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 269, January 2017 table of contents and
Articles & Reviews In This Issue
14 Guest Editorial: I Second That Emotion
Editorial By Andrew Quint
16 Future TAS
New products on the horizon.
18 Show Report
Jonathan Valin, Robert Harley, and Julie Mullins bring you the highlights from the Tokyo International Audio Show.
38 Industry News
Lavish Hi-Fi in Santa Rosa, CA, showcases GamuT Audio's Zodiac loudspeaker and hosts a Robert Harley book signing.
40 TAS Essay
Roger Skoff on super-tweeters and musical realism.
190 Manufacturer Comments
194 Zubin Mehta's Symphonies and Symphonic Poems
Art Lintgen examines a new 23-CD set by an "extremely talented" conductor.
196 David Bowie's Who Can I Be Now? 1974–1976
On Rhino's new box set Bowie becomes re-inspired, says Jeff Wilson.
198 Chasing the Dragon Records
Jeff Wilson interviews Mike Valentine, head of a new direct-to-disc label.
200 Download Roundup
Alan Taffel and Andrew Quint review hi-res rock and classical downloads.
204 Rock, Etc.
New music by Wilco, The Pretenders, Alejandro Escovedo, Melissa Etheridge, Kristin Scott Benson, and Fiona Boyes, plus an Everly Brothers DVD, a Josh White vinyl reissue, Stockfisch's latest Analog Pearls release, and MoFi's new UD1S edition of Santana's
New releases by Jane Ira Bloom, Mary Halvorson, Catherine Russell, Clare Teal, and Norah Jones, plus vinyl reissues by Miles Davis, Oscar Peterson, Joe Henderson, and McCoy Tyner.
Eighth Blackbird, the Poulenc Trio, and the music of Arvo Pärt, plus chamber music by Rózsa and Kodály and PentaTone's new SACDs of Mozart and
96 HiFiMan HE1000 V2 Headphones
Vade Forrester auditions these planar-magnetic wonders from HiFiMan.
104 Ultimate Ears UERR In-Ear Monitors
Steven Stone reports on a newly updated version of his long-term in-ear reference.
110 Hafler PH-60 Phonostage
The Hafler brand is back! Julie Mullins puts the revived company's first product
— a $599 phonostage — through its paces.
112 Brinkmann Spyder Turntable
Paul Seydor on an exceptional record-playing system from Helmut Brinkmann.
122 Rotel RA-1592 Integrated Amplifier
Rotel's powerful and capable RA-1592 redefines the mid-priced integrated amplifier category, says Neil
126 PrimaLuna DiaLogue Premium Preamplifier and HP Power Amplifiers
Long renowned for its superb build-quality and excellent sound, PrimaLuna raises the bar with its new preamp and power amps — all tube, of course. Greg Weaver offers his assessment.
138 Harbeth Monitor 40.2 Loudspeaker
Paul Seydor has purchased two loudspeakers in the past 25 years. One of them is Harbeth's new 40.2. Find out why he found this monitor so compelling.
152 Bel Canto REF600M Power Amplifier
Has Class D amplification come of age? Steven Stone thinks so, if that Class D amplifier is the Bel Canto REF600M.
156 Cable Survey: Morrow Audio, Dynamic Design, Audience
Neil Gader listens to three sets of upper-end cables and interconnects.
162 Bryston BP26 Preamplifier and 7B3 Power Amplifier
Kirk Midtskog on a new preamp and powerhouse solid-state amplifier from Bryston.
168 Legacy Aeris Loudspeaker with Wavelet Processor
With the Wavelet DSP processor, Legacy has vaulted the superb Aeris system into new territory sonically. Anthony H. Cordesman brings you a full evaluation of this unique technology.
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