The USA's Rockport Technologies had their Mira 2 loudspeaker playing at High End 2012. This update of the original Mira features a carbon-fiber-sandwich-cone midrange driver, Scan-Speak's excellent D30 soft-dome tweeter, and a 10" woofer in a three-way configuration. Perhaps most notable is the . . .
. . . midrange cone, which was designed and is manufactured by Andy Payor of Rockport. The Mira 2's price is 18,900€ per pair.
Steve Silberman is holding the tiny AudioQuest DragonFly USB DAC, which accepts resolutions of up to 24/96 via its asynchronous USB input. It's designed to be not only small but also quick and easy to use -- just plug the whole thing into your computer and you're ready to play music. The DragonFly also has a 64-step volume control for direct connection to powered speakers or power amplifiers. The DragonFly's price is $249 in the United States.
German firm Manufaktur makes a unique loudspeaker, the Ellipsenlautsprecher, which is created by carving solid hardwood pieces and gluing them together. The smallish two-way floorstander uses Scan-Speak drivers and is priced at 5300€ per pair.
Harmonic Audio Labs displayed the SE-100 integrated amplifier, which outputs 50Wpc in class A and features a MOSFET output stage and 600,000 microfarads of power-supply capacitance. The product is handmade in Greece and is priced at 12,200€.
Harbeth's Alan Shaw introduced us to the new Monitor 30.1 loudspeaker, which made its debut at High End 2012. The original Monitor 30 was the longest-running Harbeth speaker without any change whatsoever -- until earlier this year, that is. Its 15-year run came to an end when Shaw changed the drivers and then reworked the crossover with the help of the latest crossover-design software. The Monitor 30.1s are priced at 3000€ per pair.
Italy's Norma Design introduced the DS-1, which Norma calls a digital source instead of CD player. Why? When you look . . .
. . . at the back, you will see digital inputs that will accept 24/192 signals via USB, S/PDIF, and AES connections. The DS-1's price is 3790€.
Sennheiser has now gone really high end in the earbud market with the introduction of the IE 800, which features a wideband driver that will reportedly play from 5Hz to 46.5kHz. The IE 800's price is 600€. Sennheiser also introduced . . .
. . . the HDVD 800 balanced headphone amplifier, which is equipped with a USB input (and a host of other digital inputs) and is priced at 1500€. The HDVD 800 will be available later in the year.
Beyerdynamic proudly displayed the new T 90 headphones. This model uses "Tesla" driver technology, which incorporates a strong ring-shaped magnet that surrounds the coil, resulting in increased efficiency. The price of the T 90 is 499€.
Mola Mola (yes, both words) from Holland has a new line of electronics that includes a preamplifier (6500€) and a pair of proprietary class-D mono amplifiers (10,000€ per pair, flanking the central preamplifier). The preamp is equipped with . . .
. . . a full complement of balanced and single-ended inputs for flexibility. No additional model names . . . just Mola Mola.
Soundelux of Italy displayed one of the most unique-looking loudspeakers at High End 2012, their V5.12. The V5.12 uses . . .
. . . a coaxial driver that reproduces the mids and highs, as well as a woofer to reproduce the bass. Each driver fires at a diffuser for 360-degree dispersion. The V5.12's price is 24,000€ per pair.
Japan's Esoteric continues to expand their digital-source offerings with the D-07X digital-to-analog converter. This 32-bit DAC features five digital inputs and a word-clock input. The D-07X is priced at 4999€. If you want to play discs . . .
. . . you can choose the Esoteric K-07 SACD/CD player, which also has an asynchronous USB input for computer-based audio, as well as coaxial and optical inputs. The K-07 retails for 5999€.
Austria's Pro-Ject displayed various new turntables at High End 2012. The first is the Debut Carbon. This model is available with several cartridge and platter options, but in its base form it retails for 315€. The version shown above, which is called Debut Carbon Esprit, retails for 415€.
Pro-Ject also had a more advanced and expensive turntable, the new Xtension 10, which retails for 2999€. Included in the price is Pro-Ject's 10" Evolution tonearm.
Antelope Audio claims their Rubicon preamplifier contains the first atomic-clock-controlled A-to-D/D-to-A converters. The Rubicon's rubidium-based atomic clock is reportedly 100,000 times more accurate than the conventional crystal-based clocks used in most high-end DACs. There are a . . .
. . . wealth of inputs and outputs on the back panel. The Rubicon's price is expected to be 30,000€ when it's released later this year.