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High-End Audio, High Fidelity Audiophile Industry News


 
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Upcoming Show Coverage
TAVES 2014 (Toronto Audio Video Entertainment Show)
TAVES 2014 (Toronto Audio Video Entertainment Show) will be held from October 31st through November 2nd at the Sheraton Centre Hotel in Toronto, Canada. High-end home audio/video and CANPAX Headphone Show section will be available for all attendees. The CANPAX Headphone Show, powered by Audio360.org, recognizes the incredible popularity of the headphone category. Enjoy the Music.com will be at TAVES 2014 with hi-res video gear plus cover the show live via daily photos; with hi-res videos soon afterwards being available online. We may also provide live streaming video during TAVES, yet at lower than our industry-leading 1080i resolution due to the complications of bringing a true broadcast-grade TV studio across International boarders. We look forward to seeing everyone in Toronto and, wait for it, there is some very exciting news we will soon be announcing about TAVES in the coming weeks so stay tuned!

Upgraded RSS Feed
Enjoy the Music.com RSS FeedEnjoy the Music.com has just upgraded our RSS feed! We now offer more daily updates, up-to-the-minute industry information, high-end audio equipment reviews and more! Add our feed: www.EnjoyTheMusic.com/enjoythemusic.xml 

 

10 / 21 / 14

Schiit Audio Mani Photostage
Schiit Audio's new Mani Phono PreamplifierSchiit Audio's new Mani phono preamplifier ($129) is their most flexible inexpensive phono preamp on the market. There are four different gain levels to accommodate virtually any cartridge from moving coil to Decca, plus selectable loading too. Mani features a fully passive RIAA network with two separately switchable gain blocks, for 30, 42, 48, and 59 dB settings. There are separate low-noise and low-distortion amplifier stages to deliver high performance and a vanishingly low noise floor. High-output cartridges, even the renowned Deccas, are easily accommodated, as are other moving magnet, moving coil and low-output moving coil cartridges. "A lot of people ask me 'why is the father of audiophile digital moving into analog now?'" says Schiit Audio designer Mike Moffat "The truth is, I never really left. People forget there was a Theta Electronics before Theta Digital, and I did a lot of work on tubes, and on phono preamps. Now, it makes sense to come back to it with a really affordable, flexible, and great-sounding product." Frequency response is from 20 Hz to 20 kHz, the Mani's dimensions are 5" x 3.5" x 1.25" and it weighs 1 lb.

 

TIDAL CD Quality Online Streaming Music
TIDALTIDAL is making waves as their CD quality streaming music service partnerships and integration expands. TIDAL can be found in 16 home audio brands and is working closely with its integration partners to ensure that music lovers will be able to register and experience their catalog of over 25 million tracks at CD quality sound. Their music service is available within Sonos, Denon HEOS, Harman Omni, Bluesound & NAD, Meridian, Auralic, Electrocompaniet, Simple Audio, Raumfeld, Dynaudio, Audiovector, Pro-ject, Airable by Tune In Media, HiFiAkademie and ickStream. Users simply need to sign up to the service for access. The company plans to add more brands across a wide variety of platforms in the near future. TIDAL also has dedicated apps available for iOS and Android phones and tablets plus web playes for PC/MAC platforms. "The reaction from the home audio industry to TIDAL has been exceptional and we are really excited that our first 16 confirmed partners are such highly-considered brands in the industry, " said Andy Chen, CEO at TIDAL. "Experiencing TIDAL on high-quality home audio systems and headphones proves just how good high-quality music streaming can sound. We will therefore offer TIDAL across the broadest selection of home audio systems with these premium partners and more to come." As an advertisement-free, lossless, CD-quality music and HD music video streaming service with extensive curated editorial expertise, TIDAL will be available in the UK and the United States of America for a monthly subscription of £19.99 / $19.99 starting in autumn 2014.

 

Legacy Audio V Speaker
Legacy Audio V Floorstanding LoudspeakerLegacy Audio new model V high performance floorstanding loudspeaker is their "groundbreaking achievement" four-way system. This is their first to use the Legacy Wavelet Processor, which is an advanced speaker and room resonance correction system with DAC/Preamplifier. The V features open air dipole midrange, dual subwoofers with internal amplification, two Legacy 4" long AMT tweeters in a specially optimized post convergent array and carefully crafted finish options. The Legacy V is their first to use a 4" long Legacy AMT neodymium tweeters, arranged in a specially optimized post convergent array that has a frequency response that extends to 30 kHz. Dual 6" curvilinear driver with phase plug are configured in dipolar array. V also features two open air dual 14" carbon/pulp drivers and two 12" drivers. The bass section includes 2,800 Watts of the latest generation of ICEpower amplification. The Legacy Wavelet Processor is a preamp and four-way crossover with time alignment that provides a complete speaker and room resonance correction system. The Preamp and DAC can also be bypassed at the touch of a button. Wavelet optimizes the loudspeaker/room acoustic transfer function in both the frequency and time domains. Working with new algorithms, it starts with a psychoacoustically based measurement method with the provided calibrated microphone. Alignments are then individually optimized within a 40ms window by way of a wireless iPad, smart phone or computer. The result is audibly improved transient response that allows the V system to operate accurately and consistently in virtually any listening environment. The intricately crafted cabinet features optional high gloss, real wood veneer and aluminum extrusions. The elegant design is highlighted by a gentle illumination (with on/off switch) from within the center of each tower. Frequency response is from 16 Hz to 30 kHz and sensitivity is 98dB/W/m. Cabinet dimensions are 72" x 18.75" x 19" (HxWxD). 

 

10 / 16 / 14

Enjoy the Music.com Tours Acoustic Sounds
Acoustic SoundsEnjoy the Music.com now offers a very special, and exclusive, 45 minute hi-res video tour within Acoustic Sounds' inner sanctuary! We join owner Chad Kassem in what is perhaps the most in-depth and informative tour of Acoustic Sounds... including a very rare look inside their inner vault! As a leading retailer, recording studio owner and hi-res online music store, there is no doubt Acoustic Sounds it a leading force ranging from music creation to retailing and all in-between. We give you an inside look at their entire main office; with yet another exclusive hi-res video soon to follow of their vinyl LP pressing plant! Come see our video and many just-posted pics within Enjoy the Music.com's pre-show coverage of the Blues Masters at the Crossroads concertWe'll be netcasting their entire blues concert this weekend so be sure to tune in to that starting Friday at 7:30pm Salina, KS time. We look forward to seeing you there! You can chat with us during the event too as we'll have a live widown for you to ask questions and comment on this event as it happen. You can tag us on Twitter, too, via #BluesMastersAtTheCrossroads! As always, in the end what really matters is that you... enjoy the music!

 

10 / 14 / 14

Enjoy the Music.com Teams Up With TAVES Consumer Electronics Show
Enjoy the Music.com Teams Up With TAVES Consumer Electronics ShowFrom October 31st to November 2nd, the TAVES Consumer Electronics Show at the Sheraton Centre Hotel in downtown Toronto, Canada, will be the ultimate event for Canadians passionate about technology. TAVES will feature the latest devices in technology for home audio, home theater, electronic gadgets, digital photography, and a special preview of many products not yet available! For this 2014 event, products of interest never before available at TAVES Consumer Electronics Show will be included within the New Technology Arena, Jolt Art Gallery, a digital photography / imaging area as well as a dedicated headphone / portable audio section. Introduced for the first time in 2014, the New Technology Arena will enable visitors to see groundbreaking electronic products and prototypes – many funded by Kickstarter and Indiegogo crowd-funding campaigns. "TAVES is delighted that Enjoy the Music.com and Enjoy the Music.TV will be offering coverage to their readers, including live video coverage, of the TAVES Consumer Electronics Show" said Suave Kajko, President of TAVES Consumer Electronics Show. "For the first time, we will have live coverage streaming online to help inform and educate consumers on the wide variety of electronics available in the marketplace today. Enjoy the Music.com has always provided a wonderful written perspective of our event and we expect that the live streamed video coverage will take this to the next level. The timing couldn't be better since this year TAVES will offer a greatly expanded show floor, with many new product categories featured for the very first time including holographic displays, 3D printing, replicating, Oculus Rift, Tesla, and more. We look forward to the unique perspective and insight that Enjoy the Music.com and Enjoy the Music.TV offers." See our press release here

 

Enjoy the Music.com / Enjoy the Music.TV Blues Masters at the Crossroads
Blues Masters at the Crossroads 2014Enjoy the Music.com's sister site Enjoy the Music.TV is right now on-location at the Blues Masters at the Crossroads event at Blue Heaven Studios! We just posted many photos of the concert hall, with special attention paid to the inner recording studio section. Scheduled to appear includes performances by Rip Lee Pryor, Moreland & Arbuckle, Marquise Knox, Big George Brock, Kim Wilson, Joe Beard, Lazy Lester, Mighty Sam McClain, Sonny Green, Kim Wilson with Billy Flynn, and Bernard Allison. Taking place in Salina, Kansas, October 17th and 18th at a converted 1925 church sanctuary, the musical gospel continues to resonate within the walls of this historic building. You can see Enjoy the Music.com's pre-show and recoding studio photos here. Keep checking back as we will be adding more photos, perhaps a few teaser videos, etc right up until our live stream! We'll be making blues music history as Enjoy the Music.com's sister site, Enjoy the Music.TV, will be live streaming Acoustic Sounds' Blues Masters at the Crossroads concert for the entire world to enjoy the music. Yet that is not all, as after the concert we'll be moving our studio to a special remote location hotel where these incredible blues musicians jam out all night long! This after-concert event has never been recorded in hi-res, let alone streamed online too, and we plan to broadcast this for you to join us in the fun! Oh, you want more? Ok, how about we give you the opportunity to interact live with many of these great blues musicians via our integrated Internet chat! Adding to that, we also have Twitter integration and you can connect with us live at #BluesMastersAtTheCrossroads!

 

10 / 13 / 14

RMAF 2014 Live Video Report
RMAF 2014 Show Report (Rocky Mountain Audio Fest)Enjoy the Music.com live streamed well over 20 hours of originally-produced video from the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest (RMAF) 2014 event. We visited a variety of rooms / exhibition spaces and streaming it all live to our worldwide audience! In the coming weeks, we will be posting videos within our YouTube Channel in a more one-by-one basis per manufacturer / seminar. As always, in the end what really matters is that you... enjoy the music!

 

Enjoy the Music.com Posts Rick Becker's NYAS Part 4 Show Coverage
Enjoy the Music.com just posted part 4 of photojournalist Rick Becker's extensive NYAS 2014 show report. Rick's final installment covering this Brooklyn event in not to be missed!

 

10 / 09 / 14

Enjoy the Music.com Posts Rick Becker's NYAS Part 3 Show Coverage
New York Audio Show 2014 Report  NYAS 2014Enjoy the Music.com just posted part 3 of photojournalist Rick Becker's extensive NYAS 2014 show report. We added yet another two more pages with excellent information on the products seen during the New York Audio Show 2014 in Brooklyn. Rick Becker gives you wonderful reporting on all the sights and sounds at the NYAS 2014! Remember to click on the photos with a red circle on the lower right so you can see our hi-res details of all the visually stunning gear that was seen and heard at NYAS 2014.

 

10 / 08 / 14

T+A Elektroakustik PDP 3000 HV SACD/CD Player With DAC
T+A Elektroakustik PDP 3000 HV SACD/CD Player With DACT+A Elektroakustik PDP 3000 HV ($20,000) SACD/CD player plus DAC is in the company's flagship HV (High Voltage) series and has been developed specifically to reproduce high-resolution audio data without any trace of compromise. The T+A engineering team has equipped the PDP 3000 HV with an excellent disc mechanism that reads CD and SACD media, and then transfers the data to the PDP 3000 HV's high-performance PCM and DSD converters. The unit comes equipped with seven digital inputs for a wide variety of digital sources. T+A Elektroakustik's PDP 3000 case is crafted out of solid aluminum and no ferromagnetic materials. Aluminum dividers separate five shielded sub-compartments, which house the disc mechanism with decoder board and digital inputs, the D/A converter with analog output stage, the analog mains power supply, the digital mains power supply and stored within the solid aluminum front panel is the control section with its ultra-bright screen and sensor buttons. The disc transport mechanism is mounted on just two close-tolerance pushrods, which completely de-couple it from the outer case. This in turn prevents the transmission of external pressure waves, vibration or structural sound from the mounting surface to the electronics and disc mechanism. A high-torque synchronous motor moves the disc carrier block smoothly and quietly by means of a precision-made de-coupled spindle. The loading mechanism makes it easy to insert discs without damaging them; they are held in securely in place by an anti-resonance puck. The heart of the PDP 3000 HV is a quadruple double-differential DAC based on the same converter employed in the company's T+A MP 3000 HV model. The converter features a supplementary signal path for processing DSD signals. Digital input signals pass through T+A's jitter-reduction stage, which receives the data from either the CD/SACD transport or any of the seven digital inputs before being processed by the converter. The USB input is equipped with the latest USB interfaces and is capable of handling PCM and DSD audio. DSD data is passed directly to the converter modules. The current/voltage transducers, which are downstream of the D/A converter, are fully discrete. Analog output stages include unbalanced RCA and balanced XLR.

T+A Elektroakustik PDP 3000 HV SACD/CD Player With DAC

 

10 / 07 / 14

Enjoy the Music.com / Enjoy the Music.TV Will Live Stream Blues Masters at the Crossroads
Blues Masters at the Crossroads 2014The Blues Masters at the Crossroads event at Blue Heaven Studios, now in its 17th year as the preeminent authentic blues concert in the world, will feature performances by Rip Lee Pryor, Moreland & Arbuckle, Marquise Knox, Big George Brock, Kim Wilson, Joe Beard, Lazy Lester, Mighty Sam McClain, Sonny Green, Kim Wilson with Billy Flynn, and Bernard Allison. Taking place in Salina, Kansas, October 17th and 18th at a converted 1925 church sanctuary, the musical gospel continues to resonate within the walls of this historic building. To bring the 'good word to the streets', Enjoy the Music.com's sister site Enjoy the Music.TV will be live streaming Blues Masters at the Crossroads for the first time in recorded history, so the world can see and hear the live sound of true, authentic blues music during this momentous event. "Blues Masters at the Crossroads has always been a treat for the ears and eyes, so it's going to be an incredible event that is being streamed live on Enjoy the Music.com's sister site Enjoy the Music.TV," said Acoustic Sounds Founder Chad Kassem, who has presented the Blues Masters at the Crossroads concerts for the past 16 years. "The venue, the performers, and of course the music, will all work together to give viewers a powerful experience. We're all fired up about taking our blues concerts to the next level."

"Words can not truly describe just how much Enjoy the Music.TV is looking forward to live streaming Blues Masters at the Crossroads," said Editor and Creative Director of Enjoy the Music.com Steven R. Rochlin. "We will be broadcasting musical performances from authentic, well-respected blues musicians who have truly lived this unique genre of music that originated within African-American communities located in deep South of the USA. When hearing the blues, it resonates deeply with one's soul. As a genuinely American sound, there is no doubt that once you hear the blues you are hooked for life. It is our honor to stream this event live for the first time in blues music history. We also hope to have a few of the musicians answer questions within our live chat and via Twitter #BluesMasters2014." See our full press release here.

 

Vinnie Rossi LIO Modular Hi-Fi Audio Stereo System
Vinnie Rossi LIO Modular Hi-Fi Audio Stereo SystemVinnie Rossi, with their first product at the upcoming RMAF 2014 show, will be debuting their new LIO modular high fidelity audio stereo system. The LIO starts out as a base chassis/power supply ($1995) and then you can build out with a Headphone Amp, MM/MC Phonostage and/or tube stage ($595 each). You could also add a DSD/PCM DAC and/or MOSFET amp ($695 each). For volume control, you can get a Resistor Volume Control (RVC, $295) or an Autoformer Volume Control (AVC, $1395). Analog inputs are $295 and lastly Remote Cartridge Loading (RCL) is $395. Vinnie Rossi's LIO includes an all-new, patent-pending power supply design that completely isolates all audio circuitry from the AC mains power at all times. LIO's internal power supply uses Rossi's groundbreaking "PURE DC-4-EVR" technology that employs ultracapacitor banks in place of conventional AC power or batteries. While one bank of ultracapacitors is feeding pure DC current to the audio circuits, the other bank is charging. This approach is said by the manufacturer to "provide dramatic performance and durability advantages over every other power supply technology whether AC or battery". The modular design eliminated multiple boxes as users can configure a system that perfectly combines all of their current audio needs into one chassis. When ready to add functionality or upgrade to new technology, a user simply adds and/or changes plug-in modules (no soldering or special electronics knowledge needed). The MOSFET stereo amplifier module produces 45 WPC @ 4 Ohms. Of note is that the "base" LIO module includes the chassis with power supply, line-level output module, brushed DuPont Corian front & side panels, aluminum knobs and bottom, top and rear panels, Bluetooth wireless control module (allows control via a smart device with LIO app), dedicated remote control handset and external power adapter. At least one of the following Performance Modules must be selected to make LIO a functional component: Phonostage, DSD/PCM DAC, MOSFET Amp, or Headphone Amp. Vinnie Rossi's LIO is hand crafted in the USA and will be available for sale in mid-November directly from the manufacturer.

 

Astell&Kern Blue Note 75th Anniversary Package: Limited Edition
Astell&Kern Blue Note 75th Anniversary Package: Limited EditionAstell&Kern worked with Blue Note to offer their 75th Anniversary Package: Limited Edition. Astell&Kern, the industry's leading hi-res portable music player that delivers recording studio sound quality, has announced a special package partnership with Blue Note Records to commemorate the record company's 75th anniversary in the world of Jazz and Blues. A total of 75 legendary Blue Note jazz albums, which have been remastered in 24-bit/192kHz digital format, will include five special Blue Note albums that make their exclusive hi-res audio debuts with this release. These five special titles include Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers Mosaic, Tina Brooks True Blue, Don Cherry Complete Communion, Andrew Hill Point Of Departure, and Bobby Hutcherson Components. This truly phenomenal collection spans Blue Note's storied history, from Thelonious Monk's first sessions in 1947 to Grammy Award-winning jazz legend Gregory Porter's Liquid Spirit. Each album, stored within a high resolution on a microSD card, come with an accompanying acrylic glass case with original album artwork. These are all stacked in a stylish, decorative tower that can be placed within your home decor. All 75 albums are pre-loaded on the included within Astell&Kern's top-of-the-range AK240 high-resolution audio player. A special hardbound book is filled with original album art (front and back cover) for the 75 titles, as well as Richard Havers' new book, Blue Note: Uncompromising Expression. Enjoy the Music.com has reviewed the AK120 and AK240.

Astell&Kern Blue Note 75th Anniversary Package: Limited Edition Rack

 

Tears For Fears Songs from the Big Chair Super Deluxe Edition Box Set
Tears For Fears Songs from the Big Chair six disc Super Deluxe Edition Box SetTears For Fears Songs from the Big Chair six-disc Super Deluxe Edition Box Set will be released on November 11th from Universal Music Enterprises (UMe) and is the band's most extensive reissue to date! The six-disc set includes previously unreleased material and 5.1 surround sound tracks mixed by recording engineer Steven Wilson. Tears for Fears' 10,000,000 selling second album, Songs from the Big Chair (1985), marked a transition in the band's sound and catapulted them into international prominence. As a group, Tears for Fears led pop music in the mid-80's in both the United States and Europe with songs from the album that dominated the radio airwaves. "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" led the Songs from the Big Chair single releases, reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1985. "Shout" was the band’s second single and stayed at No. 1 for three weeks. The album inevitably went straight to No. 1, selling 5-million copies in the United States alone. Songs from the Big Chair peaked at No. 2 on the United Kingdom album charts and remained in the Top 10 for over six months. Soon to be available in five extended formats, this is the most comprehensive reissue of Songs from the Big Chair to date. The six-disc, deluxe edition box set features a multitude of remixes and B-sides, plus a disc of nine previously unreleased tracks and a 5.1 surround sound version of the album mixed by renowned musician and audio engineer Steven Wilson. Tears for Fears are currently in the recording studio working on their first album in nearly a decade, with a release tentatively slated for 2015. Pre-orders for the Digital Super Deluxe Edition will receive an instant download of the full original remastered album when the album is released. The complete physical box set includes: 

A six disc Super Deluxe Edition Box Set that features four CDs and two DVDs
A 30 page replica tour program plus 32 page booklet
Two CD Deluxe Edition
One CD remaster
One 180-gram vinyl LP
Pure Audio Blu-ray Edition

 

XTZ Headphone Devine Includes DSP Technology
XTZ Headphone Divine Headphones With DSP TechnologyXTZ, a company that specializes in high quality audio devices, has begun their new Kickstarter campaign for their Headphone Devine, which is the world's first wireless headphones that includes built-in digital signal processing (DSP) plus Bluetooth 4.0 and NFC pairing. The built-in DSP sound optimization includes an algorithm for both frequency and impulse response. Bluetooth 4.0 technology with aptX codec means no more cables to tangle or break. With the ability for NFC pairing, your headphones can easily connect to any mobile device such as those with the Android OS or new Apple products. So why use DSP? According to XTZ, "In all mechanical systems, there are physical constraints. As headphones are by nature a combination of electrics, mechanics and acoustics, it is impossible to avoid these constraints entirely. That’s why we use the help of a digital sound processor (DSP) – this technology enables us to move these physical limits even further and thus to optimize your sound experience. Although the development of our DSP technology demanded time and money, the application on the products is rather inexpensive. We already have a DSP app for iOS in use, but would need to align this app with our new Headphone Divine. DSP is not just DSP! There is a broad range of quality when it comes to DSP algorithms. Dirac has spent many years to optimize their software algorithm. Thereby, it advanced to be the best algorithm provider on the market. That's why many other famous brands also use their DSP technologies... With our DSP app from Dirac, you can customize your own sound experience. No matter whether it’s noisy or silent around you; with the possibility to choose between our five different characters, you can always adjust the sound individually to your surroundings." By enabling Bluetooth 4.0 technology, XTZ gives listeners the freedom to enjoy your music without any cables up to 33 feet away. For the best wireless quality, they add aptX audio coding that delivers virtual CD-quality wirelessly over Bluetooth. A multi-function key adjusts volume, play, pause, and answer. An internal battery provides up to 14 hours of continuous play. The headphone's ear-cushions and headband are made with soft Korean leatherette for comfort. XTZ's Headphone Divine weighs 170 grams, accepts industry standard micro USB cable for charging and has a microphone for answering a phone call and sound recording.

 

10 / 06 / 14

TARA Labs Evolution Series Cables
TARA Labs Evolution Series CablesTARA Labs new Evolution Series is the company's "new watershed in the art and science of audio cable design". There are three distinct levels of audio cables in the Evolution Series, starting with the AIR Evolution Interconnects and Speaker Cables. The AIR Evolution Interconnect uses the multi-lumen air-tube concept invented by TARA Labs as used in the AIR Series Interconnects originally developed in 1986. The next level in the Evolution Series is the all-new ZERO Evolution Interconnect and OMEGA Evolution Speaker Cable. The ZERO Evolution Interconnect replaces TARA Labs' ZERO Gold Interconnect, and the OMEGA Evolution Speaker Cable replaces the OMEGA Gold Speaker Cable. The new Evolution Interconnect boasts a remarkably low capacitance figure of just two pF per foot. This means that the new ZERO Evolution Interconnect should deliver extended high frequency bandwidth says the company. The ZERO Evolution Interconnect uses the same displaced and Floating Shield design together with a HFX Ground system to provide greater absorption of RF/EMI and a vanishingly low background noise. TARA Labs' Grandmaster Evolution Interconnect has a greater displacement between the shield and the conductors within the cable. This reduces the shield to conductor capacitance from any RF/EMI noise in the shield for a "truly silent, black noise floor". The Grandmaster Evolution Speaker Cable is a very large loudspeaker cable design; the result of nearly 30 years of audio cable design and understanding. Each positive and negative run, comprises eight conductor groups helixed around Teflon air-tubes for a total of 288 conductors per channel. Imagine a cable that is 000 AWG, or 85 square millimeters per channel, and is able to transfer high voltage and current.

 

DEQX PreMate+ And HDP-5
DEQX PreMate+ And HDP-5DEQX Pty Ltd will be exhibiting at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest (RMAF) introducing their PreMate+ and HDP-5 ($5995 and $6495 respectively), both featuring a 4.3" 24-bit LCD touchscreen display. The new DEQX PreMate+ is for two-channel audio for those whose room may require certain compromises in loudspeaker placement and/or cost. This full-function preamp/processor includes comprehensive loudspeaker and room calibration plus full preamplification functionality with a hi-res DAC. The unit calibrates your listening space by removing audible distortion with subsequent room compensation. The results are proper timing, phase and amplitude accuracy. DEQX's HDP-5 provides the company's best audio quality and highest level of functionality including volume control, Forensic Tone Control, and supports three-way DEQX XO Active Crossovers. Using DEQX XO, the HDP-5 replaces the loudspeakers' crossovers and tailors each tri-amplified channel for their individual drivers just as in pro audio. The DEQX achieves results with linear-phase crossovers. A new A8 ARM 1GHz CPU with a 4.3" 24-bit LCD touchscreen offers 480 x 272 resolution and provides volume control, input, profile selections, and input VU levels or peak levels for all inputs and outputs. A settings page allows user-defined display options including dimming and turning the display off.

 

Beats Banned By The NFL Due To Bose Sponsorship
Beats By Dr. Dre Hot news off the press is that a recent deal formed between Bose and the NFL (National Football League) is that the NFL will not allow players the freedom to wear whatever headphones they desire. Bose's deal forces players, team staff, etc to only wear Bose or no headphones at all while on camera during game day and press conferences. Deals such as these have been made elsewhere in the world, including that between FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) concerning players not being able to wear Beats headphones on game days or during media events. As the controversy goes, FIFA attempted to ban Beats headphones ahead of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, yet various players went against said ban and thus wore Beats headphones anyway. Beats has earned approximately 61% of sales within the USA for headphones that cost over $100 according to the NPD Group. Beats said, "Over the last few years athletes have written Beats into their DNA as part of the pre-game ritual. Music can have a significant positive effect on an athlete's focus and mental preparedness and has become as important to performance as any other piece of equipment."

 

Enjoy the Music.com Posts Rick Becker's NYAS Part 2 Show Coverage
New York Audio Show 2014 Report  NYAS 2014Enjoy the Music.com just posted part 2 of photojournalist Rick Becker's extensive NYAS 2014 show report. We added two more pages filled with excellent information on the products seen during the New York Audio Show 2014 in Brooklyn. Rick Becker has far more to add within his NYAS 2014 report and we'll of course let you know when we post more of his extensive show report right here on Enjoy the Music.com.

 

Docet-Lektor DLS-1 DSD Hybrid Module
Docet-Lektor DS-1 DSD Hybrid ModuleDocet-Lektor now offers a new DLS-1 DSD hybrid module for active filtering. Features of this new module include DSD USB v-1, v-2 , v-3 and input direct. The data stream inputs are electrically isolated whilst there is an active modulator for direct DSD. There is also an analog current/voltage output plus analog stereo mode for balanced output. The Docet-Lektor DLS-1 is a high speed hybrid module CMOS devices for DSD direct native input. It is specified in compliance with DSD standards and accepts the DSD data and clock without digital to analog converter. It outputs analog audio, which is available in both current and voltage mode, both as single-ended or balanced. Docet-Lekto's DS-1 fully balanced filter is for direct interface with an analog stage. The DLS-1 handles DSD input resolutions of 64/2.8224 MHz and 128/5.6448 MHz. Applications include use as a DSD pure modulator and filtering converter unit, update for PCM DAC converters with R2R DAC with USB-DSD input too.

 

10 / 05 / 14

Von Schweikert Audio VR-55 Aktive Loudspeaker
Von Schweikert AudioVon Schweikert Audio will be at the RMAF 2014 with a world premier of a their new VR-55 Aktive ($42,000) loudspeaker that features technology never before seen within their products. This all-new mid-sized system utilizes Finite Element Analysis (FEA) designed ceramic sandwich midrange and woofer drivers combined with a customized beryllium tweeter driven with neodymium magnets. The system is said to have distortion that is below 0.5% at normal listening levels. Von Schweikert Audio's new VR-55 Aktive also features their 'bubble of sound' dispersion pattern to produce a life-like 3-D image focus. "Due to our proprietary 'active' noise reducing Triple Wall cabinet design, along with other proprietary engineering advances, the VR-55 will astound you in every aspect of sound reproduction," says the company, "This clarity is not achieved with a 'hot' tweeter but is the result of engineering solutions to reduce distortion."

 

10 / 04 / 14

Apple Going To Court Over Their Use Of DRM
Apple Going To Court Over Their Use Of DRMApple will finally be facing the music due to their Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology. Years ago Apple forced iTunes users to be bogged down by their DRM technology ironically called "FairPlay". According to Wikipedia, "DRM is a class of technologies that are used by hardware manufacturers, publishers, copyright holders, and individuals with the intent to control the use of digital content and devices after sale." In other words, the music your purchased is controlled and limited by Apple in the way you use it. While DRM within the iTunes store is long gone, it can still be found at a variety of APPs and eBooks sales sites. Due to the alleged illegalities of employing DRM, Apple is now subject to a $350 million anti-trust lawsuit that is said to interfere with market competition. Furthermore, iMore says that "U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers denied Apple's request for summary judgment and now the lawsuit filed by RealNetworks over Apple's use of DRM on iPod devices will be sent to trial. At stake is $350 million with accusations by RealNetworks that Apple had stifled competition by locking customers into its iPod and iTunes ecosystem when it used FairPlay and repeatedly updated software to prevent RealNetworks' Harmony DRM content from being played on the iPod." The long story short is that Apple knowingly caused damage by using FairPlay to use brute force by "lock in" Apple customers to their own ecosystem of products. Apple's FairPlay repeatedly blocked songs purchased on RealPlayer from being used legally within iPods and limited on what devices songs purchased on iTunes could be played back. Apple thwarted customer's ability to play music. According to a PDF of the filed lawsuit, "In July 2004, an Apple competitor in the online music market, third party Real Networks ("Real"), introduced a new version of its own digital-song manager, RealPlayer. RealPlayer included a feature called Harmony. Harmony made songs downloaded from Real's online music store mimic FairPlay, and thus made music purchased from Real playable on iPods. Apple responded to Harmony by taking technological countermeasures to stop Harmony rom mimicking FairPlay. First, in October 2004, Apple issued an iTunes update denominated "4.7." The 4.7 update, among other things, thwarted Harmony's ability to mimic FairPlay. The Court previously held 4.7 to be a genuine product improvement and therefore lawful, and entered summary judgment in favor of Apple to the extent plaintiff's Section 2 claim rested on Apple's introduction of 4.7. iPod III, 796 F. Supp. 2d at 1146. It is Apple's second instance of disabling Harmony that forms the basis of plaintiff's present Section 2 claim. Following Apple's release of 4.7, Real modified Harmony such that it could again mimic FairPlay and make any new songs purchased from Real's online music store playable on iPods. Thereafter, in September 2006, Apple released another iTunes update that introduced a variety of features while also disabling Harmony—namely, "7.0." In an earlier summary judgment order, the Court found a triable issue of fact as to whether 7.0 was a genuine product improvement so as to not be anticompetitive... ultimately it amounts to a charge that Apple's release of 7.0 unlawfully maintained Apple's monopoly in the market for portable digital media players by making demand for iPods less elastic. Specifically, plaintiffs claim that 7.0 resulted in an increased "lock-in" effect for iPod owners who purchased songs online. Lock-in, according to plaintiffs' principal economics expert, "is a form of foreclosure that arises from actions that increase the cost to consumers of switching to a product that has better quality and/or a lower price." The court date is set for November 17th. 

 

One Week Until Enjoy the Music.com / Enjoy the Music.TV's Live Stream Of RMAF 2014
RMAF 2014 Show Report (Rocky Mountain Audio FestColorado's Rocky Mountain Audio Fest will feature high-end, high fidelity audio equipment at the Denver Marriott Tech Center Hotel from October 11th through the 13th. Attendees will enjoyed 8 floors and over 170 exhibit rooms, totaling many millions of dollars in gear to hear, see, and experience. While two-channel high fidelity audio gear takes center stage, there is a special CanJam headphone/portable media players (PMP) section plus various conferences, seminars and live music entertainment too! Enjoy the Music.com will be live streaming at the upcoming RMAF 2014. We will be visiting a variety of rooms / exhibition spaces and streaming it all live to our worldwide audience. Soon after the RMAF event, we will be providing true 1080 high resolution videos of our live streams. We look forward to reporting on exhibitors in Denver during this event. Companies showcasing their products who want to appear within Enjoy the Music.TV's live stream should contact us. You can see our RMAF 2014 / Enjoy the Music.TV press release here.

 

Blues Masters At The Crossroads Tickets & Live Stream
Blues Masters at the Crossroads at Blue Heaven StudiosGot tickets? Blues Masters at the Crossroads tickets, that is. Join us at Acoustic Sounds/Blue Heaven Studios October 17th and 18th for the rockingest, most exciting blues show in the Midwest! You can also see how vinyl LPs are made at Quality Record Pressings and shop Acoustic Sounds' warehouse full of LPs, SACDs and more great music. Sound like a good time? You bet! Enjoy the Music.TV , sister site to Enjoy the Music.com, will be live streaming the incredible blues event! Want more? We have you you covered as may be able to chat live with the musicians between performances too!

 

10 / 03 / 14

Thom Yorke's Tomorrow Modern's Boxes Has Been Downloaded 1,100,000 Times
Thom Yorke Tomorrow Modern's Boxes
Turning the music industry on it's head, Thom Yorke's new solo album has been downloaded over 1,100,000 times on BitTorrent during the past six days. As Radiohead lead singer, his second solo album Tomorrow's Modern Boxes sold for $6 and includes a video plus a free single too. We're not sure the numbers of sold units versus freebies, as Thom Yorke has not released official breakdown of the sales figures. Tomorrow Modern's Boxes is only available via BitTorrent as a type of interesting experiment, since major record labels pay only a small fraction of the profits to musicians and streaming music services are even more challenging. "It's an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around," said Thom Yorke. Of course vinyl sales are also available for those who love 12" analog music replay. BitTorrent bundles is a way for musical artists to directly benefit from their artistic creations without any added costs that result from major recording labels or the added costs of physical distribution. You can download free music or buy the BitTorrent bundle at this link. Musicians wishing to sign up and sell their music via BitTorrent bundle can do so at this link.

 

Hegel Music System's H160 Integrated Amplifier Includes DLNA And Apple Airplay
Hegel Music System H160 Stereo Integrated AmplifierHegel Music System's new H160 ($3500) stereo integrated amplifier produces 150 wpc and includes both DLNA and Apple Airplay. The unit also includes the ability to stream 24-bit/192kHz audio files over DLNA. This is the company's most recent example of their strive to design and engineer a 'one-stop solution' for their customers. Based on the core principles of Hegel Music Systems other integrated amps such as the H80 and H300, they are pushing the envelope in terms of performance and features. The H160 inherits the platform from the H80, but with significant upgrades. One is the quality of the DAC as the chips are the same, yet the implementation of them are not. Another factor is the internal power supply and power output of 150 wpc. Also uprated are the output stages, which have been improved with brand new, ultra-fast transistors. Upgrades have also been made within the preamplifier section that is said to result in less high frequency distortion and thus produce a smooth and more detailed sound. Functionality wise, there is a very high quality headphone output that can drive the most difficult headphones such as the HiFi-Man HE-6. There is a balanced input via XLR, unbalanced RCA analog input and a Home Theatre input that can be configured within the H160's software. There are also both fixed and variable line level outputs. On the digital side there are one S/PDIF coaxial, three TosLink optical, plus a USB and Ethernet network input. The network input is used for DLNA and Airplay. Dimensions are 7.72" x 16.93" x 16.15" (HxWxD) and the unit weighs a hefty 42 lbs. Enjoy the Music.com has reviewed the Hegel SUPER USB DAC / Headphone Amplifier and Hegel Music System HD10 DAC.

 

Industry News 15 Years Ago
DVD-Audio delayed! That's right, the long awaited audio format for audiophiles, DVD-Audio, seems to be delayed until the first quarter of 2000. While hardware may be available before the holiday season, three of the five leading recording companies are reported to delay the release of software for the new format until late first quarter 2000. BMG, EMI, and WEA are said to not be releasing titles this fall while Universal Group Music Group may have a small amount of titles available. Sony had no comment on the matter.

 

10 / 02 / 14

Hi-Fi+'s October Issue Is Now Online
Hi-Fi+ MagazineEnjoy the Music.com just posted Hi-Fi+'s October edition filled with many great equipment and music reviews plus think pieces. This issue includes equipment reviews of the Aurender W20 network music server, Arcam irDAC, KEF LS50 speakers, Devialet Ensember integrated amp/loudspeaker system, Triangle Antal Anniversary speaker, HRT Airstreamer, AURALiC Gemini 2000 headphone amplifier/DAC/stand, Aaron Cineast / Millennium preamp & stereo amp, Koetsu Pure Onyx MC cartridge, OPPO PM-1 planar magnetic headphones with revised earpads and much more! In his editorial, Alan Sircom says "It goes by the slightly clunky term 'coopetition' and it's short for ‘cooperative competition'. It means, you view your competition as fellow travellers on the same path... at least, when it suits! It dates back to the time of the Danelaw, when traders used to fight to the teeth before and after their longboat journeys, but were the best of friends when it came to securing the best rates from the longboat captains. If the Vikings could do it, why can't we?" See the October issue of Hi-Fi+ by clicking here.

 

Enjoy the Music.com Posts More New York Audio Show 2014 Coverage
New York Audio Show 2014 Report  NYAS 2014Enjoy the Music.com has just posted more information and photos within our industry leading 2014 New York Audio Show report. Bring an abundance of bandwidth as we have added many new hi-res photos plus part 1 of Rick Becker's extensive NYAS 2014 report.  Editor and Creative Director Steven R. Rochlin posted over 40 more photos that provide incredible product detail. Photojournalist Rick Becker's coverage has just begun and his part 1 spans three pages filled with many photos.

 

10 / 01 / 14

New High Fidelity Audio Reviews Within Our Review Magazine
Enjoy the Music.com's October Review Magazine is packed full with equipment reviews, the New York Audio Show report -- with more coming soon -- a new hi-res video with Mark Waldrep, music reviews... and we have a report on the 57th Annual Newport Jazz Festival too! Remember to friend us on Facebook and enter our October contest for your chance to win a Nordost Blue Heaven Power Cord! See the October Review Magazine by clicking here.

Review Magazine  

Viewpoint

Senseless Rambling
In A Time Of Universal Deceit - Telling The Truth Is A Revolutionary Act.
   – George Orwell
Plus... Is digital really better than analog? Plus there’s a cold war happening and you’re part of it... sort of.
Article By Steven R. Rochlin

Skoffin' Up Food For Thought
Use Your Ears, That's What They're For!
Roger Skoff writes about the best tools of all.
Article By Roger Skoff

HIFICRITIC: Stan's Safari 27
Stan takes a look at amplifier power. Specifically, ratings and clipping.
Article By Stan Curtis of HIFICRITIC


Contest: Win A Nordost Blue Heaven Power Cord!

Show Report

Enjoy the Music.com's sister site Enjoy the Music.TV will be live streaming video
during the upcoming RMAF 2014 high fidelity audio show!

New York Audio Show 2014
Some hi-res pics online now; much more to post in the coming days!
Report By Steven R. Rochlin

Lifestyle & Design
Artonomos Confluence Tea Tray
A playful plateau for your tea.
Article By Steven R. Rochlin

Barisieur By Josh Renouf
Pavlov's dog for coffee connoisseurs.
Article By Steven R. Rochlin

Freddie Paul Beer Tree
Scientific tree bears beer 'fruit'.
Article By Steven R. Rochlin

Enjoy the Music.TV
Mark Waldrep of AIX Records, iTrax, and Real HD-Audio on Enjoy the Music.TV.

Manufacturer Article
What Is, And Is Not, High-Resolution Audio
Article By John Siau Of Benchmark Media Systems

Superior Audio
Transrotor Dark Star Silver Shadow Turntable
Listening to, rather than auditioning, this fine turntable.
Review By Wojciech Pacula

Equipment Reviews
Audio Desk Systeme Vinyl Cleaner
Audio Desk Systeme's vinyl cleaner is the ultimate removal service.
Review By Leonard Norwitz

Flagstone PlanterSpeakers By Madison Fielding
A sound that grows on you.
Review By Steven R. Rochlin

MrSpeakers Alpha Dog Headphones
Having fun while exploring the MrSpeakers Alpha Dog headphones.
Review By Phil Gold

Sonic Satori
NuForce HA-200 Monoblock Headphone Amplifiers
Not your momma's headphone system!
Review By Michael Mercer

World Premiere Review!
LKV Research Line One Preamplifier
The Line One sounds more like music than a piece of audio equipment.
Review By Tom Lyle

PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium Preamplifier
One of the best things PrimaLuna has ever done.
Review By Dick Olsher

DIY Audio Reviews
Hypex NCore 400 Amplifier
Enter a great Class D amplifier from the Netherlands.
Review By Jeff Poth

Music Reviews
Enjoy the Music.com Blue Note Music Awards 2014
Best High-End Audio Equipment Of 2014 Awards

Classical Music
From violinist James Ehnes, fine performances of Shostakovich, Britten and Khachaturian.
Review By Max Westler

Ear-opening "historically informed" live performances of Stravinsky masterpieces.
Review By Max Westler

From Istanbul, an unusual approach to Scheherazade.
Review By Max Westler

Rarely heard cello music by Hans Pfitzner, splendidly performed.
Review By Joe Milicia

Jazz Festival
57th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival Report
Sonic surprises in Monterey!
Festival Report By Joe Kubala

See the October Review Magazine by clicking here.

 

Amazon Leads Vinyl Sales Within The USA
According to Billboard, Amazon is the largest seller of vinyl within the United States of America and has 12.3% market share. Next up is Urban Outfitters with 8.1% followed by Hastings Entertainment with 2.8% and Hot Topic with 2.4%. Trans World Entertainment has 2.2%. If you're an audiophile, you're up next with Audiophile, Acoustic Sounds and Newbury Comics each have market shares between 1.5% and 2%. The largest vinyl LP entity within the USA is wholesaler Alliance Entertainment, who supplies Best Buy, Barnes & Noble, Trans World Entertainment and various chain/indie stores, with a staggering 50% of vinyl LP sales. "Our plan is to build on our vinyl strategy in 2015 to really capitalize on the resurgence of vinyl -- this is definitely an area of music that consumers are telling us they're more and more interested in," says Guitar Center's Vice President of corporate affairs Christopher Bennett. "We're going to be offering a host of different vinyl record players as well in 2015 for the traditional music audiophile, and also for music producers and DJs."

 

Music Sales By The Numbers
NielsenNielsen, the entertainment industry's leading music data information provider, reveals 2014 mid-year United States of America music sales, airplay and streaming data for the six-month period of Dec. 30, 2013 through June 29, 2014. Nielsen SoundScan measures USA point-of-sale of recorded music product. Nielsen BDS captures USA radio airplay and music streams. Both systems power many of the Billboard charts. For the first six months of 2014, sales of albums were down 14.9% versus the first six months of 2013. Vinyl Album Sales and On-Demand streaming continue to show strong gains: Vinyl LP sales were up 40.4% and overall On-Demand streaming was up 42% over last year, with on-demand audio up 50.1% and on-demand video up 35.2%. "With On-Demand streams surpassing 70 billion songs in the first six months of 2014, streaming continues to be an increasingly significant portion of the music industry," said David Bakula, SVP Nielsen Entertainment. "Streaming's 42% year-over-year growth and Vinyl LP's 40% increase over last year's record-setting pace shows interest in buying and consuming music continues to be robust, with two very distinct segments of the industry expanding substantially." As one of the leading information providers for the high-end audio / high fidelity audio industry, Enjoy the Music.com has the full report in PDF here.

 

09 / 30 / 14

NAHA's Rock Legends Cruise 4
 NAHA's Rock Legends Cruise 4Get ready to set sail as NAHA's Rock Legends Cruise 4 is about to leave port with ticket sales starting October 1. As the fourth installment of this rockin' event, taking place from January 21 – 25 (2016), the Independence of the Seas sets sail from Ft. Lauderdale and will go to Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos with many major rock bands aboard. Rock Legends Cruise not only rocks, it is also a terrific value as per person price includes shipboard accommodations, all meals and snacks (some specialty restaurants are not included) and of course concert admission. Most onboard entertainment such as flowrider, rock climbing, boxing ring, pools, and full-sized volleyball / basketball court are included too. Bands scheduled to play during NAHA's Rock Legends Cruise 4 are as follows: The Doobie Brothers, Alice Cooper, Paul Rodgers, 38 Special, The Marshall Tucker Band, Don Felder, WAR, Dave Mason’s Traffic Jam, Blue Oyster Cult, Uriah Heep, The Outlaws, Molly Hatchet, Rik Emmett, The Edgar Winter Band, Ten Years After, Kim Simmonds and Savoy Brown, Pat Travers Band, Royal Southern Brotherhood, Melvin Seals & JGB, The Artimus Pyle Band, Swamp Da Wamp, Steve Rodgers, The Blue Lords, and Citizens Band Radio. For more details see their website.

 

iFi Audio iClub
iFi Audio iClubTaking social to the next level is ifi Audio with their new iCLUB. As many already know, iFi Audio is one of the first companies to use social sites like Head-Fi to get feedback and design desires of their products before the unit is in final production. The company has planned a number of industry 'firsts' including a special concierge team. Club members will also receive the very latest blog updates/developments as they arise. Through iFi Audio's Customer Relationship Management System (CRM), each member will be assigned a personal concierge as the 'iFi contact' for all things iFi / audio related. The company endeavors to look after you. Benefits of being a member also include iCLUB blog with info on iCLUB philosophy, program details, member privileges. Free gifts such as the upcoming DSD EP by David Elias and other downloads by iFi artists. Your concierge will keep in touch with you regarding input in design/development of new products. This stems from the fabulous launch of the micro iDSD which was Crowd-Designed. You may also have the chance to beta/access upcoming products. Special gatherings in major cities where you can meet the iFi network of staff, distributors and retailers. Enjoy the Music.com has reviewed the iFi audio Micro iDSD DAC/headphone amplifier, ifi Audio Micro iPhono MM/MC Phonostage and iFi micro iTube 'Swiss Army Knife'.

 

09 / 29 / 14

HIFICRITIC Magazine
HIFICRITIC MagazineEnjoy the Music.com just posted HIFICRITIC's Volume 8 No. 3, which includes reviews of headphone amps, Antelope Zodiac Platinum DAC, Well Tempered Versalex turntable, Magico S3 speakers, Oppo PM-1 & HA-1, B&W CM6 S2 speakers and many more exciting equipment reviews! Within his editorial The Audio And Music Evolution, Paul Messenger says ""We do indeed live in interesting times, though one might wonder whether the interest is now all about the technology and the delivery of the musical or AV content, rather than the music itself. We've already seen how the rise and rise of MP3 and track-by-track downloading has forced the closure of many record stores, and this latest HIFICRITIC contains an extended feature by Andrew Everard about the latest means of delivering music (and movies) to the home – live streaming over the Internet."

 

David Chesky's Jazz In The New Harmonic Live Stream
Jazz in the New HarmonicMulti-Grammy nominated American composer David Chesky will have his upcoming Lincoln Center performance streamed live online! Best known for a contemporary style that combines elements of jazz and Latin music, with more traditional classical components, David Chesky will be performing with his new group called Jazz In The New Harmonic. The performance is Wednesday, Oct 1 at 7:30pm Eastern Standard Time (GMT -5). With concert tickets sold out, they have decided to stream the concert live online for the world to enjoy. You can stream Jazz in the New Harmonic's live performance from Jazz At Lincoln Center and enter to win a pair of speakers at this link.

 

09 / 26 / 14

Oculus Rift Crescent Bay Prototype Adds 360o Head Tracking Audio
Oculus Rift Crescent Bay Prototype Oculus Rift's new Crescent Bay prototype now includes faster video refresh frame rate and 360o head tracking audio! The company licensed technology from RealSpace3D for their audio technology since it provides for high fidelity VR audio by combining HRTF spatialization and integrated reverberation algorithms. Oculus Rift's CEO, Brendan Iribe, says that their new Crescent Bay "feature prototype" is a big step forward towards virtual world immersion. Their 360-degree head tracking is powered by a camera located on the back of the new Crescent Bay prototype. Head tracking has been used within high fidelity audio products, such as the Smyth Realizer (reviewed here), and provides incredible realism for the listener using headphones. Over 100,000 Rift developer kits have shipped to more than 130 countries worldwide.

 

09 / 25 / 14

Merrill Audio Advanced Technology Labs Jens Phono MC Preamplifier
Merrill Audio Advanced Technology LabsMerrill Audio Advanced Technology Labs just sent us word on their Jens Phono preamplifier ($15,449) with 70 dB of gain for low output moving coil (MC) cartridges for vinyl LP turntables. This world class phone preamplifier offers "precise wide sound staging, a dead quiet background, high gain, lightning fast transients and superb musicality" says the company. Built specifically for low output moving coil cartridges, the Jens Phono preamplifier allows for load setting from 25 Ohms to 5 kOhms, with 70dB of gain with better than 0.1dB RIAA equalization. Their Jens Phono was in development for seven years, including three years of listening tests with veteran vinyl experts. Using expert technology and hand-built within the USA, the Jens Phono build features include external power supply, steel chassis for maximum EMI/RFI shielding, Stillpoints Ultramini riser footers for isolation, Furutech pure copper Rhodium plated RCA, double fused AC lines, silver plated Teflon sleeved pure copper wires, hand-matched high tolerance components, hand routed circuit board designs, multi-stage power supply filtering, and proprietary circuits. Those attending the New York Audio Show 2014 can see and hear this new unit from Merrill Audio.

 

Futuresource Consulting Global Headphones Market Report
Futuresource ConsultingAccording to Futuresource Consulting, global headphone markets have expanded by nearly 10% in volume last year to reach 286 million units shipped, triggering 16% growth in retail value and revenues of $8.4 billion. "We're seeing nothing short of a headphones renaissance, with consumers making product choices across a wide price band," says Rasika Iyer, Market Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. "With prices ranging from less than $5 to more than $200 and a gamut of features, consumers have now started to purchase different sets of headphones for different applications, including commuting, sport and in-home listening. In Europe and North America, we're seeing headphone ownership reaching three to four pairs on average, though this includes headphones bundled with smartphones." In-ear headphones dominate global shipments, accounting for 61% of volumes, and with the average retail price on the rise due to incorporation of new features such as microphones for mobile use and water proofing for sports use. Almost every major vendor has introduced a pair of sports headphones onto the market, offering innovative designs, inclusion of microphones and/or Bluetooth and other features. The sports headphones segment accounted for 4% of global shipments, and Futuresource forecasts show this will grow to 8% by 2018. Many companies are also developing smart headphones, to exploit the growing trend for health and fitness monitoring. LG and a number of other companies already compete in this market, while Futuresource expects a groundswell of activity in this space in 2015. Amid all the activity, the leading headphone brands in 2013 were Sony, Philips, Sennheiser, Skullcandy and JVC, accounting for 45% of total unit shipments. In value terms, Futuresource Consulting says that Beats remained the market leader. "Moving forward, the global headphones market will be worth $9.9 billion by the end of 2014, peaking at $11.3 billion in 2017 and with volumes continuing to build out to 2018 and beyond."

 

Win A Wyred 4 Sound Remedy Reclocker
Enjoy the Music.com High-End Audio Contests

Wyred 4 Sound Remedy Reclocker  Enjoy the Music.com and Wyred 4 Sound are giving away one of their Remedy reclockers ($399). Stemming from the company's highly successful Sonos Connect modifications, they are pleased to introduce a uniquely revolutionary product, the Remedy reclocker. This highly advanced digital reclocking device removes digital errors and drastically improves jitter utilizing an incredible Femto-grade clock. Pair the Remedy with the DAC of your choice and transform your favorite consumer digital source into a truly audiophile-worthy component! You can learn more and enter the contest at this link. Enjoy the Music.com has reviewed the Wyred 4 Sound DAC-2 DSDse DAC.

 

Contest Winner Chimes In!
Kimber Kable KS2416 Contest
Hi Steven and Kimber Kable,

Kimber Kable COntestI love this cable. I've been listening to it for a few weeks now, occasionally changing it out for a very generic HP cable (which serves as my reality check) or for my past reference, the Black Cat Silver Star cable. The thing is, I really don't want to change out the KS2416 ($495) cable once it's in the system. I asked my wife to listen, and she agreed that there seemed to be an ever-so-slightly longer decay and a bit more air to the music with the Kimber Kable in place. We use Moby's "The Sky is Broken" as our test track for this sort of listening. So thank you for this!

William Hubbard

 

09 / 24 / 14

Soundsmith Helios, Mezzo, Nautilus, Sotto Voce & Norma Vinyl LP Phono Cartridges
SoundsmithSoundsmith Corporation is going to be at the New York Audio Show 2014 with five new cartridge models that are designed to fulfill the needs of vinyl LP loving audiophiles. These new phono cartridge models have been engineered for moderate gain phonostage preamplifiers "to perform flawlessly in preamps that utilize a 48dB to 54dB gain structure" says company owner Peter Ledermann. He continues by saying, "No longer is there any fear of overloading with a high output MM cartridge or having to ramp up the volume with a low output MC type." Based on Peter Ledermann's classic Moving Iron vinyl LP cartridge designs – Hyperion, Sussurro, Paua, The Voice and Aida – these moderate output models are said to give the same level of performance as their high and low output siblings, yet without any tradeoffs. The new models are as follows:

Helios: The Sun-Goddess daughter of Hyperion featuring the unique "cactus spine" cantilever and OC-CL stylus ($7500).
Mezzo: Italian for middle or medium (output, not performance, that is). Based on the Sussurro ($4800).
Nautilus: This is a moderate output version of the very popular Pauau with natural seashell detail ($3800).
Sotto Voce: Literally "soft voice", is based on the company's The Voice ($2800).
Norma: The sister cartridge to the Aida featuring the same "sweet" midrange ($1800).

 

09 / 23 / 14

Enjoy the Music.com's New York Audio Show 2014 Coverage
Chester Group's 2014 New York Audio Show ReportEnjoy the Music.com's 2014 New York Audio Show report will have our very own Editor and Creative Director Steven R. Rochlin plus our longstanding in-depth photojournalist Rick Becker covering this exhibition. The New York Audio Show 2014 will be held at the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge from September 26th through 28th. This show will feature millions of dollars in high fidelity audio (high-end audio) equipment and state-of-the-art hi-res music. Attendees can compare hundreds of audio brands before they buy in one show location, ranging from high quality headphones to the latest in loudspeaker technology. You can also learn about modern in-home audio technology plus find out how to best stream music around your home. As with all events we attend, Enjoy the Music.com’s extensive virtually live show coverage will appear online during the New York Audio Show 2014. We will also be recording hi-res video, free of charge to exhibitors, which will be available within our sister site Enjoy the Music.TV. We look forward to reporting on this event and hope to see you there! Remember to tell the world you'll be there for all the fun in Brooklyn and Facebook members can join the Chester Group's New York Audio Show 2014 event here.

 

09 / 22 / 14

16th Annual Blues Masters At The Crossroads
Blues Masters at the Crossroads at Blue Heaven StudiosChad Kassem of Acoustic Sounds is holding their annual concert at their Blue Heaven Studios in Salina, Kansas. This incredible event, Blues Masters at the Crossroads, is now in their 16th year and going strong. "It's gonna be a hollerin', shakin' good time at Blue Heaven Studios for the 16th Blues Masters at the Crossroads. Where, in our converted church sanctuary, the gospel to some, the devil's music to others — the blues — has its due. This is your year to experience it all. Your seat is waiting!" says their site. This two night event will be held on Friday, October 17th, and Saturday the 18th ($60 per day). Doors open at 6:45pm and the shows begins at 7:15pm. Enjoy the Music.com and Enjoy the Music.TV will be streaming this event live online! Scheduled to perform includes:

Joe Beard
Rip Lee Pryor
Lazy Lester
Mighty Sam McClain
Moreland & Arbuckle
Kim Wilson
Big George Brock
Sonny Green
Bernard Allison
Marquise Knox
Kim Wilson with Billy Flynn

 

Mola Mola Phonostage Is APP Controlled
Mola Mola Preamplifier With PhonostageHigh-end audio finally wakes up to the modern world of APPs, as Bruno Putzey's Mola-Mola hits another milestone! The optional Mola Mola phonostage ($2500 as an optional add-on to the Makua preamplifier $13,450) allows you to make adjustments via an Android tablet from the comfort of your listening chair. These adjustments are implemented using relays, keeping the fragile phono signal in the analog domain. According to the company, it also "preserves the soul, warmth and musicality of your music". As many may remember, the use of APPs was repeatedly harped upon by Editor and Creative Director of Enjoy the Music.com Steven R. Rochlin two years ago at RMAF 2012, since high-end audio was already years behind the curve at the time. The APP allows you to adjusting the EQ and you will be able to hear what those adjustments sound like immediately for ease of comparison without the need to constantly leave the sweet spot. The phonostage provides the ability to hook up to five turntables and adjust each cartridge independently. Specifications are below:

Performance
• Input noise (MC): 0.35 nV/rtHz
• Input noise (MM): 5 fA/rtHz
• Sensitivity: Variable from 30 uV to 5 mV
• THD, IMD: Not measurable
• RIAA Conformance: +/-0.1 dB

Available Time Constants
• T1: 200, 250, 318, 400, and 450 us
• T2: 50, 64, 75, and 100 us
• Bass Shelf: 14, 18, and 20 dB

 

09 / 19 / 14

Mark Waldrep of AIX Records, iTrax , and Real HD Audio on Enjoy the Music.TV
NEW: Enjoy the Music.TV's interview with Mark Waldrep
of AIX Records, iTrax, and Real HD-Audio discusses his impressive engineering background, in providing top quality hi-res music, and today's circumstances concerning the ongoing situation with the DEG and music downloads as offered by various companies. We also learn from Mark that "Pono should focus on being straightforward, transparent, and honest about what's being offered to customers of Pono. They have a great piece of hardware and I’m confident that the website will be wonderful. However, I felt let down when I discovered that virtually ALL of the tracks on the Ponomusic website will be ripped CDs at 44.1kHz/16-bit FLAC. That’s not what I expected from Neil and his organization. It runs counter to his pronouncements and evangelizing all these years. He was all about 192kHz/24-bit FLAC as the minimum standard for 'rediscovering the soul of music'."

 

Milano hi-fidelity 2014
Milano hi-fidelity 2014Milano hi-fidelity 2014 show autumn 2014 show will take place on the 4th and 5th of October 2014 at the prestigious four star AtaHotel Quark in Milan city. This two channel (stereo) only high-end audio event enjoyed over 4000 visitors during their 2013 event and they expect this year's event to be bigger. "If your heart beats loud for two-channel hi-fi systems, you can't miss the one and only solely-audio (no video or home theater) show in Italy" says the event promoter. The Milano Hi-Fidelity organizers are proud to announce this 16th edition of their hi-fi only show. As an established tradition, the organizers have paid attention to the quality of the sound into the rooms. They are using room acoustic correction devices so exhibitors can achieve the best results out of their high fidelity audio systems.

 

TACET Johann Sebastian Bach Six Brandenburg Concertos BWV 1046-1051 Blu-ray
TACET's Johann Sebastian Bach Six Brandenburg Concertos BWV 1046-1051 Blu-rayTACET's Johann Sebastian Bach Six Brandenburg Concertos BWV 1046-1051 Blu-ray audio disc features the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra in TACET's Real Surround Sound and stereo. This multi-channel recording in TACET Real Surround Sound was recorded in the year 2000. Shortly prior to the construction of the microphones, the idea arose of selecting a special arrangement for each one of the six Brandenburg Concertos in accordance with the respective score. This principle became the cornerstone of Real Surround Sound. The primitive 8-track card (from today's perspective) in the PC forced TACET to acoustically realize the six different, novel mixes with a stereo mixing console right when the recording was made. Today, however, a recording can easily captured and carefully processed afterwards. Thus began TACET's exciting journey of discovery into a new, so far unknown world. The recording was immediately convincing. The music is said to be fantastic, and features Benjamin Hudson and the solos by Reinhold Friedrich (trumpet). Alongside SACD and DVD audio, TACET has offered this recording in stereo CD and LP. This recording is now also available on Blu-ray disc with both multi-channel and stereo tracks."

 

Zesto Audio Andros 1.2 Phonostage
Zesto Audio Andros 1.2 PhonostageZesto Audio's newly updated to Andros 1.2 phonostage ($4700, or $1500 to update units over one year old) has the same classic look as when it was first launched in 2011, yet now features many enhancements. The new Andros 1.2 phonostage upgrade includes a 10 position MC load, from 20 to 1000 Ohm and more positions in the 'sweet zone' between 200 to 1000 Ohms. There is a two position MM loading of 47 kOhm and 15 kOhm to accommodate a wider range of cartridges and the unit now provides a total of 67dB of gain. Improvements have been made to the circuitry design and component value upgrades including an enhanced grounding scheme and the unit's binding post have been moved to accommodate shorter ground wires. Zesto Audio is also offering upgrades to any current Andros owner and it comes with a new 2 year warranty, completely new back panel assembly with new components and new front logo with Andros 1.2.

 

Marantz HD-DAC1 Headphone Amplifier
Marantz HD-DAC1 Headphone AmplifierMarantz's HD-DAC1 ($799) is the company's first headphone amplifier featuring an integrated DAC. This high quality dedicated headphone amplifier employs technologies from Marantz's high-end Premium 11 series. The HD-DAC1 can drive high-impedance headphones of up to 600 Ohm and has a three-level gain control, Marantz HDAM-SA2 high current modules and a high quality audiophile DAC (CS4398). Both fixed and variable RCA outputs also provided for so that users can also directly connect it to their high fidelity integrated amplifier, to a pair of active speakers, or power amps. Two TosLink optical and a S/PDIF coaxial digital input as well as a USB-B port enable users to stream music directly from a PC or MAC. iDevices can also be connected via the USB port on the front. For even more connectivity, there is an analog input. The USB-B works in asynchronous mode to support 192kHz/24-bit hi-res audio and DSD 2.8MHz / 5.6MHz. To safeguard quality when connected to a computer, Marantz built extended isolation around the USB-B input to eliminate the chance of high frequency noise generated by the computer entering the HD-DAC1. They included a jitter remover and Dual Clock for extreme accuracy. Information on volume, input, resolution, etc. is shown on the stylish Marantz Porthole Display. The solid aluminum front is supported by a double layer bottom plate and side panels with a retro-style wooden look.

 

09 / 18 / 14


NEW: World Premiere Review!
LKV Research Line One Preamplifier
The Line One sounds more like music than a piece of audio equipment.
Review By Tom Lyle

 


NEW: PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium Preamplifier
One of the best things PrimaLuna has ever done.
Review By Dick Olsher

 

Reference Recordings Organ Polychrome: The French SchoolReference Recordings' new Organ Polychrome: The French School features organist Jan Kraybill and the Julia Irene Kauffman Organ. On this recordings they play for us Casavant Frères, Op. 3875. This is the premier solo recording of this new instrument and it should have very strong appeal for organ aficionados and audiophiles! This program of French masterworks was designed to showcase all the colors and nuances of this outstanding new instrument. It includes the world premiere recording of an important piece by beloved composer Florent Schmitt: Prière (Prelude in G minor), Op.11 (1899). Reference Recordings is proud to offer these brilliant performances by the organist who knows this instrument best, Jan Kraybill. She regularly plays and oversees the care of the three largest pipe organs in the Kansas City metro area: the Community of Christ Auditorium’s 113-rank Aeolian-Skinner (installed in 1959) and Temple’s 102-rank Casavant (1993), and the 102-rank Julia Irene Kauffman Casavant (2011) at the Kauffman Center's Helzberg Hall. Organ Polychrome: The French School is available on the hybrid surround sound SACD format, which is playable on SAD and CD players. This disc contains both 5.1 surround and stereo SACD layers, as well as a stereo compact disc layer made with the HDCD process for higher fidelity.

 

 

 
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