Meridian Explorer2 D/A headphone amplifier Associated Equipment

Sidebar 2: Associated Equipment

Digital Sources: MacBook Pro computer (early 2015); Benchmark DAC 1, PS Audio DirectStream DACs; Apogee Groove, Meridian Explorer USB DACs; Ayre Acoustics CX-7eMP CD player.
Analog Sources: Thorens TD 124 turntable reconditioned by Schopper AG; Oswalds Mill Audio slate plinth; Ortofon RMG-212 tonearm (rebuilt); Schick 12" tonearm; Ortofon 90th Anniversary SPU cartridge; Sony XDR-F1HD AM/FM/HD tuner.
Preamplification: Auditorium 23 standard step-up transformer; PS Audio NuWave Phono Converter phono stage/analog-to-digital converter, EAR phono stage.
Integrated Amplifier: Leben CS-600.
Headphones: Sennheiser HD 650, JH Audio JH-16 IEMs.
Loudspeakers: DeVore Fidelity The Nine.
Cables: USB: AudioQuest Cinnamon & Carbon & Coffee, Comprehensive Connectivity Company USB2-AB-10ST. Interconnect: Auditorium 23, The Chord Company (UK) Chorus and Chameleon Silver Plus, Q Cables Tao. Speaker: Auditorium 23. AC: Belden 14-gauge shielded, stock cords.
Accessories: Chilton's Durham media console in cherrywood.—Jim Austin

Meridian Audio Ltd.
US distributor: MAI
351 Thornton Road #108
Lithia Springs, GA 30122
(404) 344-7111

Hi-Reality's picture

Dear Jim,

Thank you indeed for this good review of the Meridian Explorer². I was looking forward to read little more about your MQA listening impressions.

Around 3:00 on 2L's 'magnificat 4 et misericordia' the highlight of the track starts with the Nidarosdomens jentekor & TrondheimSolistene to then move on to merge with the voice of the simply beautiful soprano, Lise Granden Berg, (3:34) to be joined by the organic sound of the Magne H. Draagen's organ (3:54).

The entire track is just a pure joy, bringing tears, through the current prototype of the Hi-Reality system and I intend to seek Morten Lindberg's permission and support to demo a purist audiovisual version of this magnificat at the launch event. This is one of my dreams for this project.

Skål, Babak
Hi-Reality Project

Steve Graham's picture

Maybe I'm naïve but I hope this will fulfill the lost promise of HDCD a couple of decades ago and much more as well. Now that WMG is on board hopefully others will follow. Let's hope that on both the hardware manufacturers and music distribution side it doesn't suffer from the NIH syndrome. I'd especially like to see Ayre and PS Audio, whose products I covet, get on board. I hope my location doesn't preclude me from downloads, I'd much rather pay for something than steal it but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

A Question for JA: When you say the Green LED lit up to show MQA encoding but not the blue to show Authentication does that mean that the impulse response of you A to D converter was not factored into the file you received?

With regards, Steve

IgAK's picture

"The CEO of Atlantic Records is enthusiastic about MQA, so hopefully we'll at least soon see MQA versions of those great Charles Mingus records—or Ray Charles, or Coltrane, or Zeppelin, or the Modern Jazz Quartet."

Another excuse to re-sell us the same material yet again! Well, if it results in making an improvement a success, I suppose it's for the best, regardless of what their motivation really is.