LATEST ADDITIONS

Larry Greenhill Posted: Apr 20, 2017 20 comments
The Mark Levinson No.526 is the first preamplifier designed by a new 12-person team led by Todd Eichenbaum, director of engineering at the Harman Luxury Audio Group's Engineering Center of Excellence (ECOE), in Shelton, Connecticut. Designed to fit the price niche between the company's least and most expensive preamps—the No.326S ($10,000) and No.52 ($30,000)—the No.526 costs $20,000.
Robert Baird Posted: Apr 20, 2017 1 comments
The Flying Burrito Brothers: The Gilded Palace of Sin
A&M/Intervention SP 4175 (LP). 1969/2017. Larry Marks, prod.; Henry Lewy, prod., eng.; Kevin Gray, remastering. AAA. TT: 35:24
Performance *****
Sonics ****½

The International Submarine Band, the Byrds, the Flying Burrito Brothers, and finally, just Gram Parsons. He was a Snively on his mother's side, scion of a vast citrus-growing fortune. A trust-fund baby who, unlike most of the struggling musicians he hung out with, could go to a bank and withdraw large amounts of cash. When he was 12, two days before Christmas, his father killed himself. Seven years later, on the day he graduated from high school, his mother finally drank herself to death. He lasted one semester at Harvard before becoming a denizen of Los Angeles, and eventually a powerful force in the Sunset Strip music scene.

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Jana Dagdagan Posted: Apr 19, 2017 5 comments
For this 1 Minute Audiophile Escape, we visited longstanding New York hi-fi shop Innovative Audio. This video features three (out of their many) systems readily available at the time of our visit.

Because this 1 Minute Audiophile Escape features a bit more gear than our other videos, here is a list of gear in order of appearance...

John Atkinson Posted: Apr 18, 2017 6 comments
As I mentioned in my review eight years ago of Meridian Audio's 808.2 Signature Reference CD player, I have long been impressed by the British company's components—in fact, ever since the early 1980s, when I purchased a Meridian 101 preamplifier, followed by my very positive experiences with Meridian's MCD Pro and 208 CD players, 518 digital audio processor, D600 and DSP8000 digital active loudspeakers, and, most recently, the Prime and Explorer D/A headphone amplifiers.
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Robert Schryer Posted: Apr 18, 2017 64 comments
Audiophilia is dead.

Actually, it retired to an exclusive country club in the sky—but as far as the enduring, salt-of-the-earth audio hobbyist is concerned, it may as well be dead. The reason is simple: The old audiophile paradigm used to be mostly about when we were going to get that top-shelf component we had our eye on; it was rarely an if proposition. That's because, if you were an average, determined audiophile, it wasn't prohibitively expensive to buy top-shelf equipment. That's what made our hobby so exciting back then: the idea that you could actually own the best sound around. Damn!

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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Apr 18, 2017 9 comments
The biggest audio show in the United States, AXPONA (Audio Expo North America), takes place April 21–23 at the Westin O'Hare in Rosemont, close to Chicago O'Hare International airport. Since planting its roots in America's heartland just a few years back, the show has grown to offer, in 2017, at least 142 active exhibit rooms, 453 unique brands and exhibitors, an Ear Gear Expo so large that it has spilled over into surrounding hallways, and a full schedule of seminars and entertainment.
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Fred Kaplan Posted: Apr 17, 2017 1 comments
The pianist John Lewis, who died in 2001 at the age of 79, is best known as the leader of the Modern Jazz Quartet, but throughout that group's long life (1952–1992), he also composed, conducted, and played music for many other ensembles, large and small, tinged with influences from swing and the blues to Baroque, Renaissance, and Third Stream avant-garde. The Wonderful World of Jazz, recorded in 1960 on the Atlantic label, is one of his more obscure albums, but it's also one of his freshest.

I'd never heard it, until I received this new 180gm stereo LP, reissued by Pure Pleasure Recordings...

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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 16, 2017 12 comments
"Phase 4 stereo can only be described as a marvel of sound, a radically new and dramatically potent concept in the art of high fidelity reproduction . . . it stands for motion and an uncanny sense of spatial realism unapproached by conventional disc standards."

Uh huh. And we have a miraculous vintage tube amp out in the swamps, spanned by the Brooklyn Bridge, that we want to sell you!!!

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Jason Victor Serinus Posted: Apr 15, 2017 6 comments
In honor of the Lou Harrison Centennial, Naxos has just released a CD of three of Harrison's great pieces: the Violin Concerto (aka Concerto for the Violin with Percussion Orchestra), Grand Duo, and Double Music (with John Cage). Every piece on the recording, which is also available as a 24/48 download from multiple sites, is so unique and engaging, and the percussion so resounding, that tracks from the recording are guaranteed to open ears and turn heads in rooms I visit at the forthcoming AXPONA and LAAS audio shows.
John Atkinson Art Dudley Posted: Apr 14, 2017 2 comments
It has been six years since we last released a recording on the Stereophile label—a jazz album featuring Attention Screen, the late Bob Reina's free-jazz ensemble. This dry spell was mainly due to the increasing demands made on our editorial team's time by social media and the magazine's website, but also by John Atkinson's recording activities with the Portland State Chamber Choir, who issue their recordings on their own label. Nevertheless, we've been keeping our eyes and ears open for suitable opportunities.

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