In other news this week, the music business is in a tailspin, and searching for ways to save itself. The National Association of Record Merchandisers (NARM) has just published its chairman's message, with several clues about what consumers may see from the industry in the coming months.
From the October issue, John Atkinson gets acquainted with the Morel Octwin 5.2M loudspeaker, noting, "Once you become accustomed to its admittedly weird looks, it is actually visually appealing and has a small footprint in the listening room." But there's something about the Morel's sound that causes JA to raise an eyebrow.
The last few weeks have been a roller-coaster ride for CD copy-restriction developer SunnComm. The company was riding high in early September when it was announced that BMG and Arista had chosen its MediaMax CD-3 Technology to restrict how discs are used.
Only a few short years ago, Napster quickly took root to show the world how Internet-based audio file-trading was where music distribution's future growth might run wild. But the record labels would have none of it and just as swiftly took a legal chainsaw to Napster's trunk, laying it waste and leaving plenty of room for Kazaa and other unsanctioned services to sprout like weeds.
Paul Bolin takes a spin with the Vacuum Tube Logic TL-7.5 Reference line preamplifier, observing, "For some reason, the light has never shone quite as brightly on VTL's front-end electronics, perhaps in part because it's been so long since the company attempted a headline-grabbing, all-out assault on the state of that art."
GEOFF MULDAUR'S FUTURISTIC ENSEMBLE: Private Astronomy: A Vision of the Music of Bix Beiderbecke Edge 028947458326 (CD). 2003. Conceived & arranged by Geoff Muldaur; Dick Connette, prod.; Joe Boyd, exec. prod.; Eve Seltzer, Gary Carroll, Tristan Leral, Scott Lehrer, Dave Winslow, Mark Linett, Keith Weschler, Neil Couser, engs. AAD? TT:42:18 Performance ***** Sonics ****
What comes to mind when you think of VTL? If you're like most of us, enormously powerful tube power amplifiers are inseparable from the name. To contemplate VTL is to think of some of the finest-sounding, most potent amps ever built—from the late-1980s, 400Wpc Ichiban, the first massively powerful tube monoblock of the audiophile era, to the mighty Wotan and Siegfried amplifiers of today. All well and good, as far as it goes.