The long-awaited US launch of Passionato.com, intended as the World Wide Web's "premier destination for classical music connoisseurs," has finally happened. Passionato, which has no membership fee, offers the largest collection of classical-music downloads in CD-quality, DRM-free FLAC and 320kbps MP3 formats yet assembled online.
Three years after Dynaudio released its highly coveted 30th Anniversary Sapphire loudspeaker in a limited run of 2000 units, the final pair will be sold online by Danish auctioneer Lauritz. All proceeds from the auction, which begins Wednesday, May 12, and ends at 2pm MEST on Saturday, May 22, will benefit Doctors Without Borders.
The 23rd Salon Son & Image high-fidelity show, cosponsored by Stereophile, takes place in Montreal's Hilton Bonaventure March 2628. (An additional day, March 25, is reserved for the trade and press.) With 10,000 to 12,000 attendees expected, including a sizable American contingent and several thousand Canadians from outside Quebec province, who will take advantage of bilingual presentations and literature and the anticipated absence of snow, SSI remains the largest North America audio show that is open to the public.
BluePort Jazz's catalog of 15 titles, recorded in jazz clubs and studios by Jim Merod, is now downloadable in lossless FLAC format from the House of Linn website. Meroda PhD professor, an author of numerous books, a music critic for Enjoy the Music.com, and an equipment reviewer for Positive Feedback Onlineis known for recording with as few microphones as possible and mixing everything live to two tracks in high-resolution (24-bit/96kHz) PCM format.
Axpona, the Audio Expo of North America, is geared up for its premiere next Friday in Jacksonville, Florida. The new Show runs March 57 at the 350-room Wyndham Riverwalk Hotel, which overlooks the St. Johns River and is just 15 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean. Sponsored by Stereophile, which will blog live from the show, Axpona is already looking like a winner. Impressive figures for advance Internet registration (discounted through March 1) indicate that Axpona might meet or even surpass attendance at last year's Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, in Denver.
Among the maladies to which music lovers are especially susceptible, hearing damage caused by prolonged exposure to loud sounds is perhaps the most pernicious. When you're young, you normally don't think about the consequences of cranking up the volume, but if you do that routinely, you are sure to suffer some form of hearing deficit in your lateror, in some cases, not so lateryears.
The "high-performance" sector of the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show, to be held January 710 at the Venetian Hotel, in economically downturned Las Vegas, promises an exciting array of new products for home and office. While the CES proper is open only to dealers, press, and the relatively few non-industry audiophiles who can wriggle their way in, Stereophile's intrepid bloggers promise to tell you just about everything worth talking about, via frequently updated show reports on our website.
Back when there was still something called the "classical music industry," one of Stereophile's favorite small labels was John Marks Records, masterminded by the magazine's "The Fifth Element" columnist, John Marks. In fact, it was his recordings that first brought John to the magazine's attention. JMR had a phenomenal run of releases, among them Arturo Delmoni and Meg Bachman Vas's Songs My Mother Taught Me, Nathaniel Rosen's cycle of J.S. Bach's Suites for Solo Cello, Delmoni and Rosen's Music for a Glass Bead Game, and the three Rejoice recordings of Christmas music for string quartet (also featuring Delmoni and Rosen). That's a pretty solid run for a label that released fewer than 20 recordings.
The world's largest classical label, Naxos of America, has released its first Blu-ray music package. The Virtual Haydn: Complete Works for Solo Keyboard contains three Blu-ray audio discs plus one three-hour Blu-ray videodisc that together hold 15 hours of music. All performances are by Tom Beghin, a baroque specialist and musicologist based at McGill University. Sound engineer Martha De Francisco, an Associate Professor at McGill, recorded the performances in high-resolution (24-bit/96kHz) PCM sound.
On November 19, Scottosh manufacturer Linn Products held a press conference in London to announce that it was forthwith ceasing the production of CD players, and effectively replacing them by its new DS-series "digital streaming" components in its product portfolio.
The people at Manhattan high-end audio retailer Stereo Exchange know how to throw a party. They proved it back in April with their Spring Fever event, and they look to surpass the success of that outstanding evening with their 25th Anniversary Celebration, this Thursday, November 5, from 39pm.
The first chapter in the history of the LAST Factory, manufacturer of LAST Record Preservative for LPs, is coming to a close. After shepherding for 30 years the Livermore, Californiabased company he founded, LAST's president, Walter Davies, is retiring to devote his energies to still photography. With Jan and Ric Mancuso, of Trade Secrets Consulting, Davies is looking for a buyer to keep the company in operation.
The Burning Amp Festival is almost upon us. The day-long DIY (do-it-yourself) love fest, held within yards of the San Francisco Bay, attracts a good 150 DIYers from around the world who engage in the annual ritual of demming their homemade gear for other avid audio enthusiasts.
The sixth annual Rocky Mountain Audio Fest is about to get underway at the end of this week. Scheduled to take place October 24, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center, the largest high-end audio show in the US that's open to the public will offer 150 exhibit rooms packed with products from 479 companies. Despite the economic slowdown, at least 3500 audiophiles, the same number as last year, are expected to attend.
Wilma Cozart Fine died Monday September 21 at age 82. Together with her husband Bob Fine, Cozart was responsible for producing and engineering Mercury's superb-sounding series of "Living Presence" classical recordings in the 1950s and '60s.