LATEST ADDITIONS

Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
If you are interested in the Resolution Audio Cantata ($6,000) I'd recommend reading Jon Iverson's review on Stereophile for the full scoop. But in a nutshell, beyond being beautifully designed and crafted, the Cantata is a CD player and network player/streamer with S/PDIF (AES/EBU, RCA, Toslink), Asynchronous USB and Ethernet inputs. The news is all inputs now accept up to 24-bit/192kHz. When used with the Resolution Audio Pont Neuf Bridge USB-Ethernet adapter ($400), you can stream to the Cantata with either a direct Ethernet connection or by connecting to your wireless network through your router.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
The Cambridge Audio Azur 651A Integrated Amplifier ($799) offers 75W (into 8Ω), five pairs of unbalanced RCA inputs, RCA outputs, sub out, two pairs of speaker terminals, and here's the moment you've been waiting for, a USB input. The one caveat being the DAC in the Azur 651A Integrated Amplifier will pass up to 16-bit/48kHz and no more. Cambridge views the USB input as an accessory in their Integrated Amp and people who are serious about higher resolution can opt for an outboard DAC.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
Here's the T+A MP 1260 R - DAC/Network-Client from their "R" Series of components. The 1260 R DAC/Network-Client is a DAC/UPnP/DLNA Network Player with USB, Ethernet, and S/PDIF (Coax and Toslink) inputs and analog RCA and a S/PDIF Coax output. File formats supported incude MP3, WMA, AAC, FLAC (24/96), OGG-Vorbis, and WAV (24/96) and you can also listen to vTuner Internet Radio Service.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
Eastern Westphalia, Germany-based T+A has been around for more than 30 years but for some reason they feel like news. It sure seems as if they deserve a higher profile here in the USA when you look at their extensive lineup of what appear to be handsome well-made products. I'll be taking a closer look and listen in the near future.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
MSB Technology had a roomful of computer audio delights and I easily could have spent the better part of a day and then some getting the full low down on the technology incorporated in any single piece (or part of a piece). I happened to hit the MSB room while Stereophile's Jon Iverson was there (Jon covered "digital audio" for Stereophile which these days pretty much translates into computer audio or vice versa) so we shared in a lively introduction to MSB's products.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  0 comments
Wadia has been calling their DACs "Computers" since 1988 when they released their 2000 Decoding Computer putting them well ahead of our curve. The new 121Decoding Computer ($1,499) is a DAC/digital preamp that offers Asynchronous USB, AES/EBU (XLR), Coax (RCA & BNC), Toslink, and up to 24-bit/192kHz on all of those inputs. There are pairs of balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA outputs as well as a headphone output stage and aluminum IR remote. Wadia includes their Windows drivers on a thumb drive which is a nice touch (they're also available via download from the Wadia website).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 16, 2012  |  1 comments
DSPeaker was showing a prototype of their Anti-Mode 2.0 (projected price $1,200) that sits between your amp and preamp and offers room correction, parametric EQ, digitally controlled differential analog volume control, remote control and a USB DAC (sorry no corkscrew). Inputs consist of a pair of balanced XLRs, RCAs, Toslink, USB, and outputs incude the same pairs of XLR/RCAs, Toslink and the DSPeaker datalink connector.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 15, 2012  |  0 comments
Jon Iverson (left) and Stephen Mejias of Stereophile in the first and last milk shake show down (it was a tie)

Our best laid plans were laid to waste by the piss-poor Internet service provided by Harrah's hotel in Las Vegas. Some days and nights there was simply no service available and at best connection speed was fair to middling turning a typical 10-15 minute task into an hour-long ordeal. All that to say that I will continue to post my show coverage into tomorrow and realize that this is less than ideal and I'm deeply disappointed that I was unable to provide this content in a more timely manner. And yes, I'll admit that I'm taking time out today to watch some football and root for the NY Giants.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 15, 2012  |  0 comments
Pathos Acoustics was showing off their super slickly styled and touch screen endowed Musiteca music server/DAC ($7,000). The Musiteca uses a proprietary software interface, 21" touch screen, and includes a built-in CD drive for ripping, 1 TB hard drive, the same tube DAC that resides in their Pathos Endorphin CD player, USB input for importing music files from hard drive, and an Ethernet LAN connection for downloading track info and cover art.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Jan 15, 2012  |  0 comments
Audio Research was showing a prototype of their upcoming Reference DAC Digital Media Bridge ($14,000 - $15,000). Using the same tube analog stage and power supply as the Reference 5 SE Line-Stage Preamplifier and building on the Reference DAC 8, the DAC Media Bridge adds Wired and Wireless Ethernet (802.11b/g/n) capabilities, UPnP/DLNA compliance, vTuner Radio, and six inputs including AES/EBU, S/PDIF (Coax and Toslink), and three USB 2.0 for connecting your computer, iOS device and thumb drive. Theres also a 3.5" TFT display and while there's no reference in the literature to an iOS or Android app, let's hope for the best.

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