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High-End Audio Industry News

 

05 / 15 / 03

Emission Labs 520B-V3 vacuum tube  Emission Labs has announced their new 520B-V3 vacuum tube ($350) that is part of their Reference Series. This tube is a larger power version of the 52B, but with normal 5 Volt filaments and is claimed to deliver an undistorted, continuous output power in "Class-A" of 23 watts under normal operation conditions. Emission Labs says their new 520B-V3 is the largest single plate "300B" type tube ever made. Those visiting the upcoming High End Society's Frankfurt show can purchase this tube and Emission Labs will pay consumers back the entrance price to the show!

 

05 / 14 / 03

GR Research Criterion  GR Research offers many audiophile quality loudspeakers, either fully assembled or in kit form, and can include high quality crossover components plus accessories. Their Lucidity series Criterion ($849 in kit form, pictured here) and Diluceo ($1,000 in kit form) both feature custom built 5-inch Eton woofer and G2 ribbon tweeter. The Criterion small monitor loudspeaker has a single ribbon tweeter and 5-inch midrange/woofer while the Diluceo adds a second 5-inch driver in woofer/tweeter/woofer configuration. The CSS ARG2 tweeter is latest generation ribbon tweeter offering speed and clarity while the highly regarded Eton 5-880/25 HEX-b woofer is rated down to 55Hz (-3dB). The crossover design includes Alpha Core foil inductors, Sonicap capacitors, and Mills resistors, and heavy SCI binding post.

 

05 / 13 / 03

Krell SACD Standard  Krell has begun shipping their SACD Standard player. Employing Krell's high bandwidth, high dynamic-range approach to circuit design to the Super Audio CD platform, the SACD Standard is built with a "chassis-in-a-chassis" design to provide ultra stable disc drive operation. It also has separate power supplies for digital and analog circuitry to maximize the performance of both sections while also reducing electrical interference from adversely affecting the critical audio signal. A custom-wound toroidal power transformer offers tremendous current and low noise operation for the analog circuitry. Several stages of regulation insure steady power to all gain stages while the Krell Current Mode output stage transmits the analog audio to all six channels.

 

05 / 12 / 03

Linn Unidisk 1.1  Linn's new Unidisk 1.1 universal digital disc player (announced first to the world by Enjoy the Music.com within our Industry News page on December 9th, 2002) is now in final production version. Said to be the world's first 'true convergence' pitch accurate source component and unites a comprehensive range of disc formats, the Linn Unidisk 1.1 is an integrated universal digital disc player delivering very highest sonic and video standards plus offers universal disc recognition and precise processing for all major optical digital disc formats (CD, SACD, DVD-Video, DVD-Audio, etc). The Unidisk 1.1 player automatically recognizes all major Audio and AV optical disc formats, uniquely configuring audio and video playback almost instantly. Video outputs include Progressive Scan, Interlaced, Component and DVI incorporating HDCP encryption. For added versatility all video outputs carry a constant signal, enabling concurrent use of several video playback devices. On the audio side, both single ended 0RCA) and balanced (LXR) analogue outputs access stereo and multi-channel audio playback, with S/PDIF and optical digital audio outputs streaming CD and DVD related data. On-screen graphics plus a user-friendly fascia with simple direct control of the large digital display and a comprehensive luminous remote handset make operating the Linn Unidisk 1.1 simple and intuitive. Additionally, an RS232 control interface and can integrate seamlessly with Linn's Knekt multi-room system. The Unidick 1.1 is available in black and sliver finishes. Pricing is as follows:

UK Retail 6,500 (inc. VAT) 
US Retail $11,000 (ex. Tax) 
Canadian Retail CAN $16,750 (ex. Tax) 
Europe 8,500 (ex. Tax) 
Sweden SEK 98,750 (inc. Tax) 
Norway NOK 78,500 (inc. Tax) 
Denmark DKK 79,500 (inc. Tax)

 

 

05 / 09 / 03

Almarro M33A loudspeakers and A318A stereo integrated amplifier Koro-3033A system  Almarro has announced their M33A loudspeakers and A318A stereo integrated amplifier as the Koro-3033A system. The M33A loudspeaker ($1,800 per pair) features a 4-inch full-range driver with neodymium magnet. Maximum power is 90 watts with an overall frequency response from 35Hz to 20kHz in a double bass reflex enclosure. The cabinet is constructed from solid hardwood and stained in Black Cherry, Maple, Oak, or Elm. Overall dimensions are 17 x 24 x 90 (WxDxH in cm) with a weight of approximately 14 Kg. Almarro's A318A stereo integrated amplifier ($1,500) uses one 6C33C-B output tube per channel operating in single-ended triode to produce 18 watts. No overall feedback in employed while a 6SL7 (input stage) and 6SN7 (cathode follower) are also part of this design. This integrated unit has three inputs and output taps for both 4 and 8 ohms. Dimensions are 37 x 27 x 20 (WxDxH in cm). As a package deal, the Almarro Koro-3033A offers both units for $3,100, a $200 savings over normal pricing.

 

 

PRIMEDIA Specialty Group Inc.'s Home Entertainment 2003 (HE2003, also referred to by some as the Stereophile show) will features both home theater and specialty audio products, various music events and seminars. This event will take place in San Francisco from June 5th through the 8th, 2003 at The Westin-St. Francis Hotel. The concert schedule will feature such bands as Melora Hardin, Free Peoples, Josh Jones Trio, Robert Silverman, Billy Bacon & the Forbidden Pigs, The Hacienda Boys, Daniel Glass Trio, Arturo Delmoni, Noah Wotherspoon/Wild Child Butler, and the Allen Perkins Band. Free seminars are also offered at HE2003 and include Custom Installation, HDTV, Super Audio, Well-Tuned Rooms, Why DLP?, Surround Sound, Flat-Panel Television, The Future of High-End Audio, and Ask the Editors. Advance tickets are available now by calling (800) 830-3976 or by logging on to www.HE2003.com. See our various Stereophile show reports by clicking here. Specifics of the 2003 event are as follows:

Home Entertainment 2003
The Westin-St. Francis Hotel
335 Powell Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

Tickets:
$25.00 one-day pass
$35.00 weekend pass

Open to Press & Trade Only:
Thursday, June 5, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Open to the Public:
Friday, June 6, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, June 7, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, June 8, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

 

05 / 08 / 03

Vasant GA-120S Final Edition solid-state integrated amplifier  The Vasant K GA-120S Final Edition purist solid-state integrated amplifier features high quality Noble volume potentiometer, Cardas Caps for RCA inputs, internal wiring exclusively 98% silver (2% copper), and power output rated at 35 watts at 8 ohms (60 watts at 4 ohms). Their AC power cable also has signal wiring exclusively of 98% silver (2% copper) with Wattgate 320 IEC connector and Marinco hospital grade AC connector. It comes with the Cardas contact cleaner/conditioner and Hubbell HBL8300HI hospital grade duplex outlet (20 Amp). The GA-120S Final Edition amplifier and power cable are $990 and manufactured in Thailand. A ten year warranty is included to the original owner.

 

05 / 07 / 03

  America Online's (AOL) "First Break" is hoping to discover the "next big star" by providing their members the chance to hear original songs from ten unsigned artists (five in May and five in June) and vote for their favorite each month. In addition to the Atlantic deal and Sessions@AOL appearance, the winning artist will also receive a one year subscription to Tonos, an online musician's network which helps artists break into the industry with access to top music industry execs, and a global network of musicians, songwriters and producers. Bill Wilson, Vice President and General Manager, AOL Music, said "AOL members, who have already made AOL Music the number one music destination on the Internet, will now be able to put their expertise to the test and find the next big star. We expect First Break to be very competitive, as these acts will be performing their own songs and will have one chance to impress our members."

 

 

In an interesting twist of events, consumer electronics manufacturer and major music label Sony has bought out products from audio software company Sonic Foundry for $18 million. The specific software titles Sony purchased include Acid, Vegas, and the Sound Forge editing program. "Sony has tremendous respect for the Sonic Foundry technology, and maintaining and expanding on it," says Don Levy, vice president of communications for Sony Pictures Digital.

 

05 / 06 / 03

Earthquake SuperNova MKIV-15  Earthquake's MKIV-15 self-powered subwoofer ($5,397) is a culmination of over 20 years of collective experience. Finely finished in handcrafted Burl and Black piano, the SuperNova MKIV-15 employs a Marma-15 (15-inch) driver with an impressive 3-inch excursion and 580-watt digital amplifier to produce frequencies as low as 18Hz. Overall dimensions are 19 x 19 x 19 (HxWxD) and the unit weights 74 lbs.

 

 

According to the eSpending Report from the Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Harris Interactive, and Nielsen/NetRatings, consumer electronics achieved approximately nearly $2 billion in sales during the 2002 holiday season. Online spending for consumer electronics had nearly the largest growth with an outstanding increase of 72.4%! In total, online spending has increased over 24 percent in 2002 as compared to 2001. This translates to consumer electronics tripling the average!

As for the age of those purchasing goods online, 43% of those are from 35 to 54, a major demographic in the high-end audio field. Budding audiophiles in the age group of 25 to 34 fit into the 22% bracket. Please see pie graph below for more details.

 

05 / 05 / 03

  D.H. Labs has introduced their Power Plus Reference Series power cord ($200 for 2-meter length). Featuring noise-canceling technology for improved audio and video performance, the Power Plus Reference Series AC power cord is hand-crafted from high-purity copper for improved conductivity of the electrical signal. Special noise-canceling geometries are employed to cancel intra-conductor interactions that can create noise and interference that is then passed on to your components. Two twelve-gauge conductors, and a twelve-gauge ground and is wrapped in an attractive, custom insulation that reduces "coloration" and improves overall transparency.

 

05 / 02 / 03

Bob Dylan Rolling Thunder  Critically acclaimed audiophile music label Classic Records has announced Bob Dylan's Rolling Thunder three LP box set ($100, CK-87047-1-Q) will be available on May 27th. Pressed on Classic Records' QUIEX-SVP 200 gram. A special 7-inch 45rpm (blue vinyl) record and 70 page book also come with this very special release. This edition is very limited to a mere 2,500 sets so those interested should pre-order their set immediately. A standard weight vinyl release of this same box set (minus the special 70 page book) will also be for sale ($60, CK-87047-1R).

 

05 / 01 / 03

  Enjoy the Music.com has released the May 2003 edition of their Review Magazine. Equipment reviews include:

* CES Show Report Part III and IV

* Argent's RoomLens To The Rescue!

* The AVVT 300BSL Output Valve

* Ayre CX-7 CD Player

* Classic Audio Reproductions' Cinema Ensemble Loudspeaker

* Discovery Cable Company Essential Loudspeaker Cables

* Eastern Electric MiniMax Pre-Amplifier

* DIYHifiSupply.com Joplin Amplifier Kit

*  KR Audio Kronzilla DM (Dual Monoblock) Power Amplifier

* The Mission's m53 Loudspeaker

* SAP KT66-Based New Anniversary Integrated Amplifier

The May 2003 edition also offers many music reviews including The Ray Brown Trio Soular Energy, Erich Kunzel & The Cincinnati Pops Got Swing!, Getting A Handle On Handel, Terence Martin Sleeper, Norah Jones, and many others! Please see the Review Magazine by clicking here.

 

 

RealTraps have announced their new MiniTrap for both recording studios and listening rooms. Besides performance nearly three times that of foam corners at 100Hz, MiniTraps ($159.99) are also small and easy to handle. Since MiniTraps are made with rigid fiberglass and metal instead of foam, they are fire resistant and can be installed with confidence in public venues. According to RealTraps co-owner Ethan Winer, "The main problem in most studios and listening rooms is standing waves that cause severe variations in the low frequency response. Many engineers and audiophiles cover their walls with foam, which just makes the room too dead at mid and high frequencies, while doing nothing for the low end. MiniTraps are much more absorbent than foam at low frequencies, so they do a superior job overall and with fewer pieces. Their light weight and small size also makes them ideal for larger installations like churches and auditoriums. Best of all, they install easily with one nail or hook-just like a picture-without glue or wall damage."

 


 

Previous News

2003

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2002

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May   June   July   August   September

October   November   December

 

2001

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May   June   July   August   September

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2000

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 September   October   November   December 

 

1999

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