LATEST ADDITIONS

Jim Austin  |  Dec 12, 2017  |  87 comments
I don't think I've ever seen an audio debate as nasty as the one over Master Quality Authenticated (MQA), the audio-encoding/decoding technology from industry veterans Bob Stuart, formerly of Meridian and now CEO of MQA Ltd., and Peter Craven. Stuart is the company's public face, and that face has been the target of many a mud pie thrown since the technology went public two years ago. Some of MQA's critics are courteous—a few are even well-informed—but the nastiness on-line is unprecedented, in my experience.
John Atkinson  |  Dec 11, 2017  |  111 comments
"The fundamental problem of communication is that of reproducing at one point either exactly or approximately a message selected at another point."—Claude Shannon

Since its announcement at the end of 2014, Master Quality Authenticated, the MQA encoding/decoding system, has spawned outspoken criticism. Some of the more thoughtful negative reactions have come from engineers such as Dan Lavry, Bruno Putzeys, and Daniel Weiss. Others have been expressed by manufacturers of digital products: the late Charley Hansen at Ayre Acoustics, for example, along with Jason Stoddard and Mike Moffat at Schiit Audio, John Siau at Benchmark Media Systems, and Jim Collinson at Linn Products. Some have been audio writers: Doug Schneider, at SoundStage!, and Paul Miller and Jim Lesurf, at Hi-Fi News. Most vociferous have been anonymous website posters. As Jim Austin remarks in his examination of MQA's decoding of impulse-response data elsewhere in this issue, "the nastiness online is unprecedented."

Stereophile Staff  |  Dec 11, 2017  |  0 comments
Tuesday, December 12, 2–7pm, New York retailer In Living Stereo (2 Great Jones Street, Manhattan, NY 10003) is holding a special headphone event featuring the entire line of Audeze headphones, Woo Audio tube headphone amplifiers and the Hugo TT, Mojo, and new Poly wireless streamer for the Mojo from Chord Electronics.
Stereophile Staff  |  Dec 10, 2017  |  14 comments
Yes, with the beginning of winter and the holiday season almost upon us, the January 2018 issue of Stereophile has started dropping into mailboxes, being displayed on newsstand shelves, and being downloaded to tablets. And it is, even if we say so ourselves, one heck of an issue, with GoldenEar's Triton Reference speaker on its cover and reviewed inside by John Atkinson. JA also kicks off the issue with a look at the controversy raised by MQA. Controversy? Also in the January Stereophile, Jim Austin examines the time-domain performance of MQA-equipped DACs and one Internet troll is already offering a $10 bounty for anyone who debunks one of Jim's findings!
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Dec 10, 2017  |  3 comments
Few violinists would consider saddling a recording with a title as grand and potentially pretentious as Grandissima Gravita. But not only is Rachel Podger's latest Channel Classics hybrid SACD with her ensemble, Brecon Baroque, grandly played—Podger is brilliant as always—but its title also serves as an apt descriptor of the emotional tenor of most of the works on the program.
Robert Baird  |  Dec 09, 2017  |  1 comments
It's sweet! It's vocals! It's Christmas!
Stereophile Staff  |  Dec 08, 2017  |  2 comments
Saturday December 9, from 12pm to 4pm, Suncoast Audio (7353 International Place, Unit 309, Sarasota, FL, 34240) says they are sending 2017 out with a bang! They are hosting a year-ending event with Vivid loudspeakers, Gryphon electronics, and Shunyata cabling.
Robert Baird  |  Dec 07, 2017  |  8 comments
While it hasn't always made money or hit records, the music business has never been short on ideas. Most are nonsense, but every once in a while—the gramophone, onstage monitors, Les Paul's overdubbing—the biz comes up with a winner.

Many of the craziest ideas I've heard in 30 years of writing about music have been expounded on at the South by Southwest Music Festival, held each year in Austin, Texas. At SXSW, hope springs eternal. Secrets are whispered. Buzz bands gain momentum. Rumors ripple through crowds. Everyone has visions of morphing into a mogul. There's an intoxicating energy to it all.

John Atkinson  |  Dec 07, 2017  |  First Published: Apr 01, 1989  |  1 comments
666skinny.promo250.jpgOne of the joys of reviewing loudspeakers is that there are always intriguing aspects of any particular design. The problems involved in producing a speaker that has an even tonal balance, well-controlled directivity, good bass extension, and a smooth integration of the outputs from often widely disparate drive-units have what appears to be an infinite number of solutions. The result is often a speaker so different from the norm that it just cries out to be auditioned.

Such was the case with the Delaware Acoustics DELAC S10, which costs $629/pair. Only sold factory-direct, this would therefore have been low on Stereophile's priority list for review if it weren't for two things: first, the fact that the S10 was designed by one Ralph Gonzalez, a name that should be familiar to readers of Speaker Builder magazine for having written a very useful speaker design and analysis program; second, as implied in the first paragraph, the S10 is one of the weirdest speakers I have ever laid ears on.

Paul Messenger  |  Dec 06, 2017  |  0 comments
Poland's Audio Video Show, held in Warsaw each November and now firmly established as Europe's No.2 hi-fi event, has a very different feel from Event No.1: High End, held each May in Munich, Germany. Unlike High End's business-to-business approach, the Audio Video Show is very much for regular consumers, of whom more than 14,000 attended over the show's three days, November 17–19. Boosted by a modest "Smart Home" presence, that was an increase of nearly 18% over last year's show, alongside more modest growth in the numbers of exhibitors and exhibit rooms.

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