02 / 26 / 15
Capitol AudioFest Teams Up
With The Chester Group
has teamed up with Chester Group
to continue the development of this very popular and growing fall event within the United States of America. In keeping with Chester Group practice, the show's founder Gary Gill will remain
as the shows figurehead, as will the pricing and packaging for this year's show. This relationship will help in many ways; including the benefits from economies of scale, dual show packages, joint marketing, additional
organizational and logistical support, enhanced coverage of the East Coast, and most importantly shared values for the prosperity and sustainability of this great and creative high fidelity audio industry. This year sees the show move to a new venue, the Hilton Rockville in Rockville, MD, which will offer enhanced values to both exhibitor and visitor alike. All existing sales enquiries received to date will now be caught up with, and of course given priority. Full and further details will follow in the next couple of weeks including the packaging for this year's show and how exhibitors can benefit from multiple show opportunities. The Capitol AudioFest takes place from August 28th through the
SD Association Adds Faster
Memory, Secure Data Transfer And Wi-Fi Implementation
(SDA), a global ecosystem of nearly 1000 technology companies charged with setting interoperable SD standards, has announced advanced solutions for memory cards to aid in the delivery of data, entertainment content and financial transactions. These new SD standards facilitate opportunities for mobile devices to do more. State-of-the-art microSD memory cards and connectors feature incredibly fast UHS-II capabilities, Wireless LAN SD memory cards offering expandable connected memory capabilities, plus smartSD memory cards supporting Near Field Communications (NFC) and Secure Elements (SE). The new microSD memory cards and connectors featuring UHS-II deliver easily expandable memory with high speeds to satisfy the performance needs of 4K video and high resolution audio as well as the most demanding operating systems. UHS-II brings the best performance for any application and ensures the smoothest recording and playback of entertainment including 3D HD content. It excels at handling high-speed uploads and downloads of large data files from USB3 and WiGig. UHS-II maintains backwards compatibility, can reduce overall energy consumption in comparison to UHS-I and continues the well-known microSD form factor that allows anyone to expand a UHS-II device's storage. Also being announced is a smartSD Solutions for payments, online authentication, transport and more. smartSD memory cards are the industry's best solution to create a secure mobile app while protecting both user identity and server credentials. smartSD brings the required security to optimize a HCE implementation, plus it offers the industry's best token for FIDO since a card can be used in both a mobile device and a computer. smartSD also offers an ideal solution for the MIFARE/DESFire ecosystem and for any other applications requiring a known security level and certification. It also excels at providing root of trust and security to applications on a mobile device. Lastly, new Wireless LAN SD lets consumers wirelessly transfer pictures, videos and other content from most existing mobile devices, digital cameras. personal media players, and video cameras to cloud services using Wi-Fi networks. Data can be conveniently shared between other devices using a Wireless LAN SD memory card. These memory cards make it easier to automatically save stored data online and share huge amounts of photos and videos to social networks, friends and family. "The SD Association works diligently to stay ahead of the mobile device industry and anticipate needs for new capabilities that bring benefits for both product manufacturers and consumers," said Brian Kumagai, SD Association
President. "Creating smartSD, Wireless LAN SD and UHS-II capabilities adds to our 15-year legacy of leadership in the consumer electronics marketplace. The SDA remains committed to delivering value for microSD slotted smartphones, tablets, computers and other consumer electronic devices."
02 / 25 / 15
German Physiks' HRS-130
Speaker Features Special Carbon Fiber DDD Driver
new HRS-130 loudspeaker ($17,950 per pair) features the company's custom carbon
fiber cone DDD driver and replaces their long-running HRS-120. The carbon fiber DDD driver is mounted on top of an octagonal section column cabinet to ensure full
360o sound output. A downward firing 10" woofer is located in the base to mate with the
360o output of the DDD driver. German Physiks' DDD driver is a wide-band transducer using pistonic, bending wave and modal radiation. In the HRS-130 it covers the range from 220 Hz to 24 kHz, so there is no crossover in the critical midrange. The DDD driver also has a very low moving mass, so the transient response is said to be excellent. Because the DDD driver has an omnidirectional radiation characteristic, it produces "a well-focused stereo image that can be enjoyed from a wide range of positions in the listening room" says the company. A slightly taller cabinet than the previous model allows for a larger Helmholtz resonator, which combined with the new woofer "provides a cleaner and more authoritative bass" says the company. Other improvements include a redesigned crossover for better dynamics and resolution, a two sets of WBT nextgen binding posts to allow
bi-wire/bi-amp'ing and a re-styled cabinet. The cabinet features a high-polish polyester finish in black or white to provide the HRS-130 floorstanding
speaker a sleeker and more luxurious look. Satin veneer or paint with high-polished veneer and carbon
fiber finish options are available on special order. Overall frequency response is from 29 Hz to 24
kHz, it present a 4 Ohm load with a sensitivity of 86.9dB/W/m. The crossover is a more gentle 12dB/octave electronic and 18dB/octave acoustic. There is a high frequency adjustment of -2dB, Flat, +2dB or +4dB
centered at 8000 Hz. Dimensions are 325mm x 1259mm x 325mm (WxHxD) and each unit weighs 75.9 lbs.
Milano Hi-Fidelity 2015 Show
To Be Held March 7th And 8th
Following their very
successful Rome Hi-Fidelity 2014 and Milano Hi-Fidelity 2014 event, they have announced their autumn event in Milan
. Milan Hi-Fidelity 2015 show which will take place within The Milano City at the
prestigious four star AtaHotel Quark. This event will take place on March 7th and 8th. The Milano Hi-Fidelity 2015 show features two channel stereo only, so there is not home theater or other high
technology products to be showcased. The Milano Hi-Fidelity organizers are proud to announce the 18th edition of this hi-fi only show and have established a tradition to ensure thousands of visitors to this event are satisfied. The organizers have paid attention to the quality of the sound within the exhibition rooms by using acoustic correction and room treatment devices to achieve the best results in music quality.
02 / 23 / 15
AXPONA Audio Con Adds Two Outstanding
Live Music Concerts
AXPONA Audio Con in Chicago has announced two key live concert events! Taking place from April 24th through 26th at the Westin O'Hare in Chicago, Audio Con will have more floors full of listening rooms and the Ear Gear Expo (EGX) plus the AXPONA Marketplace is doubling in size as compared to last year's event! AXPONA attendees can enjoyed direct contact with designers and manufacturer-trained personnel of high fidelity audio equipment and music engineers while listening to the latest equipment available in the marketplace. A variety of educational seminars will be conducted by leading authorities within the high-end audio field. Active displays means attendees may bring their own music and listen to it through top quality audio systems. Whether you're a serious audiophile, a newcomer to high-end audio, a musician or simply a music lover, you'll find everything you need to immerse yourself in your favorite sounds at AXPONA/Audio Con. Three solid days of great music, advanced technology, stunning design, education, networking and entertainment. In concert will be the Patricia Barber Quartet on April 24 at 8pm. As an American jazz star and Chicago local, Patricia Barber will take the stage to share her witty, smooth and soulful sound with the crowd. From her ingenious writing to her unmatched vocals, Barber's talent is well known throughout audiophile world. In 2013 Patricia's Modern Cool won the Grammy for Best Surround Sound Music Album. Another concert to be held is John Primer and the Real Deal Blues Band on April 25 at 8pm. Chicago Guitarist and Grammy Award Nominee John Primer will take the stage Saturday with his classic Windy City blues sound of decades past: rough-edged and uncompromising.
You can buy tickets for AXPONA Audio Con at this
link. You can also look forward to Enjoy the Music.com / Enjoy the Music.TV with
our industry leading live stream! We will be streaming live
online from AXPONA 2015 showcasing some of the world's best audio gear
produced by internationally recognized manufactures. We will also have live chat and Twitter integration so you can ask us questions
to our on-air guests!
02 / 21 / 15
Enjoy the Music.com Exclusive!
An Interview With Tony Levin
He of a perfect pair.
Interview By Mike Mettler
OPPO Digital HA-2 Portable
384kHz/32-bit & DSD DAC With Headphone Amplifier
has released the HA-2 portable headphone amplifier and DAC today ($299). The HA-2 is an elegant yet sophisticated portable DAC and headphone amplifier with built-in rechargeable battery. OPPO's HA-2 handles all the latest digital audio files via the ESS ES9018-K2M Sabre32 reference DAC to deliver high-resolution performance with extremely low noise and distortion. High-resolution PCM audio up to 384kHz/32-bit and DSD audio up to 12 MHz (DSD256 or DSD4x) is handled with ease. Also of note is that no Camera Connection Kit is required for high-resolution playback from iOS devices. OPPO's HA-2 is engineered to enhance music playback from mobile phones and portable music players. Featuring hybrid Class AB amplification and a USB DAC, the HA-2 offers high performance digital-to-analog conversion for Apple's iPhone/iPod products, a wide range of Android devices, plus PC and Mac computers. The HA-2 may be conveniently used to charge mobile devices on-the-go and itself can be efficiently charged in 30 minutes. Headphones, from very sensitive In-Ear Monitors (IEM) to the most power-hungry Over-the-Ears, can all benefit from the HA-2's high performance and powerful amplification. OPPO's HA-2 can also function as an external battery pack to charge mobile devices. The HA-2 offers two USB DAC input ports
-- one for Apple's iPhone/iPod, and the other for Android devices, PC and Mac computers. A 3.5
mm input works with the remaining portable music players that do not have a USB-compatible digital output. There are two gain level settings. The High Gain mode is capable of driving large power-hungry headphones, delivering up to 300
mW into 16-Ohm headphones. The Low Gain mode is intended for sensitive In-Ear Monitor
(IEM) type earphones. For users who like a bit more punch and impact with their music, the HA-2 offers a Bass Boost function that is implemented purely with analog audio circuits. Aesthetically, the HA-2 comes in a genuine leather casing with contrast stitching and beveled aluminum edges. Its fit and finish will instill a sense of pride when using the
product. Enjoy the Music.com has reviewed the OPPO BDP-105
universal disc player/DAC and the OPPO PM-1 planar magnetic headphones.
JAYS q-JAYS Are World's
Smallest IEMs With Detachable Cord
JAYS new q-JAYS ($449) are built to deliver high fidelity audio sound plus are the world's smallest universal
In-Ear Monitors (IEMs) with detachable cable. Excellent timbre and high-resolution details were made possible by integrating advanced audio engineering with various state-of-the-art development techniques such as Metal Injection Molding, CNC and laser cutting. Dual balanced armature drivers are custom made for JAYS and are claimed to be one of the world's most precise, advanced and smallest two-driver system. A brand new crossover filter seamlessly blends the output of the dedicated woofer driver with the midrange/tweeter driver, virtually free from time and phase shifts, "resulting in a well-balanced sound with incredible clarity, high-transient speed and timing" says the company. Removable laser-cut protective filters are threaded and easy to clean. They are machined from solid aluminum with 55 precise laser-cut holes within a two millimeter diameter area. These protective filters are extremely strong due to its honeycomb-like structure, efficient at dirt protection, while ensuring transparent acoustic properties. Engineered like a set of reference loudspeaker monitors, q-JAYS feature dual speakers built into each side, one for low frequencies and one for midrange and highs. Despite its small form factor, JAYS have managed to implement reliable, custom-made threaded connectors in each housing. With options for dedicated cable modules for Audio Only, iOS, Windows or Android. Users may choose the solution that best fits their needs. q-JAYS housing is precisely manufactured from fine-tolerance stainless steel. A matt proprietary scratch-resistant anti-fingerprint coating gives the q-JAYS their charcoal black look. CNC machining and laser-cutting allowed JAYS to create an extremely precise and finely-toleranced earphones made while keeping it all impressively small in size. Cables that come with the JAYS q-JAYS are three-button remote, MEMS technology for iOS, Windows, and Android. Sensitivity is 103 dB @ 1 kHz with a frequency response of 8 Hz to 16 kHz (+/-5dB).
Acoustic isolation is -40dB @ 2kHz. A carrying case, exchangeable cord and Comply
Foam ear tips are included.
02 / 20 / 15
Vinnie Rossi LIO Modular
Vinnie Rossi is now shipping their new LIO
integrated amplifier that is fully user-configurable via
specially designed modules. LIO is offered in pre-configured versions, or you can custom configure your unit, and then expand as your system and needs require. Any of these LIO audio systems may be reconfigured in the future simply by changing module and is 100% user updatable via plug in modules. There is no need for users to have soldering skills or special electronics knowledge, as each module is plug-n-play. Currently available module include Headphone Amplifier, MM/MC Phonostage, Remote Cartridge Loading, PCM/DSD DAC, MOSFET Amplifier, Input Select, Tubestage, Resistor Volume
Control, Autoformer Volume Control, and additional modules may be available in the future including remote control. The Vinnie Rossi LIO includes an all-new, patent-pending power supply design that isolates all audio circuitry from the AC mains power at all times. This is said to eliminate the need for expensive power filters, power cords, or conditioners to achieve the "ultimate in musical resolution". Preconfigured LIO units start with the LIO Integrated Amplifier for $3280), which includes the Input Select, Low-level output panel, Resistor Volume Control and MOSFET Amp. The top-line preconfigured LIO Deluxe is $6155 and comes with Input Select, PCM/DSD DAC, Phonostage, Remote Cartridge Loading, Headphone Amp, MOSFET Amp, Tubestage and Resistor Volume Control modules. Chassis colors available include silver and black.
Sony Announces Low Noise SR-64HXA
64GB MicroSDXC Card For Premium Sound
recently been reported that Sony Corporation is spinning off some divisions so
that each one may better focus on their various sectors. With the recent launch, and
Enjoy the Music.com world
premiere review of, the NW-ZX2 portable media player comes Sony's next
interesting foray into portable audio. Specifically, a specially-engineered microSD card that is said to produce lower electronic noise. Starting March 5th
in Japan, Sony will be selling their new 64 GB SR-64HXA microSDXC memory card for approximately $160, which is about five times the cost of a standard version. Sony feels there are
audible advantages as the SR-64HXA produces less electrical noise when reading
data. This may lead to audible improvements in sound quality when digital audio
files are read from the memory card by a portable media device. Of interesting note is that even Sony is wondering how this product will be received by the music-loving public as they said "We aren't that sure about the product's potential demand, but we thought some among people who are committed to great sound quality would want it," a Sony spokeswoman said according to the Wall Street Journal.
Enjoy the Music.com has been in active talks for months with Sony to
supply an official review sample of the NW-ZX2. Naturally we'd want to review
the SR-64HXA card at the same time.
According to the translation from the Sony Japan
website, "High quality design and reduce electrical noise generated when the file is read from the microSD memory card. It is possible to suppress the adverse effect on the audio playback equipment components and circuit, the sound source is connection of smooth sound with the original, the spread of clear sound field,
crispness, to reproduce the freshness, we achieve high sound quality."
Original Japanese text below.
02 / 19 / 15
World Premiere Review!
Soundsmith Mezzo And Nautilus Phono Cartridges
Reproducing music on vinyl LPs... and worth every penny of their asking price.
Review By Tom Lyle
Hi-Fi World's April 2015
Issue Is Now Available Online
magazine's April 2015 edition is now available online! Great articles
and reviews within this issue include the Tannoy Definition DC10ti and Wharfedale Diamond 220 speakers,
NOVAFiDELITY X40 music server, Glove Audio A1, Naim Unitilite system, Sugden FBA-800 power amplifier,
Ming-Da Cavatina MC3008-A valve amplifier, the Headroom Show report
Within his editorial, Noel Keywood says "Really big loudspeakers aren't so popular these days. Those massive broom cupboards of the 1970s – think Leak 2075s for example – would find few buyers now. Even back then they didn't sell in large numbers, being flagship models of their time built more as a statement of ability than a viable sales proposition. But they still impress us, old and young. There's nothing quite like walking into a room and being confronted by massive 2075s – I know because I lived with a pair for some time, and their much improved replacements, the lovely 3090s." See
this issue of Hi-Fi World at this link.
Industry News 10 Years Ago
The Recording Academy
have teamed up to help the MusiCares
Foundation, a non-profit organization that assists struggling musicians
with addiction recovery, emergency financial assistance, health treatment and
other quality of life issues. The auction continues through February 24 (2005) and features
VIP experiences including a cooking lesson with Patti LaBelle, an answering machine greeting from Wynonna, a drum lesson
with Mick Fleetwood and a Maroon5 VIP concert experience. Also available are exclusive
Grammy memorabilia items including a 47th Grammy jacket signed by
James Brown; a custom drumhead signed by Velvet Revolver; a BB King signed Gibson Lucille guitar; celebrity
drawings/sketches by Kanye West, Steven Tyler and Tim McGraw. To see the
winners of the 47th Grammy Awards please click
02 / 18 / 15
World Premiere Review!
Audeze's Transcendent EL-8 Headphones
Michael Mercer's Impressions Sessions
At $699 bucks, a first for this music addict.
Review By Michael Mercer
02 / 17 / 15
Help Support Music School
Due to many public schools within the United States of America virtually eliminating music education, which has been scientifically proven to be highly beneficial to a child's education and enhances their ability to learn in other areas of life, seven-time Grammy Nominee Ken Lewis founded
Music School Online to help bring affordable, accessible music learning to the masses.
support their Kickstarter campaign, which offers excellent discounts for
those wanting to learn an instrument or for those who desire donating money for lessons
provided to underprivileged children in need. If you or your children have always wanted to learn to sing or play an instrument for your own enjoyment, but felt that dream was unattainable,
MusicSchoolOnline.com is for you. Ken Lewis is launching Music School Online (MSO) March 1st, 2015 with over 400 tutorials teaching voice, guitar, piano, drums, bass, plus extensive music theory. The fully-animated MSO Kids site is taught by session professional who have played for leading musical artists within the world. Since MSO has no corporate funding or outside investors dictating the direction of this project, recording engineer and musician Ken Lewis has brought together a great staff whilst investing virtually every 'liquid' dollar he has in building the best site possible. "I am tapped out", says Ken. "I need the Kickstarter community to help me spread the word about MSO to the world and help create more music lessons, and your support will be rewarded in multiples! I would not have the amazing career I have now without the music education I received in school growing up. I was shocked to learn that now more than 40 percent of secondary schools do not require any courses in the arts and 2.1 million students in Elementary and Secondary schools receive NO MUSIC
EDUCATION! Music budgets are always the first ones to be cut despite all the proven benefits of music education. Schools are grooming an entire generation of robot-student test takers with virtually no exposure to the joy of learning music, and I am doing something significant about it. Please help!" MusicSchoolOnline.com offers music education for every level, from the comfort of your own home at an affordable price. Whether you want to become a serious musician, or just play for fun, they'll teach you your favorite songs while learning skills that will improve your playing. From complete beginners to seasoned players, MSO has something for you.
For true professionals who seek to learn about mixing, mastering, and producing
records, Ken Lewis has been successfully operating Audio
School Online for many years. You can see our live video interview with
Ken Lewis during Enjoy the Music.com's CES 2015
02 / 11 / 15
World Premiere Review!
Sony NW-ZX2 Walkman
Hi-Res Audio sound quality within a seductively-styled portable package.
Plus Noble's Prestige Kaiser 10, JH Audio Roxanne & Ultimate Ears UE18 Pro.
Review By Steven R. Rochlin
02 / 10 / 15
Onkyo Music Offers
High-Resolution Digital Music Downloads
Onkyo Corporation's new site
Onkyo Music has just expanded their high-resolution music download service.
Users within the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany are able to access hundreds of thousands of 24-bit/44.1kHz to 192kHz audio tracks and millions of CD-quality 16-bit/44.1kHz FLAC files. With a rapidly growing catalog, e-Onkyo
Music has been re-branded as Onkyo Music within the U.S., U.K. and Germany as
they seek to become the largest high-resolution music download store online. In partnership with 7digital, a leading digital music platform, Onkyo Corporation is expanding the service to three key overseas territories, with more planned in the near future. The service is currently in beta and can be accessed via a
dedicated website or through custom built native apps for Android and Apple iOS (in development). Onkyo Music will cover all musical genres from pop and soul, jazz and folk, plus classical music as a major focus. The service also plans to make content available from Japanese labels as well as genres previously not widely available in high-resolution audio such as rock, metal and ANIME music. Featuring global headliners as well as locally relevant in dependent artists, Onkyo Music will have wide across-the-board appeal to music lovers and audiophiles alike. Tracks and albums will be sold
à la carte in local currency with an album costing the equivalent of $15 to $20 while individual tracks will be around $3 to $4. Music purchased will be stored in a cloud locker ready for download to multiple devices. Onkyo and 7digital will work together to create unique music promotions - with high profile partnerships already in the pipeline as well as special features and unique editorial to engage customers with new music and deliver an elevated music discovery experience. "As one of the world's leading hi-fi/home theatre manufacturers we can now provide music lovers with a full end-to-end hi-res audio experience." says, Kevin Miyagi, President of Onkyo Entertainment Technology and responsible for running the
e-Onkyo Music service in Japan. CEO of 7digital, Simon Cole, comments "Onkyo has a history of being the first to market in Japan and a legacy of great innovation around superior audio systems. They are a fantastic partner to work with, and we are pleased to be a part of this new compelling offer for their customers. The marriage of such high-fidelity sound systems and this very easy to use hi-res download store has the chance to attract new digital listeners and satisfy even the most serious audiophiles."
Gold Note A-3 XL Monitor
Note's A-3 XL monitor (€2150) two-way bass reflex loudspeakers may be used for bookshelf, computer audio or on-stand use. The A-3 XL monitor features a 6" treated carbon fiber and melted paper midrange/woofer mated to a 1" elliptical silk dome tweeter. The 6" driver is made by SEAS under strict Gold Note specifications to providing an exceptionally powerful
low frequency response. It also was designed to achieve fast transient response. Furthermore, the 6" driver is recessed by 10mm to have a horn loading
effect so that bass extension is higher in audible output levels. Gold Note's custom designed 1" elliptical silk dome tweeter features a
rigid aluminum flange that is said to aid in reproducing clean and smooth high frequencies even at high volume levels. Gold Note's A-3 XL front double bass reflex design allows the speaker to be placed on a stand or shelf close to the rear wall. The custom
aluminum reflex pipes are designed to minimize turbulence and unwanted sound interactions. The speaker cabinet is tuned through the two aluminum sides. The panels are blocked on the cabinet with threaded steel bars properly tuned to let them work as "Virtual Passive Drivers" to aid in bass extension. The side panels are available in brushed black or silver aluminum finish, in addition to another option being covered with genuine Italian leather. The main cabinet is high quality lacquered in black matt or grand piano gloss.
Industry News 10 Years Ago
With compressed audio formats taking hold, a group of professional audio personalities have formed the
Music Engineering and Technology Alliance (META)
that will evaluate and certify technologies that aid in reproducing music to a high
degree. The group's hopes are to evaluate and certify current and emerging technologies, facilitate research and development, and to educate music
professionals / technology providers and consumers. Due to the relatively recent popularity of online music and various portable devices, consumers have been listening to compressed audio formats that are lossy, losing information, and not what the musicians nor engineer painstakingly worked to achieve. META seeks to certify various audio hardware and software that strives for
high-resolution, thereby reproducing music as the artist intended. Their hopes are to also educate engineers and the public concerning the difference between audio codecs. META's President and
co-founder Rory S. Kaplan is joined by former DTS COO Bill Neighbors as Acting-CEO. Other
co-founders include GRAMMY winner George Massenburg, who will be the
organization's Chief Technical Officer and Standards Committee Chair. META's President said
"Our group has been in close communication for several years working to reach the technical
developers and the consumer electronic groups. It was the right time to focus all of our efforts into a proactive mission to improve audio quality and the integrity in which it's delivered."
02 / 09 / 15
Audio Gold For Lucky Men: MY
25 Hi-Fi Malaysia Group Report
It all started innocently. Those who live within New England, USA, know about the months-long -17F winter combined with well over
18 feet of annual snowfall during the winter months. After many years enduring this annual situation, it was time for my wife Heather and me to journey to Singapore for a few months. The warm 85F days followed by perfect 73F nights are a blissful welcome to the chilling alternative back home. After about a week here in Singapore, I received a message within
Enjoy the Music.com's Facebook page that I should visit Kuala Lumpur. Literally four days later we were landing at Kuala Lumpur airport to meet the MY 25 Hi-Fi Malaysia group and heard seven system worth, in total, millions of dollars!
See Enjoy the Music.com Editor and Creative Director Steven R. Rochlin's eight page report filled with incredible high-end audio gear by clicking
January / February 2015
Hi-Fi's latest edition is now available online and features great
articles including loudspeaker sensitivity, meet an audiophile who has vowed never to sell a component again, is component breaking in fact or
fiction, plus an interview with Conrad Mas who is the founder and sole owner of Avid.
Equipment reviews include the Aragon 8008 power amplifier, Bowers & Wilkins P7 headphones, Richter Harlequin Series V speakers, Sonus Faber Olympica III speakers, and the Yamaha NS-SW300 subwoofer.
Within his editorial, Greg Borrowman says "As I see it, (thanks JGH!) everyone rabbits on about the high-end declining but I don't see any monetary evidence of such a decline (indeed if I had the space here I'd argue the exact opposite), nor is there any sound sociological basis for predicting one. The simple fact is that there will always be rich folk, and they will always buy expensive hi-fi equipment. And the more we populate the planet, the more rich folk there will be, and therefore ever-more expensive hi-fi equipment will be sold in ever-increasing quantities. The corollary of this is that at the other end of the sociological scale, there will always be poor people, and the number of people on the planet who are poor will also continue to increase. This means that cheap and crappy audio gear will also be around for ever." See
this issue of Australian Hi-Fi by
02 / 08 / 15
MAGICO Q7 Mk II Loudspeaker Brings Old And New Technology
new Q7 Mk II loudspeaker ($229,000 per pair) can be purchased new or is available as an upgrade path for current Q7 owners.
The company says, "It seems unimaginable that the Q7's performance could be improved upon. However, we are proud to say it is true – the
best just got better!" Magico's Q7 Mk II loudspeaker was inspired by some of the new technologies unveiled in the
limited-edition M-Project with key elements now incorporated into the Q7 Mk II. They say "significant improvements" to the overall sound performance is the result as changes to the tweeter, midrange, and crossover. The Q7 Mk II incorporates a more efficient version of the 28mm diamond tweeter found within the M-Project, called the MBD27. This 28mm, versus the previous 26mm, diamond-coated beryllium diaphragm with optimized geometry was created using state-of-the-art finite-element-analysis modeling tools. Thus this unit is closer to the theoretical ideal yet without gaining the extra weight normally associated with diamond's specific gravity. Magico's MP6007 6" midrange driver features a new Graphene-based cone
material that is 30% lighter and 300% stiffer than its predecessor. Of note is their claim of this bring the first commercial use of such composite. The driver utilizes an underhung neodymium-based motor system with an extra-large magnet and a top stabilizing magnet to ensure a stabilized magnetic field of 1.7 Tesla in a 15mm air gap, culminating with a pure vented titanium voice coil. The latest 3D laser scanning techniques were used to allow for precision in assembly to ensure optimal behavior within the driver's frequency range while reducing non-pistonic motion and minimizing distortion components. The midrange driver
has a +/- 6mm of stabilized excursion rate at very high sensitivity, enabling 120dB (at 1 meter) of
"distortion-free" playback in the midrange frequencies. The Q7 Mk II will include the latest state-of-the-art parts from Mundorf of Germany such as the MCap Supreme Evo capacitors. At this price range it is curious why Magico choose to use old
and non-customizable technology such as a passive crossover instead of a modern, high technology, fully
realized digital crossover solution. Digital crossovers provides benefits
including room correction whilst avoiding possible inherent phase anomalies and signal
loss due to passive parts as found within legacy crossover designs. Magico's Q7 Mk II upgrade path includes a new tweeter, new midrange, and new crossover.
Also, the faceplate requires re-machining to accommodate the new components. Overall frequency response is from 20 Hz to 50 kHz with a
sensitivity of 94dB @ 4 Ohms. Dimensions are 60" x 32" x 15" (HxDxW) and each unit weighs 750 lbs. The suggested retail price of the Q7 Mk II upgrade is $44,000 per pair.
02 / 07 / 15
Music App FLUX:FX By Guitar
Legend Adrian Belew
Guitar legend Adrian Belew
has just released his newest music – and it is said to be like nothing you've experienced before.
FLUX:FX by belew ($9.99) is music that is never the same twice. This new revolution in music provides listeners with a mobile "listening experience" that blends music and art all in one accessible Apple iOS application. Now you have access to hundreds of combinations of new Adrian Belew songs, snippets and sound bites that have been cut up, randomized and reassembled in a way that's surprising and unique. The app seeks to embody the future of technology and taps into what music lovers enjoy most about the Internet and social media, as it is always changing and moving forward. Developed in Amsterdam by MOBGEN and recorded by Belew himself, the musical roulette engine within FLUX:FX by belew randomly connects sounds and beautiful visuals together using different algorithms to produce endless variations. "I wanted to involve art and nature in the recordings – not just songs and music but also the feeling of life itself, where things are different all the time," says Adrian
Belew. He intends to keep adding to FLUX to make it truly an ever-evolving experience. The new iOs app FLUX:FX is a multi-effect audio processor app for the iPad that lets you 'play' your effects. To quote the press release, "Innovative, intuitive and exciting, FLUX:FX lets you manipulate any audio signal into something entirely new, and redefines the possibilities of audio design and live performance in an app with an almost unlimited range of effect options. FLUX:FX is a truly authentic digital platform for designing your sound. Featuring more than 30 modular effects blocks, a master Performance view with 1-touch interaction, an advanced Edit view with multi-touch and full assignment possibilities, and an innovative Sequencer view to bring motion to the audio signal, this app allows the user to easily create previously unheard sounds. Fully compatible with
Audiobus, Inter-App Audio and MIDI, FLUX:FX is made to connect seamlessly with existing live rigs and studio workflows."
Industry News 10 Years Ago
Designed by TC Applied Technologies Ltd.
and distributed exclusively by Wavefront Semiconductor, the new DICE II
FireWire Audio chip may become the next Holy Grail for both professional and high-end home audio
products. Recent evaluation models of the chip offer a dazzling array of connectivity including AES/EBU,
ADAT, I2S, MIDI, Optical, RS232, S/PDIF, and TDIF. Adding to the incredible usability of the DICE II includes networking via 1394a and IEEE1394b CAT5. Furthering the
incredible nature of this new device is that it can handle 144 channels of input, 112 channels of output, plus includes two clock domains digital audio routers so that any input can be routed to any output. A pair of Jitter Elimination Technology (JET) PLLs provide jitter-free synchronization up to 192kHz. Another added benefit is that Wavefront's Software Developer's Kit (SDK) allows for complete open source programming. Wavefront's vice president and director of engineering Bob Moses said, "A lot of customers have told us that it is critically important for them to get the source code and customize it for their particular needs. We're a chip company, not a software intellectual property licensing firm. We don't want to be a bottleneck in getting products to market -- our job is to remove barriers. So we're giving the software away for free, and using open source tools. We're hoping to enable a groundswell of
02 / 06 / 15
New Music Copyright Laws
Proposed Within The USA
Looks like we are finally getting a new
United States of America Copyright Office
ruling as a just-released report recommends changes to federal music copyright laws. Next up will be the U.S. Congress to see if these changes should be
implemented. New changes to current law reflect today's environment while also ensuring copyright holders, musicians, etc get fairly paid for the work. Within the report it says, "This report was prepared by the Office of the General Counsel, U.S. Copyright Office, following an exhaustive analysis of industry practices and considerable dialogue with music creators and the businesses that represent and invest in their interests, as well as music services and distributors and other interested parties. I am indebted to the staff who worked so tirelessly and thoughtfully to see the report to fruition and am confident that it will be a major resource for both Congress and the public." According to a report, the Copyright Office is recommending:
• The creation of a performance royalty that would pay artists and record labels when their songs are played on traditional radio.
• The elimination of the copyright loophole that cuts artists and labels out of digital royalty payments for songs recorded before 1972.
• Putting the copyright attached to a song's composition — the one owned by a publisher and songwriter — on equal footing with the copyright attached to the sound recording — the one owned by a record label and artist.
Guiding principles include:
• Music creators should be fairly compensated for their contributions.
• The licensing process should be more efficient.
• Market participants should have access to authoritative data to identify and license sound recordings and musical works.
• Usage and payment information should be transparent and accessible to rights owners.
The point is that publishers and songwriters have long complained how online playback has caused far higher rates to be paid to labels and artists while composition owners are not properly compensated. "This does not mean that the Office assumes that the rates for sound recordings and musical works should be equal," says the report. "Rather, the goal is to encourage evenhanded consideration of both rates by a single body, under a common standard, to achieve a fair result." Songwriter and President of ASCAP said, "With its report today, the U.S. Copyright Office was clear: The current music licensing system needs reform and fast. The report emphasizes how the current system undervalues musical works — something many of our members experience daily. The many proposed updates — particularly recommendations intended to make the system more equitable for songwriters — underscore yet again the inefficiency of the current system for music fans and creators alike."
Cary Sherman, CEO for the Recording Industry Association of America, said
"the report is an important contribution to the ongoing conversation about modernizing the copyright laws. Reform is necessary to develop new revenue streams for all creators and innovative consumer product offerings for music fans. The office also recognized that it is time to fix the system to ensure that all creators are paid fair market value for their work, regardless of the platform on which their work is used. For example, a performance right for FM and AM radio is long overdue."
You can read all 245 pages
(PDF) of the report by clicking here.
Channel D Pure Music Version
2.0.3 Features Streamthrough
has released a significant update to its Pure Music software. Pure Music 2.0.3 brings enhancements to its Streamthrough streaming audio technology. Streamthrough permits conveniently playing and enhancing other computer audio sources through Pure Music, with full access to Pure Music's dithered volume control, 64 bit crossover, audio EQ plug-ins, NetSend streaming, metering, etc., all without needing to quit Pure Music. Streamthrough has been included with Pure Music for the last four years, though has been enhanced even further in Pure Music 2.0.3. Switching to Streamthrough is automatic if you play an Internet radio station in iTunes, or TIDAL, Qobuz, Spotify, YouTube, etc., as the audio is automatically detected and switches Pure Music from file play to Streamthrough mode. In addition, Pure Music 2.0.3 includes improvements to address performance issues with iTunes 12.1, which was released by Apple last week. Pure Music 2.0.3 retails for its original 2010 price of $129, and upgrades are free for Pure Music 2 users.
02 / 05 / 15
Hi-Fi+ February 2015
Issue Is Now Available Online
magazine's February 2015 edition is now available online! Great articles
in this issue are Hi-Fi+'s CES in Las Vegas report plus equipment reviews including the PMC Twenty.26 floorstanding loudspeaker, CH Precision
D1 and C1, Trilogy 908/992 line preamp and mono power amps, Obravo HAMT-1 headphones, Monitor Audio Silver 8 floorstanding loudspeaker, Myajima Kansai MC cartridge, Focal Aria 905 standmount loudspeaker, Revox Joy integrated streamer/amplifier and more.
Within his editorial, Alan Sircom says "Every year, more than 100,000 assorted tech-heads descend on Las Vegas in the first week of January for the annual CES expo. And, while very much the Senior Service of consumer electronics, hi-fi (or
'Specialty Audio' in CES-speak) still has a place in the winter sun. While a new loudspeaker might not grab the headlines like a thin, curved TV or 3D printer, audio can still spring some surprises." See
this issue of Hi-Fi+ at this link.
02 / 03 / 15
Rotel RSP-1582 24-bit/192kHz
Multi-Channel Preamplifier With Phonostage
new RSP-1582 ($3499) is a 24-bit/192kHz full 7.1 channel surround-sound preamplifier and processor home theater component can serve as a master control for all audio and video components within an audio/video system. Rotel took two years painstakingly evaluating every circuit design and feature requirement of the RSP-1582; challenging themselves to produce the very best audio/video performance possible for home entertainment. DACs featured in the RSP-1582 preamp/processor consist of six 24-bit/192kHz Wolfson WM8740 chips, four dedicated DACs for the Front Left, Front Right, Center and Subwoofer channels plus shared stereo DAC chipset for the rear and surround channels. Also included is a Texas Instruments PCM1804 audio-performance analog-to-digital converter (ADC). Multi-channel soundtracks are decoded by a Texas Instruments Aureus TMS320DA808 DSP chip with a 10-channel Parametric Equalization (PEQ). Digital inputs include three TosLink optical, three S/PDIF coaxial, and USB input supporting plus an embedded aptX Bluetooth receiver. The RSP-1582 has an analog Bypass function for relevant input signals, which circumvents the DSP section to obtain the purest analog signal path. Analog inputs include Phonostage, four Auxiliary, XLR balanced input, 7.1 channel input, and six conventional stereo analog inputs. The analog pre-outputs are presented on fully balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA connectors, both with twin subwoofer connections. The volume control permits fine adjustments of level in increments of 0.5dB. For videophiles, Rotel's RSP-1582 has eight HDMI 4K video pass-through inputs utilizing a Silicon Image Sil9573 2K/4K HDMI transceiver. There are also two HDMI 4K video pass-through outputs (one ARC/CEC enabled). And a convenient front-panel HDMI input with 4K video pass-through. The front panel has a 7" TFT display to aid in facilitating easy adjustments of all audio and video parameters. A front-panel USB input is for Apple devices with 2.1 Ampere charging capability. Operating software is fully updatable via USB port or Internet network connection. There is also an RS232 and IP network interface for control of custom installations. Two IR output connectors handle IR pass-through and wired IR remote input, plus there are three source independent trigger outputs. Rotel's RSP-1582 is available is either black or silver finish.
02 / 02 / 15
KLANG:3D In-Ear Recording
Studio Monitoring System
KLANG is looking towards the future of in-ear monitoring as they seek to revolutionize the ability to hear
360o sound. Klang seeks to achieve spatial and natural in-ear
monitoring so that separating instruments is easier to accomplish whilst
providing a more natural sound. With KLANG:3D, users can experience all audio sources coming from ahead, behind, left, right, above or below your head. By combining the company's most advanced audio algorithms and their unique 3D audio technology, Klang's digital mixing desk called KLANG:fabrik connects to all professional mixing desks and stageboxes (e.g. Dante, compatible with ADAT). KLANG:fabrik is designed for up to 8 musicians (64 inputs). They plug in their in-ear transmitters or headphone amplifiers via pairs of balanced XLR connectors. KLANG:fabrik comes with sophisticated personal monitoring features. It is remote-controlled via Ethernet (KLANG:app for iOS, Android, Windows), on its 5" touch display or directly with your PC/Mac and allows every musician to easily arrange their individual sound mix. By using KLANG:fabrik while on stage, in studio or rehearsal, this system achieves a 3D soundfield using in-ear monitors. The system has 16 balanced XLR analog line level outputs with flat frequency response starting from 5 Hz to 20 kHz. TosLink optical audio is also compatible with ADAT and is handles 32 audio input channels via four TosLink optical inputs. There are 32 output channels via optical. Two fully redundant Ethernet connectors (Neutrik EtherCon) and ultra-low latency down to 0.15 ms ensures fast
response. Analog mixing to all 16 analog output channels is without any AD/DA conversion. The unit supports only low sampling rates of 44.1 / 48 kHz, whilst software updates may enable up to 192 kHz in the future as the DA converters are ready for 192kHz/24-bit. Master clock sources are via optical, word clock or DANTE. Overall latency digital input to analog output
is lower than 3 ms.
02 / 01 / 15
February Review Magazine Features CES And World
Premiere Equipment Reviews
Enjoy the Music.com's
February Review Magazine
features four world premiere reviews, 35 videos and 40 additional products from CES 2015, an exclusive tour of Singapore's high-end audio shops and much
more! We have also added Google+
to our list of social media sites. See our February Review Magazine by clicking
Our International CES
2015 report brings in 35 outstanding videos in 1080
resolution and high quality studio sound to match! We also showcase 40
products within our normal text/photo CES 2015 coverage plus an in-depth
headphone and personal media player report from Michael Mercer. Roger Skoff's The Experts
Say gives his opinions on expert opinions whilst Mr. Flood interviews a
variety of vintage audio repair facilities within Breathe New Life Into Old Gear.
We welcome our newest writer, Mike Mineo, as he takes us on a journey with
Quest For Sound Quality that bring car audio to the forefront. If you're
getting a bit on in the years, you need to read The Aging Audiophile so
can learn about the decay of one's hearing ability that may bring you to
needing hearing aids.
Exclusive Tour: Singapore! Enjoy the
Music.com's Editor and Creative Director Steven R. Rochlin takes you
on a journey through the many excellent stereo shops that serve up serious
sounds in Asia. You can learn about some true reference quality high-end
audio products that are not available within USA stores!
We once again bring you many
world premiere equipment reviews within Enjoy the Music.com. This
month's Review Magazine includes our expert assessment of the Vapor Audio Derecho
floorstanding loudspeaker, Atma-Sphere Music Systems Ultraviolet
preamplifier, Benedict Audio HotHead JFET MM and MC phonostages plus the
amazingly affordable RAL KEB02iP battery-powered headphone amplifier / DAC.
Be amongst the first to know
about all the great gear seen at the International CES
2015 event as we report on 40 products plus
add 35 videos featuring interviews with manufacturers, high-end audio
designers and a multi-GRAMMY gold record earning studio engineer!
For all you DIY'ers we have Bottlehead's
$99 The Quickie vacuum tube stereo preamplifier kit. Music reviews in this
issue include an important and enjoyable collection of chamber music treasures from American
composers plus Kaufmann croons in tribute to tenor stars of 1920's to 1930's Berlin stage and screen.
You can enjoy our
February Review Magazine at this link. As always, in the end what really matters is that you….
enjoy the music.
Come join Enjoy the Music.com's fun and informative Facebook,
pages. We feature great music, fun photos, and up to the minute updates plus
so much more for you to enjoy We also have a YouTube
channel filled with videos from shows and music concerts.
For previous high-end audio industry news click