In his review of the Sharp SM-SX100 digital integrated amplifier, Michael Fremer asks: "why would a sharp mind offer a $15,000 integrated digital amplifier to a reviewer who has been characterized in the audio press as the 'self-proclaimed Analog Messiah' and a 'hyper-Luddite'?" Would Fremer actually cotton to a digitized vinyl recording? Read Fremer's report for the startling conclusion.
The good news keeps coming. According to the lastest figures from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the month of May echoed previous months' continuous increase in audio product sales, with monthly revenues up 11% and year-to-date revenues up 12%, to $3.1 billion.
The recent struggle between the RIAA and Napster may seem like a distant battle rumbling off in some foreign realm, far removed from most audiophiles: about once a week we get e-mails asking why a high-end audio website should even cover such stuff.
In December, after months of conducting listening tests with audio professionals in the US, the Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI) choose a watermarking technology from Verance Corporation for DVD-Audio copyright protection. Test results had indicated that Verance's system was the least detectable of the contenders under consideration.
The last week of July was a busy one for music-industry attorneys—and, by some measures, a successful one. As almost everyone in the world is aware, on Wednesday, July 26, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) won a round in its fight against Napster, a San Mateo, California–based software company that enables the sharing of MP3 music files over the Internet. On that day, in a US Federal court in San Francisco, Judge Marilyn Patel decreed that the widespread sharing of music using Napster was a form of wholesale copyright violation, and ordered the service shut down effective midnight on Friday, July 28. Napster, in turn, appealed and won a stay of execution two days after Judge Patel's ruling that will enable it to remain online and in business until at least mid-September.
The last week of July was a busy one for music industry attorneys, and by some measure a sucessful one. As almost everyone in the world is aware, on Wednesday, July 26, the Recording Industry Association of America won a round in its fight against Napster, a San Mateo, CA-based software company that enables the sharing of MP3 music files over the Internet. On that day, in a US Federal court in San Francisco, Judge Marilyn Patel decreed that the widespread sharing of music using Napster was a form of wholesale copyright violation, and ordered the service shut down effective Friday, July 28 at midnight. Napster appealed and won a stay of Judge Patel's injunction that will enable it to remain online and in business until at least mid-September.
Tempted to just cut'n'paste his earlier Arcam integrated amplifier review into his rundown of the Arcam FMJ CD23 CD player, Lonnie Brownell explains that, "after all, it's the same story: British manufacturer gives highly praised product a slick new case to entice those who find their Alpha line too downscale in appearance, adds a few internal tweaks to make it a bit more interesting, and kicks the price up by $400." Instead, he does the right thing in a complete review that even answers the vital question: Should this Arcam be your last CD player?
For the millions of fans who search the Internet for their favorite music, one thing always required is the name of the artist or song sought. But what if you don't know exactly what you want to hear, and would rather search for the kind of music that suits your mood?
Several class-action lawsuits have been thrown against the music industry in the wake of its admission that it engaged in a price-fixing scheme known as Minimum Advertised Pricing, or MAP. The policy arose as a response to widespread CD price wars in the early 1990s that drove prices of some CDs below $10 each, and was intended to prevent mass-market merchandisers from offering CDs below cost as lures to pull customers into stores. The MAP policy was officially discontinued after the Federal Trade Commission reached a settlement with the industry in May of this year.