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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 30, 2015 19 comments
John Atkinson in one of the sweet spots

Last week, John Atkinson of Stereophile (but you already knew that) and John DeVore of DeVore Fidelity took the roughly 60-mile trip from Brooklyn to the wilds of NJ for a listening session in the barn. The agenda? Fun.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 30, 2015 21 comments
AudioStream officially launched at the end of September 2011. We're 4! With over 275 product reviews, more than 50 interviews, 180 music reviews, 1,600 total posts and 14,000+ comments, things have been...brisk. What's next?
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 29, 2015 7 comments
image credits: Google

Cheap and easy2 (easy to get and easy to use). Google's new Chromecast Audio disc-shaped streamer ($35) connects to your WiFi network (802.11ac 2.4GHz/5Ghz) which allows you to remote control it from your iOS or Android device, Chromebook, Mac, or Windows laptop, while offering a 3.5mm analog out and optical digital out to connect to your DAC of choice. Google has teamed up with Spotify and Deezer so you can stream their streams through your un-smart hi-fi along with content from Google Play Music.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Sep 28, 2015 6 comments
7digital has recently announced they are supporting up to 24-bit/192kHz streaming through Google Cast compatible products including Google's Chromecast, LG Music Flow speakers, Denon HEOS, and a number of Sony products including receivers, soundbars, and WiFi speakers. I'd also keep an eye on partnerships like 7digital and ROK Mobile who may deliver free CD-quality streaming to your phone as part of your cellular package.
"We will be streaming hi-res audio as a normal way of accessing music in a couple of years." Pete Downton, 7digital's Chief Commercial Officer
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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.
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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 13 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 37 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...