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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 10, 2014 0 comments
If there's one question that seems to come up over and over, it's "Which DAC did you like better?" While I can understand the interest, I think it’s more important that a review convey the sound of a given component and leave personal preferences out of it, as much as that's possible. If we want to interject the personal, just make sure it's explicit and no harm done. The harm comes from trying to boil a review down to whether the reviewer 'liked' a given component or not because that is ultimately not the point. The ultimate point is whether or not you will like it.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 10, 2014 1 comments

YouTube just doubled down on their live music video investment by adding over 13,000 new titles to their Music Vault live music video showcase. Including performances from “Bill Graham Presents” and “King Biscuit Flower Hour” courtesy of a deal with Wolfgang’s Vault, there are so many great performances here I almost didn't know where to start. I only just came across this late last night but the selection appears to be broad, rich , and amazing. From single tracks to full concerts, from Muddy Waters to Miles to The Allman Brothers to St. Vincent, there's enough great footage here to ruin a week's worth of work time. Best of all, it's free.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 09, 2014 3 comments
LH Labs are at it again with another successful crowdfunding campaign, this one appearing to be destined to break the $1M mark. The Geek Wave is a dedicated portable high res music player, capable of handling up to 32/384 PCM and double rate DSD. The Wave "...comes with at least 64 GB of internal storage (128 GB available), and is expandable via an SDXC port, which supports up to 2 addtional terabytes." There's a line out to connect your Wave to your hi-fi and of course a headphone output to drive your favorite cans.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 08, 2014 11 comments
Streaming and vinyl sales are up, everything else is down. Surprised? I didn't think so. Overall, total music sales showed a small decrease of roughly 3% as compared to the same period last year.
"With On-Demand streams surpassing 70 billion songs in the first six months of 2014, streaming continues to be an increasingly significant portion of the music industry," says David Bakula, SVP Nielsen Entertainment. "Streaming's 42% year-over-year growth and Vinyl LP's 40% increase over last year's record-setting pace shows interest in buying and consuming music continues to be robust, with two very distinct segments of the industry expanding substantially."
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 07, 2014 10 comments
Look what just arrived!
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 04, 2014 7 comments
Personable punk from Syracuse-based Perfect Pussy fronted by the ever-griping Meredith Graves. On Say Yes To Love, their debut album on Captured Tracks, this five-piece kick up a dust storm of pure unrelenting energy that's impossible to ignore (unless you turn it off). This is also, for me, mood music and lately I've been in the mood.
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Steven Plaskin Posted: Jul 03, 2014 6 comments
Over the years, I have owned several Esoteric SACD players. I have always been impressed with the exceptional build quality and massive VRDS disc drives. The D-02 Dual Mono D/A Converter, second from the top in the Esoteric lineup, has an accompanying P-02 SACD transport with the VRDS-NEO drive mechanism. Being a computer audiophile, I have moved away from disc drives and have embraced a computer transport. Certainly, there are plusses and minuses to each type of transport, but for me, the ability to access my very large library with a remote control is essential. Esoteric has not been evading the use of computer transports, but does offer an Asynchronous USB Class 2.0 input for the D-02 DAC.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 02, 2014 0 comments
My first column for Stereophile magazine is up on their website for your perusal (see Audio Streams #1) where I re-visit the family of products from Bluesound all in one big gulp (and that shit was nearly illegal in NY). Enjoy!
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 30, 2014 11 comments
"...the miraculous is everywhere believed to coexist with the quotidian." ~ Salman Rushdie

I was reminded of our hobby by Salman Rushdie's appreciation of Gabriel Garcia Márquez in the NY Times titled—Magic in Service of Truth. Please consider this highly recommended reading and pretend he's also talking about listening to music on the hi-fi. I did and it works well.

Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 27, 2014 4 comments
Two of my main music whisperers, Joe and Stephen, have both sent word and links to the music of Angel Olsen. I've been listening to two of her three albums, Half Way Home (2012) and the recently released Burn Your Fire for No Witness, for a while now. I also intended to see Angel Olsen at SXSW but never got there due to scheduling conflicts. I admit to feeling conflicted at SXSW almost always as there's simply too much for one person to see. In any event, it was Stephen's link to this performance of "High Five" on David Letterman that acted as the reminder I needed to include her as a DotW:


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