Stephen Mejias

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Stephen Mejias Posted: Nov 13, 2013 0 comments
Friday, November 22–Sunday, November 24: The Hi-Fi Expo Sofia will be held at the Grand Hotel (1 Gurko Street, Sofia, Bulgaria). Over 250 high-end brands are expected to exhibit. Show manager Gergana Boeva reports that attendance has grown steadily over the show's first three years, attracting visitors from all throughout Bulgaria, as well as neighboring countries Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, and Romania. For more info, including a complete list of exhibitors, visit the show’s official website.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Nov 08, 2013 11 comments
La Luz: Marian Li Pino (drums), Abbey Blackwell (bass), Shana Cleveland (guitar), Alice Sandahl (keys)

On Tuesday night, while on their way to Seattle to play a show with Of Montreal, the four young women who make up the great new band La Luz suffered a frightening accident. Losing control of their van, they slid across black ice, and slammed into a concrete highway divider. The band managed to maneuver their van to the side of the road, where they called for help. Then, almost incredibly, while waiting for the police and a tow truck to arrive, their van was hit by a semi-trailer truck. The van, all of the band’s gear, and many of their belongings were completely destroyed.

To get a sense of the impact, see a photo of the van here. Fortunately, it was a 12-passenger van, and La Luz were using the entire back half as cargo space for their gear and belongings. The women were seated up front when their van was rear-ended by the semi-truck, sending them toppling into a ditch. Moments later, a third van slid across the freeway and collided into the semi! Aside from bruises, broken bones, and the major disappointment of having to cancel the rest of their tour, all members of La Luz are fine, as are the drivers of the other vehicles.

A message from La Luz’s official website:

Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 25, 2013 Published: Nov 01, 2013 23 comments
In the mornings, just before I leave for work, I power up the system, turn the volume down low, and set the CD player to Repeat. I like to think that if I play calm, soothing music while Ms. Little and I are away, the cats will feel less alone and more relaxed. It's also nice, on returning home from work, to walk into a room filled with music. One evening a few weeks ago, I stepped into the apartment, dropped my bags to the floor, settled down into the couch with my iPhone, and began scrolling through text messages. I'd been seated for only a moment before I had to turn my attention entirely to the sound of the system, which, even at a very low volume, sounded warm, detailed, and unusually good—unbelievably, almost unbearably engaging.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 23, 2013 1 comments
Friday, October 25, 6–9pm: Whetstone Audio (2401 East 6th St. #1001, Austin, TX) will host its next "Hi-Fi Hootenanny." Rega's Paul Darwin will introduce the company's new Elicit-R integrated amplifier and Saturn-R CD player/DAC, which made their official debuts at last week's Rocky Mountain Audio Fest. For more info, visit WhetstoneAudio.com.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 22, 2013 3 comments
We end this show report as we started, with a photograph (this time by John Atkinson) of singer Lillian Boutté, who both opened and closed the RMAF with her band Eric Gunnison on piano, Mike Marlier on drums, and Mark Simon on bass, in the Denver Tech Center Marriott’s Atrium.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 18, 2013 8 comments
AudioStream.com's Michael Lavorgna took a front-row seat for Chad Kassem's discussion of his company's DSD download site. Photo: John Atkinson

“We’re so lucky that it’s all coming together at once,” said Acoustic Sounds’ Chad Kassem.

On the final morning of the 2013 Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, editors from Stereophile, AudioStream.com, and AnalogPlanet.com gathered in Kassem’s demo room to learn more about his new Super HiRez DSD download site.

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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 18, 2013 1 comments
Designed and manufactured in Columbus, Ohio, the JansZen zA2.1 loudspeaker ($7495/pair) is an interesting design with a side-firing ring-radiator tweeter and two 7” Alnico woofers—one above and one below a pair of stacked electrostatic panels.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 18, 2013 1 comments
Lambertville, New Jersey’s Channel D was in full effect at the 2013 RMAF, exhibiting in two rooms and proving that high-end doesn’t necessarily have to be high-priced.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 17, 2013 0 comments
The UK’s Neat Acoustics is distributed in the US by High Fidelity Services in Braintree, Massachusetts. Here we see the company’s Motive SX2, in sassy pink ($2395/pair), driven by a Sonneteer Orton integrated amplifier ($3795). The digital source was Sonneteer’s Byron CD player ($2795), while vinyl was being spun on a VPI Scout 2 ($2400) with a Dynavector 20-2 XL cartridge ($850). The attractive rack is the Custom Design Ikon 750 Reference ($1475). Neat, indeed.
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Stephen Mejias Posted: Oct 17, 2013 0 comments
Astell&Kern’s AK10 portable DAC ($299) measures 2.1 ” W x 2.1 ” H x 0.5 ” D, weighs just 1.8oz, and comes with an attractive leather case. It uses a Wolfson WM8740 DAC, capable of handling 24-bit/96kHz data, and is compatible with iOs (iPhone 5 and 5th generation iPod Touch) and Android (Galaxy S3, S4, Note2, Note3) operating systems. Its USB 2.0 input means it can also be used to improve the sound of music files stored on your Mac or PC—just send the output to your headphones or stereo. Inspired by turntable design, the silver circle atop the AK10 is actually a volume control: spin it to raise or lower the volume. Sweet.

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