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High-End Audio Industry News


12 / 31 / 06

CES 2007 News & Pre-Show Report  Our CES 2007 news and pre-show report is now online, with more announcements being added in the following days as the show draws closer to opening. Once the show begins on January 8th, you can expect our live reports to appear each day with special audiophile highlights, sneak peaks, and exclusives! Check out the multiple pages of high-end audio products to be seen during the CES 2007 by clicking here.

 

12 / 29 / 06

KR Audio Kronzilla SXI  KR Audio Electronics new 50 wpc stereo integrated Kronzilla SXI amplifier is the company's statement piece in sound and technology. Each of the two specially designed T1610 output tubes produces 50 watts at 3 percent THD, both 4 and 8 Ohm loudspeakers output taps are provided, and overall frequency response is from 20Hz to 20KHz. The preamplification section uses solid-state with mechanical (reed) relays and can be controlled via wireless remote. There are four stereo inputs, with each having a sensitivity of 0.75V to achieve full output. The SXI includes the option of bypassing the preamplification stage to act as a pure amplifier. Overall weight is 50 Kg and dimensions are 38.5 x 41.5 x 55 (WxHxD in cm).

 

12 / 28 / 06

PS Audio Trio C-100 Control Amplifier  PS Audio announced their Trio stereo component series that features PS Audio's Gain Cell technology. The Trio C-100 Control Amplifier (pictured), P-100 Preamplifier; and A-100 Power Amplifier ($1595, $995, and $995 respectively) is said by PS Audio to "represent an entirely new way of thinking about audio amplification." The C100 Control Amplifier produces 100 wpc @ 8 Ohm (200 @ 4 Ohm) with dual-mono construction and is based on Gain Cell technology for the gain control and ICE technology for the power amplifiers. PS Audio's Trio P-200 Stereo Preamplifier offers remote control and the ability to drive any power amplifier to full output. Lastly, the Trio A-100 Power Amplifier produces 200 wpc stereo and features Gain Cell gain circuitry and the latest ICE output technology. Its high input impedance is claimed to make it an ideal load for vacuum tube amplifiers.

 

12 / 27 / 06

  Lamm Industries new ML3 Signature (approximately $126,290 per pair) monoblock amplifier produces 32 watts and operates single-ended and utilizes the very powerful direct-heated GM70 triode. According to Lamm Industries, "The ML3 Signature's innovative circuitry enables a recreation of the original spectral balance and harmonic structure of the recorded material without loosing a strand of low-level detail or nuance. Another unique aspect of the design enables the ML3 Signature to recreate a three-dimensional soundstage without boundaries or limitations, while maintaining an extraordinary transparency of perceived sound." With no overall feedback and operating in Class-A single-ended mode, supporting parts include separate plate and filament transformers, six filter chokes, six rectifier tubes, and very high quality film capacitors. An option is offered, allowing the user to introduce small amounts of local feedback in the output stage. Tube compliment consists of a 12AX7, four 6N30P-DR, a GM70, and six 12AX3.

 

12 / 26 / 06

James Brown  The undisputed Godfather of Soul, James Brown, passed away December 25th after being hospitalized with pneumonia and then suffered heart failure. Born on May 3, 1933 in Macon Georgia (USA), James Brown is ranked number 2 with musical hits, behind number 1 Elvis Presley, as James earned over 116 charted hits during his successful career. He was also one of the hardest working men in show business and nicknamed "Mr. Dynamite." Hit songs include "Please Please Please" when he was with the Famous Flames in the mid 1950's, to his solo efforts "Try Me" in 1958, "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" in 1965, "Get On the Good Foot" in 1972, and "Living in America" in 1986. James Brown was one of the very first people to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 34th annual Grammy Awards in 1992. Editor of Enjoy the Music.com, Steven R,. Rochlin, had the pleasure to meet and chat with James Brown at the 1999 Woodstock festival (photo) and was in awe of the man's true love of music. James Brown's genius and influence still make their marks in modern music today. James Brown is survived by companion Rolonda Watts and his children Deanna, Terry, Daryl, Venisha, and Yamma.

 

12 / 22 / 06

NAD T 585 Universal DVD Player  NAD has announced two new power amplifiers, the T 975 seven-channel and 955 five-channel power amplifiers ($2499 and $1499 respectively) plus their T 585 universal DVD player with SACD and DVD-Audio compatibility ($1199). Both amplifiers feature NAD's proprietary PowerDrive topology to ensures distortion-free dynamics, with the T 975 producing 140 wpc (x7) and the T 955 producing 100 wpc. (x5). NAD's T 585 universal DVD player features SACD/DVD-Audio capability plus DVD-Video, MP3, HDCD, and Windows Media support. The unit also offers HDMI w/HDCP, Faroudja DCDi chip upconverts to 720p and 1080i, onboard Dolby Digital and Dolby ProLogic decoding, and audiophile quality 24-bit/192kHz audio D/A converters.

 

12 / 21 / 06

Studio Electric Amplifier  A new Studio Electric dual mono hybrid amplifier ($6,950) will be shown at the upcoming CES in Las Vegas. Designed by Studio Electric's Dave MacPherson, with striking Art Deco metal work by ElectronLuv's Josh Stippich, this piece of machine-age metal sculpture houses a tube front end with English MOSFET power. The amplifier will be available in several configurations including an integrated version. Power output is stated as 275 wpc @ 8 Ohms (375 @ 4 Ohm) with a signal to noise (SNR) of -90dB.

 

12 / 20 / 06

Practical Devices XM4  Practical Devices XM4 ($135) portable headphone amplifier builds on the success of the company's XM3 by adding Bass Boost. For a limited time they are including high-quality gold-plated mini-to-mini male jack headphone cable with orders. The XM4's robust anodized aluminum case with glossy laser-anodized faceplate houses military-precision resistors, oversized electrolytic and tantalum capacitors, plus ultra-low distortion amplification chip. Single to noise ratio (SNR) is a staggering low 100dB, total harmonic distortion (THD) is rated at 0.002% THD, and overall frequency response is from 20Hz to 20kHz. A front panel LED indicates battery status and the built-in battery charger supports rechargeable batteries. A nifty feature is that by pressing the power button 1 time = power on for 1 hour (3 times = 3 hours, 6 times = 6 hours, and 7 times = constant power). The power button also has a flashlight and dimming mode. Gain is adjustable to add 10dB to the already healthy 13dB if needed via internal jumper while pressing a front button enables the rear panel's Crossfeed Adjuster, a knob that provides for output from near stereo to monophonic sound.

 

12 / 19 / 06

  Devore Fidelity has announced their soon to be released gibbon model called The Nines (approximately $6500/pr). Following their award winning Super 8 that earned Enjoy the Music.com's prestigious Blue Note Award, The Nines is a full range mid-sized 2.5-way loudspeaker. With a standard finish in Cherry, this 8.5 x14.5 x38 (WxDxH in inches) unit weights 58 lbs. and has a frequency response from 32Hz to 38kHz. The very amplifier friendly 8 Ohm load and 91dB/W/m ensure ease of use with both high power and low power single-ended tube amplification.

 

12 / 18 / 06

Densen Audio Technologies B-410 CD Player  Densen Audio Technologies (1,000) new B-410 marks the company's new generation of CD-players. Being the entry-level CD player from Densen, joining the company's B-400+ and B-400XS, with plans to replace the older models in short order. Densen's B-410 features a completely new atapi controller for the modified CD drive. The power supply of the B-410 uses a large, custom-made torroid transformer that has 4 individual outputs to supply various stages accordingly. Critical DAC and analog circuit board are separated from the main CPU board, and can be upgraded as technology is progressing. Other features include two stereo pair of line outputs, a Digital DenLink and BNC digital output, a pair of DACs that upconvert to 24-bit, and an output stage with 6 watts of Class A power to ensure extremely low distortion analog output. A staggering lifetime warranty is included to the original owner.

 

12 / 15 / 06

  White Elephant Sale by the Boston Audio Society (BAS) will be held on Sunday, December 17 at 6:00pm at the Boston University's Biology Bldg, 24 Cummington St,1st Floor Conference Room, Boston, MA 02215. Audiophiles can bring along anything audio-related they wish to sell, exchange, get rid of and never want to see again. The equipment or materials you bring do not have to be working, but it should be of some interest to a society of members who possess a broad imagination and an expansive interest in everything.

 

Acoustic Revive's RD-3 Disc DemagnetizerAcoustic Revive's RD-3 ($399) demagnetizes both 3 and 5 inch optical discs. Normal discs are said to contain Currently, around 99 percent aluminum, with the other 1 percent being ferromagnetic substance such as iron, nickel and cobalt according to the Japanese Industrial Standard. Acoustic Revive claims that CD players contain magnetic substances so that when a disc is played, the rotation of the mechanism and magnet/motor generates a flux which quickly causes discs to become magnetized. By demagnetizing your discs, they say users "...will find that sound and picture quality are much improved. You will be able to hear aspects of the recording that were inaudible before the disc had been magnetized."

 

12 / 14 / 06

  Enjoy the Music.com's mid- December edition of our Review Magazine and Superior Audio are now online! The Review Magazine features a new editorial by Steven R. Rochlin concerning the Grammys, Low-Rez Audio, Audio Sound Effects and CES / T.H.E. Show. Flashback articles include more CES/THE Show, Pass Laboratories balanced single-ended Class-A X250 stereo amplifier and Axiom Audio's Millennia M3Ti bookshelf loudspeakers. Superior Audio revisits Basis' 2800 vacuum turntable and the Graham 2.2 tonearm. See the Mid- December issue of our Review Magazine by clicking here and Superior Audio by clicking here.

 

12 / 13 / 06

Nagra CD Player  Nagra has announced their new range of CD players. Strange, given that CD has long be surpassed by newer formats, though an interesting twist for a company known for cutting edge technology while also providing service to legendary recording studio products.. Nagra says their "ambition with this new family of players is to offer the finest possible CD player, which can reproduce at home, the original quality of a concert or studio recording, often made using a Nagra recorder - the absolute reference." Three CD player models made by the company include the CDT transport with AES, S/PDIF, and optical outputs ($12,495), a CDP player with XLR and RCA outputs and fixed analog outputs ($13,495), and lastly the CDC concept (pictured above) with a full array of XLR and RCA outputs, variable outputs, balance control and a discrete headphone section ($14,995).

 

12 / 12 / 06

Terry Cain of Cain & Cain Audio  It deeply saddens me to report that Terry Cain of Cain & Cain Audio has passed away in his sleep due to respiratory complications while battling Lyme and Lou Gehrig's disease. i have personally enjoyed spending many great moments over the years with Terry, who was always a shining and happy soul with a deep passion for music. Enjoy the Music.com has been fortunate to have reviewed various Cain & Cain products, with the Abby earning our prestigious Blue Note Award.
Award
. Terry's cousin, Kathy Gee, has set up a special bank account for the Cains which she'll administer on their behalf for funds to help ALS research or another charity of the family's choosing.

 

12 / 11 / 06

The Absolute Sound (TAS)  January issues of both The Absolute Sound (TAS) and The Audiophile Voice (TAV) are now online! TAS announces their 2006 Product of the Year Awards and heralds in Enjoy the Music.com's own Senior Editor Dick Olsher to their staff. Editor Robert Harley had this to say about their new Senior Writer, "I'm thrilled to welcome Dick Olsher to the staff of The Absolute Sound. Dick makes his debut this issue with an appraisal of the MartinLogan Vista loudspeaker. After you read his review I'm sure you'll share my enthusiasm for Dick's writing. He combines deep technical understanding of audio technology with a keen musical sensitivity and the rare ability to draw correlations between the technical and the aesthetic. His Vista review also left me with a vivid impression of how the product sounded, always the hallmark of great audio writing." You can see the entire table of contents and read Robert's complete editorial by clicking here.

In TAV you can enjoy reviews of the Paradigm Ultracube 10 subwoofer & X-30 subwoofer controller, Logitech's mm28 portable speaker system, Wavelab 6 audio software and much more. See TAV's table of contents by clicking here.

 

12 / 08 / 06

Metaxas Audio Reel2Reel  Audiophile company Metaxas Audio owner and chief designer Kostas Metaxas has recorded well over 150 concerts since 2004. With over 30 years of playback system design experience, his recordings seek to capture the most natural sounding acoustic recordings in a natural acoustic space. The company now offers CD resolution digital downloads of these recordings at 16-bit/44kHz for $10 per year and available at Real2Real. Equipment used for recording includes Neumann M150/TLM50 microphones feeding a pair of Metaxas-modified Stellavox SM8 analogue tape recorders running at 15ips.

 

12 / 07 / 06

  Perhaps music sales are not so bleak due to pirating as the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) wants the United States government to believe as Warner Music Group has posted fourth-quarter profit of $12 million. It is no surprise that digital revenue has grown 96 percent over the same period as last year and accounted for $104 million, a staggering 12 percent of total revenue. While total revenue decreased 5.4 percent to $854 million for the fourth quarter, lower operating expenses helped to provide an overall profit. Operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA) improved to $126 million from $77 million in the prior-year quarter. "These year-end results highlight the continued transformation of Warner Music Group in 2006," said Edgar Bronfman, Jr., Warner Music Group's Chairman and CEO. "Continued focus on the digital music business yielded dramatic growth in digital revenue. The increase in our digital Recorded Music revenue for the fiscal year more than offset declines in our physical Recorded Music revenue. For the first time our quarterly digital revenue broke the $100 million barrier. Our quarterly digital revenue represented 12.2 percent of our total revenue about double last year's quarter in dollar terms." For the company's full year 2006, revenue increased 0.4 percent to $3,516 million from $3,502 million last year.

 

12 / 06 / 06

Sicilia 2007 High-End Show  Following their very successful Milan Hi-End show for the past seven years, The Sound of the Valve has organized the Sicily Hi-End 2007. Taking place in Acitrezza (Catania) on April 21st and 22nd, 2007, the show is strictly for two-channel (stereo) sound systems. Photos and videos of their previous events can be seen at their website.

 

12 / 05 / 06

EMM Labs CDSA SE CD/SACD Player  EMM Labs', founded by digital audio guru Ed Meitner, has announced their CDSA SE CD/SACD player ($9995). As a culminations of all their years of knowledge and application, the CDSA SE is a single-box, dual-format player that upsamples all incoming CD audio to double the native DSD rate. Therefore 44.1kHz Redbook CD signals are internally processed at 1-bit/5.6448MHz. Another interesting fact is that Ed Meitner's discrete dual differential D-to-A conversion circuit in employed. EMM Labs' CDSA SE also features new aerospace-grade composite laminate circuit boards that are said to provide several performance advantages over conventional board materials. Outputs include optical for 6 channel DSD (either from SACD or 2 channels upconverted from CD) and AES/EBU output for PCM from CD. Inputs consist of optical and BNC clock input for external clocking. The chassis extensively treated with vibration control material consisting of a highly-damped, low-rebound, rapid-settling polymer composite. Internals software can be upgraded via the included USB communication link and is available for free from the EMM Labs' website.

 

12 / 04 / 06

Linn Exotik Preamplifier  Linn's new Exotik multi-channel digital and analog preamplifier provides eight channels of audiophile quality sound ($5,670, digital upgrade adds $2,100, and phonostage adds $520). The Exotik would be right at home with two-channel systems that may one day be upgraded to high resolution surround sound, with inputs including CD player, turntable, etc. As audiophiles (and videophiles) upgrade to multi-channel sound, plus use their system for video gaming, the Linn Exotic includes inputs for digital sources such as satellite receiver, DVD player, games console, etc. All major DSP modes and supported plus a high quality adjustable MM/MC phono stage is available. Linn's Exotik preamplifier is available in black and silver finishes.

 

12 / 01 / 06

Enjoy the Music.com Audiophile Review Magazine  Enjoy the Music.com's December edition of our Review Magazine and Superior Audio are now online! The Review Magazine features our Great Audiophile Gifts For The 2006 Holiday Season plus reviews of JuicyMusic's Merlin preamplifier and the PS Audio Soloist with JPS Labs Dedicated Line (Revisited). Superior Audio has audiophile assessments of David Berning's ZH270 amplifier, EAR-Yoshino 834T integrated, and the amazing Silbatone Ji-300MK II integrated. See the December issue of our Review Magazine by clicking here and Superior Audio by clicking here.


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