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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 28, 2015 3 comments
In three days I'll be heading to Denver, CO for the 12th annual RMAF. Billed as the largest consumer audio and home entertainment show in the United States with over 160 exhibition spaces filled with products from about 400 companies from around the world, there'll be plenty to see, hear, and report. I'll be focusing my attention on what's new in computer audio, lining up some future Q&As, seeing friends, and ideally hearing some great music that's new to me.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 25, 2015 0 comments
Kevin Martin, aka The Bug, along with Roger Robinson and vocalist Kiki Hitomi have teamed up with Austrian guitarist / electronic musician Fennesz for Editions 1 (Ninja Tune) a foray into dreamy static-filled skies.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 24, 2015 6 comments
I favorably reviewed the SOtM sMS-1000U Music Server back in 2013 (see review). Since then, SOtM has been working on their flagship music server that now comes with the "SQ" model designation. Among the upgrades from "U" to "SQ" is a standard Solid State Drive (32G SSD for OS), a high quality audio grade USB 3.0 host card using the company's tX-USBexp PCI express USB 3.0 host interface card, external power option for the audio USB output, and a "much improved ultra low noise regulator, jitter clock and active noise canceler." The idea being, better sound.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 23, 2015 61 comments
I big thank you! to my friend Stephen Mejias for pointing me to The Lossless Self by Elizabeth Newton. It is among the most cogent, coherent, and thoughtful essays I've ever read on our hi-fi hobby.
Steven Plaskin Posted: Sep 22, 2015 33 comments
Michael Lavorgna recently did an excellent job reviewing the UpTone Audio USB REGEN and the AudioQuest JitterBug as well as comparing the sonic effects of these devices with each other (see Review). But due to the significant reader interest in these new products, our esteemed editor thought it would be a great idea to get a second take on these products. Given that Michael did all the heavy lifting describing the design of these devices, I was happy to jump right in describing my sonic impressions of these little USB add-ons that are designed to improve the sound of USB audio.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 21, 2015 12 comments
I don't typically publish press releases unless they pique my interest. This one does:
Boulder, CO: 9/18/15: Last year veteran audio manufacturer PS Audio introduced Sprout, a small integrated amplifier designed to appeal to entry-level buyers and attract younger enthusiasts to audio. CEO Paul McGowan felt this step into untested waters was needed to help specialty audio survive and grow...
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 18, 2015 5 comments
I love Low. With their new album Ones and Sixes released on Sub Pop earlier this month, they have become even easier to love. Duluth, MN-based Low consists of Alan Sparhawk, Mimi Parker and Steve Garrington who together form a power trio delivering beauty, menace, and a lit fuse-like groove.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 17, 2015 17 comments
"Listen, my children, and you shall hear", from Paul Revere’s Ride Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Captain Obvious says, In hi-fi, the only way to determine preference is to listen. We're going to talk about listening through two Ethernet devices, filters more or less, an "Audio Grade Switcher", and I'm also going to talk about three different Ethernet cables, all of which I own, to see if they make any difference in the mix.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 16, 2015 10 comments
For the past month or so I've been listening through the Ayre AX-5 Twenty integrated amp and a pre-production pair of my friend John DeVore's Xs. This listening is not for a review, it is simply for pleasure. Mine.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 13, 2015 21 comments
"What we think, or what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. The only consequence is what we do."―John Ruskin

Of all the silly distinctions to creep their way into discussions of listening to music on the hi-fi, the specious argument, "You think you heard a difference, you don't know you heard a difference." is at the top of my Watch List (as in Watch out for the person saying this). This argument is typically attached at the hip to the notion that people who claim to know what they hear are "believers", in a pejorative sense. The opposite being a person who believes that if they cannot understand a reason for a perceived difference, they know there is no difference to be heard. This distinction moves the claimant from my Watch List to my Ignore List.


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