In Stereophile's January 2016 issue, I began a series of reviews of $10,000 CD players and transport-DAC combinations: an informal and serial survey, the goal of which was to gather, over time, the likeliest candidates for one's Last CD Player Ever. My choice of $10,000 as the target price was more or less arbitrary, although, in retrospect, that's about what I've invested in my go-to combination of turntable, tonearm, and pickup headso, who knows? Maybe my subconscious was acting out.
Some 100 engineers and scientists from around the globe assembled for the Audio Engineering Society's 2016 International Conference on Headphone Technology, in Aalborg, Denmark.
I figured it was coming, but it wasn't until just after I'd returned from the Audio Engineering Society's 2016 International Conference on Headphone Technologyheld last August in Aalborg, Denmarkand was writing up my report and summary on the event for InnerFidelity.com (footnote 1) that I knew for sure: Headphones are about to change . . . a lot.
UK, 1976: Upon its release, Rega Research's original Planar 3 turntable became the poor man's Linn Sondek LP12. It opened a gateway of affordability to the exotic world of high-quality British record players. Forty years later, the new Planar 3 turntable and its "light and rigid" engineering aesthetic, as conceived by Rega founder Roy Gandy, still occupy an admirably working-class, pro-music position in an audio world increasingly populated by gold-plated tonearms and quarter-ton turntables.
Last week, we posted a video on AudioStream of a conversation between Juergen Reis (MBL's Chief Designer), Michael Lavorgna (AudioStream), and John Atkinson, which we filmed during CES 2017. During that same session, we also filmed a conversation between JA and Juergen that focuses more specifically on MBL's new N31 DAC, which JA will be reviewing in a future issue of Stereophile.
In this video, Juergen and JA discuss digital filters, aliasing, Nyquist ringing, USB inputs, inter-sample "overs," and many of the other arcane issues involved in DAC design.