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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 26, 2016 3 comments
Was 2016 a good year for music? I dunno...I think so. While I did attempt to stay plugged in, it's just too much. Not sure if it was a good year for music in general. For me, the musical output far out-shined most other developments of the past 12 months.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 23, 2016 2 comments
Our reviewing team (I really enjoy typing that), Steve Plaskin, Ola Björling, John Darko, Jana Dagdagan, Alex Halberstadt, and moi, Pick 3 from 2016. Enjoy!
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 22, 2016 14 comments
It's always nice to meet new people, especially people who share your passions: You can expect to see equipment reviews from these fine folks and, as previously mentioned, a monthly music roundup from Joe in the new year. Welcome one and all!
Joe Surdna Posted: Dec 21, 2016 7 comments

[Please join me in welcoming Joe Surdna, our new contributor on all things music. Ed.]

December is my favorite month for discovering great new music, mainly because so many Best of 2016 lists are published. I discover dozens of overlooked and previously unknown albums, and for me that is the real point of publishing lists like this; not to create a hierarchical ranking, but as a way of sharing great music that you might not have heard and will come to cherish and be inspired by in the months and years to come.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 20, 2016 12 comments
While we're going to offer our own "Best of..." lists from our new music writer, Joe Surdna, as well as from all our reviewers, in the mean time, here's a list of lists. The thing I enjoy most about lists is seeing all of the music I've yet to hear. The thing I enjoy least about lists is the expected (but I expect that's kinda silly).
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 19, 2016 4 comments
If there's a theme for this list it's psychedelic repetition. Not all of it falls into that category, but those craving songs in the traditional sense will have some barriers to overcome. Regardless of whether it's ultra lush or mind meltingly harsh, those hypnotic qualities of music is a theme across almost everything I listen to. Oh, and not a lot of vocals, which seems to be another preference of mine. I guess it's easier to drift away to other worlds when there's no human anchoring you to reality.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 16, 2016 2 comments
Located on the Darss peninsular, overlooking the southern coast of the Baltic Sea, is a log cabin, nestled among the jungle-like overgrowth of surrounding birch and willow trees. The cabin is Christian Loeffler's atelier, where he locks himself up to work on both his visual art und his music.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 15, 2016 10 comments
The SOtM sMS-1000SQ Windows Edition comes with AudiophileOptimizer. See Steve Plaskin's review to learn the ins and outs of AO. I'll just add/agree that it makes this machine sound better, too. The review SOtM unit is the Digital Version, meaning there's no DAC inside. There's also no internal storage, you can add music storage (up to 4TB). What you have, then, is an Optimized Windows server that can come pre-loaded with your choice of Roon, TIDAL, Qobuz, Foobar2000 & JRiver (you have to pay for whatever you decide to use) that will send its digital output to DAC of choice.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 14, 2016 4 comments
We've made a list, checked it twice, skipped the naughty, so here's the nice. Enjoy!
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Dec 13, 2016 3 comments
Me and Charley Hansen

Prior to the start of this year's RMAF, Jana Dagdagan and I headed over to the Boulder headquarters of Ayre Acoustics to talk about their new QX-5 Twenty Digital Hub (see review). I spoke to Ayre's Principal Development Engineer Ariel Brown and Software Engineer Brendan Boyle, and separately a one-on-one with Founder and Head of Innovation Charley Hansen. Here are those results. I'd like to thank Ayre for their time and Jana for her fine work behind the camera. Enjoy!