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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 20, 1999 0 comments
The MP3 audio format has been rapidly gaining a solid reputation in the last several months. Portable products such as Diamond Multimedia's Rio have hit the market, and websites (typified by MP3.com) have gained financial success. (See related story.) But one area that has so far lagged is MP3-based playback and recording equipment for using the files at home without moving a computer next to the stereo.
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 20, 1999 0 comments
Earlier this month, DirecTV announced that it is investing $50 million in XM Satellite Radio in an effort to capitalize on direct satellite-to-receiver broadcasting technology, which is intended to provide listeners in the car and at home with up to 100 channels of music, news, and entertainment available in North America. Additional XM investors include General Motors, Clear Channel Communications, and a private investment group.
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Barry Willis Posted: Jun 20, 1999 0 comments
Almost every audiophile, whether hobbyist or professional, has taken a stab at building loudspeakers. Combine the fundamentals of cabinetmaking with some basic electronic theory, connect a few good drivers to a well-designed crossover network, and you're on your way to pretty good sound. And now, with widely available resources like crossover design software and high-quality prefabricated cabinets, the task is easier than it's ever been.
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Paul Messenger Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
John Wright was one of the most important figures on the British hi-fi scene since the mid-1960s. His natural modesty and reticence made it easy to underestimate a working life that encompassed an unusually wide range of different roles: from inventor to speaker engineer to reviewer to businessman.
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Stereophile Staff Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
Writer Robert Deutsch takes an in-depth look at the Hales Design Group Revelation Three loudspeaker in an attempt to determine whether the product lives up to its name. He also checks into the manufacturer's claim that "what we made will forever change the world of dynamic loudspeakers . . . an instant classic, a benchmark against which others of its type are measured."
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Stereophile Staff Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
Last Thursday, Virgin Entertainment Group announced an agreement with RedDotNet, a Digital on Demand company, that Virgin says will allow its customers to download music and create custom CDs, DVDs, and MiniDiscs in-store. Virgin describes the deal as "a revolutionary development heralding a new wave of music retailing." As part of the agreement, Virgin will become a shareholder in Digital on Demand, RedDotNet's parent company.
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
Danish audio-video manufacturer Bang & Olufsen has long been known for its unusual product designs. Eschewing the normal tendency of consumer electronics manufacturers to design their circuits and transports into stackable black boxes, the company's current home-audio line includes colorful vertical CD stacks with sliding clear-glass doors and brushed-aluminum cylindrical speakers.
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Jens P. Pedersen Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
Steve Portocarrero passed away Monday, June 7 from Lou Gehrig's Disease, or ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), which he was diagnosed with two years ago.
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Barry Willis Posted: Jun 13, 1999 0 comments
The world's third largest music company has thrown its massive weight behind Internet audio. On June 10, EMI Recorded Music, a division of EMI Group Plc, announced a five-year licensing agreement with Reston, Virginia-based Musicmaker.com, a major custom CD compilation service and digital download site. EMI has not simply made its enormous catalog available to the service---it has also bought into Musicmaker.com with a 50% equity stake.
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Stereophile Staff Posted: Jun 06, 1999 0 comments
Last week, TDK announced that it is introducing extended-capacity, 80-minute/700MB multimedia and music CD-R discs this July. The new discs add 50MB, or 6 minutes of stereo music capacity, to the conventional 74-minute/650MB CD-R disc. TDK says it is the first manufacturer to offer extended-capacity CD-Rs, and points out that it has been supplying recording studios with 80-minute CD-Rs for music-mastering applications since 1996.(Stereophile's new 77+ minute Bravo! CD, featuring chamber music by Elgar and Mozart, for example, was mastered on a 700MB TDK CD-R.)
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Barry Willis Posted: Jun 06, 1999 0 comments
Better late than never. America Online has finally leaped into the Internet music business with its recent purchase of San Francisco-based Spinner Networks, and Nullsoft of Sedona, Arizona. The combined deals, which were announced on June 1, cost AOL $400 million in company stock.
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Barry Willis Posted: Jun 06, 1999 0 comments
The mid-20th century was a time of tremendous political and social upheaval, technological advancement, and artistic innovation. Jazz---an American invention---is arguably the greatest single development in the history of modern music. Most of its pioneers are gone now, but their legacy lives on in their recordings---and in photographs.
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Stereophile Staff Posted: Jun 06, 1999 0 comments
Conrad-Johnson has been on a roll with their Anniversary Reference Triode preamplifier, aka the ART, which garnered the Stereophile Product of the Year award in 1998. (See previous article.) According to Lew Johnson, "We realized that Conrad-Johnson is coming up on its 20th anniversary, so we thought we might produce something special to celebrate. This is a version of the preamplifier we use in our listening room at the factory---we never even thought about producing it because it would be god-awful expensive. But it really is our last thought on what a preamp should be, so we figured we'd produce a limited edition, say 250 total, as a way of commemorating our 20 years in the business."
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Jon Iverson Posted: Jun 06, 1999 0 comments
In another milestone for digital broadcasting, Lucent Digital Radio announced last week that it has successfully tested its In-Band On-Channel (IBOC) Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB) system, live and over the air, with National Public Radio (NPR) member station WBJB-FM of Lincroft, New Jersey. According to Lucent, the tests showed that there was no degradation of the host FM analog channel during the transmission of the digital FM signal over the same band.
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Jon Iverson Posted: May 30, 1999 0 comments
Providing another boost to the nascent DVD-Audio market, Zoran Corporation, a provider of integrated circuits (ICs) and software for digital video and audio applications, announced last week the availability of a new DVD decoder IC chip, the Vaddis IV. Zoran says the chip is optimized for fourth-generation DVD players and will include integrated DVD-Audio decoding. According to the company, the new Vaddis IV decoder enables the design of flexible and advanced---yet affordable---new DVD players.

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