Here's my quick review of a few of the systems at AK2005, standard disclaimers apply (Poor listening conditions, opinions are like certain body parts, everyone has them, etc...) Best overall sound: Audio Dimensions Maggies/ARC/Clearaudio/Arcam/ASC. OK, so I'm biased towards maggies, but this system had the best midrange/treble of any system there. Bass was a bit thin, and boomy in the upper bass registers, but overall really, really nice. Second Up: Shanahain/Shanling. Those little towers sounded really nice, and the Shanling T300 was super-cool looking. Other reviews: Audio Reproductions Hartsfield: Almost stunning. Wow, all that loud, amazingly clear sound with 60W of tube amplification. Simply amazing. The only problem was something really strange going on in the upper-midrange that drove me nuts. Not typical horn-honkiness, something else. Could have been room-induced, I suppose, but it really bothered me. Salk Sound Veracity HT3: Sounded really nice. There was some funniness in the treble, but I only heard them for a few minutes so it could have been the recording, or some other factor. Beautiful speakers, probably the nicest looking speakers at the show. Royd monitors @ Botrytis. Pretty nice for minis. The super-wide placement had the soundstage kinda screwy, but overall sound balance was nice. NOS Valves Room 2 Klipsch/NOS Amps - Argh, those Klipsch speakers were nasty. I forgot what they were playing but it was *loud* and the midrange was *harsh* I could only stand listening for a few minutes. Sorry, didn't like them. Stacked Advents/receiver. Surprizingly good from a strange configuration. A little constrained in the treble, maybe some wierd resonance or something, but overall not bad. Ohm speakers - I seem to remember a couple people had them, I didn't like them. Treble was all over the place. Due to their unique radiation pattern, the room was probably a major factor in this. AKG Electrostatic headphones @ Elusive Disc - Really nice, except for a lack of bass. What they did do, they did extremely well (typical of planars/stats) Surprisingly comfortable given their odd headband. Much more clear than my Sennheiser HD-580's, maybe even beter than the 600's we have at work.