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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 21, 2015 14 comments
Just three months after buying 13 vintage record presses, Chad Kassem of Acoustic Sounds (above) has purchased The Mastering Lab (TML), the legendary facility of Grammy Award-winning mastering engineer, Doug Sax, who died of cancer on April 2 at the age of 78...
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 03, 2015 0 comments
Resolving to get an early start, I skipped breakfast and hit the show floor at 10:30am on Sunday. Will Kline of Fine Sounds (left) and Sunil Merchant (right) of Covina, CA's Sunny's Components were justifiably proud of the simply beautiful midrange created by the marriage of Wilson Audio Alexia loudspeakers ($52,000/pair) and Audio Research components. This wasn't the most transparent of systems I auditioned, but it was unquestionably among the most musical.
Jason Victor Serinus Sasha Matson Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 03, 2015 3 comments
One of the most delightful annual surprises of the now departed Las Vegas installment of THE Show was stumbling upon the NFS (Not For Sale) room. Assembled by the distinguished personage known as Buddha, it allowed visitors to become submerged in a combination of post-psychedelic revelry, good sound, lots of free booze, and a total absence of hawking...
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 02, 2015 12 comments
If I were forced to spend a week alone on a desert island, with my only companions a small, battery-powered player and one person's music collection, I'd have a tough time setting between the libraries of Jeffrey Catalano (High Water Sound, in the room above), Philip O'Hanlon (On a Higher Note), and John DeVore (Devore Fidelity). While their musical predilections certainly vary, all have impeccable taste when it comes to repertoire and artistry...
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Jun 01, 2015 3 comments
In the lobby of the Hotel Irvine, Meryl Jane was not only showing her paintings of famous audiophile-approved artists, but also extremely eager to have her picture snapped in their midst. By all laws known to God, human, and those strange outlaw beings known as Texans, opening day at an audio show is when systems, usually not fully dialed in, often sound sub par. Yet in Hotel Irvine, the most consistently fine sound I encountered was on Day One, in the extremely hard-to-tame cubic conference rooms on the lobby level...
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: May 30, 2015 5 comments
The ribbon had been cut and the trumpets sounded. THE Show Newport Beach, whose 2015 installment had moved a mile or two up the road into Irvine, was underway. Doing the honors at the ribbon-cutting ceremony were, from left to right, a gold chain-bedecked Steve Rochlin of Enjoy the Music, accompanied by his wife, Heather to his left, and an unidentified woman to his right; Michael Fremer of Stereophile and; David Robinson of Positive Feedback, Robert Harley of The Absolute Sound.
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: May 29, 2015 10 comments
Six weeks before the start of THE Show Newport Beach, word got out that the show organizers were poised to add a last-minute "Trade and Press Day" for Thursday May 28. As it turned out, the actual announcement came later, less than a month before the show. The idea, if instituted correctly, could have been a good one. But done so last minute, it seemed, at best, half-cocked...Be that as it may, I was able to register with the lovely Lucette Nicoll (above center) and take in just a few rooms before dinnertime.
Jason Victor Serinus Posted: May 26, 2015 1 comments
The countdown to the start of THE Show Newport in Orange Country, California has begun. The largest three-day consumer audio show in America kicks off for the public on Friday, May 29 in the newly remodeled Hotel Irvine, with an optional trade day for press and invited guests the afternoon/eve before. With every exhibit space sold out, THE Show Newport promises to keep audiophiles busy with 406 exhibitors holding forth in 150 hotel rooms (including 10 larger suites), up to 25 larger rooms, 80 booths in a 6000 sq. ft. Headphonium Pavilion, and a packed Marketplace.
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: May 23, 2015 5 comments
Just two weeks before PS Audio premieres the BHK Signature 300 mono amps at Newport Beach, the company showcased its BHK Signature 250 stereo amplifier ($7499) in Munich. This was my first opportunity to hear this Bascom H. King specialty in the context of an all-PS Audio system, and despite the sub-optimal room acoustics, it did not disappoint...
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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: May 23, 2015 4 comments
In addition to jazz chanteuse Lyn Stanley, who was sponsored by Purist Audio Design, the High End Society presented three quasi pop-up ensembles that, unless you followed the schedule, appeared without notice in hallways and at the top of stairways. Thus, while moving between Aurender and AudioQuest, did I encounter the Karinettensextett Karlischnättra. The six or eight bars of blessedly unamplified music I heard at the very end of their presentation sounded lovely...


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