The Chester Group's New York Audio
Show 2013 -- Sunday
Today's mission, should I choose to accept it, is to visit
every room at the show and
ask a simple question:
"What component(s) do you have under $1000?"
Not everyone has that free flowing funds, or perhaps they
are seeking a system for their office, kitchen, bathroom, etc and don't want
to delve too deeply into audiophile-land. And so just what can
you get at the New York Audio Show 2013 for $1000...
Well Rounded Sound
WB1 small desk monitor tube-shaped speakers are only $399.
Duo network media player (will set ya back $650) has two hot swappable HDD
racks for 3.5" SATA drives. It does audio and video, with video processor
by Sigma Designs (SMP8643). The unit has a slot for SD memory cards and three
high-speed USB 2.0 ports for connecting external storage and extension
modules. To quote their website "The Duo supports practically all audio
and video formats. It is compatible with all types of "high-definition"
sound formats (Dolby TrueHD, DTS HD Master Audio). Special notice should be
taken of the extremely fast networking speeds, IPTV and Internet radio
functions, as well as the built-in Internet browser. New functions and
supported formats are brought to the Dune HD Duo with the regular release of
firmware updates." Bit torrent, IPTV, web browsing and much more is what
this baby can do. Of course you want the dirt on their audio side of things,
because for such a low price how could it handle a variety of audio file
types? Well, it can handle:
Audio codecs: AC3 (Dolby Digital), DTS, MPEG, AAC, LPCM,
WMA, WMAPro, EAC3 (Dolby Digital Plus), Dolby True HD, DTS HD High Resolution
Audio, DTS HD Master Audio, FLAC, multichannel FLAC, Ogg/Vorbis; support for
very high quality audio (up to 192 kHz/24-bit)
Audio file formats: MP3, MPA, M4A, WMA, FLAC, APE
(Monkey's Audio), Ogg/Vorbis, WAV, DTS-WAV, DTS, AC3, AAC
HD audio support: pass-through (up to 7.1 channels) and
decoding (up to 7.1 channels) of Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD MA (Blu-ray
structure, TS, MKV), pass-through (up to 7.1 channels) of multichannel
LPCMaudiotracks (Blu-ray structure, TS, MKV), decoding (up to 7.1 channels) of
FLAC (MKV, external)
Subtitle formats: SRT (external), SUB (MicroDVD) (external),
text (MKV), SSA/ASS (MKV, external), VobSub (MP4, MKV, external SUB/IDX), PGS
(Blu-ray structure, TS, MKV)
Ah yes, the good ol' Beringer
2496 crossover ($400) and Tascam
S1 ($800) were in a room here at the New York City Audio Show 2013.
Of course those on a Mac surely already own this, yet we
have Channel D with their amazing
software ($129 for Pure Music and Pure Vinyl is $279).
For those who like tweaks, the Stein
Music H2 is $1000 each. Hmmm... this is not quite a component technically,
but I'll let this one slide as Enjoy the
Music.com reviewed it and he really
WA7 Fireflies USB/DAC headphone amp is $999. This vacuum tube headphone
amplifier has a built-in USB 32-bit/192kHz DAC and 6C45 driver/power tubes
operating in Class A. There is a dedicated port for in-ear-monitors (IEMs) and
one for normal headphones. Hmmm,
did I just say ‘normal' when referring to audiophiles? Why yes, yes I did
and so what are you going to do about it, punk? ;-)
P4 speakers ($325) in bamboo and N22 amplifier ($199) are here at the New York
Audio Show 2013. In fact everything by Audioengine is under $1000. Remember
kids, i personally love the A5 and have a set in the bedroom and another pair
in the bathroom (with Audioengine S8 powered subwoofer).
New to Coincident
is their Dynamo SE34 ($999) that uses EL34 tubes. Now I know what you
thinking, this sweet looking honey of an amplifier simply can't have all
that great exotic stuff yet still be under
a grand. This cutie SET amp is said to belie its 8 watt power rating and
according to Coincident any 90dB/W/m sensitive speaker should work. Other
tubes that support the EL34 outputs are 6SL7 input/driver tube and 5U4 GB
rectifier tube. And there's more! For under a grand you also get hand
wiring, a stainless steel mirror finish chassis… all in a 22 lbs package for
less than an Alexander Hamilton ($1000 United States Federal Reserve Note).
has always been a sharp company and their X300A ($800) powered speakers with
USB DAC use the company's 5.25" Uni-Q driver. Inside each cabinet is not
one, but two Class AB amplifiers (20w for the tweeter and 50w for the
midrange/woofer). There's a standard 3.5mm analog headphone input, USB 2.0
jack and the DAC section can handle 24-bit/96kHz. Its really cool of KEF to
remember we desktop audio guys need something to groove to, too.
Here's the RP3 Rega turntable ($895) and Brio-R ($895).
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