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High-End Audio Industry News


07 / 22 / 05

Daluso HE Range of Loudspeakers  Daluso's HE-Range of loudspeakers from the Netherlands offer a wide variety of designs for both audiophiles and home theater. With all designs including Seas' coaxial driver, they provide a point source listening experience that is cohesive and time accurate throughout the frequency range. Daluso's HE range consists four bass reflex loudspeakers that include the XXL, XL, L, M and 5 center models. Custom finishes include artistic impressions from futuristic and techno to retro or classic. Metallic coloring is also available.

 

07 / 21 / 05

Reel Acoustics RSW Subwoofers  Reel Acoustics' now offers their next generation RSW subwoofers. The RSW801.2, RSW 101.2, and RSW 1215.2 subwoofers feature a single downward-firing 8, 10, or 12 inch driver (respectively) and include amplification and crossover for ease of system integration. With front ported cabinet design, the electronics have a dual-colored "halo glow" LED for power mode indication. Both high and low level inputs and 24dB/octave crossover further assist in ease of matching the unit to a system's main loudspeakers and the users room. Reel Acoustics' RSW 810.2 includes 125 watts of amplification, the RSW 1012.2 includes 150 watts, and the RSW 1215 has 250 watts. All units are available in black finish.

 

07 / 20 / 05

Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)  Online sales are gaining on their brick and mortar counterpart. According to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the trade association representing more than 2,000 corporate members involved in electronics worldwide and whose members account for more than $121 billion in annual sales, "Online shoppers surveyed reported better customer loyalty than those who make consumer electronics purchases in person. The survey appears to show that 52 percent claim store brand loyalty in online shopping versus only 37 percent of brick and mortar shoppers. With more than 1,000 United States adults surveyed by CEA, online CE shoppers report higher satisfaction with online purchasing. The CEA survey also found that consumers who buy consumer electronics products online spend 67 percent more each year than those who do not. "Consumer electronics devices today are found in more American homes than are automobiles," said Joe Bates, director of research at CEA. "CE products have become ubiquitous, and play a key role in almost every aspect of our lives. As a result, consumers will naturally gravitate towards a convenient means of purchase that makes them feel as though they have made a fair, well-informed decision in a setting that is easy to reach and work with."

Other interesting facts from non-CEA sources say the fourth quarter of 2004 shows online sales achieving $22.34 billion, 10 million Americans purchased digital content, 50 million people use PayPal, and E-commerce to grow to $142.5 billion in 2005 reaching an estimated $316 billion by 2010.

 

07 / 19 / 05

Transcendent Sound The Beast  Transcendent Sound has announced the late September 2005 availability of their new 165 watt OTL amplifier dubbed "The Beast." With over a decade of experience producing OTL amplification, Transcendent Sound's The Best delivers 165 watts into an 8 ohm load (115 watts into 4 ohms), the unit is offered in both kit ($3,695) and assembled form ($4,995) with RCA inputs (add $300 for XLR). Fully balanced XLR insures all the benefits of the interface while RCA in of the floating differential variety to insure either connection eliminates ground loop hum. As for tubes, the input features a 12AX7 gain stage and phase splitter with stage voltage regulation, AC coupled to a 12AT7 differential amplifier, also regulated. This then drives symmetrical 12BH7 cathode followers, both regulated that drive the output stage. Output tubes are EL-519 arranged in vertical pairs with each pair having its own fuse and each fuse has an LED indicator. Each output tube is also protected with four current limiting resistors, one for each grid and the plate. Output impedance is 0.2 ohm to insure the ability to drive 4 ohm loudspeakers.

 

07 / 15 / 05

Classé Audio CDP-300 DVD Player  Classé Audio's new CDP-300 ($6,500) DVD player joins the company's highly regarded Delta Series. In addition to DVD-Video discs, the unit also plays DVD-Audio, CD, DualDisc, and discs encoded with MP3, WMA and AAC, Video-CD, S-VCD and JPEG picture discs. The CDP-300 is the company's first DVD Player to offer touch screen control and video preview on the front panel. Other features include specially designed vibration-absorbing feet, rigid chassis, and DVD-ROM drive, and jitter reduction via a CPLD (Complex Programmable Logic Device) and sample rate converter. All digital sources are recreated as 24-bit/192kHz signals and re-clocked before being output to the DAC. In fact three stereo DACs (with 8x filters) have been selected to convert digital audio to analog. Six channels of analog audio output via RCA and stereo output is also available via balanced XLR connectors. These channels are truly balanced, having been taken as differential outputs from each channel of a stereo DAC. The unit can also be employed as a transport via SPDIF, AES/EBU and TOSLINK output. Taking advantage of HDTV, Classé Audio's CDP-300 is claimed to achieve full implementation of all HDTV resolutions including HDMI output with 480i, 480p, 576i, 576p, 720p, 1080i and 1080p.

 

07 / 14 / 05

International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI)  As the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) — an organization that represents the recording industry worldwide with over 1450 members in 75 countries — has successfully motivated Ukraine in approving stronger anti-piracy laws, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) representing United States' recording industry has just released their 2004 annual commercial piracy report. Ukraine has long been known as a place where an unacceptably high level of music piracy can be found. The country's Parliament Verkhovna Rada has passed a Bill of amendments to Ukraine's Law on Laser-readable Discs to tackle ongoing pirate CD production and illegal exports. According to the IFPI "Ukraine's CD plant capacity of around 50 million discs a year is three times its legitimate demand. The adoption of the law follows sustained pressure from the recording industry and Ukraine's trading partners."

Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)In the United States, the RIAA's annual piracy report claims to show pirated music on the rise and goes so far as to allege ties to criminal syndicates! With high-quality pirated discs very closely resemble legitimate CDs, the RIAA alleges that "criminal enterprises are becoming increasingly involved in the piracy racket, illegally burning massive numbers of blank CDs with music from today's most popular artists." According to the RIAA there has been a 58 percent increase in seizures of counterfeit CDs that may appear authentic at first glance. In 2004, the number of counterfeit CD-Rs seized declined 27 percent, while the seizure of counterfeit labels rose 372 percent and seizures of CD-R burner equipment nearly doubled compared to 2003 levels. The RIAA reported "a 21 percent decrease in the plain-view seizures that are typical of street-vendor enforcement, while the number of search warrants and consent searches continued to climb. Street vendor arrests have also declined, as law enforcement is increasingly making more targeted arrests at the distributor and manufacturer level." To see the complete piracy report statistics, please click here.

 

07 / 13 / 05

Acrolink 7N-A2070 Interconnect Cable  The Lotus Group now offers their Acrolink 7N-A2070 interconnect cable as part of their Premium Series of 6 and 7 nines pure copper cables. Each cable is treated with their "traditional Stressfree process" said to maintain uniformity of crystalline structure. The conductor are insulated with a polymer of Polyolefin, which Acrolink feels has the lowest available dielectric constant. Rounding out the design, the sheath material is comprised of a combination of ultra-high-density tungsten, amorphous metal, and graphite granules to reduce resonance within the cable. Acrolink's 7N-A2070 interconnect cable is available in RCA or XLR, with both plug types having hollow, iron free and deoxidized phosphor bronze center pins polished to a mirror finish and plated with rhodium. The RCA type is fitted with a carbon fiber while the outer casing of the XLR type is precision machined out of solid brass.

 

07 / 12 / 05

Vacuum Tube Valley Magazine  Vacuum Tube Valley Magazine has announced their Southern California Audio, Video and Music EXPO Celebrating 75 Years of Hi-Fi and Sound in the Movie Industry. To be held at the Embassy Suites in Pasadena/Arcadia, California on November 19th and 20th, there will be both new and used gear for sale plus various seminars. On displaying and demonstrating will be home theater systems, tube and transistor amplifiers, loudspeakers, turntables, CD players, cables and accessories. Musicians take note as there will be multiple vendors selling boutique and vintage guitar amplifiers, vintage guitars, NOS tubes and parts, and vintage hi-fi speakers. Naturally music vendors will also be present with everything from digital disc to collector-grade LP records. To commemorate the 75th anniversary of high quality sound in movies, noted audio historians will present the history of sound in movies and the great companies involved including Altec-Lansing, JBL, Western Electric, and RCA.

 

07 / 11 / 05

Meadowlark Audio  It saddens us to report that after speculation concerning the health of Meadowlark Audio due to lack of response from phone calls and e-mail, it appears they are selling all their inventor and have gone out of business. Labeled as "Last Chance - Ever - To Own Brand New Meadowlark Audio Speakers!!!" both new and 'B-Stock' are being sold off at deep discounts. Their website states, "After eleven years, production has ceased at Meadowlark Audio... but a few pair of new, in the box speakers remain. These speakers are not leftovers, but regular inventory built to Meadowlark’s very high standards. Speakers that are denoted “B-Stock” have minor cosmetic imperfections - but meet exactly the same electronic performance standards as A grade speakers." Of interesting note is that it is claimed as a third party sale with the seller not an audio retailer and can not offer advice or additional descriptions or materials other than what is listed on the company's website. All sales are final as Meadowlark Audio is "a defunct corporation - you will receive neither warranty nor recourse." Feel free to read our exclusive review of Meadowlark Audio's Osprey loudspeaker here and their Herron2 here.

 

07 / 08 / 05

  The ability of accessing audiophile quality content via the Internet, including online reviews and music, is becoming easier as more people around the world have access to high speed connections. It was recently reported by the FCC that in the United States subscriptions to such services leaped 34 percent in 2004 to now account for 38 million lines. As impressive as this may sound, the United States is far from leading the pack as fifteen other countries are ahead of the United States. While there is no mainstream online music provider offering DVD-Audio content, high speed Internet may allow close facsimiles as advanced hardware, compression technology, and decoding software become available. Naturally there will be no need for audiophiles who enjoy digital music to own a physical copy as it can simply reside on a music server. It appears more and more audiophiles are also doing away with 'dead tree legacy media' in exchange for digital copies. Many audiophile publications are strictly online, though print media is finally learning the facts about Internet growth. Those who produce print versions are now experiencing growth due to offering online downloadable versions.

 

07 / 07 / 05

Canton Karat M Series Loudspeakers  Canton has introduced four models in its newly redesigned Karat M series loudspeaker lineup that include the Karat M 90 DC, Karat M 35 DC, Karat M 20, and Karat CM 50 ($3,000/pair, $2,000/pair, $1,200/pair, and $800 each respectively). All models incorporate driver and cabinet engineering advances developed for the company's flagship Vento series. The new Karat M series consists of a 3-way floorstanding speaker, 2-way and 3-way compact speakers, and a 2.5-way center channel. Of note is Canton's 1-inch aluminum-manganese tweeter, which employs a newly redesigned transmission plate front baffle for claimed improved dispersion and linear response well above the audible range. Each model also employs Canton's proven 6-inch aluminum cone driver for the critical midrange with it's unusual concave dustcap to provide improved imaging and multiple resonance paths for lower distortion. The Karat M series cabinets are constructed of extensively braced and damped MDF and is highly resistant to resonance. Cabinet finishes are available in graphite and silver lacquer, which is hand applied in numerous layers, as well as real wood veneers of cherry or beech. The largest loudspeaker, the Karat M 90 DC, is a 3-way floorstander with a side-firing 10-inch woofer and a front baffle width of under 7 inches. A pair of midrange drivers vertically flank a tweeter for superior off-axis linear response while bass performance is further enhanced by Canton's DC (Displacement Control) Technology claimed to filter subsonic signals to prevent undesirable woofer excursions.

 

07 / 06 / 05

Densen B-330 Stereo Amplifier  Densen has introduced the B-330 (GBP 3000) stereo amplifier that produces 120 watts per channel. With circuit technology and design directly descended from Densen's B-350 monoblocks, the B-330 uses DMCD (Dense Mass Current Distribution) technology that is claimed to "secure an extremely firm grip on the speakers combined with a fast, precise and transparent sound." A massive power supply that includes a custom made transformer allows this 120 watts per channel stereo unit produce 240 watts into a 4 ohm load. The double-sided Teflon circuit board is etched with traces that insure a short signal path while circuit components are all robot mounted SMD (Surface Mounted Devices).

 

07 / 05 / 05

Mashboxx  With the Grokster vs. MGM peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing lawsuit decision by the United States Supreme Court being plus the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) new filing of 784 new lawsuits against alleged illegal file sharers, Sony BMG Music Entertainment has licensed a new peer-to-peer file sharing service to allow others to enjoy the music. Mashboxx, now in Beta, is a new service that proclaims to make file sharing legal. This is the first time a major recording label has authorized P2P sharing of content as Mashboxx will sell songs for 99 cents each with the ability to preview the entire song for a limited number of plays before purchase. Other major content providers are said to be also in discussion with Matchboxx to license their content. Andrew Lack, chief executive officer of Sony BMG Music Entertainment, said "We're pleased to be working with... the Mashboxx team as they introduce their new service with the aim of meeting the needs of music fans, while at the same time protecting artists and their work." Mashboxx's CEO Wayne Rosso said, "Sony BMG Music Entertainment has done the heretofore unthinkable: embrace file sharing. And in so doing has displayed great courage and foresight. We at Mashboxx are clearly overjoyed because this is a watershed moment in the evolution of the digital music marketplace. We hope it will be the harbinger of a brighter future for content owners, P2P technology and, of course, users."

 

07 / 01 / 05

Enjoy the Music.com Decade Award  Enjoy the Music.com is celebrating a decade of helping audiophiles worldwide! We have new issues of both our Review Magazine and Superior Audio now online and wish to thank everyone for their support over these many years. It is truly an honor to have met and received e-mail from so many music lovers from around the world! Our Review Magazine features our Decade Award plus the Behringer EQ-RTA Mastering Equalizer, KR Audio 300B Balloon triode, and a $1,500 audiophile system by Odyssey Audio. Superior Audio includes reviews of the sexy Shanling CD-T300 and Avantgarde Acoustic's Duo hornspeaker.  On behalf of the entire staff of Enjoy the Music.com we thank you for over a decade of... enjoying the music.


 

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