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Robert Harley Posted: May 09, 2004 Published: May 01, 1990 3 comments
The promise of "perfect sound forever," successfully foisted on an unwitting public by the Compact Disc's promoters, at first seemed to put an end to the audiophile's inexorable need to tweak a playback system's front end at the point of information retrieval. Several factors contributed to the demise of tweaking during the period when CD players began replacing turntables as the primary front-end signal source. First, the binary nature (ones and zeros) of digital audio would apparently preclude variations in playback sound quality due to imperfections in the recording medium. Second, if CD's sound was indeed "perfect," how could digital tweaking improve on perfection? Finally, CD players and discs presented an enigma to audiophiles accustomed to the more easily understood concept of a stylus wiggling in a phonograph groove. These conditions created a climate in which it was assumed that nothing in the optical and mechanical systems of a CD player could affect digital playback's musicality.
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Stereophile Staff Posted: May 03, 2004 Published: May 04, 2004 0 comments
From the April 2004 issue, a must-read for all audiophiles: Keith Howard does the SACD and DVD-Audio math for "New Media Metrics." Using a vast collection of informative graphs, KH explores hi-rez attributes and puzzlers. "In the case of SACD, why provide a potential bandwidth in excess of 1.4MHz, only to fill more than 95% of it with quantization noise?"
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Jon Iverson Posted: May 03, 2004 Published: May 04, 2004 0 comments
Stereophile readers are clearly in favor of our coverage of products like Apple's iPod. But judging by some of the comments we receive, they're split on whether it's been a kick in the pants for music lovers or just added to the downward low-rez spiral of digital audio.
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Barry Willis Posted: May 03, 2004 0 comments
Have you ever been to a rock concert and come away mumbling, "Those engineers must be deaf"? After enduring three hours of an all-out sonic assault, you were probably just a tad cranky, but the facts are that those engineers probably were deaf, or well on their way.
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Barry Willis Posted: May 03, 2004 0 comments
It's safe to say that few audio engineers are more famous than Ray Dolby. On May 1, the founder and chairman of Dolby Laboratories was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Akron, Ohio, joining such luminaries as Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, and Thomas Edison, inventor of the light bulb and the phonograph.
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Stereophile Staff Posted: May 02, 2004 0 comments
Last week, Primedia announced the next in a series of editorial upgrades to its Home Technology & Photography specialty group. The group is redesigning its Stereophile Guide to Home Theater magazine to become Stereophile Ultimate AV (new URL: www.ultimateavmag.com) starting with the June 2004 issue. Hitting newsstands May 11, the redesigned magazine will feature 16 pages of new and expanded editorial content for high-end audio/video enthusiasts, more advertisers, and an enhanced consumer-friendly design.
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John Atkinson Posted: May 02, 2004 Published: Sep 01, 1990 0 comments
Meeting Englishman Tim de Paravicini for the first time, you start to wonder if your mind has slipped a gear, whether premature brain fade has cut in. The conversation seems not only to be racing by unexpectedly quickly, but also subjects you hadn't even realized were subjects are being examined in knowledgeable depth. It was at the end of the 1970s that I bumped into Tim at a trade show in the UK; having wanted to ask his opinion of tube-amp design, knowing that the gangling, wispy-bearded, Nigeria-born, one-time resident of South Africa and Japan, ex-Lux engineer (footnote 1) had cast a magic wand over the Michaelson & Austin product line, I found myself instead being treated to an exposition of color phosphor problems in TV monitors. For Tim is a true polymath, his mind seemingly capable of running at high speed along several sets of tracks simultaneously.
Robert J. Reina Posted: May 02, 2004 Published: Aug 01, 1999 0 comments
The story of New Acoustic Dimensions, aka NAD, begins in the late 1970s. The company was founded as a dealer distribution collective to design and market reasonably priced serious high-end gear to cost-constrained audiophiles. By eliminating needless features and focusing manufacturing in low-cost production facilities, NAD has successfully delivered audiophile-quality gear for 20 years at prices little more expensive than mass-market department-store schlock.
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Keith Howard Posted: May 02, 2004 Published: Apr 01, 2004 0 comments
Looked at from one viewpoint, DVD-Audio and SACD appear to be exercises in sheer profligacy. In the case of DVD-A, why provide a maximum bandwidth almost five times what is conventionally taken to be the audible frequency range, and couple it to a dynamic-range capability far in excess of that achievable by the microphones used to record the sound? In the case of SACD, why provide a potential bandwidth in excess of 1.4MHz, only to fill more than 95% of it with quantization noise?
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Wes Phillips Posted: Apr 26, 2004 0 comments
We were startled to receive an email announcement recently informing us that Scot Markwell, long-time set-up and equipment maven for The Abso!ute Sound's erstwhile editor Harry Pearson, had joined the staff at www.themusic.com to manage its Gear Shop division.

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