Michael Lavorgna

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 21, 2014 7 comments
With Spotify's recently announced family plan that effectively makes family members accounts come in at $5/month, and Apple's rumored $5/month target for its Beats music streaming service, I wonder how much is too little when it comes to the monthly cost of streaming.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 20, 2014 6 comments
My review of the Astell & Kern AK240 portable high res player appears in this month's Stereophile, available on newsstands now! Spoiler Alert: I liked it.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 17, 2014 0 comments
Cover songs. I have a soft spot for cover songs as they tell us about artist's influences while giving voice to difference. Ideally. Northampton Mass's Winterpills new album Echolalia is filled with lovely covers from Sharon Van Etten, Nick Drake, Buddy Holly, XTC, Beck, the Beatles and more.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 1 comments
While Channel D, makers of Pure Music ($129) (which I'm listening to right now) and Pure Vinyl ($299), wasn't showing anything new, its important to note that they are one of the only software companies to have a room of their own. This commitment to keeping a public face is nice to see.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
The Bel Canto REFStream ($2495 pictured on the bottom) is a network streamer capable of handling up to 24/192 data. Outputs include AES/EBU, Fiber, BNC and RCA S/PDIF. For the demo, Bel Canto was using their e.One DAC2.7 ($2495) and JRiver/JRemote for the control point.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
The pre-production Cary Audio DMC-600 (Digital Music Center) server ($TBD) supports resolutions up to 32/284 and double rate DSD via USB. There's a CD/HDCD drive, user selectable solid state and tube analog output sections, two Coaxial inputs (24/192), Toslink (24/96), AES/EBU input (24/192), and CSR aptX lossless Bluetooth input. Production models should be shipping "later this year".
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
Gordon Rankin of Wavelength Audio always manages something new at RMAF and this year was no different. Pictured on the right is the Crimson DAC with the new FPGA-based Q1 DoP/PCM DAC modue ($9000 or $1500 for the Q1 module upgrade for existing owners) which supports up to double rate DSD. The Quotient DSD module is also available for Wavelength's Cosecant DAC ($750).
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
Fun. Listening to music. Fun. What more do we have to ask of this wonderful hobby of ours? Listening to music is not only fun but it's a damn lovely and fortunate way to spend time. We are truly privileged to take part in such a hobby. That said, let me complain...
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
The new Sony Walkman ($299), pictured with their new MDR-1ADAC high-res stereo headphones with integrated DAC/amp ($399.99), offers 64GB of RAM and a micro-SD slot for memory expansion. The Sony Walkman does not support DSD, alas, but it does support PCM resolutions up to 24/192. From the quick listen I listened, the $299 Walkman will give some other more expensive portable players a run for their money. It's also a joy to hold, the small form factor and super lite weight practically disappear in your hand.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Oct 15, 2014 0 comments
After RMAF on Friday night, David Robinson of Positive Feedback Online and Andreas Koch of Playback Designs organized a field trip to Boulder's Super Audio Center. Run by recording engineer extraordinaire Gus Skinas, we were treated to a live, through the booth, performance by jazz pianist Don Grusin, some lovely multi-channel DSD recordings, some with associated video, food and drink. I have to say that if you've never heard DSD, you've never heard DSD. There's an uncanny sense of dimensionality and naturalness to dynamic swings that seems to me to be handled extremely well by the format.

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