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  2. The proposal could save costs and thousands of tons of electronic waste, advocates say, but previous measures have fizzled. View the full article
  3. B>Cecilia Bartoli: Farinelli Cecilia Bartoli, mezzo-soprano; Il Giardino Armonico, Giovanni Antonini, cond. Decca 4850214 (24/96 download). 2019. Arend Prohmann, prod. and editor; Philip Siney, eng. Performance: ***** Sonics: **** When I first heard mezzo-soprano Cecilia Bartoli in person some 29 years ago, at her West Coast debut in the "Cal Performances" series at Berkeley's Hertz Hall, she was just 24 years old. Along with the rest of the audience, I was astonished at her ability to ally phenomenal coloratura technique with an out-of-the-box range of expression—unheard since the prime of Maria Callas. It was clear why Decca had already signed her and released her first recording the year before, when she was just 23. Fri, 01/17/2020 View the full article
  4. We wanted à la carte television, and now we have it — and it costs more than cable. Here’s how to watch your favorite shows without overpaying for a dozen apps. View the full article
  5. Don’t let Facebook, Instagram or Twitter become negative aspects of your life. Here’s how to fix them. View the full article
  6. He originally received pushback from his employer, Xerox. But his invention eventually became nearly ubiquitous in every office and home. View the full article
  7. It's 3am. You're lying in bed. Something woke you up—you don't know what it was. You pull back the covers, get up, and tiptoe out to your listening room. There, standing by your record rack, thumbing through your prized LPs, is a man in black (no, not Johnny Cash—a different man in black). You see a bulge in his pocket; it could be a gun. Something shiny catches your eye—there's a switchblade knife between his teeth! At his feet, leaning against your record shelf, is a cudgel. Oh, and it looks like he might have some infectious disease. You, of course, are in your PJs. You notice, at the top of the stack of records that he holds under his arm, that one record, the one you love the most, the one you can't live without. Wed, 01/15/2020 View the full article
  8. My first exposure to current-mode phono preamplification was maybe a dozen years ago, when such products were new. The one I received, though nicely packaged, was not ready for prime time. I never smelled smoke, but I never heard sound, either: If it wasn't DOA, it was at a minimum DSAA—Dead Soon After Arrival. Tue, 01/14/2020 View the full article
  9. On Friday, January 17 from 5-9pm, Innovative Audio in New York City will debut the Wilson Chronosonic XVX, Wilson's flagship loudspeaker. Mon, 01/13/2020 View the full article
  10. The cab business is down 75 percent in less than a decade. The plan is to make taxis a lot more like their app-hailed rivals. View the full article
  11. In September 2019, I made an afternoon visit to National Sawdust, a vibrant, innovative performance space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to attend a demonstration of the new Constellation and Spacemap systems installed there by Meyer Sound. According to Meyer Sound designer Steve Ellison, the two systems permit control of the space's acoustics (Constellation) and empower performers and sound designers to construct a soundscape (Spacemap) in which voices, instruments, and other sounds can be located virtually anywhere within as well as beyond the confines of the performance space. Mon, 01/13/2020 View the full article
  12. At the 1992 Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Audio Research showed a line of reference products that represented the pinnacle of founder William Z. Johnson's life work as an amplifier designer. Although the all-tubed, fully balanced preamplifier and tubed monoblock power amplifiers were shown as works-in-progress, it was clear that these were products aimed at advancing the state of the amplifier art with no consideration for cost. Mon, 08/01/1994 View the full article
  13. From the front, the LS5 looks identical to Audio Research's popular LS2: two knobs on either side of the Audio Research nameplate, and a row of toggle switches along the bottom. But that's where the similarities end; the LS5 is a completely different animal from the LS2, or even the balanced LS2B. Mon, 08/01/1994 View the full article
  14. Tell me now: When you're there in the scene, watching Lord Voldemort chase Han Solo through the Cave of the Klan Bear, how often do you notice that the sounds you're experiencing are being pumped at you from five black-painted room boundaries, while the flickering-light images approach from only one? Moreover, in a parallel, more quotidian reality, you're sitting upright in your seat, noisily chomping popcorn while absorbing—and processing—massive amounts of sensory data: Did you ever consider the sensual, mechanical, and psychological complexity of a moment like this, and how fundamentally unnatural it is? Wed, 01/08/2020 View the full article
  15. Sales doubled in 2019, but the industry’s tipping point — severing ties to the gas pump — still lies ahead. These cars will help make that happen. View the full article
  16. Of the celebrated triumvirate of John Scofield, Pat Metheny, and Bill Frisell—the most original and influential jazz guitarists of the past 50 years—none is more distinctive, or self-effacing, than Frisell, a true changeling of the guitar. Frisell is a jazz-based musician, but his music crisscrosses genres, and his guitar playing isn't bound to or limited by a specific technique. He's a master illusionist, able to alter a song's meaning far beyond its original intent with the aid of a Telecaster guitar, a modest effects chain, and, most importantly, his rich imagination. Tue, 01/07/2020 View the full article
  17. When I performed the measurements of the Q Acoustics Concept 500 loudspeaker to accompany Thomas J. Norton's review in March 2019, I was impressed by what I found. The floorstanding Concept 500 offers a high level of audio engineering excellence for its price of $5999.99/pair. When I attended a Q Acoustics press briefing a few months back, where the English company announced the US availability of their stand-mounted Concept 300, I didn't hesitate to ask for a pair to review. Fri, 01/03/2020 View the full article
  18. From a killer fly swatter to a family-worthy cargo bike, these are the things we bought this year that made our lives easier and a lot more fun. View the full article
  19. They’re poorly constructed and easily confused — but mine is the only gadget I can trust. View the full article
  20. It depends on many factors, including what you even mean by “screen time.” View the full article
  21. Ride-on vehicles like cars, trucks and the occasional front-loader captivate children and offer the big carmakers a marketing opportunity. View the full article
  22. Smartphones are more expensive than ever, but we still don’t keep them very long. Here’s why, and what you can do to extend their life. View the full article
  23. One measure of a high-end product designer's talent is the musical success of his top-of-the-line product. This is his statement to the world of what he can accomplish—a kind of "personal best" that defines the upper limits of his talent. Because he knows of no way to make the product better, the component stands as the ultimate testimonial to his skill. Fri, 04/01/1994 View the full article
  24. While it can't exactly be said that the folks from The Mod Squad invented the game of audiophile modifications of existing, current-production hardware, they certainly have grown to be one of the major leaguers. Their mods have a reputation for being well-thought-out, nearly always offering improvements over the originals. And while they weren't the originators of the concept, any company which brought the world Tiptoes (probably their most famous product) will probably have a niche in the 21st-Century Museum of High-End Audio. Sun, 05/01/1988 View the full article
  25. After talking with a number of exhibitors and attendees, I’d have to call the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest’s daring move to a new and very different venue—a controversial if also inevitable move—a success. Everyone I spoke to was happy with attendance, and the sound in the hotel rooms was generally excellent. Tue, 09/10/2019 View the full article
  26. Ray Kimber of Kimber Kable was in “You gotta” mode. After he told me that WBT, the 34-year-old German company that supplies connectors and cable terminations to hundreds of manufacturers worldwide, had a new, environmentally friendly facing process that made for better sound, I arranged to meet with WBT founder and CEO Wolfgang Thoerner on Sunday morning to discuss their new "WBT-PlasmaProtect" PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) plasma process. Tue, 09/10/2019 View the full article
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