RMAF 2012

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Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 14, 2012
Antelope Audio attacks the state of the art with its new Rubicon Atomic AD/DA Preamp (target price $40,000):
World's first 384 kHz converter, phono stage preamp and headphone amplifier with an integrated atomic clock.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 14, 2012
Light Harmonic was showing (off) their Da Vinci DAC ($20,000) to great effect with a light show worthy of Dan Flavin. The Da Vinci is a nonoversamlping DAC and includes an Asynchronous USB 2.0 input capable of playing back up to 32-bit/384KHz, an Asynchronous AES/EBU on 3-pin female XLR connectors and one Asynchronous S/PDIF each handle up to 24/192, and balanced and unbalanced outputs. More-than-rumor has it we'll be seeing DSD capabilities added to the USB input by the end of the year (perhaps a CES launch?).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 13, 2012
How beautiful can music be? Or maybe the better question to ask in the context of a hi-fi show is do we sometimes forget that people make music for people? With all of our attention focused on hardware, I think we may at times lose sight of the point of all of our audiophiling but people like Fan-Ya Lin remind us in a not subtle at all way that the beauty of music lies in its making. And people are ultimately both the makers and receivers of this gift.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 13, 2012
The Mojo Audio Universal Media Server (starting at $1,799.95) is based on a modified Mac Mini and adds the Mojo Audio external Joule II Power Supply (pictured far right). If you visit the Mojo Audio website, you'll find there are a number of options including a 2.3/2.5GHz i5 or 2.7GHz i7 processor, 2 to 8GB of RAM, Solid State Drive sizes from 90GB to 240GB, AC and DC filters, Internal filters, and power cord options. There's also a Mac Mini upgrade kit available for $1,000 for people who prefer to roll their own.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 12, 2012
The Alpha PS1 powered speakers ($300/pair) from PSB feature a 3/4 aluminum dome tweeter, 3 1/2" polypropylene cone/rubber surround woofer, and a 20W Class D amp all wrapped in what you can see is a nice gloss black desktop-friendly 4 1/2 x 7 7/8 x 6 7/8" package. Inputs include 1 pair of RCAs and a 3.5mm Aux Input and there's a subwoofer output but from the few minutes I spent listening to these little wonders, you may not feel the need.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 12, 2012
The i-Fi Micro line from Avatar Acoustics is brand spankin' new and comes to you courtesy of "trickle-down technology licensed from AMR and aimed primarily at the future, Computer Audio generation." Hey! That's us and we're here! While the i-Fi line was on silent display the iDAC ($299) tempted with its asynchronous USB input that can handle up to 24/192kHz source material, headphone amp, and analog volume control. You can add the optional iUSB Power Plant ($199) that offers "super regulated power with Isoearth and Isopower technology providing two USB outputs, one for power and another for audio/power."
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 05, 2012
Ansel Adams, Longs Peak, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

The Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2012 kicks off next Friday, October 12 and runs for just three days. I say just three days because there are 160 rooms filled with gear from over 300 companies. That's about eight minutes per room not counting hallway time, gab time, photo time, note-taking time and let me see what else...oh yea, listening to music. Of course one person cannot completely cover RMAF 2012 so I've decided to try a new approach.