Barry Willis  |  Mar 08, 2004  |  0 comments
Recorded music as a packaged-goods commodity continues to decline, according to figures released March 4 by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Jon Iverson  |  Mar 08, 2004  |  0 comments
Four short years ago, rock band Metallica angered part of its fan base by going after downloaders who used the online file-trading service Napster. At that time, the band provided Napster with the screen names of 335,000 users reputed to be pirating Metallica's music, and demanded they be removed from the service. The group was also the first to sue the fledgling company.
John Atkinson  |  Mar 07, 2004  |  First Published: Mar 01, 2004  |  0 comments
One of my mentors, John Crabbe—my predecessor as editor of the English magazine Hi-Fi News—used to insist that a magazine's soul is its "Letters" column. If a magazine was able to publish a lively collection of readers' letters, said John, it would enjoy a lengthy life. Conversely, if its letters column was dull or nonexistent, then no matter how much advertising it had or how many readers it could boast, it was just a matter of time before it had the lid shut on it. In the 28 years since John told me this, I have not found an exception. The kicker, of course, is that there's no easy way of ensuring that a magazine has lively letters to publish.
Jonathan Scull  |  Mar 07, 2004  |  First Published: Dec 01, 1998  |  0 comments
Over time I've successfully used a variety of tuning devices to refine the acoustics in Kathleen's and my listening room. But I've always suspected that Acoustic Science's Tube Traps might be a good way to finish it off. I've occasionally asked visitors to stand in one spot or another behind the speakers as I listened for tergiversation (ie, "to change one's tune"; Hoo-hah!). I found several locations where a nice, dense audiophile body made an improvement to the sound.
Martin Colloms  |  Mar 07, 2004  |  First Published: Aug 01, 1998  |  0 comments
The search for signal transparency has led to much experiment and debate concerning losses in fidelity that can be traced to the preamplifier or—as it's more often and awkwardly called these days when the phono stage is omitted—the "line controller."
John Atkinson  |  Mar 07, 2004  |  First Published: Dec 01, 1990  |  0 comments
Jitter is not what digital sound quality induces in the listener; rather it is the instability in the clock signal that controls exactly when the analog waveform is sampled in the original A/D conversion, or when the digital word input into a DAC results in an analog voltage being produced at the chip's output. "So what?" is the response of digital advocates, "As long as a digital one is recognized as a one and a digital zero as a zero, then how can there be any difference in sound?" goes their argument, normally culminating in a fervently expressed "Bits is bits!"
Barry Willis  |  Mar 01, 2004  |  0 comments
In late February, many California music fans discovered in their mail a one-page form letter from the state's attorney general, Bill Lockyer, announcing that he was "pleased to enclose payment for your claim in the settlement of the Compact Disc Minimum Advertised Price Antitrust Litigation." Attached to the bottom of the form letter was a tear-off check made out to the aggrieved music fan from "CD MAP Antitrust Litigation" in Faribault, MN.
Barry Willis  |  Mar 01, 2004  |  0 comments
In its nearly two decades, Benicia, CA–based loudspeaker manufacturer NHT has earned a well-deserved reputation for affordable high-performance products, among them legendary mini-monitors, such as the Super Zero and Super One, as well as its full-range Model 3.3. Founded by Ken Kantor and Chris Byrne in 1986, the company was sold to Jensen International in the early 1990s, spun off to packaged goods specialist Recoton, and acquired by Rockford Corporation in the final days of 2002—an event that saved NHT from an uncertain fate.
Stereophile Staff  |  Mar 01, 2004  |  0 comments
John Atkinson headed to the Midwest last year to record another audiophile disc. In Deep River: the Cantus Spirituals Project, JA describes the process of capturing a chorus of male voices with high-rez digital equipment. Atkinson notes, "Presented with the magnificent acoustic of Sioux Falls' 1500-seat Washington Pavilion of the Arts & Sciences, the question facing me was how to present what are still fairly intimate works while taking advantage of that supportive acoustic."
Jon Iverson  |  Mar 01, 2004  |  0 comments
A recent online poll indicates that a majority of Stereophile's online readers still don't like the idea of using computers when it comes to enjoying music. If a new report accurately predicts the future, they might as well get used to the rest of the world's booting up their tunes.