Ariel Bitran

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Ariel Bitran  |  Nov 12, 2008  |  12 comments

Secondly, we listened to Bobby Womack's The Facts of Life. Actually, I didn't even listen to it. I had to get some guitar stuff prepared for band practice later that evening, but Alex chilled on my couch, listening to the LP.

After Side 1 was over, he screamed, "This guy is AMAZING."

Ariel Bitran  |  Nov 25, 2008  |  0 comments

Following that record, I tuned in to Luciano by Luciano Pavarotti, also found in the trash. Pavarotti sang with impact and the timpani were a joy.

Ariel Bitran  |  Aug 26, 2013  |  42 comments
It was hot—the kind of hot where the second you get out of the shower, you start sweating. My ceiling fan could’ve provided relief, but the repeated clink of its pull-chain added an offbeat to the music. My goal was to analyze my system’s current strengths and weaknesses and define my “reference sound”. The fan had to go. It was time to listen.
Ariel Bitran  |  Jun 12, 2013  |  8 comments
I spent about sixteen hours last weekend studying a rainbow of frequency anomalies and the subdivisions in which they lie. Why? Because I am an audiophile, and it is fun. Also, it’s my job.

After reading the all-encompassing Audio Glossary at from front-to-back, I rewrote the glossary as a bulleted list reflecting an organized critical listening process to utilize in the future.

Sections include ‘Midrange: 160—1300Hz,’ ‘Soundstaging and Imaging,’ and the seductive ‘Pleasurable Excess’. In the process, I got to know words I thought I understood a little better, learned about sonic situations like a chocolaty sound, comb filtering, and the venetian blind effect, and drew out differences between words that seemed similar but are not quite, such as “accuracy”, a qualifier to describe how truthful a system is to recreating the incoming signal but not necessarily how much the system sounds like the real thing, versus “realism”, a term used to describe a system’s sound only if the recording being evaluated is truthful to the acoustic event. So if you have an accurate system and put on a recording that captures an excellent live performance and true timbres of the instruments in a pleasant-sounding acoustical space, you’ll be just as happy as a pig in… well, you know what.

Ariel Bitran  |  Nov 03, 2012  |  35 comments
In this list, I give you my top five guitar solos of all time. Various characteristics were considered for placement on this list: technical skill, melodic composition and framework, pop sensibility, harmonization, but no value was considered more important than ‘does it move me?’

There are no numbers indicating whether one is first or fifth. If the solo is listed here, it is simply one of the best.

Ariel Bitran  |  Feb 13, 2013  |  1 comments participant Eric Schneck of Brooklyn, New York (that's right, Brooklyn...watchu lookin' at) is the lucky winner of the Fela Kuti Box Set Sweepstakes.
Ariel Bitran  |  Jul 17, 2007  |  0 comments
Invisible airwaves
crackle with life
bright antennae bristle
with the energy
Ariel Bitran  |  Apr 18, 2013  |  15 comments
In an effort to control crowds, build anticipation, and give each listener a comfortable chance at the MBL experience, MBL and partnering dealer Sensorium AV provided twenty tickets to each of their hourly shows. MBL upped the ante this year with a multi-channel demonstration.

There was certainly a lot of hype surrounding the room: the long lines waiting to get in the demo, the even longer lines waiting for tickets, and the crushing riffs of Rush’s “YYZ” emanating out into the hallway. Attendees strolled out of the room giggling and carrying gift bags. While all the other rooms at this hi-fi show were the same walk-in, knock on the speakers, and walk-out ordeal, MBL and Sensorium AV wanted to make this an experience to remember.

Ariel Bitran  |  Apr 23, 2012  |  5 comments
Stereophile is not all about reviewing hi-fi, and thanks to our all-knowing and thrill-seeking Music Editor, Robert Baird, we cover exciting new releases in each monthly issue for you to consider on your hi-fi escapades. In this post, I listen to all records we reviewed available on streaming services MOG and Spotify from our April 2012 issue, provide my own two-cents, and link to the playlists from the two services. With a premium account, one can stream at 320kbps Ogg Vorbis files from Spotify, and MOG users can stream 320kbps MP3s for free!


The MOG April 2012 Playlist: A Pensive Month

The Spotify April 2012 Playlist: Pure Fun

Ariel Bitran  |  Apr 18, 2012  |  1 comments
Ask the Editors, Round Two on day three of the New York Audio & AV show was decidedly more laid back than Ask the Editors, Round One possibly because there were less panelists clamoring over a single microphone. In fact, I’m not even sure if the microphone was used this time around, since everyone could hear each other clearly in the room.