LATEST ADDITIONS

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
While this mainly the purview of Tyll Hertsens over at InnerFidelity (make sure to check out his show coverage for all things personal listening), the drop dead classic looking (its the meters) McIntosh MHA100 Headphone Amplifier ($5,000) also includes a pair of speaker binding posts strapped to a 50W amp so you can "...enjoy your desktop speakers instead of your headphones" according to the MaIntosh marketing literature. You'd have to have one big desk. Also from McIntosh, "Employs new adaptation of McIntosh Autoformer technology to produce three headphone impedance ranges of 8-40, 40-150 and 150-600 ohms so every headphone will receive the optimal McIntosh sound." Inputs include Coax S/PDIF, Toslink, AES/EBU, asynchronous USB, as well as 2 analog inputs (XLR and RCA). Outputs include a 1/4" headphone jack, the aforementioned speaker binding posts, and a pre-out for connecting a subwoofer. The MHA100 can handle files with resolutions up to 24/192.
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Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
The new classic looking McIntosh MB100 Media Bridge ($6,500) is a network player and a server with a 1TB internal hard drive for music storage while the music player and OS sit on an internal 64GB solid state hard drive. There's also wi-fi capability and "On-board embedded streaming services include Pandora®, SiriusXM®, Spotify®, Rhapsody, Last.fm and TuneIn". The MB100 can play back up to 24/192 PCM data. Inputs include 4x USB (2x USB 2.0 / 2x USB 3.0), 1x Network (10/100/1000), and 1x eSata. Outputs consist of 2x Analog (1 Balanced, 1 Unbalanced), 1x Coax S/PDIF, 1x Toslink, 1x HDMI for GUI only, and 1x DVI for GUI only. There's also a McIntosh supplied remote app for iOS and Android devices. Expect production models to be available by June.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
The solid state Audio Research CD6 ($9,000) offers up to 24/192 playback from its asynchronous USB and 3 S/PDIF inputs (1 Coax S/PDIF and 2 Toslink). The CD6 is, obviously, also a CD player which is great news for you disc spinners and there are both RCA and XLR output pairs.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
From Japanese turntable manufacturer TechDAS comes the D-7 Supreme DAC ($8,600) that supports up to 24/192 PCM and 2x DSD. Digital inputs include USB, Coax S/PDIF, and Toslink while digital output consists of a single Coax S/PDIF. Fixed analog outputs include balanced XLRs and single ended RCAs, and there's also a variable single ended RCA output controlled by the D-7s front mounted volume control. The chassis is made from aluminum and brass with an incorporated super duralumin and DLC insulation base and the whole affair sits on three brass spikes.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
cocktailAudio is another new company at least in my experience. On display in the Usher room was the cocktailAudio x30 ($TBD around 1,800) which is a network player, server, and a 50W integrated amplifier that arrives discless so you can outfit it with the 3.5” SATA hard disk, 2.5” SATA hard disk, or solid state drive (SSD) of your choice. There's also USB inputs to connect USB storage devices. Based on the Burr-Brown PCM1792a DAC, the x30 can handle up to 24/192 files and supports APE/CUE, WAV, FLAC, ALAC, PCM, MP3, WMA, M4A, AAC, AIFF, AIF, and Ogg Vorbis file formats as well as gapless playback. There's also a built-in FM tuner, two digital inputs (Toslink, Coax S/PDIF), two analogue inputs, three digital outputs (Toslink, Coax S/PDIF, AES/EBU), and two analogue outputs, as well as the obligatory speaker binding posts. And a 5" TFT LCD (800x480 pixel) front mounted display and a headphone amp. All.in.one.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 2 comments
The Cary Audio DMS-500 ($4,995), which we saw in prototype form last year, is a DLNA/UPnP compliant network player that also supports aptX Bluetooth streaming as well as offering Coax S/PDIF and Toslink DAC inputs. Capable of handling up to 32/384 PCM and DSD data, the DMS-500 includes 3 USB inputs for connecting USB storage devices, an eSata input for connecting a HDD, Coax S/PDIF output if you'd like to bypass its internal DAC, and both RCA and balanced XLR outputs.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
The new Astel & Kern AK240 ($TBD but around $2500) can handle up to 24/192 PCM and 2x DSD data with its Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC and you can store up to a total of 320GB of music on 256GB of internal memory and 1 micro SD Card. The AK240 is based on an Android OS with an eye toward allowing downloads of HD music directly from the device [trending]. Should hit the stores by March 2014.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
The Millenia CT 2 sub/satellite system ($849) from Paradigm delivers aptX and Bluetooth streaming, decodes Dolby Digital, and offers a "Music" and "Movie" mode. The CT speakers are based on Paradigm’s Reference MilleniaOne's and the CT 2 package includes a controller box with a Toslink and 3.5mm analog input. Owners of older Millenia CT systems can upgrage to the CT 2 status for $149.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
Erstwhile French speaker manufacturer Cabasse was showing a trio of new streaming products. Let's start with the Stream Source ($549) which is a full fledged DLNA network player that also supports wi-fi, aptX Bluetooth, data rates up to 24/96 and WAV, FLAC, WMA, AIFF, AAC, ALAC, and MP3 file formats. Outputs include Analog RCA and optical S/PDIF. The Stream Source also includes a USB Type-A input which allows you to connect USB Storage and turn it into Network Attached Storage for sharing around your house among other Cabasse streamers.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jan 14, 2014 0 comments
The iFi iDSD Mini DAC ($TBD but should come in under $1k) made an appearance in prototype form. Supporting up to 24/384 PCM and 2x DSD, the iFi iDSD Mini DAC offers an asynchronous USB input, Coax S/PDIF (BNC & RCA), AES/EBU, and Toslink inputs as well as aptX Bluetooth streaming and fully symmetrical balanced outputs. The included headphone amp pumps out 4Watts in Class A and incorporates "Tubestate Circuitry" as found in iFi's iCAN headphone amp.

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