Added to the Archives This Week

As John Atkinson puts it, Meridian usually does things "their way," putting amps and DACs inside of speakers in an all-out attempt at "re-creating the original soundfield, no matter how many speakers and channels it takes to do it right." But as Atkinson finds, the Meridian 518 Digital Audio Processor might be the company's most perverse product: "The $1650 518 offers digital inputs and outputs only. It can digitally perform gain and source selection; it can change data with one digital word length to data with another; and it does all these things with 72-bit internal precision." So JA asks, "How does the 518 fit within a conventional high-end audio system?" Read along as he figures it all out.

A new tool can sometimes completely change your perspective. Which is what Robert Harley discovered when he began to use one of the first jitter analyzers to uncover why some CD transports sound different from others. In A Transport of Delight: CD Transport Jitter, Harley put the analyzer into audiophile service, reporting that "it isn't enough to get the bits right; those bits have to be converted back into music with as accurate a timing reference as when the music was first digitized."

Next, we have the first installment in a new series for the online archives: Recording of July 2001: The Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Album by Chip Stern. Each issue, the magazine's editors single out a Recording of the Month for having great music in great sound, and we'll now bring those to you online.