The sound in the Vinnie Rossi/Spatial Audio room was superb. I knew it was a good sign when as soon as I walked in I started to relax, my toe started tapping and depending on the recording, when you closed your eyes the room walls would drop away and you would swear the musicians were in the room. The sound was organic, effortless, integrated from top to bottom with crisp, clear bass, massive sound stage and no room resonances. Given the wonderful sound, I found the sparse, simple elegance of the system even more astonishing and it still leaves me marveling as it was a stark contrast to every other room at the show that I visited. There were no massive, acoustically isolating racks of DAC's, preamps, and power conditioners, no monster amps sitting in the middle of the floor between the speakers, no cables the size of fire hoses connecting the various pieces of equipment, no acoustic panels and sound tuning devices cluttering the room, just a small laptop running Roon, Vinnie's Lio, and Clayton's X-1's connected by some very thin, unobtrusive cables. It sounded great in both halves of the the room even though the suite had two divider walls partially separating one portion of the room from the other. The quality of the sound was the purist testimony to the quality of the design, materials and synergies of each component. Astonishing!
This is a system that anyone could aspire to build and continually evolve. Start with Vinnie's simplest Lio configuration and upgrade the Lio as time and funds permit with no investment cost penalty. Given it's simplistic, minimalist beauty, it is a system that would be welcome in almost any home by any significant other and where one could be content remaining forever within the ecosystem that Vinnie has created.
Just as importantly if not more so than the system, was the opportunity to speak with Clayton and Vinnie. You will never meet two nicer, more down-to-earth guys than these two who are also brilliant, passionate, visionaries. It was simply a joy to sit and talk with them.
Lastly, this visit fully convinced me that this is what audio, as an industry, should aspire to be. Simple, elegant, sparse, unobtrusive systems that can evolve with time, designed, created and serviced by quality people, that always leaves the music to stand alone with no apologies or caveats needed.