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07 / 01 / 16
Enjoy the Music.com's
July Review Magazine Is Now Available
Music.com brings on heat within the July issue of our Review
Magazine. We have two hot World Premiere audiophile reviews
plus just published this week's most talked about study "A Meta-Analysis Of High Resolution Audio Perceptual Evaluation
by Joshua Reissa of Queen Mary University of London (QMUL). Joshua finds
that Hi-Res Audio can be heard and proves it within this not-to-be-missed
study. We've also just completed our coverage of T.H.E.
Show Newport with over 25 pages of great audiophile gear! Please keep in mind not all articles and reviews appear
below, so be sure to see our
Review Magazine's main homepage to access them all.
T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 Report
The Home Entertainment Show Newport 2016
HIGH END 2016 Munich Audiophile Show Report
A Fantastic Opportunity!
Working together brings high-end audio more presence.
Editorial By Steven R. Rochlin
It's All Good
Roger Skoff writes about the state of our hobby, and is well pleased.
Article By Roger Skoff
A Meta-Analysis Of High Resolution Audio Perceptual Evaluation
Article By Joshua Reiss
Westlake Audio Tower 5 Loudspeakers
I say go for it!
Review By Tom Lyle
Gryphon Audio Designs Kalliope DAC
A cost-no-object 32-bit/384kHz & DSD512 DAC for those who desire the very best.
Review By Steven R. Rochlin
Audiosmile LBM - Little British Monitor
A considerable upgrade for desktop speakers that packs a punch!
Review By Christopher Tan
Charisma Audio 103 $750 Phono Cartridge
So affordable that you won't cry when wearing it out.
Review By Rick Becker
Hegel HD30 32-bit/192kHz DAC
A truly exceptional DAC!
Review And Images By Greg Weaver
<<< REWIND <<<
McIntosh MC75 Monoblock Tube Amp & C22 Tube Pre
McIntosh's latest re-introduction of their classic audio components.
Review By Anthony Nicosia
06 / 30 / 16
Latest Magazine Issue Is Now Available
Enjoy the Music.com has just posted the
July / August 2016 issue of Australian
Hi-Fi magazine! This issue includes how Munich's HIGH END show has taken over from Las Vegas' CES as the most important event on the audio
calendar. Audiophile equipment reviews include the Yamaha CD-S3000 SACD player, Krix Neuphonix MkII loudspeakers, Einstein 'The Tune' integrated amplifier, Meridian Explorer2 DAC, Bryston 14B3 power amplifier, JBL Studio 530 loudspeakers, and Stax RS-L700
earspeakers. Within his editorial titled 'Crowd-Funded Hi-Fi: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?',
Greg Borrowman says , "It costs a lot of money to get an electronic hi-fi product to market. So much money that in the past only very large companies or very dedicated individuals were able to manage it. These days, thanks to the modern miracle that is crowd-funding, anyone can raise the money to build a product, often within only a few days. No more need for expensive bank loans or pesky shareholders or worse, demanding business partners: Just crowd-fund it. That's what a company called Kreyos did when it thought a waterproof, voice-activated smart watch would be a good idea. Lots of ordinary people also thought it would be a good idea too, and quickly contributed $US1.5 million (using the Indiegogo platform) towards building that watch. But when the company finally delivered the watch to its backers ('way beyond the promised deadline, by the way) it was not the watch it had promised to those people who had paid their money. The final product was not waterproof, lacked support for either Google Now or SIRI, and did not have the promised voice control for emails, messages and making calls."
See what's within this issue of Australian
Hi-Fi at this
Industry News 15 Years Ago
61% Of 18 to 24 Year Old Internet Users Have Downloaded Music
According to the company Ipsos-Reid, who has over 20 years in surveys and logging public opinions and habits, 51% of Internet users aged 18 to 34 in 30 countries have enjoyed downloaded music from the Internet. While college students seem to be quickly embracing music from the Internet, approximately 61% of Internet users aged 18 to 24 had downloaded music by 2001 as opposed to "only" 53% by 2000. As for other age groups, 29% of Internet users aged 35 to 54 have downloaded music while 16% of Internet users over age 55 have enjoyed music from the Internet. This all adds up to 38% of all Internet users within this 30 country study have downloaded music.
06 / 29 / 16
Newport 2016 Report
Critical Mass Systems,
Constellation, J-Corder, AudioQuest, MasterBuilt Audio And Von Schweikert Audio
ModWright Instruments, Daedalus Audio, WyWires And GIK Acoustics
Audioengine W3 Wireless System And HD6 Powered Speakers
Zu Audio Druid MK. V, Modern Console No. 1, And
Zu Audio DL-103 Cartridge
Valve Amplification Company (VAC) And Nola Brio Speakers
McIntosh Labs C2600 Tube Pre, MP100 Phono
& MVP901 Player/DAC
McIntosh Labs, has just
announced their new C2600 Vacuum Tube Preamplifier, the MP100 Phono Preamplifier and the MVP901 Audio Video Player ($7000,
$2000 and $5500 respectively). Building upon the C2300 and C2500 two of the most successful McIntosh vacuum tube preamplifiers is the C2600 that incorporates the best of the previous models while adding McIntosh Labs' advanced digital audio section and upgraded tube circuitry design. The C2600 is a versatile preamplifier with an expansive set of 16 inputs to connect virtually all analog or digital music sources. Analog inputs include 3 balanced, 4 unbalanced plus 1 each dedicated Moving Magnet and Moving Coil phono inputs. Digital inputs consist of 3 optical, 2 coax, 1 USB and 1 McIntosh exclusive MCT connection. Three sets of balanced and unbalanced analog outputs connect the C2600 to the rest of the system. The C2600 features a 32-bit/384kHz, DSD digital-to-analog-converter (DAC) and is capable of decoding and playing DSD64, DSD128 and DSD256 plus DXD 352.8kHz and DXD 384kHz. For headphone listening, the addition of Headphone Crossfeed Director (HXD) brings an added dimension to the music. Home Theater Pass Thru allows for seamless integration into a multi-channel home theater system. The MP100 is the first dedicated phono preamplifier from McIntosh and is designed to help both new and experienced vinyl lovers get the most fidelity, performance and most importantly enjoyment from their albums. Like all McIntosh products, the MP100 is packed with features designed specifically for the vinyl lover including: Moving Coil and Moving Magnet inputs; Moving Coil and Moving Magnet adjustable loading (6 settings each); balanced and unbalanced analog outputs; optical, coax and USB digital outputs; and a Mono switch for when playing mono records to decrease noise and play the signal correctly. When used with a properly configured conversion program, the MP100 can
"rip" the records to a computer via USB to produce high quality digital files. The digital outputs are fixed to 24-bit/96kHz to capture the full dynamic range of a record while optimizing digital file size. If an album has a very loud section, the digital output clipping protection prevents harsh sounding and speaker damaging distortion from being recorded to the file. Compact in size at just 3" tall, it shares the same 11.5" narrow chassis design as the MXA70 Integrated Audio System, MHA100 Headphone Amp and MB50 Streaming Audio Player. McIntosh Labs' MVP901 Audio Video Player can be an integral part of any home theater system. With its ability to upsample 1080P and lower resolutions to 4K Ultra HD, it can breathe new life into a vast movie library and is a perfect complement to the 4K compatible McIntosh MX122 or MX160 home theater processor. Built in decoding of Dolby True HD and DTS-HD Master Audio will put the viewer in the center of the action. The MVP901 can also pass the latest object-based 3D audio formats such as Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and Auro-3D to the compatible processor for truly encompassing surround sound. CDs, SACDs and DVD-Audio discs can be enjoyed via an 8-channel, 32-bit/192kHz DAC that's used in stereo quad balanced mode to produce high fidelity audio. The HDMI output can be used for multi-channel music playback. Three USB ports allow playback of audio and video files from flash drives. Network streaming and BD-Live is available through the
Queen Mary University Study:
People Can Hear Difference In Hi-Res Audio
Queen Mary University of London
(QMUL) has released an article about their study that shows, scientifically, that people can hear the difference in high resolution audio. "Listeners can hear a difference between standard audio and better than CD quality, known as high resolution audio, according to a new study from Queen Mary University of London. The study compared data from over 12,000 different trials from 18 studies where participants were asked to discriminate between samples of music in different formats. Dr Joshua Reiss from
QMUL's Centre for Digital Music in the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science said:
"Audio purists and industry should welcome these findings our study finds high resolution audio has a small but important advantage in its quality of reproduction over standard audio
content." Many in the music industry have been split as to whether people can really hear a difference between CD quality music and high resolution audio even celebrity musicians have entered the fray with new music streaming services: Tidal launched by Jay-Z and Pono players and music service spearheaded by Neil Young and crowd funded through a Kickstarter campaign. Both streaming services launched in the last two years have been met with scepticism. However, this new study found that listeners can tell the difference between low and high resolution audio formats, and the effect is dramatically increased with training: trained test subjects could distinguish between the formats around sixty per cent of the time. Writing in the Journal of the Audio Engineering Society, the research suggested that careful selection of stimuli, such as using long samples of more than 30 seconds, may play an important role in the ability to discriminate between the formats. Dr Reiss explained:
"One motivation for this research was that people in the audio community endlessly discuss whether the use of high resolution formats and equipment really make a difference. Conventional wisdom states that CD quality should be sufficient to capture everything we hear, yet anecdotes abound where individuals claim that hi-res content sounds crisper, or more intense. And people often cherry-pick their favourite study to support whichever side
they're on. "Our study is the first attempt to have a thorough and impartial look at whether high res audio can be heard. We gathered 80 publications, and analysed all available data, even asking authors of earlier studies for their original reports from old filing cabinets. We subjected the data to many forms of analysis. The effect was clear, and there were some indicators as to what conditions demonstrate it most effectively. Hopefully, we can now move forward towards identifying how and why we perceive these
differences." The samples analysed were mainly classical and jazz music, though
it's not clear for which type of music high resolution recording and playback made the biggest difference. 'A meta-analysis of high resolution audio perceptual evaluation' by Joshua D. Reiss will be published in the June issue of Journal of the Audio Engineering Society."
the Music.com has published A Meta-Analysis Of High Resolution Audio Perceptual Evaluation
at this link.
06 / 28 / 16
Hi-Fi World's August 2016
Issue Features Reviews And T.H.E. Show
Enjoy the Music.com has just posted the
August 2016 issue of Hi-Fi World magazine! This issue
features T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 report by Noel Keywood heads to California to bring you all the latest equipment from Newport's high-end show.
Reviews within this issue includes Magneplanar 20.7 and Q Acoustics 3050 speakers, Opus#1 and Arcam IrDAC-II digital audio units plus the Unison Research Sh headphone amplifier, Leema
Elements pre-amp/DAC, Atlas Eosiec power cable, Pioneer PL-12D turntable, Urbanista Melbourne portable speaker, Goldring 1012GX/1042 MM cartridges, and Audio Desk Systeme Vinyl Cleaner Pro Ultrasonic.
Within his editorial Noel Keywood says, "If you've read anything about hi-fi you'll know that electrostatic loudspeakers are something esoteric, something special. But there's another type of panel loudspeaker the magnetic planar that's also trying to grab our attention. They are altogether a rarer animal, even though technically easier to build than an electrostatic. Like electrostatics and for the same reason they must be big to develop deep bass. Well, the Magneplanar 20.7s we review in this issue see p10 were to me eye-poppingly big. Moreover, they needed all of our 25ft long listening room to sound correctly balanced and produce deep and even bass. But once in position they offered a glorious sound and there was some discussion amongst us all and bemused visitors as to which was best: the 20.7s or the sizeable Martin Logan Renaissance electrostatics I reviewed last month."
See what's within this issue of Hi-Fi World at this
Devialet Gold Phantom Features 4500 Watts And Rose Gold Finish
Devialet, awarded Best of CES, has released their new 4500-watt Gold Phantom ($2990) compact and beautiful spherical component
DSP-enabled powered loudspeaker. Incorporating a decade of research and development plus $30,000,000 budget and 88 patents, the Phantom produces
everything from sub-bass at 14Hz to ultra-sharp treble at 27kHz. As the most extreme loudspeaker in the lineup, the rose gold colored Gold Phantom has a maximum volume of 108dB SPL, which is equivalent to a live rock concert. Enabled by 4500 Watts of power, the physical impact of the deepest basses ever reproduced by this design. A new high-precision titanium tweeter handles frequencies up to 27kHz, with all drivers being commanded by a new core ADH (Analog Digital Hybrid amplification). An uprated Devialet embedded in ADHV2 intelligence DAC, which is higher in specification over the Texas Instruments PCM1798 within the standard and Silver models, handles 24-bits/192kHz yet has lower distortion
of -112dB (versus -106dB). All Devialet Phantom speakers include an ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore 800MHz dual-core
processor, hard IP, and FPGA in a unique System-On-Chip (SoC) Cyclone V with 512MB DDR3 memory. The Phantom is easily synchronized via Wi-Fi, Ethernet or PLC and up to 24 Phantom, with 12 Phantom playing simultaneously via Dialog software. Free Spark software works with Windows 7+, Mac OSX 10.9+, iOS 7+, and Android 4.4+. Bluetooth connection includes A2D and AVRCP profiles, aptX, AAC, and SBC audio codecs.
TosLink optical input is also provided for TV, CD player, Blu-Ray, video games console, etc. A very special 22 karat rose gold
finish showcases the superior nature of this top-of-the-range model. Gold Phantom represents the highest-end of the acclaimed range of Devialet Phantom audio products, including the original Phantom (750 Watts, $1990) and Silver Phantom (3000 Watts, $2390). Gold Phantom will be available via pre-orders starting today and shipping will begin on Bastille Day, the 14th of July 2016.
06 / 27 / 16
Gold Note XS85 Floorstanding Reference
Note's XS85 unique design of their new flagship speaker is based on ultra-rigid, curved and modular panels. The super-dampened case is reinforced with internal double cabinets and external wooden
multi-layers to control resonances and improve sound quality. The cabinets conveniently separate bass and mid/highs to enhance perfect tuning, and they are connected through a 3mm thick laser-shaped layer in
aluminum to increase rigidity and to enable the module design. The bass drivers cabinet is vented while the mid/highs is sealed with a second open chamber featuring a solid
aluminum grille to further improve rigidity and reduce internal reflections at the same time. A28 mm custom ultra linear extra thin and lightweight soft dome tweeter is mated with two 150mm ultra linear horn loaded super light drivers that are Nextel treated paper. A pair of 220 mm ultra linear horn loaded super light drivers are also made with Nextel treated paper. Chrome plated brass phase plugs reduce compression due to temperature variations in the voice coil, which increases long term power handling capacity. The passive crossover works at 200Hz and 2200Hz via a resistive design enabling ultra linear load to present a stable 4 Ohms to the power amplifier. Gold Note's XS85 loudspeaker has a frequency response from 30Hz to 30kHz and a sensitivity of 90dB/W/m.
Dimensions are 1280 x 357 x 665 mm (HxWxD) and each pair weighs 140 kgs. Available finishes include black lacquer front panel, top, rear panels and stand, black glossy grand piano lacquer, white lacquer or Italian walnut side panels.
Industry News 15 Years Ago
Bowers & Wilkins Celebrates 35th Anniversary With New Signature Line
Commemorating their 35th
anniversary of the firm's founding, Bowers
& Wilkin is releasing a new Signature line that includes the
Signature 800, Signature HTM center channel and Signature SCM surround. "It
incorporates everything we've learned, over more than a third of a century,
about superior acoustic design," company founder John Bowers said. The
Signature 800, accompanied by the upgraded Signature HTM and Signature SCM
center and surround model, includes both improved components and all-new
elements. In place of the original Nautilus 801's single 15-inch bass driver,
the Signature 800 employs twin 10-inch units but each one is driven by the
identical "motor" structure from the earlier design's single woofer.
This doubling of drive capacity, with the same effective piston-area, is claimed
to improved bass dynamics for more natural and lifelike attack while also being
more forgiving in-room acoustical interaction. The
midrange retains the familiar spherical head enclosure that holds an improved
version of B&W's 6" FST Kevlar driver. The Signature 800 employs a more
powerful Neodymium-Iron-Boron magnet structure; combined with a thicker
top-plate, is said to lower harmonic distortion and reduces time-domain
"smearing" distortions for clearer, more defined vocal and
instrumental timbres. The tweeter has been improved to now deliver top-end limit
of 50 kHz. Their new Signature HTM and SCM include the newly refined midrange
and tweeter drivers and are designed to match the Signature 800 for a complete
home theater system. The B&W Signature 800, HTM, and SCM will be available
in July, 2001 and priced at: Signature 800 $20,000/pair, Signature HTM
$3000/each, Signature SCM $3000/pair.
06 / 24 / 16
BitTorrent's New Co-CEOs Finally
Unleash The Power Of The Bundle
In April of this year, the new Co-CEOs Jeremy Johnson and Robert Delamar of
BitTorrent wanted to lead the company's growing media platforms. In 2011, what began as a prototype for a sustainable distribution platform for creators for direct-to-fan became something more in October 2013. Now, over 30,000 creators and more than 200 million fans use BitTorrent Bundle for on-demand music and video.
BitTorrent supports Hi-Res Music, VR video, 360 photos, interactive content and
much more. In October of 2013
Enjoy the Music.com published an article about this evolution of
BitTorrent so artists can expand their reach to fans worldwide. It has just been announced that
BitTorrent is accelerating their momentum in media and creative distribution. "When I first came to BitTorrent, Inc. I was inspired by the people, the culture, and the technology", said Jeremy Johnson, with Robert Delamar. "We are something very unique on the Internet
an artist-first, people-powered platform, focused on creativity and community rather than abundance. It was clear to me that this was a platform that deserved investment. By introducing ad-supported streaming for mobile devices Android available now, iOS and Apple TV coming soon BitTorrent Now is the first step toward creating an ever greater direct-to-fan platform. This is also our first step in creating truly awesome product experiences across mobile, television, and desktop platforms. So, why are we doing this? Because we believe we can help solve some of the most troubling problems facing creators in the digital age. The Internet has the promise of a direct connection between creators and fans. The ability to facilitate a dialogue and a collaboration. Yet, in the digital age, art has increasingly become commoditized. Existing platforms impose business models, format restrictions, algorithmic discovery; all of which are barriers between artists and fans...
the creative vision and connection to fans is not a priority.
It doesn't have to be this way.
We believe we can help artists harness a powerful medium the Internet in a meaningful way. In a way that they can profit from distributing their work. In a way that empowers creators with data ownership and transparency. We believe art is about engagement, about connecting people. This is why we endeavour to build awesome experiences, to build platforms that allow creators to deliver the most engaging work possible. And to allow them to set the business model that best fits their unique work. And in a way that publishers can access and retain
all consumer data. Engagement means transparency. And so following on the introduction of our live streaming app in May, we humbly submit our on-demand streaming apps for your consideration.
This is your platform. This has been built with thanks to the open dialogue with our artist partners and their fans. And we encourage you to keep the feedback coming; it keeps us working hard to do better and better."
06 / 23 / 16
Astell&Kern AK70 Hi-Res
Audio Player And AK T8iE II In-Ear Monitor
Astell&Kern's new AK70 high-resolution portable audio player and AK T8iE 2nd generation in-ear monitor (IEM) have just been announced ($599 and $999 respectively). As the new entry-level portable hi-res player, the single DAC AK70 is the first Astell&Kern portable player to feature a digital line out via optical and USB. This allows users a range of options to connect their own favorite external DAC. A single Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC chipset supports up to 24-bit/192KHz PCM audio and up to double-rate 5.6MHz DSD (converted to PCM). There is 64GB of internal flash storage plus a single microSD card slot for up to 200GB of additional storage memory. Astell&Kern's new AK70 is DLNA 1.0 compatible, has Wi-Fi, supports OTA firmware updates, and can streaming music from other devices on the same network. Astell&Kern AK70 USB DAC can be connected to a Mac/PC to bypass internal sound card and output hi-res audio from your computer. The unit also fully supports
Astell&Kern's CD-Ripper to allow you to rip music directly to the player without the need for a computer. Astell&Kern's new AK T8iE IEMs is a working partnership with Beyerdynamic yet is available exclusively through Astell&Kern. The new second generation AK T8iE updates the popular IEM with an new cable design. The AK T8iE features a concha design with the cable running over the ear, which has several advantages. A somewhat larger housing is necessary to accommodate the 11 millimeter Tesla driver inside. The oval-shaped concha molds sit very comfortably in the ear without any pressure. The cable is covered with Aramid, a strong and heat resistant synthetic fiber, for high durability that will stand up to long term use. The earbud itself is made of a proprietary composite with a three layer PVD coating and contains copper and chrome. Astell&Kern's AK T8iE features two cables, the first with a balanced 2.5mm four-pole jack for use with Astell&Kern players. Also included is a second cable with standard 3.5mm stereo jack for use with other portable players and cell phones. Five different sizes of these unique silicone tips are included as well as foam tips in S, M and L.
Newport 2016 Report
Wireworld Cable Technology Audio Cable Polygraph Test
RIVA Audio Turbo X And Model S Bluetooth Speaker
ELAC's Andrew Jones Designed Debut And
Uni-Fi Series Of Speakers
AURALiC ALTAIR, MERAK, And VEGA Review
Well Pleased Audio
Diesis Audio, Angstrom Audio Lab, Aqua Acoustic Quality, Antipodes And
Aurum Cantus, Wells Audio, Music Vault And Dana Cables
06 / 22 / 16
Gpinto ON Turntable Has Valve
Pre, Amp, Plus Analog And Digital Inputs
ON turntable, created by Italian Giuseppe Pinto as an easy to use plug-and-play high fidelity turntable that handles virtually every function for ease of use, features virtually every type of input and uses a combination of vacuum tubes and solid-state
amplification. As a play on the words On and Off, the ON turntable has a height of only 6.5 centimeters and is capable of managing all kind of sources including both analog and digital. It can be connected to computers with a USB cable and to portable devices (smartphones, tablets and digital music players) via a Bluetooth aptX audio receiver. It houses a valve preamplifier with dedicated power supply and you have a choice of amplification of 100, 250 or 500 watts. ON's multi-layer beech veneer deck uses veneer of first choice woods and is mated with a Corian plinth and platter. Great attention for materials, design, craftsmanship and technological research shines through as a carbon fiber tonearm. The phonostage has selectable gain for MM and MC cartridges, the Valve preamplifier has a dedicated power supply, and there are two unbalanced RCA analog inputs. Digital inputs include S/PDIF coaxial, two TosLink optical and one USB. The DAC can handle digital audio files up to 24-bit/192kHz. The latest currently available Bluetooth spec handles higher quality aptX audio. For the 100 watt model an MC board is optional, yet comes standard within the 250 and 500 watt models (2999, 3999 and 4999 respectively).
06 / 21 / 16
<<< REWIND <<<
McIntosh MC75 Monoblock Tube Amplifier & C22 Tube Preamplifier
McIntosh's latest re-introduction of their classic audio components.
Review By Anthony Nicosia
Foundation Series Acoustic Treatment System
Resolution Acoustics, manufacturer of patent-pending
acoustic treatment systems, is pleased to announce their new Foundation Series of room acoustic devices. This entry-level system offers high value, with patent-pending technologies room the company's award-winning flagship Time & Space Series. "The goal of an acoustic room-treatment system is to clear room anomalies so that the electronics, speakers, and cables can shine through," said Bart Andeer, President of Resolution Acoustics. Like the Time & Space Series, the new Foundation Series components are proudly handcrafted in the USA. Resolution Acoustics' broadband diffusion / absorption system has been carefully designed to scramble reflected waves so that they do not remain coherent, leaving the reflected waves staggered in time. This weakening of the reflected waves will leave the direct wave from the speaker dominant while the weakened waves will add ambiance to the listening experience. Resolution Acoustics design philosophy has been to develop a balanced system of acoustic room treatments that will allow a high-quality audio system to reveal its full potential by taming the room's acoustic signature while maintaining a high level of aesthetic appeal.
Handcrafted in the US, by selected artisans, our systems are designed to complement the room environment while providing stunning sound clarity and amazing definition without listening fatigue. Resolution Acoustics can work with your architect or interior designer to create a unique system for your home, as well as assist you, from conceptualization to final voicing and speaker positioning.
06 / 20 / 16
Newport 2016 Report
Nothing For Sale Audio Room
Questyle Audio CMA600i And QP1R
Kyron Audio Kronos Open Baffle DSP Speaker System
06 / 18 / 16
Veracity Audio Mystra &
Chrysalis Class A Tubed 24/192 & 128 DSD DAC
Veracity Audio, a British innovator in high-end audio, has launched their Mystra digital to analog converter (starting at
£3390, pictured) that
decades upwards of 24-bit/192kHz and DSD128. Designed and hand-built to order in the Heart of England, a choice of custom levels and black or silver front panel finish. Veracity Audio's Mystra DAC is a true dual mono design with dual DAC architectures with dedicated 24-bit dual mono multi-bit conversion. There is a reconstruction filter offering playback of bitstream DSD64 and DSD128 natively and without digital processing. PCM is handled natively. Other features include analog auto-switching with incoming signal file format directing DSD to DSD reconstruction filter and PCM to parallel PCM only DACs. Both digital engines have a direct connection and share the single-ended triode valve analog stage on a 'one-at-a-time' basis. The Class A vacuum tube
stages have a pair of 6SN7 dual triode for voltage driver and two ECC82 dual triodes for high current output driver. Digital inputs are two S/PDIF RCA coax, an optional AES/EBU via XLR or BNC, multi-format asynchronous USB. Analog preamplifier inputs and
stereo unbalanced RCA and balanced XLR outputs are included. To precisely match the output of the DAC to any preamplifier or integrated amplifier, Veracity Audio's Mystra DAC is equipped with an analog volume control designed with non-inductive resistors controlled by relays with only two resistors in signal path at any level and R2R shunt operation. For digital-only systems, this volume control can facilitate direct connection to power amplifiers. Volume control and input selector operation is also remote controlled with a custom handmade handset. The Mystra DAC has a headphone output for
32 to 300 Ohm headphones with minimalist high current design that is connected directly from valve output to a solid-state driver that is capable of up to 250mA output. This headphone amplifier can drive virtually all
dynamic driver headphones.
Veracity Audio's new Chrysalis DAC (starting at £5690 with five Year warranty) is a true dual mono design. Dual DAC architectures with dedicated 24-bit/192kHz, quad mono conversion handle PCM format natively through a multi-bit, hybrid engine and without sample rate change. There is also a non-oversampling mode for CD Audio resolution. Separate reconstruction filters are responsible for playback of bitstream DSD64 and DSD128 natively and without digital processing.
The new Chrysalis DAC has great features including analog auto-switching with incoming signal file format directing DSD to DSD reconstruction filter and PCM to parallel PCM only DACs. Both digital engines have a direct connection and share the single-ended triode valve analogue stage on a 'one-at-a-time' basis. The Class A vacuum tube stages have a pair of 6SN7 dual triode for voltage driver and two ECC82 dual triodes for high current output driver. Valve stages are powered by dual CV574 valve rectifiers. Digital inputs are two S/PDIF RCA coax, multi-format asynchronous USB and an optional AES/EBU via XLR or BNC. Analog preamplifier inputs, stereo unbalanced RCA and Jensen passive balanced XLR outputs are included.
Bluetooth 5 Specification Provide
8x Data Rates Versus BT4
Bluetooth 5.0 has been announced and will double the data speed and provide eight times the data broadcasting capability while quadrupling the wireless rage using the same amount of electrical / battery power.
Created in 1994, Bluetooth technology was conceived as a wireless alternative to data cables by exchanging data using radio transmissions.
This newly announced specification could easily bring Hi-Res Audio and Hi-Res Music via BT 5 to audio devices.
Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) said this new specification will be available in late 2016 or early 2017, with BT 5 protocol also making Internet of Things (IoT) faster and more secure.BT5 will also help with sending and receiving data via a multitude of future wearable from watches to virtual reality devices. High-end audio could easily take advantage of the BT5 standardization and very high data transfer rates to offer wireless
connection between digital audio devices, amplification, and loudspeakers including multi-channel electronic crossovers and multi-room
devices. According to SIG, "One of the most popular applications for Bluetooth historically has been wireless
audio headsets and hands-free connectivity in cars to wireless speakers and headphones that stream music from your phone or tablet. This uses a version of Bluetooth called BR/EDR (bit rate/enhanced data rate) that is optimized for sending a steady stream of high quality data (i.e. music) in a power efficient
Order Now: Limited Edition
Star Wars Hologram Vinyl LP
Walt Disney Records
has finally released their new hologram vinyl version of the original motion picture soundtrack for
Star Wars: The Force Awakens. With score conducted and composed by five-time Academy Award-winning composer John Williams and liner notes by the
film's director, J.J. Abrams, the double LP features a 16-page booklet on 180 gram vinyl. This one-of-a-kind vinyl set, hand etched by Tristan Duke (Jack
White's Lazaretto) of Infinity Light Science, offers a 3D hologram experience featuring the Millennium Falcon on Disc 1/Side B and a TIE Fighter on Disc 2/Side B. For optimal viewing, use a direct light source or simply hold a mobile phone flashlight above the vinyl to view the holograms.
Tristan Duke founded Infinity Light Science in 2008, a research laboratory with an emphasis on laser holography, interferometry, light-field imaging, hand-drawn holography, and relativistic imaging.
The must-have vinyl album also features Direct Metal Mastering (DMM) for an optimal listening experience. Disney Music Group has joined forces with Pro-Ject Audio Systems to showcase this unique, next-level advancement in holographic vinyl technology with the Elemental turntable, a combination of minimalist design and maximum performance from the world leader in high fidelity turntables. The two brands will collaborate on co-promotions at retail, online, and radio.
The Star Wars: The Force Awakens 2-LP hologram soundtrack is now shipping!
Star Wars hologram vinyl set is available for order right now on Amazon.
Industry News 10 Years Ago
La La Lets You Swap Used CDs With Others For Only $1
Swap your CDs for $1 each and support musical artists, but not the recording
label. Website la la claims to have available
1.4 million titles from their collective members and will give back 20 cents of every CD to the
musical artists. The site claims "...to reduce overhead in marketing costs across the industry, so artists can make more from selling their
music." The site also says, "Every day, lala.com members are adding thousands of new titles, roughly the equivalent of 15 Wal-Mart stores worth of music. This translates into an unparalleled selection of music for lala.com members." Lala is able to work past the usual legalities of copyright and royalty
payments by only allowing original CD discs to be traded. The Unites States based RIAA and worldwide
IFPI, two organizations who use very strong legal tactics to those who do not pay various royalties, have not chimed in on this new effort.
06 / 17 / 16
The Absolute Sound's
July / August 2016
Issue Is Now Available
Enjoy the Music.com has just posted the
July 2016 issue of The Absolute Sound magazine! This issue features
reviews of the Acoustic Signature Invictus turntable, Dragon Inspire IHA-1 headphone amplifier, Stax SR-L700
headphones, Basis Audio Superarm 9 tonearm, Brown Audio Labs SP-1B preamplifier, Phoenix Engineering Eagle PSU and Roadrunner Tachometer, Audience Ohno cable, Audience's svelte Ohno cables, WyWires Diamond cable, Transparent Audio XL Generation 5 cable, Monitor Audio Gold 300 loudspeaker, Audio Research Corporation GSi75 integrated amplifier, GoldenEar Technology SuperSub XXL subwoofer, and VooDoo Iso-Pod isolation system.
A very special guest editorial by longtime reader titled Nothing Could Be Finer: An Ode to Liner Notes by Roy Midyett
it says "Mention the words "liner notes" to anyone under the age of 40 and the response would be about the same as saying "curb feelers" or "slide rule." Except for the "seasoned" music enthusiast, liner notes have faded from the collective consciousness, replaced by iTunes, ear buds, and smart-phone screens. The hands that used to hold an album cover are now tapping out typos and bad grammar every 60 seconds.
As the Compact Disc ascended in the 1980s (you remember the 80s: big hair, bad music), what passed for liner notes just weren't the same anymore. They were no longer accessible, and in most cases, not worth accessing. You had to dig them out of those jewel cases, then squint at the teensy font. They didn't make it easy on the writer or the
reader. See what's within this issue of The Absolute
Sound at this
T.H.E. Show Newport Reports
10,300 In Attendance
Bob Levi, President and CEO of Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society, has just announced the following: I am delighted to announce that our Newport Show had 10,300 unique visitors this year up from 8600 last year. Our show is now more than double the size of AXPONA in Chicago, the next largest show! The attendance of 10,300 is official! Like our Society now with over 2100 members, no high-end
audio show has ever been this big, ever! Many thanks and warmest regards, Bob
06 / 16 / 16
Newport 2016 Report
Concert Fidelity Electronics And Maxonic Speakers
Kimber Kable And For You Single Ladies Out There...
/ USA Tube Audio Labs
Featuring Lumin White, Mastersound, Torus Power, Mark Levinson and Revel.
VPI Industries, EMM Labs, Merrill Audio, German
Physiks, Stillpoints And GIK Acoustics
dCS, Dan D'Agostina Master Audio Systems, Wilson Audio, Stromtank and Nordost
Audio Note UK @ T.H.E. Show Newport 2016
Underwood Hifi With Emerald Physics And Core Power
Ocean Way Audio HR4
Rhapsody International Pivots
To Using Napster Branding
In hopes of spurring more brand recognition and expanding users,
Rhapsody International Inc. is now pivoting to the brand name
Napster. Rhapsody International has lost $35.5 million in 2015 as reported by their shareholder company RealNetworks. In 2015 Rhapsody's revenue was a mere $201.9 million. Napster is known as the original peer-to-peer music-sharing service that caused much mayhem due to freely sharing music between users. Napster P2P
technology has been used by hundreds of millions of Internet users for everything from legal file sharing to illegal music, movie and program downloading. Rhapsody International Inc. is
hoping that by using the highly recognized nameplate of Napster they will be become more prevalent within the inline marketplace. "The move is one of many steps we're taking to strengthen our global brand and better position the company for growth, said Rhapsody International Chief Executive Mike Davis. "Subscribers can keep enjoying their playlists, favorites and albums as usual, without interruption; they will automatically be brought in under the Napster name via auto updates in the app."
06 / 15 / 16
Acoustic Sciences Corporation's IsoThermal TubeTrap
Acoustic Sciences Corporation, manufacturer of the iconic TubeTrap, has recently added their IsoThermal TubeTrap ($549
each introductory price) that is said to deliver twice the bass absorption of an equivalent-sized TubeTrap between 30 and 250 Hz. Technically speaking, the IsoThermal TubeTrap is an isothermal-class RC time constant bass trap combined with the adjustable treble diffusion of our regular TubeTrap. Because of the dynamic performance of the IsoThermal TubeTrap, it is at home in a variety of venues giving you extended low end absorption and increased efficiency. You can use the unit within a home theater, high end listening room and recording studios. The ASC IsoThermal TubeTrap
offers extended bass absorption below 250 Hz, treble diffusion (or absorption) above 250 Hz, and is great for controlling the phase add/cancel effects of the rear wall bounce. Acoustic Sciences Corporation's IsoThermal TubeTrap is available in a variety of sizes, each with their own absorptive properties. You get a 30 day, 100% satisfaction guarantee to ensure customer satisfaction.
06 / 14 / 16
Download CANADA Hi-Fi's
June/July Issue For Free
Enjoy the Music.com has just posted the
June / July 2016 issue of CANADA Hi-Fi+ magazine! This issue features
articles including Innovative Technology Products and Tech Toys, The Origins and History of Punk Music -- Part 3, Ultra High Definition TV -- More Than Resolution Product, plus high-end audio equipment reviews of the Bryston 483 (Cubed Series) amplifier, Gold Note Valore Plus 425 Turntable and PH-1 Phono Stage, plus ArtVibes Audio DaVinci loudspeakers.
Within his editorial Turntables, Punk Music Plus Innovative Tech Products And Toys,
Suave Kajko says " Summer weather is here in full swing and I've already had a couple of chances to hit the streets of our beautiful city of Toronto to visit several record shops. Bouncing from one record shop to another is always more fun on a summer afternoon and it seems that there are more record shops in this city than ever. What inspired these record shop visits? I recently picked up a new turntable -- the Italian-made Gold Note Giglio. This turntable is such a dramatic upgrade over my Clearaudio Concept table that it has got me listening to all my records again and constantly hunting for new ones. The fact that this is perhaps the most gorgeous looking table on the market makes me love it even more. Look out for a review of this table in an upcoming issue. In the meantime, please check out our review of the more affordable Gold Note Valore 425 turntable in this very issue."
Se what's within this issue of of CANADA Hi-Fi+
and download the magazine for free!
06 / 13 / 16
Enjoy the Music.com
Launches Dedicated Facebook Page
Enjoy the Music.com has just launched our
dedicated Facebook page, which joins our dedicated social media pages including Twitter. Updates, music and more will be
appearing within Facebook and Twitter plus we plan to have many fun giveaways too! You can be
amongst the first to learn about our latest show coverage, high-end audio equipment reviews, and think pieces. "During our soft launch this past weekend we have already received hundreds of likes on our new Facebook page" said Creative Director Steven R. Rochlin. "As we celebrate our dedicated Facebook page, we're already planning a great contest to appear within our July
Review Magazine issue." Facebook users can easily find us
@EnjoyTheMusiccom and our Twitter account is
Industry News 15 Years Ago
ESS Technology Universal DVD Chip Handles Hi-Res Audio Formats
ESS Technology has introduced a single-chip
solution for what many are calling a "Universal DVD" player. Capable of decoding CD, DVD-Audio, DVD-Video, SACD,
VCD, SVCD, Dolby Digital, Dolby
Pro-Logic, DTS decoding, and MP3, the new ESS ES4438 PMP chip provides two advanced embedded processors; a 32-bit RISC CPU for general system management and a 64-bit digital signal processor (DSP) for audio/video and graphics acceleration. Audiophiles will rejoice as full
multi-channel 24-bit/192kHz decoding is supported. For the videophile, a built-in
"SmartScan" capability offers de-interlace progressive scan for high-end video output. This feature supports Macrovision AGC version 1.03 for 480P. To see the complete specifications/press release, simply
06 / 10 / 16
Newport 2016 Report
T.H.E. Show Newport Opening Day Ceremony And Richard Beers Memorial
T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 Marketplace Part
Darin Fong Audio, Quality Record Pressings, Acoustic Sounds, HDTracks, Checky Records, Noble Audio, and Linear Tube Audio.
T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 Marketplace Part
Kimber Kable Axios, Comply, Audeze, Manley Labs, Magic Bus, and Sony Hi-Res Audio.
T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 Marketplace Part
Nordost, The Absolute Sound, MrSpeakers, 64 Audio, and MIT Cables.
Capital Audiofest At The Hilton
Washington From July 8th To 10th
Capital Audiofest is the premier East
coast audio show that you can count on to deliver great sound, enjoy thousands of dollars of high-end audio gear, audiophile music all within a truly fun experience. In 2016 CAF are also bringing into the spotlight the return of CanMania as an integral part of the overall event. Also look for huge
giveaways that will attract more attendees! Taking place once again at the newly renovated Hilton
Washington / Rockville from July 8th through 10th. Gary Gill, the promoter and owner of the Capital Audiofest, has announced an exciting promotion as one lucky audiophile will win a complete system worth over $12,000! "We have had a tradition of giveaways at all of our previous shows, it's always been a big crowd pleaser," said Gary. "After all who doesn't like free stuff But in the past it has been components and accessories; this year we'll be giving away an entire system! This is no lightweight system either, it consists of top notch components from VPI, Alta Audio and complete connection suite from Luminous Audio." The system includes Alta Audio's new Rhea speakers, VPI 299D Limited Edition integrated tube amplifier, VPI Scout Jr with Ortofon 2M red cartridge, and Luminous Audio connection
package. Learn more about the Capitol
Audiofest 2016 show here.
06 / 09 / 16
Issue Features Many Audiophile Equipment Reviews
Enjoy the Music.com has just posted the
June 2016 issue of Hi-Fi+ magazine! This issue features
reviews of the Mark Levinson 585 integrated amplifier with DAC, Audio Research Corporation Reference Phono 3 valve phonostage, Bowers & Wilkins 803 D3 floorstanding loudspeaker, Soulution Audio 520 full-function preamplifier, McIntosh C52 / MC301 full-function preamplifier and mono power amplifier, Fono Acustica Virtuoso loudspeaker cables, DS Audio DS-W1 optical cartridge and equaliser, Audio Alchemy DDP-1 / PS-5 / DPA-1, Teddy Padro i80a integrated amplifier, Roksan Audo PUG / VSC tonearm and phono stage / speed control for the Xerxes turntable, Audiomat Aria integrated valve amplifier, Sennheiser HD 630VB variable bass closed back headphones, plus Synergistic Research Grounding Blocks And Cables, Tranquility Base UEF, and Atmosphere system tuning components.
editorial, Alan Sircom says, "We started out on the theme of this issue with a simple goal the best of the best. And naturally, when dealing with an industry that has seemingly no upper limit to its price structure, that can automatically translate to astronomical prices. While there are some products in this line-up that certainly fit that bill, in the process of compiling this flight into audio's stratosphere, we ended up with performance over
price. Maybe it's a sign of some much-needed sanity hitting the upper tiers of the super high-end, but whenever we looked at something supremely expensive, something simply 'expensive' invariably sounded better. In some cases, the super-high-end was in performance only. While 'The Man on the Clapham Omnibus' might think anyone suggesting a £12,500 loudspeaker marks a return to sane prices is not themselves sane, stepping back from £125,000 loudspeakers and beyond makes such a price tag seem positively cheap!"
See what's within this issue of
Hi-Fi+ at this
Meridian Ultra DAC Includes
Extensive Connectivity and MQA Decoding
With a combination of world firsts and innovative technologies positions, the new Meridian Ultra DAC ($23,000) seeks to be within a class of its own for Meridian Audio. As the culmination of nearly two decades of research and engineering according to Chief Technical Officer at Meridian, Richard Hollinshead, Meridian's Ultra DAC provides considerable connectivity options, user features, and format support. Incorporating an extensive list of performance-enhancing technologies, including Dual Mono DAC cards, DSP filter options, upsampling, and apodizing, the Meridian Ultra DAC is a dedicated unit utilizing Meridian's renowned audio expertise to set a new standard in the analogue realm. Connectivity options include USB 2.0, S/PDIF, TosLink, 75 ohm BNC, and AES3 on XLR, as well as Meridian's Speakerlink and the award-winning Sooloos music-management platform for the very best user-friendly experience. One pair of balanced and one pair of unbalanced analog outputs are also provided. As a 384kHz/24-bit dedicated DAC, other decoding options include DXD, DSD64 and DSD128 (DoP), and MQA. Significant user features are provided including LipSync, PC setup, and RS232, enabling integration with third-party systems such as Control4 or Crestron. The Ultra DAC is the first Meridian product to give users the option to select one of three upsampling filters when reproducing sources with a sample rate of 44kHz or 48kHz, such as CD or DAT. In addition, a dedicated clock card is included for the lowest possible jitter. The Ultra DAC is the first product in the world to include MQA Limited's Hierarchical Converter Technology, which employs multiple converters to increase temporal resolution while reducing noise and quantization errors. Another first for a Meridian product is the construction of the Ultra's Dual Mono DAC card, which incorporates multiple regulated power supplies and eight-layer circuit boards with
low impedance ground-planes, for isolation and the low-noise grounding that is critical to digital audio accuracy. A fully linear power supply provides isolation from the AC supply, and DC-coupled output prevents degradation from AC coupling capacitors. Meridian's Ultra DAC front panel was designed for quiet operation, with non-ferrous construction, and a static LCD display chosen for its low electrical noise and ease of readability. The Meridian Ultra DAC is built by hand in the UK and is available in beautiful high gloss black as standard. Other color options are available using Meridian's Select bespoke color service ($1000).
06 / 08 / 16
Rage Against The Machine's
Debut Album On Limited Edition Hybrid SACD
The Machine's debut album will be released on limited edition hybrid SACD. Mastered by Steve Hoffman and Stephen Marsh at Marsh Mastering for Marshall
Blonstein's Audio Fidelity, Rage Against
The Machine's first album is a mix of punk, metal, hardcore and politically resonate rap. Every song is full of energy with smart lyrics and plenty of slam-dancing potential. In 1992, the band released its self-titled debut album, which became a commercial and critical success. The album went to #1 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart, and #45 on the Billboard 200 chart. Rolling Stone magazine named it as one of the 500 greatest albums of all time. In 2001, Q magazine named it as one of the 50 Heaviest Albums Of All Time. This album is relentless, from the opening track
"Bombtrack" all the way to the last blast of "Freedom," every tune is a highly explosive ball of energy, none of which is clearly superior to any of the others. The lyrics, while full of blunt and pure anger, are very passionate and well-written in the sense that they actually stand for something. This album like no other changed the landscape of
1990s music. The "guilty parties": Zack de la Rocha's vitriolic and angst-ridden words fueled by the heaviest rhythm section on the planet featuring drummer Brad Wilk and the exciting and dynamic bass of Timmy C and of course,
RATM's signature sound, Tom Morello's belligerent, aggressive guitar riffs and turntable-esque noise that make this the best debut album of all-time. "Know Your Enemy" features Tool vocalist Maynard James Keenan on additional vocals and also features
Jane's Addiction drummer Stephen Perkins on trashcan percussion. The liner notes claim, "No samples, keyboards or synthesizers used in the making of this recording." This is, and always will be, considered Rage Against the
Machine's most important work.
Industry News 15 Years Ago
Secure Digital Music Initiative And Online Music Streaming
As we hinted at during yesterday's news about the Secure Digital Music Initiative
(SDMI) dying, many major companies have walked away from the group as after years of
discussion, no final format has been decided upon. With both political and technical underpinnings, it seems that the old saying is quite true; too many cook s spoil the broth. Flying in the face of this news, major electronics retailer Best Buy, who has already inked a deal with Liquid Audio, MTV and the House of Blues, has now added RioPort in their partnered venture to sell downloadable/streaming music online. Pricing should be around 99 cents to $1.99 for music single and $11.98 to $18.98 for an entire album.
Speaking of the House of Blues, they will soon have the world's first
24 hour interactive music channel using Liberate Technologies' interactive TV software
with the backend handled by RespondTV. This new service can be broadcast through both cable and satellite boxes that use middleware from Liberate, Microsoft,
OpenTV, PowerTV, Sony and WorldGate. For now RespondTV only has a solid deal for distribution with AT&T Broadband.
For previous high-end audio industry news click