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HIFICRITIC     April / May / June 2020


HIFICRITIC Volume 14 Number 2 April / May / June 2020


Reviews & Articles Within This Issue
2 Editorial: The Many Aspects Of The Audio Industry
Editorial By Martin Colloms


4 Peter Thomas
In an exclusive HIFICRITIC interview, the cofounder of PMC recalls his early days at the BBC and the beginnings of the company, and gives his views on the state of speaker design and the hi-fi industry.


9 Stan's Safari
Stan's been spending his time in isolation tinkering with some vintage amplifiers in his collection – and pondering elements of their design and construction.


11 Mola Mola Tambaqui
Yes, the name's unusual, being derived from a giant sunfish, but then so is this DAC, designed by company founder Bruno Putzeys and with a sound that captivates both Andrew Everard and Martin Colloms.


13 The 'A' Team
Martin Colloms compares three compact speakers – from Amphion, Aurender and ATC – and discovers that not only is the design thinking for each very different, but they also deliver a variety of presentations.


20 Michi P5/S5
First launched by Rotel as its premium brand back at the beginning of the 1990s, Michi is back with a very different look, and an initial offering of a preamplifier and two power amps. Andrew Everard suggests the P5 preamp and S5 stereo power amp could be a taste of great things to come.


23 All You Really Need To Know About Digital Filters
Usually one of the hidden aspects of the handling of digital data, filtering can have a significant affect on how a DAC sounds. Keith Howard examines the common types, and explains why they matter.


28 iFi Audio Aurora
No other all-in-one network audio system looks quite like it, and the British-based company's latest arrival features a slew of unique technologies, including all-analogue room optimisation. And it's more than just a looker: it sounds spectacular, too.


HIFICRITIC Volume 14 Number 2 April / May / June 2020


37 The New Norma?
Chris Kelly finds much to like Norma Audio's CD player/DAC and integrated amplifier, and says the brand should be more celebrated.


33 Network Connections
Martin Colloms, Andrew Everard and Steve Harris examine a trio of 'audiophile' Ethernet switches, and a bushel of network cables.


40 Klipsh Forte III
Part of the company's Heritage series, this impressive speaker combines classic horn technology with some modern thinking.


Rega Aethos Integrated Amplifier Review

Rega Aethos Integrated Amplifier Review
Rega moves to fill a key space in its amplifier range with the Aethos, an unusual exercise in 'trickle up' engineering. 
Review By Ed Selly Of HIFICRITIC
Over the last eighteen months, the main focus of Rega Research's activities has been its range of turntables, cartridges and phono stages. While hardly surprising, this has but it meant that the range of supporting amplifiers no longer matched the turntables as closely as they once had. In particular, the significant hole between the £1679 Elicit R and the £6399 Osiris was an issue for people looking to partner the Rega Planar 8 or 10 with a matching Rega amplifier.
---> Read our Rega Aethos integrated amplifier review.


44 Audio Note UK Meishu Tonmeister
The latest iteration of this classic valve amplifier more than lives up to its name, according to a delighted Chris Frankland.


46 Neat Ministra
Drawing on technology from across its manufacturer's range, this compact speaker delivers a powerful, yet refined, sound.


48 PSB Alpha S10
Compact and very affordable, this active subwoofer finds a fan in Kevin Fiske.


50 Chord Electronics 2GO
Building on the success of the Mojo/Poly, this tiny streamer turns the Hugo 2 into a complete player. It's great, but its control app grates on Jon Honeyball's nerves.


52 Streaming Amplifiers
A trio of network-connectable amps – Arcam's SA30, the Cyrus ONE Cast and Marantz's PM7000N – shows there's more than one way to integrate streaming without affecting audio performance.


58 Classical
Andrew Mellor surveys the latest classical releases, from Adès to Wagner.


60 Jazz And More In DSD
James Parker explains why the technology behind SACD was made for jazz.


62 Secordhand Stars
Steve Harris reveals his latest haul of 'pre-loved' recordings.


64 Soundstage
Former Naim chairman Paul Stephenson on early musical influences, and rediscoveries.





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