In this issue we dare mention the unmentionable: networking! As in computers. As in headache. But network engineer and hi-fi enthusiast Jim Roberts has kept much of his look at wired and wireless networks remarkably simple, without losing useful detail. We don't get into IP addresses, router client lists and such like and perhaps we need to, but I feel Jim's unravelling of basic functionalities, identifying the role of a Router, Switch and Access point for example, is illuminating in a subject that is heavy going wherever you read about it. I did not realise that my own run of cables, switches and Wi-Fi transmitter at home constitutes a star network, but Jim's piece on page 36 clarified its structure and I hope you find it similarly useful. OK, it's computers, but these days they're intertwined with audio and Jim adds in plenty of audio-only specialist knowledge you won't come across in computer magazines.
Seemingly a million miles away as a subject, and almost as far geographically, is our look this month at the massive Wharfedale Airedale Classic loudspeaker, designed and built in China. Many readers will know that Peter Comeau, designer of the Airedale, used to write detailed articles on loudspeaker design for this magazine, and even ran World
Design, before he was made a great offer to live and work in Shenzhen, just north of Hong Kong. Knowing Peter well and having worked with him and visited the IAG factory, it was natural that he should ask us to cover this unusual model. Our review doesn't take the usual form, because carriage was impossible, but the story on page 10 is an interesting one all the same I believe.
Did I enjoy visiting Manchester in the winter? Er, no. Standing on Euston station at 5 a.m. in the bitter cold wasn't nice, standing on Crewe station for a connecting train at 8 a.m. was no nicer – then it was cancelled! But I arrived at the show by 11 a.m. and it was superb – see page 66. Manchester Shows are always friendly and relaxed and there were some interesting new products, mainly from UK manufacturers, many of them based 'up north'. It hasn't all gone to China yet!
I hope you enjoy this issue of Hi-Fi World. There's still a lot happening in the world of audio and high fidelity and we bring it to you.
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