of music playing, then silence. Today I was able to hear much more and the sound from the Constellation electronics was sublime through the Magico S5's. Effortless and very involving.


This room was phenomenal to look at and listen to. The combination of bamboo and concrete was interesting and the bamboo cd player was very intriguing. The sound from the Rossofiorentino speakers was smooth and fun to listen to. The hosts were very welcoming, easy to talk to and very enthusiastic. I visited this room multiple times this week.

Totem Acoustics

I have always enjoyed the sound of Totem Acoustics speakers and have found them to be unlike most other tradition designs. Very musical and fun to listen to, and the new Element line (powered by Chord electronics) did not disappoint. While not a fan of the looks of the new speakers as the Torrent driver bezel is rather in your face compared to traditional Totem designs, I am a fan of the sound. Check out the beefy Torrent driver.

Audio Physic

The sound was very nice, if a little laid back. The source was a Trtion Chronolog music server with Grandinote amps.

Filtronique Room

Huge Sonus Faber speakers which were amazing looking, if huge behemoth speakers are your thing, (which they are for me). Glorious sound thanks in part to the massive Moon amps powering them and dSC stack controlling. There was also various static turntables and assorted gear in this very popular room. I wanted to stay much longer here.


No one around when I was in the room, and I am far too clumsy to try and load a record on these beautiful machines. None the less they were a treat just to look at. The yellow was even better in person.

Audio Note

Plagued with tube problems early on in the show this room was up and running by middle of day two. It was as you would expect from Audio Note, unsuspecting speakers stuffed into corners making sweet music.

Audiophonie room

They were playing Parasound gear with Jadis Tubes and Spender speakers. Very easy to listen to and the amps were glorious eye-candy.

As well as full rooms there were plenty of various Static displays. This big line up of mortal-sized Focal speakers showed various models.

Aragon amps which are just imposing to look at, and I mean that in the best way possible!

Gutwire cables had various displays around the show, and many rooms had there cables in use.

A trio of special edition Simaudio Moon amps. As a huge Floyd fan I must have the black one, it is stunning. Interestingly the Quebec edition violates La charte de la langue française by silk-screening the labels on the front in English. On second thought, I'll take all three s'il vous plait.

Last visit of the trip was back to RJH and the addictive Single Driver Reference 1`s. When the owner was asked why he was so laid back and not talking up his speakers he replied with "I don't have to say a word, the speakers do all the talking". Indeed. And that wrapped up my first show. I met some great people, heard lots of wonderful systems, and as always enjoyed Montreal.

Jared Rachwalski.

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