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The Absolute Sound


The Absolute Sound Issue 212 April 2011   Welcome to The Abso!ute Sound online! We explore music and the reproduction of music in the home. We believe that the sound of music, unamplified, occurring in a real space is a philosophic absolute against which we may judge the performance of devices designed to reproduce music. Our goal is to provide the resources consumers need to judge how a component's sound either honors or departs from the music's truth, and to make sound purchasing decisions that maximize their experience of reproduced sound. Below is our Issue 212, April 2011 table of contents and link to the editorial.

Read this edition's editorial by clicking here.


Articles & Reviews In This Issue
06 From the Editor
Full Circle
Editorial By Robert Harley

8 Letters

12 From the Editor

16 Book Review: Vinyl Lives!
Wayne Garcia on this new guide to the best vinyl shops in the U.S.

117 Manufacturer Comments

The 2011 Consumer Electronics Show
We take you behind the scenes of the planet's biggest audio show with 29 pages of exclusive coverage. 
30 Loudspeakers
36 Solid-state Electronics
40 Digital
44 Speakers
48 T.H.E. Show's Highlights
52 Loudspeakers
58 Tube Gear
62 Analog Gear
66 Upper-End Electronics
72 Loudspeakers

Equipment Reports
18 Start Me Up: Definitive Technology BP 8060 ST Loudspeaker
This tall floorstanding loudspeaker with powered side-firing woofers delivers a big sound from an ultra-slim package, says Kirk Midtskog.

22 Absolute Analog: JR Transrotor Dark Star Turntable
There's nothing "dark" about this star of a turntable from Germany, according to Neil Gader. 

84 PrimaLuna ProLogue Premium Integrated Amplifier
Neil Gader on this upscale new line from the guys who put the fun-and value-back in tube audio.

88 PSI Audio A 14M Active Powered Loudspeaker
These mini, but mighty powered-speakers from the "pro" world are ideal for a wide range of applications. Steven Stone reports. 

94 Zu Audio Essence Loudspeaker
Neil Gader listens to this unusual high-sensitivity, virtual single-driver loudspeaker.

98 Cover Story: Hegel H200 Integrated Amplifier
20-year-old Norwegian high-end company Hegel showcases its unique amplifier circuits in this mid-priced integrated. Kirk Midtskog has the good news. 

104 The Cutting Edge: Octave Audio Jubilee Monoblock Power Amplifiers and Preamplifier
Anthony H. Cordesman evaluates a pair of über-expensive tubed components from Germany's Octave Audio.

110 HP's Workshop: In a world scoop, HP weighs in on the most anticipated loudspeaker of the year-the Magnepan 3.7.

118 The Zenph Experience
Andy Quint visits Zenph Sound Innovations and reports on the company's séance-like materializations of pianists Rachmaninoff, Glenn Gould, Art Tatum, and Oscar Peterson, summoned up from the past in state-of-the-art sonics. 

122 Rock
New releases from Iron and Wine, The Walkmen, Gregg Allman, and Jim Byrnes; seminal recordings by Bruce Springsteen, Johnny Cash, and The Stooges rescued from the vaults; and MoFi's vinyl reissue of a Ray Charles classic. 

128 Jazz
Recent offerings from Jim Hall and Joey Baron, Gyan Riley, and the Dave Liebman Group, along with vinyl remasterings of Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington at the Cote D'Azur, and Bill Evans at Town Hall. 

132 Classical
Janácek string quartets and ancient Armenian hymns with a twist, Castelnuovo-Tedesco overtures, tangos on piano, and a bargain-priced 60-disc anthology of symphonies conducted by Leonard Bernstein.

133 Fives Faves
Mark Lehman initiates a new TAS feature with five "personal favorite" Sixties jazz instrumentals. 


136 Back Page
Hans Ole Vitus of Vitus Audio talks with Neil Gader.


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