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04 / 30 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

AXPONA 2018 At The Schaumberg Renaissance Report By Greg Weaver
AXPONA 2018 At The Schaumberg Renaissance
This year's Audio eXPO North America was utterly amazing, and on so many levels!
AXPONA Show Report By Greg Weaver


04 / 28 / 18

CanJam SoCal Show Report 2018
CanJam SoCal Show Report 2018
Hi-Tech Hi-Fi- CanJam SoCal offers a sneak peek into the industry's future with loads of cool technology.
Show Report By Dave Hanson


04 / 27 / 18

Sonos Multi-Room Wireless Audio Company To IPO
Sonos Multi-Room Wireless Audio Company To IPOAccording to The Wall Street Journal's Marketwatch, "Sonos Inc., the Santa Barbara, Calif.-based wireless-speaker company, is preparing for an initial public offering that could come as soon as June or July, according to people familiar with the process. Sonos, whose speaker system lets customers play music in every room of their house, has confidentially filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an IPO, these people said. This week, the company held an analyst day at the company's offices in Santa Barbara in which its senior executives outlined its financials and walked through details of the business." Of note is that Sonos has already raised ~$110 million from investors and that 2017 revenue was said to be on track to cross $1 billion.


Australian Hi-Fi Magazine's March / April Issue
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine March / April 2018This issue of Australian Hi-Fi features show coverage of CES plus reviews of the Lavardin ISx Reference integrated amplifier, GoldenEar SuperSub X subwoofer, Schiit Bifrost Multibit DAC, Dynaudio Focus 60XD active speakers, Bel Canto ACI 600 amplifier / DAC, and Crosszone CZ-1 headphones. Within his editorial Greg Borrowman says "Despite me having in the past exposed dodgy reviews of audio components on various audio websites over the years, I still find that when I am looking at websites that have nothing at all to do with audio I am often 'sucked in' by false and misleading 'reviews'. By way of example, I recently went on holidays, and in the process of trying to book hotels in advance, ended up reading quite a few reviews of hotels posted on Trip Advisor. I not only read those reviews, I followed their advice. Oops. Big mistake. On one occasion, I wondered if the reviewer had ever stayed in the hotel. Not that the hotel websites were any better. One of the hotels we stayed in (it was a family holiday) had posted room images on its website that were taken from a completely different hotel! No wonder the view from the window of my room (or from any other window in the hotel for that matter) didn't match the website images." See what's within this issue of Australian Hi-Fi at this link.


04 / 26 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

Magico, Tekton Design, Parasound, And Raidho AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin
Magico, Tekton Design, Parasound, And Raidho
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Pass Labs XP-12 Preamplifier And XA30.8 Stereo Amplifier
Impressed by Pass Labs' INT-60 integrated amplifier, Kevin Fiske decides to check out the XP-12 and XA30.8 pre-power combo.
Review By Kevin Fiske


IFPI Global Music Report 2018 Says Revenues Increased 8.1%
IFPI Global Music Report 2018 Says Revenues Increased 8.1%According to the IFPI, a non-profit organization that represent the interests of 1300 record companies from across the globe, says that streaming revenues grew 41.1% to become largest revenue source. This figure was driven by 176 million users of paid subscription accounts and marks the third consecutive year of growth following 15 years of revenue decline. IFPI's State of the Industry report says that the global recorded music market grew by 8.1% in 2017, its third consecutive year of growth since IFPI began tracking the market in 1997. Figures released today in IFPI's Global Music Report 2018 show total revenues for 2017 were $17.3 billion. Streaming remains the main driver of recovering revenues and, for the first time, has become the single largest revenue source with 176 million users of paid streaming services contributing to year-on-year streaming growth of 41.1%. Streaming now accounts for 38.4% of total recorded music revenue and its growth has more than offset a 5.4% decline in physical revenue and a 20.5% decline in download revenue. Total digital income last year accounted for more than half of all revenue (54%) for the first time. Record companies remain dedicated to ensuring full and fair value is returned for music as it is consumed in its many different forms around the world. Crucially, this involves finding a legislative solution to the value gap, the mismatch between the value created by some digital platforms from their use of music and what they pay to those creating and investing in it. You can see the IFPI's Global Music Report 2018, Annual State Of The Industry PDF at this link.


04 / 25 / 18

A Very Special Offer For Enjoy the Music.com Instagram Followers
Enjoy the Music.com On Instagram
Remember to visit Enjoy the Music.com's #Instagram page! Today we are giving you an exclusive ADVANCED look at an upcoming review! Since we've recently launched our Instagram page, we want to give you a special advanced look at an upcoming review scheduled to appear within the May edition of Enjoy the Music.com's Review Magazine. We look forward to you joining us on Instagram to take advantage of this very special offer! As always, in the end what really matters is that you... Enjoy the Music!


Cary Audio SA-200.2 ES And SA-500.1 ES Solid-State Power Amplifiers
Cary Audio SA-200.2 ES And SA-500.1 ES Solid-State Power AmplifiersCary Audio just announced their SA-200.2 ES and SA-500.1 ES solid-state power amplifiers ($4495 and $4995 respectively) that represent the next generation of the SA design. They embody a modular approach that ensures consistency in performance, and ease of manufacture and serviceability. In implementing the new designs, Cary Audio have "dramatically improved performance and current-handling capacity over the previous models while still maintaining the highest levels of sonic quality" according to the company. The SA-200.2 ES is a 200 Watt stereo amplifier into 8 Ohms (350W @ 4 Ohms), with XLR balanced and RCA single ended inputs. The SA-500.1 ES is a 500 Watt monoblock amplifier into 8 Ohms (1000W @ 4 Ohms), with XLR balanced and RCA single ended inputs. Both amplifiers exhibit very high current capability, are said to be stable into low impedance loads, and feature 3dB of dynamic headroom. Cary Audio employs high-precision metal film resistors in almost all circuitry, even in places where their use is not required. They chose to overbuilt the output stages and increased the heat dissipating capabilities of the amplifiers by as much as 50% over previous designs. The monolithic front end brought major advantages to the amplifier designs with improved temperature stability, low offset, and a substantial reduction of all types of distortion across the full frequency spectrum. Reducing the noise floor, increasing the isolation between the channels, and especially redesigning the sensitive front end of the amplifier has said to improved imaging, sound staging and depth retrieval.


04 / 24 / 18

Brian Eno's Music For Installations On 6 CDs And 9 Vinyl LPs
Brian Eno's Music For Installations On 6 CDs And 9 Vinyl LPsBrian Eno's new multi-album Music For Installations is available on special six CD super deluxe limited edition numbered box set that includes a 64-page Plexiglas cover book and download card. There's also a six CD standard edition box set with 64-page book. And lastly, a nine LP super deluxe edition vinyl box set with 64-page book, plus of course a download card. Musician, producer, visual artist, thinker and activist Brian Eno first came to international prominence in the early 1970s as a founding member of Roxy Music, and immediately followed with a series of critically-praised and influential solo albums. His visionary production includes albums with David Bowie, Talking Heads, Devo, Laurie Anderson and Coldplay, whilst his long list of collaborations includes recordings with John Cale, David Byrne, Grace Jones and James Blake. Less widely discussed although equally notable and arguably even more prolific are his visual experiments with light and video. These are the fertile ground from which so much of his other work has grown, they cover an even longer span of time than his recordings, and have in recent decades paralleled his musical output. Music For Installations is a collection of new, rare and previously unreleased tracks, all of which will be available on vinyl for the first time. All of the material was recorded by Eno for use in his installations covering the period from 1986 until the present (and beyond). Over this time he has emerged as the leading exponent of generative music worldwide and is recognized as one of the foremost audio-visual installation artists of his time. Designed by Brian and long-time collaborator Nick Robertson, this beautifully bound package comes with a 64-page booklet featuring rare and unseen exhibition photographs and a new essay written by Eno.


AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

Ayon Audio, Lumenwhite, PureAudioProject, Whammerdyne, And Triangle Art AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin
Ayon Audio, Lumenwhite, PureAudioProject, Whammerdyne, And Triangle Art
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


04 / 23 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

Gryphon Audio, Gershman Acoustics, VAC, VPI, Nagra Audio, And Kubala*Sosna AXPONA 2018 Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin
Gryphon Audio, Gershman Acoustics, VAC, VPI, Nagra Audio, And Kubala*Sosna
AXPONA 2018 Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Enjoy the Music.com's HIGH END 2018 Show Report From Munich
Enjoy the Music.com's HIGH END 2018 Show Report From Munich HIGH END 2018 show will open its doors and welcome exhibitors and visitors from all over the world from May 10th through 13th in Munich, Germany. With exhibitor space already fully booked months in advance, HIGH END show has entered the crucial phase of its preparations in the run-up to the event, which is held for the 37th time. As during the past 18 years, longer than any other North American magazine, Enjoy the Music.com will once again be reporting on HIGH END in Munich. Approximately 500 exhibitors are expected to showcased their products during HIGH END 2018 show in Munich. As one of high-end audio's most important European events, exhibitor space at Munich's large M.O.C. is completely sold out many months in advance. Held from May 10th through 13th, HIGH END 2018 is Europe's most prominent and largest audio show of the year. The first day of the exhibition is exclusively reserved for trade visitors and media from all over the world. You can learn more about this event, plus see Enjoy the Music.com's HIGH END 2018 show report, at this link.


High-End Audio News 16 Years Ago
Panasonic B-flat CQ-TX5500D Tube Car Audio CD player
Panasonic B-flat CQ-TX5500DOld School meets New Wave as the Panasonic's B-flat CQ-TX5500D (approximately $800) double DIN in dash automobile CD player is the world's first to employ a vacuum tube, yet also play MP3 CD-Rom discs. Employing a tube in the pre-amplification stage, the B-flat produces 16 Watts (nominal) into four channels (45 Watts per channel peak) at 4 Ohms. An auxiliary input allows for flexibility of additional source components such as a portable cassette player or MiniDisc. Overall dimensions are 178mm x 100mm x 160mm while the unit weighs in at 2.3 kg. The CQ-TX5500 includes and AM/FM radio, allows for choosing folders on an MP3 CD-Rom, track selection on audio CD discs, and provides for single button random playback and repeat. A wireless remote control is also available. Visual features include the ability to view the tube while "old school" backlit analog UV meters show power output. Playback abilities include MPEG-1 Layer 3 (32kbs to 256kbs), MPEG-2 Layer 3LSF (16kbs to 160kbs). CD playback frequency response is from 5Hz to 20kHz. No date set for availability within the USA.


04 / 20 / 18

10th Annual Record Store Day Celebration Is Tomorrow! April 21, 2018
10th Annual Record Store Day Celebration Is April 21, 2018Record Store Day, with participating stores being defined as a brick and mortar retailers whose main primary business focuses on a major commitment to music retail, is scheduled for April 21, 2018. Very special limited edition vinyl LPs, cassettes and other promotion materials will be made available during Record Store Day celebration, which will be at physical indie record stores – not online retailers or corporate behemoths. Record Store Day was conceived in 2007 at a gathering of independent record store owners and employees as a way to celebrate and spread the word about the unique culture surrounding nearly 1400 independently owned record stores within the United States of America and thousands of similar stores internationally. The first Record Store Day took place on April 19, 2008. This year marks the 10th anniversary and there are many limited edition release to be available. "This is a day for the people who make up the world of the record store – the staff, the customers and the artists – to come together and celebrate the unique culture of a record store and the special role these independently owned stores play in their communities" says their website. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day. Festivities include performances, cook-outs, body painting, meet & greets with artists, parades, DJs spinning records, and on and on. In 2008 a small list of titles was released on Record Store Day and that list has grown to include artists and labels both large and small, in every genre and price point. For several years, 60% or more of the Record Store Day Official Release List came from independent labels and distributors. The list continues to include a wide range of artists, covering the diverse taste of record stores and their customers. Record Store Day is currently managed by Michael Kurtz and Carrie Colliton, in coordination with Michael Bunnell and Eric Levin.


ASCAP Delivers Over $1 Billion For The First Time In History
ASCAP Delivers Over $1 Billion For The First Time In HistoryAccording to ASCAP (The American Society of Composers), "record-high revenues and distributions in 2017. The organization, which today represents more than 660,000 members, collected approximately $1.144 billion in revenues last year and distributed for the first time more than $1.007 billion to its songwriter, composer and music publisher members. Total ASCAP revenues increased by 8 percent and distributions were up 10 percent year-over-year. Revenues from ASCAP's licensing efforts in the US alone grew nearly 11 percent in 2017 to $846 million, up $86.9 million over 2016. Domestic distributions from ASCAP-licensed and administered performances in the US also increased, to $723 million, up 15 percent over 2016." And while ASCAP operates on a not-for-profit basis and delivers about 88 cents of every dollar collected back to members for performances of their music, this means 12% of income is needed for operational expenditures. ASCAP goes on to say, "ASCAP's domestic revenue growth was fueled by increased revenues across multiple platforms, including audio streaming services, audiovisual media and radio. ASCAP also continued to secure future revenues for members by closing significant licensing deals with major media companies. An agreement with YouTube for public performance rights and data collaboration, announced last June, will improve the accuracy and reliability of the metadata attached to musical works, and will result in greater compensation for ASCAP members. ASCAP debuted a market-leading suite of digital tools in its Member Access portal in 2017, unparalleled in the performing rights sector. The tools make it easy for songwriters, composers and publishers to register and manage large catalogs of music and provide songwriters and publishers with new data visualization tools for a deeper dive into their earnings data. Ultimately, ASCAP's new tools empower members to make more informed business decisions about their catalogs and works."


04 / 19 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

GoldenEar Technology, McIntosh Labs, VAC, Von Schweikert, Scaena, Avantgarde Acoustic, Kimber Kable, And MrSpeakers AXPONA 2018 Show Report
GoldenEar Technology, McIntosh Labs, VAC, Von Schweikert, Scaena, Avantgarde Acoustic, Kimber Kable, And MrSpeakers
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Gryphon Diablo 300 Integrated Amp With 32-bit / 384kHz & DSD DAC Option
Proven power, magnificent majesty and very versatile too!
Review By Steven R. Rochlin


A Personal Note From Marine de Rogez-Presson, Show President Of LAAS
A Personal Note From Marine de Rogez-Presson, Show President Of LAASDear Industry Friends,
I am writing to you with a delicate but necessary, and more importantly, optimistic update on the LA Audio Show, taking place June 7-10, 2018. As Robert Evans stated, "There are 3 sides to every story: Your side, my side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each differently," but he also said that "any man who thinks he knows the mind of a woman is a man who knows nothing," so please allow me to share.

There seems to be a great deal of confusion resulting from uninformed gossip about the players involved in the LA Audio Show and its direction. While I cannot deny or confirm what others have stated because it is their business and not mine, I can confirm that today, the LA Audio Show is mine and mine alone to steer towards collective success.

I can also confirm that The Los Angeles & Orange County Audio Society, led by President Bob Levi, has been a vital protector for the LA Audio Show and has kept its heart beating strong — this society of exemplary board members and its following of 2400+ active members are no doubt at the helm of our Southern California community of audio enthusiasts and its supporting dealers and manufacturers; AND its continued growth and success with shows over the last 8+ years.

I think that Richard Beers's unexpected and unplanned passing in 2016 without question left us with a beautiful chaos and we all have done what we respectively believed to be best at the time. I won't deny that I made a personal decision to leave his legacy because I did not agree with the direction and lack of deliberation. I won't deny all of the challenges and confusion has been difficult for everyone but on the flip side, I think it's challenged us all to seek a collective understanding and agreement on the best direction for the future. In other words, it has been immeasurably inspiring and all that we needed at this exact moment.

I am also writing to you because if the LA Audio Show truly is what we all want, and I believe based on participation it is, we need everyone's help putting the chatter aside so we can collectively get back to what matters: moving in a productive and forward direction. At this point, the calls and emails to discuss the whys and whats of other people's actions and statements is counter-productive. I realize there have also been discussions about my 'lack of presence,' and want to assure you that today I am back in the driver seat as I was for the Society and I's most successful 2016 event. I have complete confidence in the direction we are taking today because 1) I have taken my time to seriously and carefully reflect on all the successes and lessons, 2) I've put in the work to learn how it best comes together, and not, and 3) I've done my due diligence of seeking to understand what it is the industry wishes to manifest at this turn of the century.

It is undeniable that times are changing, that we seek a refreshing outlook and a more 'attainable' approach for the hobby to draw in 'new blood'. It's further undeniable that not everyone shares the same visions. So — in order to do that successfully, I genuinely believe we must both honor the old and embrace the new, and we must do it one step at a time; and furthermore — I firmly believe that we are most successful doing it together.

Please give me a chance to outline what my understanding is, how I intend to get there, and how you can be a part of it — should you echo my sentiments.

Enjoy the Music.com's LAAS 2018 show report can be seen at this link.


04 / 18 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

Rupert Neve, JH Audio, AIS Audio, GiK Acoustics, AURALiC, YG Acoustics, Kubala-Sosna, Pass Labs, Fist Watt, Dana Cables, Benchmark, Aurum Cantus And Synergistic Research At AXPONA 2018
Rupert Neve, JH Audio, AIS Audio, GiK Acoustics, AURALiC, YG Acoustics, Kubala-Sosna, Pass Labs, First Watt, Dana Cables, Benchmark, Aurum Cantus And Synergistic Research
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Sumiko Announces Two New MC And Four MM Phono Cartridges
Sumiko Announces Two New MC And Four New MM Phono CartridgesSumiko is proud to announce six new phono cartridges, the outcome of a three-year development effort. There are four new moving magnet cartridges, the Rainier, Olympia, Moonstone and Amethyst which join the existing Oyster product lineup; and two new moving coil cartridges, the Songbird and Starling which will be part of the Reference Series product line. The four new additions to the acclaimed Oyster series are the most ambitious Moving Magnet (MM) cartridges we have released to date. The Rainier, Olympia, and Moonstone all utilize a common housing and generator assembly, so the stylus assemblies are interchangeable. You can purchase the Rainier and upgrade to the Olympia or Moonstone without replacing the entire cartridge. They set a new performance standard for the audiophile on a budget. The Amethyst is our flagship Moving Magnet (MM) design and requires its own unique cartridge body to maximize the performance of the excellent Nude Line Contact stylus. This exceptional cartridge even surpasses some moving coil cartridges in resolution and detail, setting a new benchmark for moving magnet cartridges with replaceable stylus assemblies. Joining the Reference Series line are two new Moving Coil (MC) designs including the new Songbird, which features exceptional tracking capability and the flexibility to mate well with a wide variety of tonearms and turntables. The Songbird's high output voltage ensures noise free musical reproduction compatible with not only moving coil phono inputs but also moving magnet inputs. The Starling is our new reference open architecture design featuring a MicroRidge stylus on a boron cantilever in a low output/low mass configuration. This is a powerful, dynamic cartridge with a very refined coherent presentation. The Starling is the latest manifestation of Sumiko's forty years of refinement of phono cartridge design. Both cartridges feature a new CNC-precision milled high grade aluminum body with optimized resonance properties. Suggested retail price is Songbird $899, Starling $1899, MM: Rainier $149, Olympia $199, Moonstone $299, and the Amethyst $599.


04 / 17 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

Nordost, Newvelle Records, Mytek, Morrow Audio, And Pro-ject At AXPONA 2018 Show Report
Nordost, Newvelle Records, Mytek, Morrow Audio, McIntosh Labs and Pro-ject
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Audio Research Reference 160M Monoblock Power Amplifier
Audio Research Reference 160M Monoblock Power AmplifierAfter two years in development, the new Audio Research Reference 160M (REF160M, $30,000 per pair) monoblock power amplifier is said by the company to be "built like no other, looks like no other, and sounds like no other amplifier that you have ever heard, but it is unmistakably Audio Research." The REF160M will provide a conservatively rated 150 Watts in ultralinear mode and 75 Watts in triode mode. This amplifier features a refined audio topology with fewer parts, yet each part is extremely high quality as the signal path has been minimized to ensure signal purity. Features include switchable Ultralinear/Triode operation, proprietary auto-bias, output tube monitoring and protection, plus an advanced power meter. Designers at Audio Research wanted to create a new style that would complement the look of the REF6 preamplifier while also featuring a transparent faceplate that allows a view of the glowing KT150 vacuum tubes. This window incorporates an innovative dual-layer construction with distinctively etched markings that create an integrated power meter. The power meter's output-level markings illuminate via hidden LEDs, and the illumination brightness is adjustable. The REF160M includes a sculpted cover with an integrated fan to cool the heat generated by the four KT150 output tubes and two 6H30 driver tubes. Solid-state power regulation was chosen to provide increased efficiency, stability, and reliability. The power supply stage uses a newly developed High Energy Capacity Transformer and a hefty bulk storage-capacity network to provide extremely high current on demand for transient peaks and intense dynamics, as well as for prodigious bass depth and authority. Dimensions are 17.25" x 10" x 18.5" (WxHxD) and it weighs 56 lbs.


Using 3D Printed Metamaterials For Both Vibrations And Sound Control
Using 3D Printed Metamaterials For Both Vibrations And Sound ControlResearchers at the University Of Southern California are using specially developed magnetoactive metamaterials in a set structure to control vibrations and sound. "Acoustic metamaterials with negative constitutive parameters (modulus and/or mass density) have shown great potential in diverse applications ranging from sonic cloaking, abnormal refraction and superlensing, to noise canceling. In conventional acoustic metamaterials, the negative constitutive parameters are engineered via tailored structures with fixed geometries; therefore, the relationships between constitutive parameters and acoustic frequencies are typically fixed to form a 2D phase space once the structures are fabricated. Here, by means of a model system of magnetoactive lattice structures, stimuli-responsive acoustic metamaterials are demonstrated to be able to extend the 2D phase space to 3D through rapidly and repeatedly switching signs of constitutive parameters with remote magnetic fields. It is shown for the first time that effective modulus can be reversibly switched between positive and negative within controlled frequency regimes through lattice buckling modulated by theoretically predicted magnetic fields. The magnetically triggered negative-modulus and cavity-induced negative density are integrated to achieve flexible switching between single-negative and double-negative. This strategy opens promising avenues for remote, rapid, and reversible modulation of acoustic transportation, refraction, imaging, and focusing in sub-wavelength regimes."


04 / 16 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage

AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report

AXPONA 2018 = EPIC Sound! EPIC Venue! EPIC Weather?
AXPONA 2018 = EPIC Sound! EPIC Venue! EPIC Weather?
AXPONA 2018 Show Coverage By Steven R. Rochlin


Rebeat Innovation's High Definition Vinyl LPs Scheduled For 2019
Rebeat Innovation's High Definition Vinyl LPs Scheduled For 2019As reported on Enjoy the Music.com's Industry New on March 17, 2016, "many new vinyl titles are sourced from digital audio files, the once all analog domain is now taking things one step further as it has been reported that Rebeat Innovation has patented High Definition Vinyl (HD Vinyl). This new format may be reaching stores in the coming years and has many benefits over the many decades old process. It has been claimed that this new format is backward compatible with current turntables plus there can be 30% more capacity stored within this new vinyl LP format." Rebeat has recently received $4.8 million in investor backing so they can purchase the laser machine needed to make HD Vinyl a reality. "We adjust the distance of the grooves, we correct the radial/tangential errors, and we optimize the frequencies," said Rebeat Innovation CEO Güenter Loibl "You could say we 'master' the topographical data, which is a totally different approach." Another added benefit according to Rebeat Innovation is that this new process doubles the audio fidelity of most LPs currently sold within stores. This newly patented process of creating HD Vinyl begins by employing 3D-based topographical mapping and then the Femto-laser inscription technology. This digital process allows for a more accurate cutting of the lacquer and can easily be repeated time and again as new lacquers are needed. Furthermore, the original digital source file can be seamlessly tweaked and tuned to ensure a top quality end result. Rebeat Innovation hopes to have new vinyl LP titles available in 2019.


04 / 11 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Coverage

AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Pass Labs Debuts XP-22 Preamplifier & XP-27 Phono Stage At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Experience ATC's Latest Loudspeakers At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Gayle Sanders Returns With Eikon DSP-Based Speaker System


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Fidelis AV To Showcase Harbeth 40.2 Reference Speakers


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Ayon Audio's New Orthos II XS Monoblock Tube Amplifiers


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
AURALiC To Feature Aries G1, Aries G2 Streamer And LEO GX


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Experience Luxman Sound With Triangle Speakers At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Sohmer Associates: Acoustic Research, Emotiva, And HiFiMAN At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Parasound Debuts Halo JC 5 Stereo Amplifier At AXPONA 2018


04 / 10 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Coverage

AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Magico Is Excited To Unveil A3 Floorstander At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Doshi Audio Debuts New Models At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Gold Note: The Italian Music Experience At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Bryston's 24B3 Six Channel Bridgeable Solid-State Amplifier


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
SotM's First Network Switch Unveiling At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Benchmark Introduces Their HPA4 Line Stage And Headphone Amplifier


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Gauder Akustik Will Team Up With Western Electric At AXPONA 2018


04 / 09 / 18

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Coverage

AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report

AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
An Evening With(out) David Bowie Presented By Thomas Mulready


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Be In The Moment With Cleer's Next And Flow Headphones


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Egglestonworks Shows Viginti, Debuts Kiva, At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Legacy Valor System In Utopia A At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
MartinLogan to Demonstrate Three Masterpiece Series Electrostatic Speakers At AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Paradigm to Demonstrate Persona, Prestige, and Décor Speakers and Anthem STR and MRX Electronics at AXPONA 2018


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Prism Sound's Callia DAC Brings Recording Studio Quality To AXPONA 2018 Room #366


AXPONA 2018 Pre-Show Report
Zesto Audio Brings Top Audio Gear To AXPONA 2018

More AXPONA pre-show report coming soon!


RIAA Revenue Statistics For 2017 -- Streaming Music Dominance
RIAA Revenue Statistics For 2017"In 2017 revenues from recorded music in the United States increased 16.5% at estimated retail value to $8.7 billion," says the RIAA, "continuing the growth from the previous year. At wholesale, revenues grew 12.6% to $5.9 billion. Similar to 2016, these increases came primarily from growth in paid music subscriptions to services like Spotify, Amazon, Tidal, Apple Music, Pandora and others, which grew by more than 50%. This is the first time since 1999 that U.S. music revenues grew materially for two years in a row. At $8.7 billion, the industry has taken a decade to return to the same overall revenue level as 2008, and is still 40% below peak levels as the growth from streaming has been offset by continued declines in revenues from both physical and digital unit based sales. Streaming music platforms accounted for almost 2/3rd of total U.S. music industry revenues in 2017, and contributed nearly all of the growth. The streaming category includes revenues from premium subscription services, streaming radio services including those revenues distributed by Sound Exchange (like Pandora, Sirius XM, and other Internet radio), and ad-supported on-demand streaming services (such as YouTube, Vevo, and ad-supported Spotify). Total revenues from streaming platforms were up 43% to $5.7 billion, and in 2017 made up 65% of total industry revenues." While there's no doubt streaming is a main source for music lovers, according to the RIAA "Shipments of physical products decreased just 4% to $1.5 billion in 2017, a lower rate of decline than in recent years. In the first half of the year, the rate of return of physical goods declined, leading to better results. In the second half, those rates returned to more typical levels. Vinyl continues to be a bright spot among physical formats, with revenues up 10% to $395 million. Shipments of CDs continued to decline, falling 6% in 2017 to $1.1 billion. Revenues from shipments of physical products made up 17% of the industry total in 2017." You can read the entire News and Notes on 2017 RIAA Revenue Statistics PDF press release at this link.


Erzetich Audio's New Mania And Phobos Stereo Headphones
Erzetich Audio's New Mania And Phobos Stereo HeadphonesErzetich Audio is taking pre-orders for the Mania semi-open and Phobos open over the ear headphones (€1019 and €1699 respectively). The company says they are making waves in the headphone sector thanks to their unique approach to design and manufacture. These two new limited series headphones seek to provide premium sound quality using wooden cups and a deep understanding of acoustics to craft headphones that stand out in the competitive music industry. Dutch singer Anneke van Giersbergen has also been unveiled as the brand's first ambassador to coincide with this latest release. The first pair of headphones, named Phobos, offer a detailed, firm, and dynamic sound resulting in a rich experience whether wearers are listening to classical or jazz music according to the company. Style and design are an essential part of Phobos too, with the bold octagonal shape creating a statement as well as supporting sound quality with the addition of planar magnetic drivers positioned in the cups. The second pair of versatile headphones, dubbed Mania, are ideal for music fans that have a diverse collection of tunes they flick through. The internal geometry of the cups has been expertly crafted for maximum harmony, making them perfectly suited for shifts in musical mood and tempo.


04 / 06 / 18

AXPONA 2018: America's Largest Spring High-End Show Is Next Week
AXPONA 2018 Show ReportAXPONA 2018 is set for April 13th through 15th at the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Center and will be our eighth annual coverage by Enjoy the Music.com. All audiophiles, music lovers, vinyl collectors, audio engineers and musicians can attend three jam-packed days of incredible sounds, technology, presentations, design, and the very latest products in the industry. Now in its ninth year, AXPONA is one of the defining high-end audio show within the United States. This event caters to dealers, distributors and manufacturers, as well as music lovers and audiophiles. AXPONA's new state-of-the-art venue will feature an expanded Exhibit Hall plus a new Record Shop and Master Class Theater. AXPONA will once again offer something for everyone – from the novice music lover to the seasoned audio expert looking to enhance their sound with the latest technology. As their largest show to date, AXPONA Seeks to meet the increasing demand from attendees looking for the very best brands within the music world under one roof. The expanded Exhibit Hall, which is home to the Marketplace and Ear Gear Expo, is an outstanding 30,000 square feet and will showcase a vast array of turntables, cables, accessories, racks and stands, tonearms, cartridges and the latest headphones and associated equipment in the growing world of mobile and high-end personal listening. Enjoy the Music.com's AXPONA 2018 show coverage will begin the first day of the event. To learn more, plus read our previous reports, see our special AXPONA 2018 show report page at this link.


Industry News 10 Years Ago
Apple's iTunes Is Now The #1 United States Music Retailer
Apple Computers Incorporated iTunes Music StoreOnline music is now king as Apple's iTunes is ranked as the number one United States retailer, as based on the latest data from the NPD Group. This data is based on the amount of music sold during January and February 2008. How big is iTunes you ask? How does a staggering 50 million customers in total paying up for over four billion songs. Of course with your local brick and mortar store's ever-dwindling physical media stock, iTunes has over six million songs available 24/7 for your shopping pleasure. "We launched iTunes less than five years ago, and it has now become the number one music retailer in the world," said Eddy Cue, Apple's vice president of iTunes. Of course audiophiles demand something less lossy compressed, and so MusicGiants may be their choice for high-resolution music. As a disclaimer, Enjoy the Music.com is partners in offering MusicGiants downloads and while some downloads have DRM, hopes are to make the entire catalog DRM free in the coming months. In other online music news, MySpace will soon launch their music service. Participating labels include Sony BMG, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group, while EMI Music Group may join in shortly. As for physical media, no crystal ball needed as Q1 2008 sales within the United States have fallen 10.7 percent. Selling 104.5 million units, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The decades old compressed audio CD format, as most engineers record music well over the 16-bit/44kHz standard, saw sales reduced by 16 percent during the same period. Of course music downloads experienced double-digital growth, reaching a 28.7 percent climb. Is it time to kill the CD format in exchange for high-resolution digital download, only you can decide.


04 / 05 / 18

Abyss AB-1266 Planar Magnetic Headphones By JPS Labs Review
Abyss AB-1266 Planar Magnetic Headphones By JPS Labs
The journey is the destination.
Review By Dave Hanson


Hi-Fi+'s April Magazine Features Bristol Show And Reviews
Hi-Fi+ Issue 158 April 2018Hi-Fi+ Magazine's April 2018 issue features the Bristol Sound & Vision 2018 show plus Meet Your Maker with Karl-Heinz Fink. Audio gear reviews include the Chord Electronics Dave / SPM 1050 MKII DAC/preamp and stereo power amplifier, Dan D'Agostino Master Audio Systems Progression preamplifier / power amplifier, Exopsure XM5 integrated amplifier, Bel Canto Black EX integrated amplifier, Sugden Sapphire DAP-800/FBA-800 DAC / preamp and stereo power amp, Aavik U-150 Unity integrated amplifier, Mobile Fidelity Studiophono phono stage, Linn Products Urika II digital phono stage, Dynaudio Contour 30 floorstanding loudspeakers, Elac Adante AS-61 standmount loudspeakers, Pioneer SE-Monitor 5 closed-back headphones, Campfire Audio Polaris / Andromeda earphones, plus Black Rhodium Overture / Polka / Stream analogue interconnects, loudspeaker cables, and power cords. Within his editorial, Hi-Fi+'s Alan Sircom says "Every year the amplifier gets that little bit more complex! The amplifier used to have just two jobs to do – select the right source, and then make those small signals large enough to be played by a pair of loudspeakers. Increasingly, however, the humble amplifier is more of a complete digital nexus, having to cope with new formats and streaming standards and a whole lot more. Fortunately, there are some clever audio designers who are very good at combinations. It's a mark of resilience that the amplifier hasn't changed quite as dramatically as it could. Notionally at least, a modern amplifier could be almost entirely digital, operating in Class D, and about the size of a roll of sticky tape. And although such things do exist, many chose not to go there and still prefer their amplifiers a little more traditional. Sometimes very traditional, but most of us meet somewhere in the middle, with amplifier systems that feature inputs new and old." See what's within this issue of Hi-Fi+ Magazine at this link.


04 / 04 / 18

Campfire Audio Has Introduced Their Comet And Atlas In-Ear Monitor
Campfire Audio Has Introduced Their Comet And Atlas In-Ear MonitorCampfire Audio has just announced their new audiophile-grade in-ear monitors Comet and Atlas ($199 and $1299 respectively). Campfire Audio's new stainless steel earphone bodies are drop forged and then CNC machined before being hand polished to a mirror finish. The durability of stainless steel provides peace of mind in daily use. Each earphone is assembled by hand in our workshop by their team of highly skilled craftspeople. Custom design driver technologies ensure a unique sonic signature. Each earphone is painstakingly tuned to meet specific sonic characteristics. Both Atlas and Comet feature all new custom driver designs. Campfire Audio's Tuned Acoustic Expansion Chamber (TAEC) discards a traditional tube and damper tuning systems for acoustic tuning without compression. As a result, high frequencies are extended and open, providing an excellent sonic quality unique to Campfire Audio earphones. Of note is that recently Campfire Audio introduced new technology for use with dynamic driver designs; Polarity Tuned Chamber. 3D modeled tuned chambers encapsulate the driver allows for optimal performance and precise tuning. Comet features TAEC technology while Atlas incorporates our Polarity Tuned Chamber. The ergonomic shape of both Comet and Atlas offer an easy to wear and comfortable fit. Additionally, the bilateral design allows for two fitting options. The hand polished Stainless Steel finish makes for a great looking earphone. It is durable and ready to stand up to demanding daily use.


04 / 03 / 18

OPPO Digital Will Gradually Stop Manufacturing New Products
OPPO Digital Will Gradually Stop Manufacturing New ProductsWhat has come as a big shock to many people within the audio / video industry, the highly popular and award-earning company OPPO Digital will stop producing new products. According to OPPO Digital, "It has been 14 years since we established OPPO Digital in the United States, and with the support of our customers, technical partners, and movie/music studios, we produced many award-winning Hi-Fi audio products and universal disc players, spanning three generations from DVD, Blu-ray, to 4K UHD. As our latest 4K UHD players reach the pinnacle of their performance, it is time to say goodbye. We are proud to have made such well-regarded products and to have served the enthusiast community. Without our customers' suggestions, encouragement, and support, we could not have accomplished these achievements. Though OPPO Digital will gradually stop manufacturing new products, existing products will continue to be supported, warranties will still be valid, and both in-warranty and out-of-warranty repair services will continue to be available. Firmware will continue to be maintained and updates released from time to time. Customers can rest assured that they will continue to receive the high quality service and support that they have come to expect from OPPO Digital. We greatly appreciate the opportunity to have developed such exciting products for our customers. It has been an honor.

Best regards,

All of us at OPPO Digital"


Industry News 15 Years Ago
Universal Music Makes Commitment In Producing DVD-Audio
Universal Music Group (UMG) has announced their commitment to make music available on DVD-Audio. Beginning with twenty United States releases slated for the second half of 2003, UMG plans an ongoing program to make a combination of best-selling artists and core catalog titles available on DVD-Audio in major markets worldwide. "Universal has always played a leading role in the development and implementation of new technologies and formats," states Larry Kenswil, President, eLabs, Universal Music Group. "Over the past five years DVD has established itself as one of the fastest growing formats. The huge penetration of DVD makes DVD-Audio a natural progression for music lovers who are already owners of DVD players, taking them from the familiar world of stereo to the 21st Century world of multi-channel surround sound."


04 / 02 / 18

Enjoy the Music.com's April Review Magazine Is One Of Our Largest!
Enjoy the Music.com's April Review Magazine features over 20 reviews and articles! We're also preparing for the upcoming AXPONA event in Chicago and look fwd to seeing you there! We're very happy to bring you four special articles from manufacturers, who share their wisdom and experience to both educate and entertain. With so many new articles and reviews, we're keeping this brief. Look forward to seeing everyone at AXPONA 2018 in April as it looks to be another truly epic show!

WARNING: Below is just a sampling of the over 20 articles and reviews within the April issue, so be sure to see what's within this month's edition of Enjoy the Music.com's Review Magazine at this link. As always, in the end what really matters is that you...

Enjoy the Music,

Steven R. Rochlin
Creative Director
Enjoy the Music.com


Scientific Study Shows Lossy Compression Has Major Negative Affects
Scientific Study Shows Lossy Compression Has Major Negative Affects
Lossy music compression may have caused many undesirable social issues.
Article By Dr. Aud I. Ologist Esq. III PhD MD


A Silent Renaissance?
Roger Skoff writes surprising news about our hobby and industry.
Article By Roger Skoff


AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report
AXPONA 2018 High-End Audio Show Report
Audio Expo North America Coverage by Enjoy the Music.com


Sound Practices Fear Of Frying
Fear Of Frying
Or how I learned to stop worrying and love my home audio system.
Article By Joyce Of Sound Practices Magazine


Bi-Amp'ing Basics By KEF
Bi-Amp'ing Basics
Article By Jack Sharkey KEF Direct


The World Beyond 20kHz
Article By Earthworks Audio Founder David E. Blackmer


World Premiere Review!
McIntosh MC611 Review Preview
3223 words that hope to deliver an entertaining, and informative, story.
Review By Steven R. Rochlin


Etsuro Urushi Cobalt Blue Moving Coil Phono Cartridge Review
Etsuro Urushi Cobalt Blue Moving Coil Phono Cartridge
A super-transparent window into the sounds that have been etched into an LP's surface.
Review By Tom Lyle


1MORE Triple Driver Over-Ear Headphones Review
1MORE Triple Driver Over-Ear Headphones
Can 1MORE deliver another classic bang-for-the-buck beauty?
Review By Dave Hanson


Ciúnas ISO-DAC, ISO-HUB, ISO-S/PDIF, ISO-PS, Plus Raspberry Pi 3 S/PDIF And Allo DigiOne Review
Ciúnas ISO-DAC, ISO-HUB, ISO-S/PDIF, ISO-PS, Plus Raspberry Pi 3 S/PDIF And Allo DigiOne
Digital done right!
Review By Clive Meakins


Reference 3A MM de Capo BE Monitor Review
Reference 3A MM de Capo BE Monitor
A musician's delight with this updated classic... and a bargain too!
Review By Phil Gold


Vermouth Audio Little Luccas MkII Limited Edition Speakers Plus Red Velvet And Black Pearl Cables ReviewVermouth Audio Little Luccas MkII Limited Edition Speakers Plus Red Velvet And Black Pearl Cables Review
Vermouth Audio Little Luccas MkII Limited Edition Speakers Plus Red Velvet And Black Pearl Cables
Good things come in small packages?
Review By Dwayne Carter


More Articles Available Online!
See all our show reports, articles, and gear reviews within Enjoy the Music.com's Review Magazine now available online.

Also visit us online at:      


04 / 01 / 18

Aple's New ALP Hi-Res Music Strategy Brings The Best In Audio Fidelity
Aple's New ALP Hi-Res Music Strategy Brings The Best In Audio FidelityEveryone knows that for many years Aple has demanded music providers to send lossless Hi-Res Audio files, and it took hiring someone with great future outlook, plus the retirement gift by Jim-Bob Io, to make this possible. Their new ALP (Apple Lossless Player) will bring the company's uncompressed 24-bit files to all current and future products. Mit Kooc, CEO of Aple said, "Our founder Steve Boj's deep passion for music brought us the MyPed, a truly revolutionary portable music player of its time and only capable from a company as innovative as Aple. Our new ALP Music continues our legacy and is now available to 75 countries across the world. Naturally Aple is forward-thinking, with bringing change to hardware, software, and most important of all, streamlining the payment system to musical artists while ensuring our customers experiences the very best music experience. ALP in now available for both your iToones library and our revolutionary music streaming service. For those who want to own their music, you can easily upgrade your current music library for only 50 cents per song ($3 for each album, including double albums) to upgrade from lossy AAC to our incredible-sounding lossless 24-bit format. Now let's turn our attention to our extremely popular, and fast-growing, Aple Music streaming service. For only $20 per month for single-user, and $27.50 for family plan, you have full access to hundreds of thousands of the very best sounding music on Earth as only Aple can bring. By using the same core ALP Music technology within both iToones and Aple Music streaming, we've efficiently unified the user experience and ease of use. Our Aple family of users are passionate, and for the first time we're bringing an authentic experience to music lovers worldwide. There's no other company with the ability to bring this experience from the original music file to the hardware that will make it sound its best."

"In addition to the new ALP Music," says CEO of Aple Mit Kooc, "the company has acquired one of audio industry's most innovative companies. Aple is proud to announce that they have acquired Deviant, a gorgeous self-contained music system with an abundance of power you may have already heard at one of our beautiful retail stores. From 1000 Watts or more, not only is potent power a given, the Museum of Modern Art has celebrated its design. Furthermore, end-to-end system integration, as only Aple can provide, ensures you enjoy a truly authentic experience. Furthermore, if your connection is not fast enough for 24-bit, it seamlessly downsamples as your data connection allows to give you the best sound possible. Unlike other proprietary music scheme, there is no additional licensing or fees for music labels. Aple only desires to bring the very best products to our users, and with Aple's new ALP Music we're sure you'll agree it is the best your music has sounded."

"Music creators, and passionate music enthusiasts, will also rejoice as for the very first time a streaming music service will also provide the most in-depth meta data, album artwork (including exclusives) and Aple exclusive interactive features including special featurettes" continued Mit Kooc, "We here at Aple want to ensure that music creators are paid fairly, as so with proper meta data we fairly support musicians, who have been suffering for decades due to an extremely complicated music industry system, to our new Aple Music Meta payout system. More will be revealed concerning exactly what song writers, engineers, and musicians will be paid, yet this is a major industry-leading step in the right direction for the music business. It takes the payment system away from a myriad of inefficient organizations to a single, efficient modern system as only Aple can do. This maximizes what music creators receive for payment and removes the many fees associated with other collection companies. So as you can see, Aple's new ALP Music values the creative force of music, plus is the industry's first true re-think about both the business side and delivery of the highest quality music to our customers." We here at Enjoy the Music.com know you'll enjoy the music this April first.


For previous high-end audio industry news click here.


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