Herb Reichert

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Herb Reichert  |  Jun 14, 2018  |  8 comments
An e-mail from an old audiophile pal: "Herb, my buddy owns a recording studio, and he told me one of his $10k reference amplifiers stopped working and the manufacturer said it would take months to be repaired. So he went online and bought this 60W AkitikA solid-state amplifier to use while his big amp was being repaired. The trouble is, the kit cost only $314. (The studio guy bought his assembled and tested for $488.) Now, he likes the AkitikA more than his broke-down reference amp."
Herb Reichert  |  May 31, 2018  |  35 comments
"Okay, all you high-rolling audiophile know-it-alls—what is the argument against amplifiers that operate in high-bias, class-A, single-ended mode, with the lowest possible parts count? Is there a better strategy for beauty, rhythm, color, texture, and easy-flowing musical verity? I think not. And please explain: Why has mainstream audio gone to such ridiculous and expensive lengths to avoid building and selling precisely these sorts of amps?"
Herb Reichert  |  May 31, 2018  |  9 comments
Brooklyn, 1979: Fridays were fierce. After a week of doing construction, I would gobble Wild Turkey at the Spring Lounge, then fall asleep on the F train with a fold of cash and a Sony Walkman stuffed in a chest pocket of my paint-spattered Belstaff Trialmaster jacket. Usually I missed my York Street stop by only a few stations, but occasionally I'd wake up at sunrise on Saturday at the last stop: Coney Island. I didn't mind. It was restorative to shuffle the deserted boardwalk, listening to the Ramones' Road to Ruin or Television's Marquee Moon.
Herb Reichert  |  May 17, 2018  |  7 comments
I am getting near the end of my Munich High End 2018 report and I am already feeling sad for all the rooms with hornspeakers I did not get to experience. What if I missed all the best ones?
Herb Reichert  |  May 16, 2018  |  11 comments
The July Stereophile will include my Follow-Up report on the Joseph Audio Pulsar loudspeakers; the same Pulsars Michael Fremer raved about in his full review. Before I submitted the review, Jana Dagdagan and I made a live binaural recording/video to accompany my written report so you, the reader at home, could experience the exact same recordings in the exact same system in the same room I used to evaluate the Pulsars. Today, therefore, I will only tell you that Jeff Joseph's floor-standing, gloss-white Perspective loudspeakers (15,990 Euros/pair) sounded fuller, deeper, bigger, and richer, than the stand-mounted Pulsars I reviewed.
Herb Reichert  |  May 16, 2018  |  7 comments
Look at this photo of Cessaro Horn Acoustics' beautiful-in-color 5-way "Zeta" lautsprecher. Can you imagine it sitting in your listening room? I could, and I'd be proud to own it—if only I didn't live in a one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment and write reviews for a living. The Zetas are new, and cost between 320,00 and 460,000 Euros/pair, which—don't laugh—I think seems like a bargain for all the hardware and good sound a buyer would receive.
Herb Reichert  |  May 15, 2018  |  11 comments
In the primary Living Voice room (there were two) I found the Vox Olympian & Vox Elysian loudspeakers (851,200/pair Euros in Macassar Ebony & Amboyna Burl with figured Eucalyptus wood), partnered with vintage Kondo electronics via both digital and analog sources. For analog, there was the Grand Prix Audio Monaco 2.0 turntable with a Kuzma 4-point tonearm, and a Fuuga MC cartridge (45,419 Euro total) connected via a Living Voice step-up transformer (6812 Euros) to a SJS enhanced model 3 phono-amplifier voiced for Living Voice (15,896 Euros).
Herb Reichert  |  May 14, 2018  |  13 comments
So, folks, here are a couple things you need to understand about Munich High End 2018:

As a rule, Europe brings to audio a different aesthetic and perspective than America—they are way less into giant, million-dollar, solid-state amplifiers and way more into low-power tube amps. And . . . they are definitely into horn loudspeakers in a way that most Americans cannot fathom.

Herb Reichert  |  May 11, 2018  |  9 comments
This is my first trip to High End Munich, held Thursday–Sunday May 10–13 at the MOC convention center. Besides reporting for Stereophile, I am charged with scouting to make a final determination whether it "would be worth the suffering" for my Brooklyn friend Sphere, who hates to travel more than two hours to get anywhere! "Herb, just tell me, if I only attend one audio show, should it be Munich?"
Herb Reichert  |  May 03, 2018  |  12 comments
While covering CanMania at the 2017 Capital Audiofest, I was sitting at the table of HeadAmp Audio Electronics, listening first to John McEuen singing Warren Zevon's "Excitable Boy," from McEuen's Made in Brooklyn (24-bit/192kHz AIFF, Chesky JD388/HDtracks), then to Macy Gray's Stripped (24/96 AIFF, Chesky JD389/HDtracks). I was listening through HeadAmp's extraordinary GS-X Mk.2 headphone amplifier ($2999–$3199), but midway through Gray's "I Try," I stopped, pulled the Audeze LCD-4 headphones off my head, and asked HeadAmp's head of sales and marketing, Peter James, what DAC he was using.

"Do you know the HoloAudio Spring DAC?"

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