Show Report: TAVES 2012

Regional hi-fi shows are sprouting up all over North America. We now have the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Denver, T.H.E. Show in Newport Beach, AXPONA in Jacksonville, and NYC’s New York Audio and A/V show. And each year Montreal gets its own event, Salon Son & Image. Wouldn’t it be great if they also held one in Toronto? Oh, wait, they do: the Toronto Audio Video Entertainment Show, or TAVES for short.

Held during the last weekend of September, TAVES just celebrated its second year of existence. With great cultural attractions, hotels, and restaurants, along with easy-to-access public transportation, Toronto seems the perfect place for a hi-fi show. I was more than ready to go.

Held in the historic King Edward Hotel, a turn-of-the-century building filled with spacious rooms with high ceilings, TAVES had a comfortable, relaxed vibe that made it a pleasure to wander around. Though billed as an A/V show, the emphasis here was strongly on audio. However, the wide range of gear on view — everything from affordable all-in-one AirPlay systems, to stratospherically priced high-end speakers, amplifiers and turntables — made it the perfect venue for the hi-fi-curious to check out what the whole audiophile thing is about.