Ariel Bitran
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Ariel Bitran Apr 17, 2013 0 comments
Mat Weisfield was ultra-stoked to tell me about VPI's new 3D-printed tonearm. I'll let Art do the explaining, but when I heard the VPI room, images were rock solid and full-bodied through the 3D printed tonearm and nascent VPI Classic Direct. A turntable created out of happenstance, when the chassis for the planned direct-drive Vanquish was not ready for the show, they stuck the Vanquish parts into a Classic chassis and the VPI Classic Direct (approximately $20-25k) was born. Resourceful, those VPI fellas.
Ariel Bitran, News
Ariel Bitran Jan 31, 2013 1 comments
Vladmir Lamm flips the record. The LP1 is on the top of the shelf to his left.

On Wednesday January 29th, 2013, Innovative Audio Video Showrooms hosted the NYC premier of the Lamm LP1 Signature phono preamplifier ($32,790).

Ariel Bitran
Ariel Bitran May 07, 2013 0 comments
Simon Hewitt, Cambridge Audio’s Director of Marketing, visited Stereophile HQ to demonstrate the Cambridge Audio Minx Air one-box Bluetooth system. Hewitt says Cambridge Audio’s business is exploding thanks to the Minx Air. It makes up 15% of Cambridge’s current profits. Meanwhile, Cambridge is busy building more speaker lines as their fathering company, Audio Partnership, fades out mass distribution of Mourdant-Short.

Minx Air is currently available in two sizes, the Minx Air 100 ($449) and the larger Minx Air 200 ($599). It features Airplay, on-board Internet radio, and bass EQ that can be controlled via app. I played three synced Spotify playlist selections transmitted via Bluetooth from my iPhone. At the end, Hewitt asked, “What was that first track you demoed?”

Ariel Bitran
Ariel Bitran Apr 01, 2013 4 comments

In a recent Stereophile.com news item, John Marks informed readers about free online music production classes now offered from the esteemed Berklee College of Music. Seems like JM himself is taking up this opportunity. In this video assigment, JM shares his explanation of the ORTF microphone placement technique for stereo recording.

Sweepstakes
Ariel Bitran Jul 31, 2013 3 comments
John Parks of Hurst, Texas is the winner of Stereophile.com's Monitor Audio Airstream WS100 Sweepstakes. The Monitor Audio Airstream WS100 are desktop speakers that receive a wireless audio signal transmitted on the 2.4GHz band via USB dongle.

John is befuddled. While he has these awesome and convenient desktop speakers, he has no desk! We do not have any desk sweepstakes coming up soon.

Congrats on your win John, and thanks for playing! Hope you find a suitable surface.

NY Audio & AV 2012
Ariel Bitran Apr 18, 2012 0 comments
In the LessLoss Audio room, a gorgeous couple of Kaiser Vivace loudspeakers painted in a Lamborghini Orange finish ($42,500 in painted semi-gloss, add $2500 for the Lambo paint job) paired with electronics from Beyond Frontiers Audio, including their Tulip Tube DAC converter, which runs in a dual mono state with 2 Burr Brown chips, and the Tulip Stereo Integrated amplifier. Tulip, in the designer’s former country of Yugoslavia, is a friendly name for a “good old guy”. Cabling and “ambient field conditioning” in this room were provided by LessLoss, who offered their Anchorwave cables and Blackbody ambient field conditioner. The Blackbody claims to “enhance audio playback quality by modifying the interaction of your gear’s circuitry with the ambient electromagnetic field.”
Sweepstakes
Ariel Bitran Jul 13, 2013 Published: Jul 15, 2013 0 comments
Richard Kanter is the winner of our HRT Microstreamer USB DAC sweepstakes. Richard's been doing live sound recording and reinforcement at McCabes Guitar Shop in Santa Monica, California for the past 43 years. He still loves it! You can find out more about McCabes here.

Thanks for playing Richard!

Ariel Bitran, Sweepstakes
Ariel Bitran Jun 12, 2013 1 comments
After each sweepstakes winner confirms receiving their prize, I request a photo of the lucky recipient posing with their reward. Ken Olen’s photo had me mystified. The grainy image of a mustachioed man with a mischievous smile seemed darkened and distant. Where did this picture come from?

Though Olen claims to be from Bedford, New Hampshire, using our fancy photograph-decoding software from partnering magazine Shutterbug and some of John Atkinson's equipment measurement tools, I unveiled Olen’s actual location. He’s in outer space galaxies away! No wonder his transmission came through so hazy. The sound of those Logic3 Scuderia R300 Headphones must really be something special.

Thanks for participating Ken and safe travels!

Ariel Bitran
Ariel Bitran Sep 12, 2012 3 comments
I’ll be honest, when Klipsch invited me to see the B-52s on Thursday, August 9th, all I really wanted was for Peter Griffin to stroll across the Irving Plaza stage oblivious to the swirling lights and drifting artificial fog, whip out an acoustic guitar, and play that jangly lead from “Rock Lobster”. A bearded lobster donning a turban would then prance to the front of the stage and everyone would scream “Death to America / And butter sauce!” This never happened. However, I did successfully ignore the opening band Love Funk, had my mind blown by the B-52s, but most importantly, I discovered a bunch of new products from the Klipsch family.

“Iraq Lobstah!”

NY Audio & AV 2012
Ariel Bitran Apr 17, 2012 0 comments
In a previous post, I talk about the cliché track selections one experiences at a hi-fi show (see “Hotel California”), so I was happy to hear one of my favorite groups, Rodrigo y Gabriela, in the Red Wine Audio Room. Their cover of Metallica’s “Orion” sounded crisp yet subtly refined and represented the true tonality of an acoustic guitar. Playback through Red Wine Audio amplification and Kudos C20 loudspeakers created a wide soundstage.
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