LATEST ADDITIONS

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 11, 2012 2 comments
Head on over to Headphone Commute's Bandcamp page and pick up ... and darkness came a wonderful collection of music from 87 musicians to support the victims of Hurricane Sandy.
100% of all the proceeds generated from the sale of this album will be donated towards two charitable organizations: Doctors Without Borders and The Humane Society. The artists on the release have been hand-picked to showcase the world's top talent in ambient, modern classical, and experimental music. The unprecedented selection features many unreleased pieces composed exclusively for the cause.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 10, 2012 8 comments

It's A Clean (Musical) Machine
The PSB Alpha PS1 powered desktop speakers are some of the cleanest, clearest-sounding speakers to have graced my desktop. Even using my iMac's 3.5mm analog output, the music taking up residence on and around my desk is remarkably free from any sort of sound other than the music itself. There's no boom in the bass, no tipped up treble, just clean, clear, music. For $300/pair that should make a lot of music lovers very happy.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Dec 07, 2012 122 comments
Register to win a Van den Hul USB Ultimate Sweepstakes (MSRP $599.00) we are giving away.

VDH has looked into how these signals can be influenced and how the construction of a cable could be optimized to get the best result possible. The outcome is the new USB Ultimate cable. The USB Ultimate features some unique ideas resulting in superior performance and value.

[This sweepstakes is now closed.]

Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 07, 2012 0 comments
Is epic too big a word for Shields, Grizzly Bear's newest and 4th LP in twice that many years? Perhaps. I've read it called Baroque which is kinda nice as it reminds me of that church-facade I climbed one late night in Venice many moons ago. Whatever you want to call it, Shields is one wonder of a record filled with layers of references on top of lovely songs (and sounds). Dreamy one minute, driving the next, atmospheres and beats collide and join forces to make for one heckofa twisty turny record. And its sounds sound good, too. Shields has already hit a few "Best of 2012" lists and even though I don't have one I'll throw it on.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 05, 2012 19 comments
Ripping Vinyl
Channel D's Pure Vinyl is software for ripping and listening to your records digitally. I don't know about you, but my LP-buying habits differ from my download-buying habits. The former is more varied and daring partly based on the fact that there's about one million times more LPs that interest me as compared to downloads. So my LP collection does not mirror my hard drive collection and sometimes, many times, I'd love to have access to my LPs from my computer. Channel D's Pure Vinyl to the rescue!
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 03, 2012 4 comments
How does a free Studio Master download every day from now until December 25th sound? Hint: Good! I'll let Linn tell the story:
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 03, 2012 7 comments
It's that time of year again so let's just get on with it!
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Nov 30, 2012 4 comments
Gavin Bryars' "The Sinking of the Titanic" is, to my mind, a beautiful piece of work. I've been on the lookout for the original LP version which was released on Brian Eno's Obscure Records label in 1975 (it is Obscure No. 1!) which includes the equally sublime "Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet". Today's pick was recorded at the 49th International Festival of Contemporary Music at The Venice Biennale on October 1, 2005 at the Teatro Maliban. It features Gavin Bryars on double bass, Philip Jeck on turntables, and the Italian ensemble Alter Ego on Strings, Brass, Wind, Percussion, Keyboard, Tape Recorder and sound design. And the results are, again to my mind, lovely and deep with one of the hugest heapings of sad submerged nostalgia you're likely to encounter on record.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Nov 29, 2012 65 comments
A file format shootout. A DSD versus PCM grudge match. Bit wars. A sample rate smackdown. Can 24/96 take 24/192? Does DSD stomp PCM?

There's a lot of buzz about DSD, talk of CD's demise, and music offered in various PCM formats from CD-quality up to 24/192. What's a person who cares about the quality of their music reproduction experience to do? And the answer is, listen. I got the idea to listen to various files in different resolutions and formats after receiving some comments on my Mytek Stereo192-DSD DAC review asking about double rate DSD or 128x DSD. Namely, is 128x DSD better than 64x DSD. It sure sounds better, mathematically! But the only way I know to figure out if one thing sounds better than some other thing is to listen. So that's what I set about doing.

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