At least one exhibitor informed me, at the end of Day Two, that a lot of people he encountered thought that hi-res referred solely to streaming. This exhibitor found that visitors were quite attracted to the Astell&Kern portable audio players that were located near his exhibit, but pretty clueless as to sound quality of his far more expensive gear
Once an hour, Mike Mettler, music editor of our sister publication Sound and Vision, introduced live demonstrations in the Hi-Res Audio Pavilion's mini-simulation of the Capitol Recording Studios. Each session was conducted by a different award-winning engineer or producer
On the first day of CES, a consortium of industry professionals gathered by the Digital Entertainment Group (DEG)and chaired by Marc Finer, President of the DEGspoke to assembled press and industry supporters at a Hi-Res Audio Press Conference. The group announced a new consumer awareness campaign called Stream the Studio, which is designed to increase awareness of hi-res audio amongst millennials.
What better way to say goodbye to 2016 than to pop the champagne and blast your way through to the Trump Years with the latest version of a double-whammy warhorse pairing, Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition and Night on Bald Mountain, from Gustavo Dudamel and the Vienna Philharmonic (Deutsche Grammophon)? After all, there's no getting around the fact that fireworks are fireworks, and that New Year's Eve is a night for same.
Just in time for the New Year, Audio High has released a new set of 23 of Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas, performed live by Robert Silverman and available in MQA, hi-rez, CD-quality, and MP3 formats. If the prospect of one of Canada's most feted pianists offering his mature thoughts on Beethoven in superb sound is not, in and of itself, sufficient reason to tempt you, the fact that the MP3 files can be obtained for free, with the others available for a donation to the Silver Linings non-profit charity, certainly will be.
With 2016 almost behind us, there's just enough time to speak of two of the many recordings issued this year to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. Equally commendable, albeit radically different in the way they honor the Bard, are Shakespeare Songs (Warner Classics) from tenor Ian Bostridge and pianist Anthony Pappano (available in 24/96 from HDTracks), and Take All my Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets (Deutsche Grammophon) from Rufus Wainwright and friends (available in 24/44.1 from HDTracks).
On December 8, 12 days before an embargo on the news was lifted, I visited Wilson Audio in Utah. The occasion was the launch of the WAMM Master Chronosonic loudspeaker. Given its limited-edition production run (70 pairs), oversized dimensions (approximately 86" H with spikes x 26" W x 36.5" D), and high price ($685,000/pair), Wilson Audio's ultimate speaker is not slated for dealer and audio show demos. Instead, the only way prospective customers, dealers, and select press can experience Dave Wilson's magnum opusthe culmination of well over three decades of loudspeaker developmentis to journey to the Wilson residence in Provo.
Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.William Bruce Cameron, Informal Sociology: A Casual Introduction to Sociological Thinking (1963)
I hear not the volumes of sound merely, I am moved by the exquisite meanings.Walt Whitman, "That Music Always Round Me," from Leaves of Grass
These two statements, to me, express the core perspective shared by Stereophile's contributors. When I encountered both of them within a span of 30 days, they spoke so strongly that I felt impelled to hook up the biggest, baddest loudspeakers I could find and broadcast them to the world, without distortion. Failing in that quest, and having not yet attained the status of the Edward R. Murrows and Walter Cronkites of eras past, I share them here.