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Falcon Acoustics, BAT and MoFi – FLAX 2023

MoFi Distribution went fairly big at the Florida Audio Expo this year. Packing in assorted brands and producing three unique rooms, the Chicago-based company offered attendees a chance to see a wide variety of audio options from across the globe in Tampa. One of the first rooms that peaked our interest was heavily focused around British HiFi, and the subject of a three part series from the PTA audiophile-oriented The Occasional Podcast.

Making an appearance in that room was no other than Jerry Bloomfield of the legendary British loudspeaker brand Falcon acoustics. Jerry appeared in episode S6E7 of the bi weekly show, and is likely one of the foremost authorities on the early BBC designs and the LS3/5a in general. Falcon Acoustics has introduced several reissues of the legendary British speaker, with limited runs selling out with relatively quick timelines. The latest at the show is the 50th Anniversary LS3/5a Gold Badge edition ($3995), with an absolutely gorgeous Golden Madrone finish to complement the iconic two way bookshelf. I was told at the show that worldwide collection of 100 pieces had already run its course, but there was an additional 20 pairs left allotted to the US, of which 10…then suddenly 9 were available. As of this writing, the option is still available on the company site.

What was on active display was an entirely different matter, in a way. The new Falcon Acoustics M10 ($2,295) shared many similarities to the LS3/5a with a few design elements, but was intended to reach down into the low frequencies just a little further. What I heard included an extremely engaging tonality along with a detailed, but satisfying top end. The setup playing George Michaels’ Older on vinyl was a purely analog system. And from my total experience at the show, perhaps one of the best examples of a purely “analog” vibe that I heard all weekend. The midrange was velvety and accurate, voices were highly evolved and natural. The bass wasn’t as impressive as some of the other rooms with full size floor standers or even multiple subwoofers, but for a smaller standmount or legitimate bookshelf size, the results were pretty fantastic.

I actually utilize the MoFi Electronics UltraDeck Turntable for most of my at-home listening and reviews, but I have clearly had my eye on the Fender PrecisionDeck ($3,495) that acted as the source for our demonstration in the room. The sunburst paint aesthetic reminds me of many a guitar that I fell in love with during my youth, and that nostalgia has not wavered an inch over the years. From the live demo at the event this weekend, the showy table keeps up the same high bar in sound quality as the UltraDeck, with a good chance that it could even be a step up in performance and not just another pretty face in the crowded space of sub $5k turntables out there. Also in the mix was a BAT VK-3500 integrated, which PTA writer Marc Phillips reviewed last year on his quest for the perfect pairing of British two ways and integrated amplification. The phono pre stage was handled by the MoFi Electronics UltraPhono which we reviewed shortly after it launched.

The stop on my tour of the show gets the award for best vibes, not only for the friendly atmosphere offered by the hosts, but the for delicious and satisfying sound waves produced during my extended listening session. Well done, room one!

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