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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 27, 2015 12 comments
I was planning on writing up a post where I offered what I thought would be a reasonable way to spread out one's overall hi-fi budget by category. Speakers get X%, amplification Y%, source Z% and so on. Essentially creating an order of importance. But the more I wrote, the more tangled up my logic got. So I emailed a few friends whose opinions I admire and trust, and they confirmed my idea was pretty stupid since there's a near infinite number of roads to hi-fi happiness. Creating a percentage scale creates a totally arbitrary and needlessly restricted path. Boom.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 24, 2015 3 comments
Dawn of Midi's Dysnomia is the kind of music you actually have to listen to (eek!). I have my friend John DeVore to thank for the heads up on this Brooklyn-based band and it just figures. You see, John is just the kind of guy who actually listens to music (eek!). Albums' worth at a clip (eek!). I'm also an album listening lover which may be due to the fact that I grew up spinning records and I wanted to hear every last musical morsel on every record I bought. And I still do.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 23, 2015 73 comments
Hermes Chaine d’ Ancre Gold Necklace Jewelry – $27,400

What would you do if you bought a $340 Ethernet cable only to find you don't hear any difference between it and a $5.00 Ethernet cable? Return it? Or strip it? Well Lee Hutchinson over on Ars Technica opted for the latter since posting about expensive Audiophile Ethernet cables on sites like Ars Technica is like posting about Kim Kardashian's latest revealing outfit...anywhere. Neither tell us anything of import yet people can't seem to look away.

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 23, 2015 5 comments
Crowds & Power
More than any other audio company, much-much-more, LH Labs has been exceedingly successful in utilizing crowdfunding for product development and sales. This model obviously shirks the traditional hi-fi approach in many ways but most importantly lots of people are buying audio gear without anyone having heard it. Reviews necessarily come after the initial wave of crowdfunding and crowd-designing enthusiasm has ebbed so at best we can create a second wave or tell people what they already know. I find LH Labs overall approach refreshing if a tad fresh.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 22, 2015 17 comments
I was holding up on talking about this story until it seemed like a real story. Well it does. Here's the crux of it; Apple charges a 30% fee to streaming services for every iOS customer that signs up for their service through the Apple App Store. So services like Spotify, Tidal, and Rdio bump up their regular $9.99/mo pricing to $12.99/mo in the App Store so they don't take the 30% Apple hit. Which makes Apple Music's $9.99/mo competitive streaming service a comparative deal. To add insult to injury these same streaming services cannot point out on the Apple App Store that you can get their service for $9.99/mo if you just buy direct. Nor can they include a link to their respective websites, offer a free promo (Apple Music does), or a family plan (Apple Music does) according to Apple's App Store guidelines. Is this fair?
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 20, 2015 26 comments
“If your experiment needs a statistician, you need a better experiment.” ― Ernest Rutherford

I have not seen the results of yesterday's Amazing Randi/Ars Technica $1,000,000 challenge comparing an AudioQuest Vodka Ethernet cable to "a cheap Amazon Basics Cat5 Ethernet" but I can't wait to read the results and the analysis of those results. Should be entertaining. My guess is we'll be told that Ethernet cables do not make any difference even though many people have experienced otherwise. One real question is—when looking at results from audio tests involving more than one person, does it make sense to draw generalized conclusions that discount individual results?

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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 17, 2015 25 comments
All the the world's a staging and there's no bigger stage than Las Vegas and no bigger lover of that stage than James Randi. Ars Technica along with the James Randi Educational Foundation are going to put an AudioQuest Vodka Ethernet cable to the test! Well actually they are going to put whoever takes part in the test to the test the results of which will tell us everything we wanted to know about these listeners listening to the test gear and music in the test environment. But hey, I love the scientific method as much as the next guy especially when it's tarted up and paraded on stage in Vegas in front of paying skeptical spectators. That sounds like the perfect impartial crowd in a perfectly natural and acoustically sound environment for a listening test, no? I'll be hanging on the edge of my seat waiting to hear how they didn't hear a difference.
Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 17, 2015 1 comments
Sharon Van Etten, Patty Griffin, Diane Cluck, Julia Holter, Lucinda Williams, Marissa Nadler, Laurel Halo, Larkin Grimm, Isobel Campbell, Tara Jane O'Neil, and Josephine Foster sing songs penned by Karen Dalton. Sold.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 16, 2015 9 comments
As music consumers move from ownership to access on a global scale, the music industry and its technology partners the streaming services haven't figured out how to run the business they're running. Who pays the price for their incompetence? The people without whom this business would not exist—musicians and songwriters. Thankfully Rethink Music has taken on the task of unraveling this unholy mess.
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Michael Lavorgna Posted: Jul 16, 2015 12 comments
Mr. Young let me introduce you to Tidal, Qobuz, and Deezer Elite. They have what you want.

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