Sony has recently revealed that they will be broadcasting digital audio via satellite as early as summer 1998. The planned service is the result of a deal made between Sony, Perfect TV, and Japan Sky Broadcasting Corporation (JSkyB) that is expected to close in April.
A good part of each day around here is spent perusing the internet for all things audio: manufacturer sites, audio news, newsgroups, equipment reviews, etc. What's found ranges from the good-intentioned to the well-financed, and much of what's out there also represents the labors of love many audiophiles lavish on their favorite hobby.
Audio designers may differ in their specific design approaches, but the best of them have in common a real passion for their craft. I certainly found this when I visited the Hales Design Group factory in Huntington Beach, California. Although still in his early 30s, Paul Hales has been involved in the design and manufacture of high-quality loudspeakers for almost a decade—first with the Hales Audio partnership, then with his own company, Hales Design Group. When he was just 23, an age when most people are still trying to figure out what they want to do with their lives, Paul had a speaker company and a speaker, the System Two Signature, that got a rave review in Stereophile (Vol.13 No.9, September 1990). Naturally, my first question was about beginnings...
Threshold Corporation, long known as one of the original high-end audio equipment pioneers, is discussing plans to restructure the company to meet new market conditions. Threshold, based in Camarillo, California, manufactures high-end audio amplifiers, preamplifiers, and digital products under the Threshold, FortT, and PS Audio product lines. (PS Audio, of which Threshold Corp. is the majority owner, is currently a separate corporation.)
Sometimes, the only thing that'll soothe the cares and lift the thoughts of man is kicking back and letting glorious music wash over you. Isn't that why we're all here? But no sooner do you sit yourself down in the sweet spot and cue up, say, Mozart's 40th, than you hear:
Judging from the e-mail Wes Phillips has received since announcing Classic Records' 24-bit/96kHz "DADs" (DVD-Videos utilizing the two channels of 24/96 written into the video standard), audiophiles appear to be intensely curious about the new music format.
The largest advertising and promotional campaign for an audio product in Sony Electronics' (and possibly anyone's) history debuted during NBC's Thursday-night prime-time television lineup last week. The campaign, titled "Make it with MD," featured various celebrities as they moved through a Hollywood party sporting a small MiniDisc personal stereo unit playing their own personalized music mixes. Sony also plans major cable, billboard, print ad, and promotional tie-ins.