LATEST ADDITIONS

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 30, 2014 0 comments
Head on over to the BBC's website to watch and listen to an interesting interview with Blue Coast Records owner and DSD pioneer Cookie Marenco. "Cookie Marenco: Pioneer of high quality digital music recording" is part of the BBC's Women in Tech, "a series of stories profiling the most innovative, pioneering and successful women and how they are changing an industry traditionally dominated by men."
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 30, 2014 3 comments
It's official. The AURALiC Aries pictured above and below will make its fully tricked out debut in Munich, May 15-18, 2014. Handsome devil, isn't she? The fuss over the Aries basically comes down to the fact that it represents the first hi-fi device that can stream DXD and up to double rate DSD over WiFi. Inputs include Dual-Band high-speed WiFi, Gigabit Ethernet and USB 2.0 port. Outputs are USB, AES/EBU, Coax and TOSLINK. Control of Aries is left up to the Lightning DS App for iOS and Android devices (Android version coming September 2014) or the desktop app which should be ready by year's end.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 29, 2014 5 comments
My pulse raced when I saw Damon Albarn's new album Everyday Robot available as a "HD Digital Album" on the Warner Music Store website. Not because I'm a fan of Damon Albarn, not that I'm not, rather the simple discovery of a HD download offering on a major label's website warmed my heart. I'd imagine your heart does in fact warm if your pulse races but if I'm wrong I'm really just trying to convey my excitement over the adoption of HD downloads by a major. Which ain't minor for us music lovers who also appreciate better sound quality.
Steven Plaskin Posted: Apr 28, 2014 15 comments
Being an audio reviewer, I have the opportunity to evaluate many of the high end USB cables that are manufactured today. While most of these cables are very nice sounding, some of the cables really distinguish themselves sonically. The JCAT USB cable is just one of those very special USB cables that stand out from the large number of high-end USB cable offerings today.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 28, 2014 8 comments
LH Labs Geek Out 1000 DAC ($299)

Here's what's in-house or en-route to AudioStream for review.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 25, 2014 2 comments
We'll be taking care of some back-end business tomorrow morning, Saturday April 26, from approximately 6:00am - 8:00am (EST) during which time AudioStream will be off line.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 25, 2014 0 comments
If you don't know Jef Gilson you're in for a treat. A true musical polymath, Gilson was a clarinetist, pianist, arranger, composer, record label founder (Palm), sound engineer, music teacher, and big band leader. Born in Guebwiller, France Gilson came up through the ranks in the late '50s and early '60s via hard bop but branched out into free jazz and Afro-jazz, the latter being the subject of today's pick.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 24, 2014 3 comments
The New Young DSD DAC
The original M2Tech Young DAC was very favorably reviewed by Jon Iverson in Stereophile (see review), "The M2Tech combo's performance had seduced me—where I usually return to the Benchmark once I've done my critical listening to any DAC I'm reviewing, this time I left the Young and Palmer in the system until the morning I had to ship them out. I didn't want to let them go." The Young DSD version adds a number of features to the original including a digital preamplifier with analog volume control, adjustable output level, true balanced output, USB 2.0 compatibility so no drivers are required for Mac users, and of course the ability to play back both 64x and 128x DSD, the latter available via USB.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 23, 2014 31 comments
In an article in The Guardian titled, "Pono: only a man pays for music quality that he can't hear", author Charles Arthur, the Guardian's technology editor, states in no uncertain terms that "...44.1kHz, 16-bit audio sampling is good enough to reproduce any music." Arthur reminds us of the Nyquist-Shannon theorem, a "neat piece of maths", which he feels tells us just about all we need to know regarding sampling rates and digital music reproduction. As far as bit depth goes, "It's possible, if you're a mad-keen audiophile, to get 24-bit audio mixes – but they aren't cheap. And it's highly unlikely that in a blind test you would hear the difference." That's it, case closed according to Mr. Arthur. I say, not so fast.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Apr 22, 2014 2 comments
Auralic recently changed their Facebook page with the addition of the above cover photo. Nice. My guess is this is their new Aries Wi-Fi streamer that we saw in prototype form at CES earlier this year (see report). To refresh, the Aries uses dual band Gigabit Wi-Fi (802.11ac) to stream up to DXD and DSD without wires. The Aries is due to make its official launch in Munich.

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