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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 19, 2015 3 comments
I jumped aboard the Ilyas Ahmed 6- and 12-string train back in 2008 with the LP release of Between Two Skies. With I'm All Your Own released in March of this year on Immune Recordings after a three year hiatus, Ilyas has arrived at a new station of song.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 18, 2015 7 comments
Server, renderer, control point. Those are the ingredients of a UPnP/DLNA playback system. The server stores your music as well as the server software, the renderer is responsible for requesting your music from the server and passing it along to your attached DAC, while the control point is your interface to make this happen. Today, we're looking at and listening to the Bel Canto REFStream Asynchronous Ethernet Renderer to see how well it performs this deceptively simple task.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 17, 2015 25 comments
Let's listen to some music!

Since the goal of listening to music on the Hi-Fi is enjoyment, the only valid proof of anything to do with that experience lies in listening. Here at AudioStream, we listen to the products we review and report on what we hear. The value in this equation is simple; you are getting an honest and careful appraisal of how a given component, cable, app, or tweak affects our enjoyment of music. In my opinion, the more experience we have with this process and you have reading what we write, the more value you'll find in our reviews. Simple stuff really and not at all unique in the world of audio reviewing. So I have to wonder why some people expect/demand something more?

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 15, 2015 11 comments
image credits: Aumeo Audio

Let's say each of us has different hearing sensitivity and let's also say the ideal would be to deliver a corrected signal for our individual hearing profile. Aumeo claims to deliver just that:

"Why do you need Aumeo?

Because it's a well-known fact that everybody hears differently. Like our eyes, nose, mouth and all our sensory organs, not all ears are built the same. But your audio equipment has no way of knowing just exactly how differently you hear.

Therefore your audio equipment can't take your unique hearing into account when they deliver sound to you, and have to assume that their users have the same 'standardized' hearing."

Interesting, no?
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 12, 2015 1 comments
Sharon Van Etten is just as good live, maybe even better, than on record. And I really enjoy her records. On her latest 5-song EP, I Don't Want To Let You Down (Jagjaguwar), we get more lovely heartbreak, more pain, and more soul searching. This is straight forward singer-songwriter stuff with a twist which is delivered by Van Etten's beautiful voice.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 11, 2015 4 comments
Less Stuff
The Dynaudio Xeo 4s and the larger floor standing Xeo 6s plus the Hub need just two things from you—a source(s) and power. That's it. That's all you need for a complete Hi-Fi. Interested?
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 10, 2015 3 comments
photo credit: Emotiva

Emotiva has announced two new portable DAC/Headphone Amps—the Big Ego ($229) and the Little Ego ($169) both capable of playing back up to 32/384 PCM data. Each DAC offers three digital filters for tailoring the Ego to your liking; the Symmetrical filter offering equal amounts of pre- and post-ringing, the Asymmetrical Low Damping filter which essentially does away with pre-ringing coupled with several cycles of post-ringing, and the Asymmetrical High Damping filter that reportedly preserves tonal qualities "like resonance and warmth".

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 08, 2015 36 comments
Of course we care about sound quality at AudioStream so it's kinda pointless for me to dig into the Apple Music service because you can get better sound quality from Tidal Hi-Fi, Qobuz, Deezer, and others including hi-res streaming from Naxos/OraStream. But seeing as I lasted the 3 hours+ of the Apple Show, I'll say some more.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 08, 2015 0 comments
A man of few words, even for Twitter.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jun 08, 2015 9 comments
Multi-multi-millionaire Tim Cook is due to announce his new streaming service today at Apple's World Wide Developers Conference (begins 1:00PM EST) and people are asking—Who cares? "Tim Cook and Apple have enough of my money already." comments John who prefers to remain anonymous. John continues "Besides, why would I pay Apple $120 a year to listen to the same music I can listen to for free on Spotify?"