Jana Dagdagan

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Jana Dagdagan  |  Feb 17, 2017  |  8 comments
This past weekend, John Atkinson and I attended the debut of Vivid Audio's new flagship speaker, the G1 Spirit, at a private home in Itasca, IL (to the west of Chicago.) The event was hosted by concert pianist and audio retailer George Vatchnadze of Kyomi Audio. Prior to the event's start, JA and Vivid speaker designer Laurence Dickie had a stimulating conversation about speaker design, focusing on the G1 Spirit loudspeaker.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jan 30, 2017  |  1 comments
Last week, we posted a video on AudioStream of a conversation between Juergen Reis (MBL's Chief Designer), Michael Lavorgna (AudioStream), and John Atkinson, which we filmed during CES 2017. During that same session, we also filmed a conversation between JA and Juergen that focuses more specifically on MBL's new N31 DAC, which JA will be reviewing in a future issue of Stereophile.

In this video, Juergen and JA discuss digital filters, aliasing, Nyquist ringing, USB inputs, inter-sample "overs," and many of the other arcane issues involved in DAC design.

Jana Dagdagan  |  Jan 24, 2017  |  8 comments
On the final day of the show, our special guest, ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro and our very own Jason Victor Serinus came together to form the most unlikely of duos. We originally attempted to film this while in a moving gondola but were sternly prohibited from doing so by the gondola ride manager.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jan 17, 2017  |  31 comments
"What are your thoughts on this year's CES?": A multi-dimensional question that means many different things to the many different people who share the high-end audio realm. For my first attendance at the annual Consumer Electronics Show, I had a mission: to compile answers to this complex question and fit my findings on a visual medium, a time capsule of sorts. Is this the last year of CES? Was the low attendance in the high-end audio segment at the Venetian just a temporary lull? Or could it be a turning point for the high-end audio industry? Whatever might happen, 2017 struck me as a pivotal year for CES, and a show that begged to be captured.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Jan 03, 2017  |  8 comments
This week's Industry Profile features Jim Hagerman of Hagerman Audio Labs. In essence, Jim is Hagerman Audio Labs all-in-one, as he impressively functions as owner/designer/engineer/tester/builder/shipper/customer service, and so on. Hagerman Audio Labs first caught my eye a couple years back when I started getting into DIY projects. Though he has since eliminated DIY from his offerings (you can read why below), Jim continued to interest me because: 1) his website lists an address in Honolulu (a rarity in high-end audio), 2) he publishes his schematics, and 3) his candid approach to social media is refreshing—all hopeful indicators that he'd make a very interesting Industry Profile subject.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Dec 27, 2016  |  9 comments
Aloha, Stereophile Readers! I write to you from my childhood home on the tropical island of Oahu—my birthplace and present vacation spot until the start of CES. As Stereophile's resident Hawaii-native, I felt inspired to make a list of Hawaiian music albums. Here's a quintessential mix of five old and new favorites from the 50th state, in no particular order:
Jana Dagdagan  |  Dec 19, 2016  |  11 comments
This week's industry profile tells a story about beginnings and changing times, in a conversation with Steve Cohen, a longtime employee (he doesn't have a formal job title) of the New York based hi-fi shop In Living Stereo. I started our conversation by asking Steve how he got into hi-fi. What was his background?
Jana Dagdagan  |  Dec 16, 2016  |  20 comments
When I was in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, visiting D+M’s Euro HQ, I shot a few video clips to accompany my written account in hopes of providing readers with an additional experiential view of my time there.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Dec 12, 2016  |  5 comments
At the end of November, I spent a couple days in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, getting a first look at Marantz's New Reference series audio components. During my brief visit to D+M's European HQ, I was fortunate enough to spend 40 minutes of one-on-one chat time with Ken Ishiwata, Marantz's famed Brand Ambassador, and a key component to Marantz's success for nearly 40 years. I was originally only scheduled to have 10 minutes with him, but thankfully, due to a last-minute adjustment, we were able to talk for longer.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Dec 06, 2016  |  4 comments
Last week, Paul Messenger and I represented Stereophile at a Marantz press conference announcing the New Reference Series: the SA-10 SACD player/DAC and the PM-10 amplifier. The conference was held at D+M's European Headquarters located in Eindhoven, The Netherlands. Josh Bizar of Music Direct, Andy Quint of The Absolute Sound, and I were the only Americans present at this session. (And naturally, the most severely jetlagged.) We were joined by nearly two-dozen international audio journalists from a handful of countries.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Nov 28, 2016  |  5 comments
For the past eight months, my headphone of choice at Stereophile's New York office has been a pair of AudioQuest Nighthawks. That's eight hours a day, five days a week, for approximately 32 weeks. Not eternity, but we've spent a good chunk of quality time together. The overall setup is comprised of an Apple MacBook Pro (usually streaming Tidal, Spotify, or Amarra for Tidal), an AudioQuest Jitterbug, an AudioQuest DragonFly Red, and said NightHawks. I suppose it's safe to say that my ears tend to jibe well with AudioQuest products.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Nov 21, 2016  |  28 comments
This past Friday, November 17, critically acclaimed French audio startup Devialet officially opened the doors to their first US standalone store right here in SoHo, NY. This store joins five other standalones globally (Paris, London, Berlin) and, as of yet, no future plans of additional US locations have been disclosed.
Jana Dagdagan  |  Nov 14, 2016  |  6 comments
Dear Reader: This is my first of a series of industry profiles. The hi-fi publication sector largely consists of equipment reviews and music features. My hope for this series is to focus instead on the great people who keep this industry alive from the ground up, behind the scenes—designers, engineers, listeners, salespeople, and all music lovers alike. It should be interesting.

As the winter months inevitably approach, it feels only appropriate to delay the forthcoming cold with one last bit of summer. Summer Yin and I have known each other for nearly a year and a half, during which she has played integral roles at both HiFiMAN and AURALiC. I started our conversation by asking her about her experience and background in the audio industry.

Jana Dagdagan  |  Nov 07, 2016  |  12 comments
Photo of Art Dudley, Robin Wyatt, and Michael Lavorgna: John Atkinson. All other photos: Jana Dagdagan.

NYAS 2015. Rye Brook, NY.—Then, a lone capsule filled with liquid anxiety, outfitted in wobbly heels and a blanket of sweat aimlessly wandered through the halls of hotel hi-fi. She had recently interviewed for her dream job at her dream publication, Stereophile, but had not heard back yet. She desperately hoped to meet Sirs Art Dudley and Michael Lavorgna for the first time, and luckily succeeded in doing so at the 'Zen and the Art of Audio Reviewing' seminar.

Jana Dagdagan  |  Oct 31, 2016  |  37 comments
When Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2016 (RMAF)—the hot hi-fi rager of the Wild West—came to its close, I had one more official stop to make: YG Acoustics.

Located just 30 minutes from Denver in the city of Arvada, is the YG Acoustics facility—including the factory, showroom, and offices. Much like most factories, the exterior is an unassuming vanilla casing, with no evidence of the flavorful, no-compromise, high-tech, high-end speakers living (and being brought to life) inside.

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