LATEST ADDITIONS

Robert Schryer  |  Sep 23, 2022  |  9 comments
Has it ever crossed your mind that the reason you like your system more than your friend's or the store's is not because yours is better, even if you think it is, but because you're used to the sound of yours and not of theirs? Welcome to product habituation.

Some people, including some audiophiles, believe that product habituation is what's really behind what some people refer to as product break-in. It's not a mechanical or electronic phenomenon, they contend, but a mental one. Assuming the sound of the new gear is of adequate quality, it's the listener that breaks in to the product, as the product's sound, which was initially strange, grows more familiar and, so, right.

Rogier van Bakel  |  Sep 22, 2022  |  7 comments
I like to think that my musical tastes are pretty eclectic: jazz, pop, blues, Americana, metal, world music, ambient, prog rock, more. Operatic music and classical singing, though? Thanks, I'll pass.

There are exceptions. I find tear-tugging beauty in "Ebben? Ne Andrò Lontana" from Alfredo Catalani's La Wally, whether sung by Donij van Doorn or Wilhelmenia Wiggins Fernandez (footnote 1). The German Lieder of Kurt Weill, as interpreted by soprano Teresa Stratas, produce gladness in my heart but confusion in my uncomprehending wife and children. Maybe it's because the often sarcastic, gruff songs about the travails of the lumpenproletariat contrast with the purity of Stratas's classically trained voice. That clash is precisely what I love about it.

Jason Victor Serinus  |  Sep 21, 2022  |  10 comments
The text, from Gary Bruestle, a speaker-positioning wizard at Definitive Audio in Seattle, left my mouth watering: "Have you heard the Apex version of a Rossini or Vivaldi yet? It's stunningly good. Addictive, even. ... I usually have a hard time relaxing and listening to music in the showroom, but the Rossini Apex DAC had me in its thrall for a few hours yesterday."
Herb Reichert  |  Sep 20, 2022  |  9 comments
If I hear it, is it real?

If your ears see,
And your eyes hear,
Not a doubt you'll cherish—How naturally the rain drips
From the eyes!
Bujutsu Sosho

The more audio gear I review, the more fascinated I become by the fact that as I listen to recorded music, I can close my eyes and see musicians on the stage at Carnegie Hall, or djembe drummers in a desert by a tent, or a bass note penetrating the Milky Way. What a gift of consciousness. And what a great hobby it is that focuses my attentions in this manner.

Stereophile Staff  |  Sep 15, 2022  |  16 comments
Every product listed here has been reviewed in Stereophile. Everything on the list, regardless of rating, is genuinely recommendable.

Within each category, products are listed by class; within each class, they're in alphabetical order, followed by their price, a review synopsis, and a note indicating the issues in which the review, and any subsequent follow-up reports, appeared. "Vol.45 No.6" indicates our June 2022 issue, for example. "WWW" means the review is also posted online.

John Atkinson  |  Sep 15, 2022  |  0 comments
Two high-performance preamplifiers were subjected to further listening in recent issues. Jason Victor Serinus wrote about Rotel's Michi P5 in September 2022; Jim Austin auditioned the Audio Research Reference 6SE in October 2022.
Anne E. Johnson  |  Sep 14, 2022  |  0 comments
Howard Jones: Dialogue
D-Tox Records (Multiple formats; auditioned as 16/44.1 stream). 2022. Howard Jones, prod.; Robbie Bronnimann, eng.
Performance ****½
Sonics ****½

Howard Jones has always come across as an endearing blend of mad scientist and hopeless romantic. Since his 1983 debut single, "New Song," he has blended obsessive technical detail with extreme emotionality. His newest album, Dialogue, is the latest example of this approach, in which intricate structures of synthesized sound grow into musical mountains supporting impassioned lyrics.

Jim Austin  |  Sep 13, 2022  |  11 comments
I first heard about the project in an email, one of the dozens I receive every day and barely glance at. It said that the editor of a German hi-fi publication was crossing the ocean to talk about hi-fi audio to students and their parents at a junior/senior high school in Westchester County, New York, just 45 minutes or so by car from my Manhattan apartment. Interesting. And odd. I moved on to the next email.
Mike Mettler  |  Sep 09, 2022  |  1 comments
Steve Earle was born in 1967. Well, that's not exactly true. Earle was in fact born on January 17, 1955, in Fort Monroe, Virginia, but the singer, songwriter, and master interpreter's musical awakening came in 1967, when he was 12 years old, growing up in his acknowledged hometown of San Antonio, Texas.
Jason Victor Serinus, Stephen Francis Vasta  |  Sep 09, 2022  |  7 comments
Prism IV: Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Mahler: Symphony No.4, Žibuoklė Martinaitytė Ex Tenebris Lux and Consolations: Music by Bach, Chopin, Dushkin, Handel, Kreisler, Liszt, Massenet, and others.

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