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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Apr 21, 2014 1 comments
The 2014 AXPONA (Audio Expo North America), scheduled for April 25–27 in Chicago's completely refurbished Westin O'Hare, promises to the biggest and most comprehensive US consumer audio show east of Denver. How about, for starters, at least 56 known product introductions, with many more intentionally unannounced; 75 active exhibits in "standard" hotel rooms, whose dimensions are a far-from-standard 14.9'x19' with 8.5' high ceilings; 35 significantly larger meeting rooms and suites, spread over numerous floors, often filled with more than one active system per room; an Ear Gear Expo with exhibits from 23 headphone and headphone amp/accessory manufacturers; and a lobby level marketplace that promises 70 displays from 30 different vendors?
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Stereophile Staff Posted: Apr 16, 2014 4 comments
The May 2014 issue of Stereophile is now on newsstands. With High-Resolution Audio poised to go mainstream, the issue features Sony's $2000 HAP-Z1ES file player on its cover. Kalman Rubinson takes the Sony through its paces summing up that the "audiophile quality" Sony "has the potential to become a gateway product for the mass market of portable-player users."
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John Atkinson Posted: Apr 16, 2014 4 comments
It's been getting closer and closer the past few days. But this morning, Stereophile's Facebook page got its 20,000th "Like."

Woo hoo!!!!

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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Apr 14, 2014 7 comments
Meridian Audio's co-founder Bob Stuart (above) journeyed to Audio High in Mountain View, CA on April 8 for the US unveiling of Meridian's new Special Edition DSP Digital Active Loudspeaker. The tantalizing time I spent listening to the top-of-the-line DSP8000SE ($80,000/pair) convinced me that Meridian's slogan, "Redefine the Possible," is anything but hype.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Apr 03, 2014 4 comments
When high-end audio retailer AudioVision San Francisco got hit with an unexpected eviction notice, Antonio Long and Randy Johnson realized they had to either raise funds fast for a move or close up shop. That's when they decided to generate support via what is undoubtedly the first high-end retailer Indiegogo fundraising campaign.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Mar 27, 2014 4 comments
Universal Music Group (UMG) is currently fulfilling its promise to release hundreds of 24/96 High Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-Ray (audio only) titles in 14 countries by the end of 2014. While many of these titles are from its rich back catalog, a few are new. These include, on the pop front, George Michael's Symphonica, and for classical, one of my 2013 R2D4s, Jonas Kaufmann's Wagner.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Mar 24, 2014 2 comments
Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. Such is the story of the Montreal Audio Show aka Salon Son et Image (SSI), which takes place this coming weekend, March 28–30. The Chester Group may be sponsoring the show for the first time, and longtime show organizer Michel Plante may have ceded the reins to his partner/wife, Sarah Tremblay, but both the location (the Hilton Bonaventure Hotel) and the show structure are pretty much the same. Tremblay expects about 80 exhibitors—the same as last year—holding forth in 80–100 rooms.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Mar 22, 2014 23 comments
Thumbing their collective nose at pundits who predict the imminent demise of physical media, Universal Music Group has begun reissuing select back catalog and new releases in Pure Audio (audio only) Blu-Ray 24/96 and/or 24/96 download formats. The first of the classical titles appeared in February, with more rolling out all the time. To get the skinny on UMG's plans for Blu-ray and hi-res, I conducted two separate interviews with folks in the UK. The first, with Barry Holden, the extremely committed and highly articulate VP of Classical Catalogue at Universal Music, appears below.
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Robert Baird Posted: Mar 12, 2014 21 comments
"I’m not an audiophile but I’m very geeky about other things."
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Mar 06, 2014 3 comments
Over half a century after the creation of the prized Everest Records catalog, most of whose 78 classical titles were recorded between 1958 and 1961 on 35mm magnetic tape in three-channel stereo, 61 titles have now been remastered and released in multiple formats. In addition to physical CD and downloadable Mastered for iTunes versions, a still-expanding, luscious hi-res treasure trove of Everest titles may be downloaded from HDTracks's Everest Records pages. All HDTracks titles, remastered from the master tapes in 24/192, are available in both 24/192 and 24/96 versions.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Mar 02, 2014 25 comments
How often have you encountered someone reciting your obituary? That's what happened when he of the living dead visited Michael Woods' aesthetically sensational Elite Audio Systems showroom in San Francisco on February 22, only to discover Gary Leonard Koh, CEO of and chief designer for Genesis Advanced Technologies, declaring, "The days when people sat in one sole sweet spot listening to music are over."
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John Atkinson Posted: Feb 23, 2014 16 comments
All photographs by Lily Szabo Photography and used with permission

Thursday February 13 was a day most of us in New York would have preferred to stay indoors. With 10” of snow falling since the night before, the Stereophile office closed, the roads in my neighborhood impassable, and public transport iffy at best, I really didn’t want to make the trek into Manhattan. But I did and was glad to have done so. English loudspeaker manufacturer KEF, represented by a team led by the company's brand ambassador Johan Coorg (above right), was promoting a unique event for the press at MSR Studios on 48th Street featuring legendary engineer and producer Ken Scott (above left).

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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Feb 16, 2014 68 comments
Save the Stereo, a Web-based project dedicated to developing and promoting the best ideas for leading the next generation of music lovers to component-based high-fidelity, launched at the start of the year. Although we have seen a number of prior organizations dedicated to the cause of spreading the gospel of high performance audio wither and die—see John Atkinson's 2005 essay on the subject—this one is different. Because its founder, Gordon White, is soliciting feedback from the audiophile community and developing a grounded action plan before proceeding, perusing the project's website and filling out its all-important, short survey seems more than worth the while of both high-performance audio consumers and industry members.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Feb 11, 2014 0 comments
Sunday, February 23, 12–5:30pm: Essential Audio (715 Braeside Place, Barrington, Illinois) will host an audio demonstration with Brian Zolner, president of Bricasti Design, for the grand opening of its remodeled, expanded facilities.
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Art Dudley Posted: Feb 07, 2014 6 comments
Photograph: Jonathan Halpern

Ken Shindo, the Japanese audio designer whose electronics, loudspeakers, and accessories have influenced the parallel worlds of tube audio and analog audio, and who is shown above (right) with loudspeaker designer John DeVore, died late last month after a brief illness. He was 74.

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