Art Dudley Posted: Aug 31, 2015 3 comments
People who speak of running with the big dogs describe the experience as a good thing; I can't imagine why. I'll take the small dogs any old time: They're more characterful, less self-possessed, and just plain friendlier. And among hi-fi shows, Capital Audiofest is the friendliest and most interesting small dog on the porch, and still one of my favorites.

Gary Gill's regional show, which retains its slight and very pleasant DIY vibe, returned to the Washington DC area on August 28–30 for its sixth year, and drew respectable numbers of people, especially by the end of the day on Saturday . . .

Herb Reichert Posted: Aug 31, 2015 0 comments
Fern & Roby make artful-looking, and (to me) an impressive sounding turntable with a 70lb cast-bronze plinth and 35lb bronze platter. I have always believed that most audio gear sounds like what it is made of, how it is made, and what it looks like. I saw their beautiful plinth and I saw their elegant thick paper literature, and I thought, maybe this will be all show and no go. I thought this might be a lifestyle product. Then I saw the Syrinx PU-3 tonearm and remembered how all my Japanese friends admired the PU-3's lively, natural sound.
Herb Reichert Posted: Aug 30, 2015 1 comments
It didn't take long for me grasp that this 2015 edition of Capital Audiofest was a big moment for the universally admired (and loved) VPI clan. Everywhere I looked, clan patriarch Harry Weisfeld (center in photo) was smiling and telling great stories. Harry gets my Best In Show award for fascinating tales and amazing tutorials (we talked a lot about drag racing in the 1960s and turntable/arm-bearing lubes). His son Mat (peeking over shoulders in the background) and Mat's fiancée Jane win the Best Couple Ever award and I saw them hugging, kissing, and holding up the "Holy Shit!—That's My Son and Future Daughter-in-Law" trophy.
Herb Reichert Posted: Aug 29, 2015 3 comments
It was early Friday morning, and it was quiet, except for the seductive sounds of Alison Krauss floating through the door from the ModWright/Daedalus room. I had never really met Dan Wright but today we got to hang and talk and I was very impressed. While we talked I kept being distracted by the solid but delicate LP sounds of my beloved Alison coming from the Daedalus Poseidon V2 loudspeakers ($16,450/pair) driven by the ModWright KWA 150SE Signature edition power amp ($8995).
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Fred Kaplan Posted: Aug 29, 2015 2 comments
I've lived in New York City for 20 years, but until last weekend, I'd never visited the Louis Armstrong House and Museum in the borough of Queens. My lapse was inexcusable. The place, which has been opened to the public since 2003, isn't a difficult destination: a nice ride out on the No.7 subway line (to the 103rd Street–Corona station), followed by a five-minute walk. The place is a sheer delight. I plan to go again. You should, too.
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Paul Messenger Posted: Aug 28, 2015 1 comments
Photo: Paul Messenger

Dieter Burmester founded Burmester Audiosysteme GmbH in 1977 and ran it for 38 years. For me, he was the friendly face of an unusually friendly and outgoing German high-end hi-fi company. He died on August 15, and his company will badly miss him.

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Robert Baird Posted: Aug 28, 2015 3 comments
For Grace Potter it seemed inevitable that the clock was going to strike Midnight.
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John Atkinson Posted: Aug 28, 2015 8 comments
Photo: Stephen Mejias

We were saddened to hear of the death of loudspeaker designer Bobby Palkovic, apparently by his own hand. We had published positive reviews of Bobby's Merlin speakers, including one of his VSM Millennium design and the VSM-MX at Following is the news posted to Facebook by Bobby's friend, Rich Brkich of audio retailer Signature Sound...

Kalman Rubinson Posted: Aug 27, 2015 21 comments
For some time now I've wanted to upgrade my weekend system in Connecticut, and have been surveying three-way floorstanding speakers priced below about $2500/pair. I've focused on the stereo performance of each pair with music because, despite my interest in surround sound, the great majority of recordings are available only in two-channel stereo. Not wanting to look like a Bowers & Wilkins fanboy—my main system has long included their 800-series speakers—I put off auditioning B&W's 683 S2. But my goal was to get the best bang for my buck and with the 683 S2 costing $1650/pair, it would foolish to be influenced by such extraneous considerations. Besides, the 683 S2's three-way design and physical proportions were precisely what I was looking for.
John Atkinson Posted: Aug 27, 2015 2 comments
Danish manufacturer GamuT Audio's patchy history in the US includes a succession of distributors that failed to establish the brand here. But in 2014 GamuT tapped Michael Vamos to spearhead their own US-based distribution company, which is now energetically promoting the company's products. That change coincided with my auditioning, at the 2014 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, of GamuT's two-and-a-half-way RS5 tower loudspeaker ($31,900/pair). I was sufficiently impressed that I asked to review it—but then, at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show, I experienced the RS7. This was the GamuT speaker I wanted to spend some time with, and at the end of March, GamuT's R&D manager, Benno Meldgaard, joined Michael Vamos in setting up a pair of RS7s in my listening room.


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