The Indulgence Show 2017, wow, what a weekend! It was fantastic to be involved with the show and there was a real buzz about it. The organisers had listened to the feedback from visitors and exhibitors alike, after last year’s show, and had made significant improvements in all areas. We have already confirmed our ongoing media partnership with the show and are getting excited about what next year’s event will bring.

The Novotel London West in Hammersmith is a vast, modern hotel and conference centre so there was a great mix of room sizes for all types of exhibitors. The place is quite confusing in it’s layout but the organisers had addressed the navigation issues from the previous year and ramped up the amount of signage and branding to help with the flow around the show. There was a bright and airy feel and it was indulgent. The hotel has a large team of international staff who are professional, friendly and very helpful….plus the bar staff pamper you with their spectacular cocktail making skills. I treated myself to an after-show ‘Perfect Manhattan’ on Sunday, which was indeed perfect!

Phil Hansen and his team of purple-shirted show staff were also very helpful, both with setting up the show and helping visitors find their way around. A massive thank you has to go to Eric who helped us set up our Hifi Pig DJ event on the Saturday.

It was really great this year to also participate in the show as an exhibitor, or a ‘Pop up’ exhibitor for a couple of hours. On Saturday afternoon we had the excellent Fray Bentos of the Dogstar in Brixton Djing in the Cognac Suite on a very nice system supplied by Chord Electronics, The Chord Company and Ophidian Loudspeakers. We created a relaxed atmosphere where folk could come and hear non-audiophile music, plus come away with our Hifi Pig Goody bags and enter our competition to win Tannoy speakers and an Audio Suspension turntable shelf. We met some lovely people and people really seemed to enjoy it. Our little event seemed particularly popular with families and couples, of which the show seemed to attract a lot of.

Stuart is bringing you in depth coverage of all of the rooms and stands at the exhibition. The level of exhibitors was excellent, up there with an established show like High End Munich with a huge amount of effort put in to give great sounding, beautifully presented rooms. So without further ado, here’s my round up of what particularly stood out for me at Indulgence 2017.

Dynaudio

The Danish company always have a stylish and well done room, whatever show you visit them at. They chose Indulgence to launch their new intelligent wireless speaker system, Music. While many other companies have been jumping on the multiroom, high end band wagon and trying to out-Devialet Devialet, Dynaudio have spent time developing this new product and not released it until they were good and ready. The family of four are both good to look at, with an air of an Issey Miyake designed clutch bag about them and from what we heard great sounding. What makes them particularly interesting is the app that controls them, which comes across as very intuitive and simple to use.

 

Innuos/Goldmund

This room was basically a masterclass in simplicity and style. Great sounding, Innuos were demonstrating the difference between their Zenith music server and their limited edition SE version using Goldmund Prologos active speakers, Goldmund Mimesis 11 Pre amp, Chord Sarum-T Cables, Quadraspire X Reference Rack in a room treated with Artnovion acoustic panels. The look was cool and modern and very stylish with the system working very well together.

Electromod

Headfi fans were very well catered for at Indulgence with the large Headroom area. Mark of Electromod was drawing the crowds for his selection of brands including Schiit and MrSpeakers with the new MrSpeakers Aeon Flow Open headphones making their world debut at the show. It was great to see a younger crowd making a beeline for the headfi gear, clearly showing how the industry is appealing to that more youthful market.

Luzli Roller

There were a lot of exotic headphones on display. A new one that I hadn’t encountered before was the Luzli Roller Mk1. These are really different looking and they roll up for easy transportation, which kind of sounds like a cheap gimmick, however they are Swiss made and very high quality. We had a quick listen and they sounded the business too, also being very comfortable on the head. A lot of attention had been paid to the presentation with everything coming in a really high end wooden box, definitely a luxury item!

Metaxas & Sins

Kostas Metaxas is a real larger than life character and his creations reflect his personality. From his Memento Mori headphone amps in the Headroom zone, scaring small children with their light up eyes, to his main room, you really got the impression that Kostas does things a little differently. His Siren speakers were what I really wanted to hear and they did not disappoint, stunning to look at and incredible sounding they conveyed a real sense of detail and energy in the music. This is big, bold hifi, with a real sense of fun and enjoyment of both the aural and visual kind.

PMC

Would it actually be a hifi show without PMC? Probably not! These guys work very hard at shows, they actually had their gear in around six different rooms so they don’t do things by halves. They had a huge pair of speakers in the Ultimate Analogue room and then in another were demonstrating their new Cor amp along with the smallest of their twenty5 speakers…from one extreme to the other. As usual, Peter, Keith and the team were on hand to have a chat and explain more about the products very professional but also very approachable. There was also the latest AVM gear from Germany, distributed in the UK by PMC.

Ultimate Stream

A special mention needs to go to Steve Heliker at Ultimate Stream. A relatively new distributor/dealer, Steve has really thrown himself into the show circuit. His room at Indulgence was carefully thought out and showcased his brands like Aequo Audio, Merging Technologies and Auralic. The blue lighting gave a calm, chilled out feeling and it was a very pleasant place to stop and listen to some tunes.

Chord Electronics

Another of the brands that really make a hifi show, Chord tackled both the hifi angle, with their great sounding and cool looking room upstairs and also they were down in the Headroom giving headfi types the chance to try out Poly. Poly, which will be available later this year, just in time for Christmas shopping, turns the Mojo headphone amp/DAC into a wireless network player, streamer and SD card playback device. Judging by the crowds around the Chord stand it’s going to be a very popular request this festive season.

Vertere Acoustics

Another really lovely room was Vertere. Of course this is very, very high end gear and Touraj does make some of the most beautiful turntables that money can buy. What strikes you most though about their rooms is their passion for music. The combination of Vertere with FM speakers and electronics made for a wonderful sound and we were lucky to catch a presentation from Abbey Road Studio’s Miles Showell. We were pushed for time but spent much longer than we should in this room as it was so pleasant.

So those are some of my highlights from The Indulgence Show 2017, there were plenty of other excellent rooms that you can read about in our main coverage. The show is set to go from strength to strength in future years, there is plenty to draw the whole family in and it’s in a great location for getting the buzz of London and making a real weekend of it. Roll on Indulgence 2018!

Linette Smith

 

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