Aaron Clinton

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Everything posted by Aaron Clinton

  1. Achieving room-filling, high-quality sound in a hotel room is difficult enough. Getting it in a cavernous ballroom is even more problematic. Yet, over the past few years at AXPONA, RMAF, and most recently at the February 2020 FLAX (Florida Audio Expo), Von Schweikert Audio, in association with The Audio Company of Marietta, Georgia, has managed that—and, other than the approximately 100 bodies occupying every seat in the house, they've done it without any room treatment, or without any that I could see. Fri, 06/19/2020 View the full article
  2. When the original video game was transcendental, can a sequel top it? Two Times reporters debate the answer. View the full article
  3. EOB (Ed O'Brien): Earth Capitol (24/88.2 streaming). 2020. Flood and Catherine Marks, prods.; Alan Moulder, Stephen Marcussen, engs. Performance **** Sonics **** Calling himself EOB, songwriter/singer/guitarist Ed O'Brien has released his first solo album after 35 years with Radiohead. Over the decades, bandmates have branched out for high-profile projects—Jonny Greenwood writes film scores and Thom Yorke has several solo recordings—but O'Brien has stayed mostly in the background. Earth pushes him to the forefront, revealing a knack for collaborative creativity. Thu, 06/18/2020 View the full article
  4. Photo: Sasha Matson In April 14, 1895, Mahler's Symphony No.2, "Resurrection," premiered in Berlin (footnote 1). Mahler wrote a program for this symphony prior to a performance six years later, in Dresden. Here is what he wrote about the first movement, Allegro maestoso: "We are standing near the grave of a well-loved man. His whole life, his struggles, his sufferings and his accomplishments on earth pass before us. And now, in this solemn and deeply stirring moment, when the confusion and distractions of everyday life are lifted like a hood from our eyes, a voice of awe-inspiring solemnity chills our heart, a voice that, blinded by the mirage of everyday life, we usually ignore: 'What next?' it says. 'What is life and what is death? Will we live on eternally? Is it all an empty dream or do our life and death have meaning?'" Wed, 06/17/2020 View the full article
  5. Photo: Sasha Matson I met Art Dudley twice, and in both instances, he was exceedingly humble and gracious with his time. The first time, I thanked him for hosting the Virtues of Vintage panel at DC's Capital Audiofest, just moments after he was verbally accosted by an unwell man seated in front of me—something about audio-journalism lingo and abstract phrases like "midrange bloom." Tue, 06/16/2020 View the full article
  6. Testing the RF transmission of Kimber Kable, up to 3GHz, at Ben Duncan Research Labs, in 2008. The resulting proof of RF rejection was published on-line by Russ Andrews Accessories in England. (Photo: Naomi Swain). Editor's Preface: In an article in the October 1995 issue of Stereophile, Professor Malcolm Omar Hawksford used Maxwell's Equations to develop a mathematical model describing the behavior of cables at audio frequencies. Among the predictions of this model were that for good conductors there exists an optimum size of wire for audio signal transmission, and that for a wire larger than this size an energy storage mechanism would exist. In his article Malcolm described a simple experiment, the results of which appeared to confirm his hypothesis. Then serendipity struck. English engineer Ben Duncan, whose writings have occasionally appeared in Stereophile, sent me an article he had written for the pro-audio magazine Studio Sound. The results of a series of cable measurements he had performed seemed to confirm the Hawksford Hypothesis. We offer them here for your delight and delectation.—John Atkinson Fri, 12/01/1995 View the full article
  7. The Aleph Null, or 0, represents Nelson Pass's maiden product under the Pass Laboratories banner. When he left Threshold several years ago, Pass had the luxury of starting over with a clean slate, and decided immediately that he wanted to design a single-ended MOSFET amp. The result is aptly named after Georg Cantor's first transfinite number: Aleph Null, the gateway to higher-order infinities. Just as Cantor's transfinite mathematics stretched minds with its novel conceptual view of the infinite, the Pass Aleph 0 tantalizes the imagination with a new dimension in the future of solid-state amplification: a single-ended output stage. Wed, 03/01/1995 View the full article
  8. The VPI Magic Brick is an 8lb block of steel laminations, about 5" by 3" by 2", encased in a nicely-finished oak box for aesthetic appeal and for protecting whatever the brick is sitting on from scratches. Placing the Brick over the power transformer of a piece of electronic gear is supposed to improve the sound of your stereo system. Sat, 05/01/1982 View the full article
  9. Online financial service companies are filling a gap, especially as companies have altered how they work. View the full article
  10. Almost a dead-ringer for the early-model Sharpe HA-10, Koss's PRO-4 ($45) is readily distinguishable by a large knurled protuberance sticking out of the lower part of the right-hand phone. This, in case you've wondered, is a mounting for a "boom-type" lip microphone, for use in speech labs and for communication purposes. (Sharpe and Permoflux also provide facilities for attaching a lip-mike.) Sun, 12/01/1963 View the full article
  11. This is the fourth year Stereophile has named a select few components as "Products of the Year." By doing so, we intend to give recognition to those components that have proved capable of giving pleasure beyond the formal review period. Fri, 12/01/1995 View the full article
  12. The Talisman S represented, ca 1983, the top of Sumiko's moving-coil cartridge line and shared its design philosophy and external appearance with the Talisman A and B, the remaining two cartridges in the Talisman family before the introduction of the Virtuoso line. The three differed only in cantilever material and stylus shape. The A, the least expensive, had an aluminum alloy cantilever and an elliptical diamond stylus. Sat, 07/01/1989 View the full article
  13. Lots of new app ideas are emerging to track Covid-19, but each has issues around privacy, location accuracy and how much appeal it will have to the public and to health officials. View the full article
  14. During the years I lived in New York City and environs, I never learned my way around Brooklyn—something I now regret, given that borough's emergence as a hotbed of audio creativity: our industry's Laurel Canyon, so to speak. Such gone-but-not-forgotten brands as Futterman and Fi were manufactured there, and today Brooklyn is home to DeVore Fidelity, Lamm Industries, Mytek Digital, Grado Labs, Ohm Acoustics, and Oswalds Mill Audio. Fri, 05/29/2020 View the full article
  15. "What happens in college stays in college" might be the best policy for most undergrad-formed bands, but Snarky Puppy is an exception to that rule (and a number of others). Bassist/composer Michael League found fertile musical ground in the jazz studies program at the University of North Texas when he formed Snarky Puppy in 2003. Thu, 05/28/2020 View the full article
  16. Almost 35 million people have HBO. But not all of them can get HBO Max. Here’s what you need to know. View the full article
  17. Designing Audio Power Amplifiers, Second Edition, by Bob Cordell, Routledge/Focal Press, 2019. 776pp. $160.00, hard cover; $97.95, paperback. I first met Bob Cordell at clinics he gave at the last audio show Stereophile organized, Home Entertainment 2007, in Manhattan. At those clinics, Bob shared his views on why amplifier measurements are not always good at predicting differences in sound quality. So when I was scheduled to host a seminar—"Amplifiers: Do Measurements Matter?"—at this year's now-canceled AXPONA, Cordell was on the short list of designers I felt would offer valuable insight. Wed, 05/27/2020 View the full article
  18. AT&T’s streaming platform goes live on Wednesday. At $15 a month, it’s more expensive than its rivals and comes at a time when household income is dropping. View the full article
  19. I loved New Orleans music before I even knew what it was. In the mid-1960s, I went to high school in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, which back then was a bleak, On the Waterfront landscape of dock workers and drifters hanging out in the pool halls along Bedford Avenue. We were warned to watch out on our way to track practice at nearby McCarren Park, because the pool halls were violent and confrontations often spilled out onto the street. Tue, 05/26/2020 View the full article
  20. What to do with a business that involves close physical contact with clients? Innovate and, if you’re lucky, grow — but at a distance. View the full article
  21. Soon after I took over preparing Stereophile's biannual Recommended Components listing from the magazine's founder, J. Gordon Holt, in 1986, I ran into a problem. With so many products listed, the magazine was running out of the necessary pages to include them all. To solve this problem, I looked at how long a typical product remained on the market before being updated or replaced. The answer was 3–4 years. I therefore implemented a policy that unless one of the magazine's editors or reviewers had continued experience with a product, it would be dropped from Recommended Components after three years. Fri, 05/22/2020 View the full article
  22. Reviewing a new loudspeaker from Totem feels like destiny—as if a formative moment 30 years ago has come full circle. That's because the first genuine audiophile speaker I ever owned was Totem's now-iconic Model 1, a product whose arrival altered many audiophiles' expectations of how much great—and wide-range—sound a small speaker can deliver. It's still being made today, at least in spirit. Thu, 05/21/2020 View the full article
  23. I'm not in perfect agreement with my colleagues and friends who believe that RCA's Living Stereo LPs from the late 1950s and '60s are the best-sounding commercial classical recordings ever made. To me, the Decca SXL catalog outshines them sonically, in addition to showcasing the talents of an even greater roster of artists. But that's not to say I'm immune to their charms. The RCA catalog contains some real gems. Wed, 05/20/2020 View the full article
  24. Finally—a way to get a handle on the sound of Aavik Acoustics electronics. I'd heard the Danish-made components many times at shows, but always in the context of Ansuz Acoustics cables and Børresen Acoustics loudspeakers. As much as the threesome was inevitable—all three companies are owned by Michael Børresen, Lars Kristensen, and a third shareholder—there was no way to determine the unique sound of each component in the mix. Tue, 05/19/2020 View the full article
  25. Denver’s Rocky Mountain Audio Fest (RMAF) has canceled its 2020 show. Tue, 05/19/2020 View the full article