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  1. Last week
  2. Have you checked out some multi room amps on
  3. I need some advice on how to proceed with a DAC streaming upgrade for my existing 2-channel audio. Current system is Harmon Pardon Signature power and pre-amps, Warfdale Reva bookshelf speakers and a refurbished Dual 1228 turntable with a Shure V15III and a Jico hyperelliptical stylus. I'd like to enable high quality streaming for this syste. I am considering the Bluesound Node2i and the new Denon DNP800ne. Any comments on these network streamers? Am I missing other competitors in this price range? Also, would I be better off retiring the Harmon Kardons and replacing them with an integrated amp that has a good DAC and streaming capabilities? I'm thinking of the new SVS Prime Wireless Soundbase. I'm sure there are several good alternatives to that choice, too. Comments and opinions would be greatly appreciated. View the full article
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  5. Thursday November 1, 6–9pm, Atlanta specialty audio retailer HiFi Buys Atlanta (3157 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta, GA) will have an open house featuring special guest Richard Vandersteen, founder and head engineer of Vandersteen Audio. Richard, along with global sales manager Brad O’Toole, will demonstrate the System 9 (above), featuring the new Sub Nine subwoofers and System 9 granite bases, the Quatro Wood CT loudspeakers with the new M5-HPA high-pass amplifiers, and the new Sub Three adjustable subwoofer with the Treo CT loudspeakers. Wed, 10/31/2018 View the full article
  6. To celebrate its fifth birthday, Southern California retailer Audio Element (117 East Union Street, Pasadena, CA 91103) is having an open house on Saturday, November 3, from 11am–4pm. Featured will be new products from dCS (the Bartók D/A headphone amplifier), Musical Surroundings (the Nova III phono preamplifier and Hana ML phono cartridge), and Wilson Audio (the Sasha DAW loudspeaker). Wed, 10/31/2018 View the full article
  7. I have flip-flopped between these points of view: that some audio products or technologies are better suited than others to specific styles of music, and that any good product or technology should be equally at home with rock'n'roll, chamber music, large-scale classical, hard bop, techno, ragas—even George Crumb. At age 19, in my first job as a hi-fi salesman, I was asked to adopt the first of those views. The shop I worked in carried only two loudspeaker lines—EPI and Ultralinear, both long gone—and the owner urged me to push the former on lovers of classical music, and the latter on rock fans. So I did. To paraphrase Jiang Qing, I was the shopkeeper's dog: What he said to bite, I bit. Tue, 10/30/2018 View the full article
  8. J.S. Bach: Six Suites for Viola Solo, BWV 1007–1012 Kim Kashkashian, four- & five-string violas ECM New Series 2553/54 (2 CDs). 2018. Manfred Eicher, prod.; Judy Sherman, eng. DDD. TT: 2:22:35 Performance ****½ Sonics ***** Little is known of the origins of the Solo Suites, usually performed on the cello. No manuscript in Bach's hand survives, and in the copy produced by his second wife, Anna Magdalena, markings for slurs, articulation, and dynamics are sparse even by baroque standards. The suites may actually have been composed for the violoncello da spalla, an instrument smaller than the cello but larger than the viola, and played while held on the shoulder (some modern players use a neckstrap). But what are problems for the musicologist present a world of latitude to the interpreter, in this case master violist Kim Kashkashian, who takes full advantage of them. Tue, 10/30/2018 View the full article
  9. The still youthful Danish String Quartet, whose 2016 release on ECM New Series inspired this glowing review in Stereophile, has returned with another hi-rez recording, Prism I (ECM New Series 2561), the first in a projected series of recordings for ECM New Series that will place one of Beethoven's late string quartets in the context of a related fugue by J.S. Bach and another linked quartet. Mon, 10/29/2018 View the full article
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  11. I've never aspired to owning a BMW 7-series, or a Martin D-45, or a Rolex Submariner: BMW's far less expensive 3-series models capture my imagination by bordering on the affordable, likewise Martin's D-18—and as long as I live, I'll never understand the appeal of expensive wristwatches. Bling's not my thing. True to form, when I visited the Mytek display at High End 2018, in Munich, my attention was drawn to the brand-new Mytek Liberty DAC and its three-figure price: for $995, one could now own the equivalent of the original Mytek Brooklyn D/A processor, without that model's phono preamp—this according to the company's Adam Bielewicz, who served as my product-line guide on that sunny May day. Thu, 10/25/2018 View the full article
  12. "Any color, so long as it's black." That was the choice famously offered by Henry Ford to buyers of his Model T. Some makers of loudspeakers, notably GoldenEar Technology, follow the same dictum. Not Focal. The Kanta No.2 ($9999/pair) is available with a cabinet finished in High Black Lacquer or Walnut veneer, with baffles finished in a variety of colors, including High Glass Carrara White and Gauloise Blue. The review samples had black cabinets and white baffles, which made me think of the two-tone cars that were the rage in the 1950s and '60s—and which may be coming back. Thu, 10/25/2018 View the full article
  13. Like the title says, that is the idea. Firstly I would like to know if is good or bad? secondly this is the equipment I have at hand: 1 set of mids and highs: Illusion Audio Carbon C6 1 pair of subs: Illusion Audio Carbon C12xl 1 processor (if needed): Alpine PXA-H800 and controller 1 six channel amp: MMATS HiFi 6150d As the source I could use my PS4 via my TV which has RCA and optical out, both of which I could use with the processor. I have a hard drive with uncompressed music attached to it. What I need is a power source to power the electronics and enclosures for the speakers. I am somewhat well versed with REW and I have an RTA mic. I am all ears as to I am a bit unsure on how to proceed or if I should proceed at all. View the full article
  14. I haven't been able to find a review and I was wondering since I have the M100s View the full article
  15. Doshi Audio first crossed my radar at the 2010 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, where I wrote that the sound of the company's tubed monoblocks and preamp, connected to Wilson Audio Sasha loudspeakers via Transparent XL cables, "excelled in midrange strength as the system threw an exciting soundstage." After auditions of Doshi-Wilson pairings at many subsequent shows had convinced me that Doshi's products could truly sing, I contacted company owner and product designer Nishith "Nick" Doshi to inquire about reviewing one of his amps. Tue, 10/23/2018 View the full article
  16. The original PS Audio Sprout, which I reviewed in the May 2015 issue, showed newcomers an easier, smaller way to amplify music recordings in the home. At $599, the Sprout100 costs $100 more. It fixes a few of the old Sprout's weirdnesses: no power-on indicator light, no remote control, five-way binding posts that weren't really five-way. It also doubles the Sprout's class-D power output into 4 ohms, from 50 to 100Wpc (or 50Wpc into 8 ohms), and adds a few sonic and mechanical enhancements. Tue, 10/23/2018 View the full article
  17. Borrowing a page from the Montreal show—and, before that, from the shows sponsored by Stereophile—Toronto Audiofest presented some live performances of music. One of the performers was the gifted cellist, Vincent Bélanger—see photo above—familiar to audiophiles from his recordings and appearances at audio shows. Tue, 10/23/2018 View the full article
  18. Hi, I have an Onkyo HT-S7800 and i would like to replace my existing center speaker with Klipsch RP-250C. Is it compatible with my existing system? Is Klipsch RP-250C worth the upgrade from my existing center speaker? Thanks in advance View the full article
  19. My HT setup is 5.1 My sitting room is 14LX12Bx8H (normal English home). I have 2XIMF TLS 80 Transmission Line Speakers ( about 1976), Onkyo TX-NR609 Receiver, small 1XYamaha Front and 2Xsmall Yamaha Rear speakers. I have a small Yamaha Sub but I do not use it. Reading the thread, center speaker should be matched with the 2 front speakers. I feel my center is ok but not as good as I would like it to be. How do I go about finding a center speaker that will match with the fronts with spec as this:STUDIO TLS 80 Dimensions Free Standing with Plinth; 38 1/2" x 16" x 18" wide Drive Units Bass unit 11 3/4" x 8 1/4" flat polystyrene diaphragm loaded by transmission line mid range unit 6" plastic cone containing in separate line tweeter 1 3/4 " diaphragm 3/4" chemical dome super-tweeter Crossover Electrical four way at 375 Hz , 3.5 kHz and 15 Khz Frequency Range 20 Hz to beyong audibility Matching Impedence 4 - 8 ohms (see graph) Efficiency Measured via Pink Noise at 1 metre on axis for 40 watts 96dB Driving Power Requirements 40 - 80 watts I would be grateful for any suggestions. Regards 2Ch Good Music Fight Loudness War. Preserve Dynamic Range. William View the full article
  20. Although most rooms I visited at the end of RMAF 2018 offered fine sound, I single out the new Dragonfire Acoustics Mini Dragon self-powered desktop system ($10,000 total) for two reasons: a) its designer, Dragoslav Colich (aka Dr. C), who continues to design every Audeze headphone, calls these first desktop planar speakers from his new company his "life achievement…the finest transducer I have built," and, b) they sound fantastic. Thu, 10/11/2018 View the full article
  21. Here's a switch: Instead of a million-dollar system, we begin with a bargain-priced powered-speaker system, the Vanatoo Transparent One Encore ($599/pair). Designed near me, in Seattle, and manufactured in China, this successor to Vanatoo's original model, which was released six years ago, has a new 1" aluminum dome tweeter, more powerful 100W, four-channel amplifier with "much better" DSP-based L/R crossover, remote control, Bluetooth with aptX, and four more "automatically sensed" inputs for analog, USB, Toslink optical, and coaxial digital, the last three accepting up to 24/96 but downsampling to 24/48. Thu, 10/11/2018 View the full article
  22. In the Musical Surroundings room I discovered a once-in-a-lifetime coincidence: a system that contained four products that were reviewed or used in reviews in the October 2018 Stereophile, plus a somewhat more expensive sister of one of the two products that appeared on the cover: Audio Research Ref 160M mono amplifiers ($30,000/pair) and Reference 6 line stage ($14,000), Sonus Faber Aida loudspeakers ($130,000/pair), DS Audio Master1 optical phono cartridge and EQ ($22,500), and Hana ML MC cartridge ($1200). Wed, 10/10/2018 View the full article
  23. I almost missed the huge EMM Labs exhibit on the ground floor until John Atkinson told me that he had visited it, and the sound was exceptional. Don't quote me on the adjective, please. Instead, I'll own it for myself. When a system makes a recording of a 9' concert grand—in this case, Murray Perahia's instrument—sounds like it really is a 9' grand, color me very, very impressed. As one should be, given a system price tag of near $1,000,000. Wed, 10/10/2018 View the full article
  24. That title will surely get a rise out of some folks! Be that as it may, the aforementioned company ran two MQA Live events at RMAF, during which high-resolution (24/192) MQA streams of live jazz ensembles were streamed in real time to various rooms at the show. MQA claims that the streams were essentially analog to analog, right off the desk. Wed, 10/10/2018 View the full article
  25. A few hours before Friday evening's Rocky Mountain International HiFi Press Awards 2018 got underway, Jeremy Bryan of MBL North America once again blew me away with the sound of his company's system. Capped by the mbl 101 E MKII Radialstrahler four-way omnidirectional loudspeaker ($70,500/pair), the combination of Wireworld cabling with mbl's N31 DAC–CD player ($15,400), N11 stereo preamplifier ($14,600), and two N15 mono power amplifiers ($17,800/each) created an extremely wide, solid, and deep soundstage in which music flowed naturally and with great beauty. Mon, 10/08/2018 View the full article
  26. The large, superb-sounding system in the High Fidelity Services room left me deeply impressed. The system was headlined by the debut of the Verity Audio Monsalvat speaker system with its included Pro-6 six-channel crossover ($675,000 total) and three of Verity Audio's Monsalvat Amp-60 stereo amps ($58,000/each). Together with a TW-Acustic Raven phono preamplifier ($18,000), TW-Acustic Raven Black Knight turntable ($42,000) with debut Raven 12 and 10.5 tonearms ($11,500 total) and debut Ortofon MC Century cartridge ($12,000), Melco N1ZH MK1 music server ($4995), debut Signal Projects cables, Vibex power distribution, debut CAD GC-1 ground control unit, debut Symposium Pro amp stand, Vibex isolation feet, and SRA rack, the system cost a mere $1,115,405. Note that it was not the only system at RMAF in this price range. Sun, 10/07/2018 View the full article
  27. The RMAF T-Shirt Award of 2018 goes to Denver's own Chris Hoffman, whom I spied on the ground floor of the Denver Marriott Tech Center. "I'd been threatening to make this T-shirt for a couple of years," he confessed after being caught in the act. Sat, 10/06/2018 View the full article
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