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The MoFi predicament

Commentaries | Music | The Columns | Vinyl

David Blumenstein

The fallout from the MoFi/Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab/Music Direct debacle is far-reaching. It affects not only audiophiles and vinyl enthusiasts, but the entire HiFi industry if not directly, then by association. Let’s be clear: if indeed MoFi is now transparent after coaxing to publish the provenance and digital step(s) in its releases, they could/should have […]

Turntable Mat Evaluation: an afternoon with the Sacramento Audio Group

Audio Accessories | Commentaries | The Columns

Marc Silver

I am always looking for topics to write about and this one recently just fell into my lap. I have not seen a lot on turntable mats; when I brought it up at a recent meeting of the Sacramento Audio Group, the members thought it would be a great and fun exercise for a club […]

Perlisten Interview

Commentaries | Speakers | The Columns

Doug Schroeder

The following is an interview of Perlisten CEO and Co-founder Dan Roemer. I see on the website the brief bios for Dan and Lars. Are there others deserving particular mention in association with the success of Perlisten? Erik Wiederholtz, Stephen Mascenik and Peter Yang also are partners of Perlisten The company timeline mentions a “high […]

Perlisten S7t tower speakers and D212s subwoofers Review

Floorstanding Speakers | Speakers | Subwoofers

Doug Schroeder

From the author: In a bid to lessen the inordinate amount of time spent on development of reviews, I have determined to alter their format. For the past 14 years I have typically conducted technically inclined interviews and woven into the articles the information gleaned. Now, in order to save keystrokes and allow you to […]

Reference Recordings Beethoven Symphony No. 6 “Pastoral’ & Stucky Silent Spring FR-747SACD Review

Classical | Music

Constantine Soo

Tracks: Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 Pastoral I. Awakening of cheerful feelings on arriving in the country: Allegro ma non troppo (11:01) II. Scene by the brook: Andante molto mosso (11:49) III. Merry assembly of country folk: Allegro (4:57) IV. Thunderstorm: Allegro (3:28) V. Shepherd’s Song – Benevolent feelings of thanksgiving to the deity […]

Interview with Peter Connell, Director of the Disneyland Band

Commentaries | The Columns

Byron Baba

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to chat with Peter Connell, the director of the world famous Disneyland Band. Peter leads a group of the most entertaining musicians around. Anyone who has spent time on Disneyland’s Main Street at the Anaheim, California park gets to be entertained listening to live unamplified music by this […]

Audio Note UK Empress Silver parallel single-ended triode monoblock amplifiers Review

Amplification | Mono Block | Tube

Richard Austen

Also read Audio Note UK M1 Phono preamp & Empress Silver parallel single-ended triode monoblocks Review   The Audio Note Empress Silver Monoblock amplifiers are parallel single-ended amplifiers using two 2a3 power tubes per channel and generating 7-8 watts per channel. Audio Note describes the Empress as follows: Pure Class A operation Zero Negative Feedback […]

Parasound NewClassic 275 v.2 two channel power amplifier Review

Amplification | Solid State

Byron Baba

I really enjoyed my time with the Parasound NewClassic 200 Pre preamplifier in my last review. I find Parasound products to sound great, are a tremendous value, and are built to last based on my own almost 30 years of personal experience with the brand. The Parasound NewClassic 275 v.2 power amplifier is one of […]

Glanz MH-1200S stainless steel tonearm Review

Analog Sources | Tone Arms

Constantine Soo

The tagline for Glanz is “A legendary brand is reborn” and it is not an exaggeration. The Glanz name was first used in 1972 by the Mitachi Onkyo corporation when a twenty-three-year-old Masataka Hamada joined and developed the company’s first moving magnet cartridges. He went independent in 1980 while continuing development of audio technologies for […]

One man’s dream: the Acapella Spharon Excalibur speakers system (a consideration)

Spotlight | System Profiles

Fred Crowder

Introduction I became friends with Jim some years ago, as we were both pursuing an interest in the Audio Note UK top DA converter at the showroom of Colorado dealership Audio Federation. Jim’s determination to build a system that could reproduce as well as possible the sound of live music, particularly the symphonies and piano […]

Parasound NewClassic 200 Pre Review


Byron Baba

I have been successfully using Parasound components for almost 30 years. I purchased the Parasound HCA-1200 power amplifier brand new back in 1993, which then had a list of $845.00. I have used the amp all this time, initially driving Acarian Systems Alon 1 speakers and currently Magnepan MMG speakers. The reliability of this Parasound […]

Audio Note UK Isis Mains cable Review

Cables | Power Cables

Fred Crowder

In a world where a power cord can sell for more than the price of an automobile, is it possible to find a power cord that will significantly improve the performance of your equipment, yet can be had at a reasonable price (say significantly less than $1,000)? This review attempts to answer that question. In […]

PureAudioProject Trio15 Coax10 open-baffle speakers Review

Floorstanding Speakers | Speakers

Doug Schroeder

The hopeless truth (or fascinating reality) They say wisdom is recognizing how little you know, that the more you learn, the more you realize how little you know. With each high-end audio system I assembled, and there have been hundreds, the feeling grows in me that I know less and less of the absolute extent […]

Audio Note UK M1 Phono preamp & Empress Silver parallel single-ended triode monoblocks Review

Amplification | Mono Block | Phono | Preamplifier | Tube

Miyajima Laboratory Destiny moving-coil cartridge Review

Analog Sources | Cartridges

Constantine Soo

How do you want your music? Some classical fans may want less micro detail in favor of a more laid back, macro perspective to take in the entire orchestra, perhaps yielding a more judicious treatment of delicate woodwinds amidst the panoramic strings and brasses. To some lieder fans, tonal magnetism and fluidity of the human […]

Accusound Ones & Digital SE cable system Review

Cables | Digital Cables | Interconnects | Speaker Cables

David Blumenstein

Late 2020 and all of 2021 did a number on me and not for the reason you might think, although that might have played a part. During this time, I moved house three times, having to pack up all of my belongings, including all of my stereo systems and requisite gear, as many times. That […]

Cambridge Audio EVO 150 all-in-one player Review

Amplification | DACs | Digital | Digital Sources | Integrated Amplifiers | Others

David Blumenstein

The Cambridge Audio EVO 150 at first glance is a network streamer and integrated amplifier and, while that would not be factually incorrect, it is that much and more. Its industrial design, highlighted by the borderless display screen (picture a resort hotel’s rooftop infinite pool viewed from above), serves not only its effusive functionality and […]

Nagaoka MP-110 phono cartridge Review

Analog Sources | Cartridges

Byron Baba

Nagaoka phono cartridges have received some rave reviews on the internet. In one video, the Nagaoka MP-150 ($350) was favored over the Hana EL and Ortofon Quintet Blue low output moving coils. To check out the brand, I decided to try the entry-level Nagaoka MP-110 ($169.95), which is in the value sweet spot for cartridges […]

Aural Symphonics Optimism Lotus ST optical cable Review

Cables | Digital Cables

Fred Crowder

While there is any number of superb digital units in today’s market, I continue to use an EMM Labs TX2 transport in conjunction with the companion DA2 D/A converter, with which I have been extremely happy.  Other units may, in certain areas, have small advantages, but none when taken as a whole is better or […]

Pass Laboratories HPA-1 headphone amplifier Review

Amplification | Headphone Amplifier | Preamplifier | Solid State

Constantine Soo

I can count on one hand the number of manufacturers who build solidly engineered products that are ahead of the curve and herd, whose products remain vastly competitive and superior to others, and price increase is as rare as hen’s teeth. I can also name companies pricing their products to the stratosphere and tout more […]

Clearaudio Concept Turntable with Satisfy Tonearm and Concept V2 MM Cartridge Review

Analog Sources | Cartridges | Tone Arms | Turn Tables

Constantine Soo

Audiophile-class turntables have always been fairly expensive propositions from their heydays of the eighties to present, a tide that was reversed seemingly in the deep digital age of the new millennium. Large scale turntable manufacturers began to introduce products retailing in the low thousands of dollars, some even with a perceived promise of more advanced […]

Lyra Atlas Lambda SL moving-coil cartridge Review

Analog Sources | Cartridges

Fred Crowder

Introduction I have tried over the years to review products that interested me, which generally meant that they could be expected to sound good and interface well with my system. For the most part, that has worked well for me, even though some products were much better than others and some suited my system better […]

Orchard Audio Starkrimson Streamer Ultra Review and Q&A with Leo Ayzenshtat

Amplification | Digital | Digital Sources | Others

David Snyder

The year is 2021, which means that the first wave of millennials will enter their forties. This is the age where a confluence of high earning potential and enthusiasm for sound reproduction often produces audiophiles. But research tells us that millennials generally “derive more value from experiences than objects.” How should an industry that has […]

Salk Sound SongTower speakers Review

Floorstanding Speakers | Speakers

Byron Baba

I first heard a pair of Salk Sound speakers at the California Audio Show a number of years ago and I was impressed with the presentation. The Salk Sound website indicates that several of their models utilize transmission line designs, an approach that can give extended bass of high quality. I have an old pair […]

Van den Hul The Colibri XGW Master Signature moving coil cartridge & The Grail SE phono preamp Review

Amplification | Analog Sources | Cartridges | Phono

Constantine Soo

After reviewing the $16,500 Top Wing Suzaku Red Sparrow coreless straight-flux cartridge, I auditioned several other high-end cartridges, including two $10,000+ designs that exhibited unremarkable characteristics even when compared to the $4,000 Soundsmith Paua II. All in all, all negated recommendation. The only exception thus far is the Dutch cartridge specialist Van den Hul’s The […]

Rotel A14MKII integrated amplifier Review

Amplification | Integrated Amplifiers

Byron Baba

A common comment in high-end audio is “I would like a high-end stereo system but it is just too expensive.”  While that may be true, I feel high-end audio is more about an attitude and your approach to buying audio components.  I have listened to a number of home theater setups that were very costly […]

Ohm Acoustics F5 speaker Review

Floorstanding Speakers | Speakers

Doug Schroeder

What does an audiophile do with a speaker that tosses sound everywhere? How is the perfectionist to approach a soundstage that is bulbous, what I term the mushroom cloud soundstage? It is so obviously different that it raises many questions about its characteristics and operation in a HiFi system. A distinct subset of enthusiasts claim […]

Staccato Audio discrete hybrid opamps Review

Amplification | Solid State

Doug Schroeder

I need some advice from the community.When I use my discrete opamps, they are generating heat and after an hour or two the room gets too warm. I have to put the AC on full, and my feet get cold. Does anyone know a solution? That, of course, is a fantasy post to a fictitious […]

PureAudioProject Quintet15 Horn1 open-baffle speaker system

Floorstanding Speakers | Speakers

Doug Schroeder

I got my new Erector Set the other day! If you are old enough to remember Erector Set toys, which are still being produced by Meccano, then you are authentically heading over the hill. I played many hours with that plastic toolbox full of metal girders, bolts, nuts, a set of four wheels, and even […]

Rogers LS 5/9 Classic speakers Review

Bookshelf Speakers | Speakers

Richard Austen

The LS3/5a is perhaps the most famous loudspeaker in the audio world with many versions made, past and present, by many companies. Various versions of the speakers have been reviewed at Dagogo, most recently a current Rogers offering, which was reviewed by Constantine Soo. Indeed, I had also requested a pair but when I saw […]

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