LATEST ADDITIONS

Herb Reichert  |  Jan 29, 2019  |  20 comments
Every time I fly to California, my brain gets stuck on the lyrics of that Arlo Guthrie song: "Coming into Los Angeles / bringing in a couple of keys . . ." Even landing in San Francisco, I'm always smiling, because I've never been busted in California.

Which means that I'm a lucky guy. In this life I have acquired nothing of material value, but I did see Howlin' Wolf and Little Walter in Chicago in 1962, at Theresa's. I spent the whole Summer of Love (1967) in San Francisco listening to music. And because I lived only a few blocks away, I witnessed the Ramones' first gig at CBGB, in 1974.

Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 28, 2019  |  7 comments
There are many ways to talk about the remarkable Symphonies Nos.1 & 4 • Jeux vénitiens of Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski (1913–1994). You could, for example, approach them as does Kimmo Korhonen, whose extremely detailed and well-thought-out liner notes for the recent Ondine SACD of these works from Hannu Lintu and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra examine the evolution of Lutoslawski's tonal language and explain that they basically represent the beginning (Symphony No.1, 1947), middle (Venetian Games, 1960–1961) and end (Symphony No.4, 1992) of his arc as a mature composer. Or you could simply close your eyes and discover how many fantastic places they take you to.
Art Dudley  |  Jan 24, 2019  |  39 comments
To audio designers in Japan and elsewhere, the single-ended, 300B-tubed amplifier is like a haiku: an art form defined by both its prescribed limitations and the potential such restraint offers for artistic expression. Here, the only hard-and-fast rule is a simple one: output devices are limited to one 300B directly heated triode tube per channel. From there, it's a blank slate: Do you want AC or DC on the output-tube heaters? Tube or solid-state rectification? Low or high gain? Fixed or cathode bias? New parts, vintage parts, or a mix of both? Triode or pentode tubes as drivers? Capacitors or transformers—or nothing at all—between the plates of the driver tubes and the grids of the output tubes?
Isaac Markowitz  |  Jan 24, 2019  |  17 comments
I've just returned home from one of the greatest concerts of my life, and felt absolutely compelled to share my thoughts with you. Yo-Yo Ma performed all six of J.S. Bach's Cello Suites, from memory, over a mesmerizing two-and-a-half hours at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, in Morrison, Colorado. It was a truly special experience.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 23, 2019  |  4 comments
Roon, one of the major brands of audiophile-quality high-resolution music playback software, has just released its v.1.6 upgrade. Roon 1.6 finally includes a portal for hi-rez streaming Qobuz, whose US launch is rumored for sometime next month. In addition to pairing Roon's rich metadata with the entire Qobuz and Tidal catalogs, the upgrade also offers major new features.
Stereophile Staff  |  Jan 23, 2019  |  3 comments
Saturday, January 26, 5–9pm, The Audio Guy (1590 E. Business 121, Building 2, Suite 500, Lewisville, TX 75056) is having an open house with VPI Industries president Mat Weisfeld, who be giving a sneak peek at the new limited-edition HW40 turntable. Michael Vamos will be on hand to demo the GamuT RS5i speakers and other vendor reps will also demonstrate some of their latest offerings. And singer/songwriter Robynn Shayne will be performing some of her latest music!
Kalman Rubinson  |  Jan 22, 2019  |  62 comments
I had a moment of revelation in 2000, when I first set up a pair of Revel's original Ultima Studio loudspeakers in my living room. It wasn't just my awareness that Revel's next-to-top-of-the-line loudspeaker was outstandingly good—it seemed to perfectly match my space and my ears. From the first day, I knew these would be keepers and I purchased the review samples.

Revel's Ultima Studio2 arrived in 2008, and though it performed even better than the original, the impression it made on me wasn't quite revelatory, and my praise was somewhat restrained—something for which Fred Kaplan justly chided me in his enthusiastic Follow-Up review in December 2009. To this day, the Ultima Studio2 and Revel's top model, the Salon2, remain Revel's standard bearers. Meanwhile, I wonder when there will be a Studio3.

Kalman Rubinson  |  Jan 22, 2019  |  62 comments
Revel began demonstrating prototypes of the Performa F228Be, reviewed elsewhere in this issue, at the Consumer Electronics Show and other audio events in 2015, though they had yet to settle on the model name. The most salient feature that distinguished the F228Be-to-be from the established Performa3 F208 was the new beryllium tweeter, and while it sounded more than okay under show conditions, I always heard a bit of brightness and harshness. I knew it was still a work in progress, but I wasn't very eager to want to take it home.
Herb Reichert  |  Jan 22, 2019  |  6 comments
I am obliged to begin this review of First Watt's new stereo power amplifier, the SIT-3, with an explanation of how I believe a power amplifier should be reviewed. Why? Because the 18Wpc SIT-3 is a unique and historically important design that can't be wired up to just any loudspeaker and then critiqued on the basis of its bass power, treble brightness, or midrange acuity.
Jason Victor Serinus  |  Jan 21, 2019  |  1 comments
To celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and the recent Women's March, we turn the spotlight on Symphonies Nos.1 & 4 of Florence Beatrice Price (1887–1953), the first African American woman to have her music performed by a major American orchestra. In doing so, I extend a big thank you to Naxos, whose invaluable American Classics series continues to record works by American composers both famous and relatively unknown.

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