There's no better symbol of high fidelity than the electrostatic loudspeaker. Pushing air with a gossamer thin Mylar film driven by electrostatic forces has got to be the most immediately and obviously evocative way of generating sound. It is something we can all understand is truly esoteric – and Quad produced one of the first domestic electrostatic loudspeakers in 1957. The world has been trying to beat them at it ever since, but none have managed to pull ahead convincingly. When Quad announced two new models recently we immediately lined up a review of the most affordable ESL-2812 and you can read about it in this issue on page 12.
Serendipity brought us an astonishing top quality, battery powered high resolution music player to play through the Quads, the Astell & Kern AK100. Ours flew in from Korea (as it were!) set up in Korean. I puzzled as to which bit of Korean I must select to get English up on screen. After a lot of menu searching and a few little expletives there was light through the darkness of my misunderstanding and I was off. What was immediately apparent was its superb sound. Peter
Comeau, chief acoustics engineer of the IAG Group, and Quad designer, dropped in from China and was suitably impressed to hear Mastering Quality music files played through the Quad ESL-2812 electrostatics. What a glorious demo of where high fidelity is going!
We all thought SACD was dead didn't we? Oh enthusiasts of little faith; we thought the same about the LP too. Shame. Silver discs may be on their last legs, perhaps dragged down by a lingering sense of being inferior, but high quality digital seems peculiarly tenacious in its ability to retain fans. DSD digital lives on and may be winging its way to you in due course, over fibre optic and copper cables, as a download. See what we have to say about DSD on page 49.
The world of high quality audio is moving on at a cracking pace as we swing into 2013 – and you'll find plenty of it here in the latest issue of
Hi-Fi World. I hope you enjoy it. You can tell me personally at the Bristol Sound & Vision Show, in Bristol, February 22nd through 24th.We are on Stand 4A. I hope to see you there.
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