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06-24-2016 | By David W. Robinson

John Marks Welcomes You to The Tannhauser Gate...and I Welcome Him to PF!

[I have had a long acquaintance and friendship-at-a-distance with John Marks of John Marks Records, and, until recently, a contributor to Stereophile. Music lover, producer, writer, reviewer, audio designer, and a very cogent, trenchant thinker, John is a person that I have a very great deal of respect for. I first encountered John around the time of... Read More »

06-20-2016 | By David W. Robinson

Brief Impressions: Fiona Joy's Into the Mist in Quad DSD from Blue Coast Records

Fiona Joy - Into The Mist I have been spending some time with several new titles from Cookie Marenco's Blue Coast Records, all in Quad DSD. One of them was by an artist that I've developed a great deal of affection for, Fiona Joy. The album is entitled Into the Mist, and for me, that... Read More »

06-20-2016 | By Scott Dedo

Riva S Wireless Bluetooth Speaker: a Layman's Review

"Hey, check this out," Dave said as he pulled a sleek silver and black gizmo from a sturdy little nylon sleeve. "It's a Riva portable speaker," he said, tapping a glowing touch-button. A rich, whirly arpeggio emanated with a surprising bit of rumble to it. He rattled off some technical-sounding descriptions that were over my... Read More »

06-20-2016 | By Dean Seislove

The Neoteric Listener - The Ayon Scorpio Integrated and CD-07s Compact Disc Player

The Ayon Audio Scorpio is a heavy, Class A integrated amplifier made of high grade aluminum and powered by gleaming KT88 and 12AU7 tubes. One look and listen, and you know it's textbook audio, the perfect answer to your friends when they say, "So how's a high end amplifier any different from my Yamaha?" Like... Read More »

06-17-2016 | By Dave Clark

T.H.E. Show Newport 2016, Part Five

T.H.E. Show Newport, the conclusion! From Part One... Second year at the same location, the Hotel Irvine, room 441, and with us arriving late Wednesday afternoon after a full day of teaching. Tired, exhausted... and bittersweet as this was the next to last week before we retired as educators. Daunting task. Set up a room—a hospitality room... Read More »

06-17-2016 | By Dave Clark

T.H.E. Show Newport 2016, Part Four

T.H.E. Show coverage continues... with more. From Part One... Second year at the same location, the Hotel Irvine, room 441, and with us arriving late Wednesday afternoon after a full day of teaching. Tired, exhausted... and bittersweet as this was the next to last week before we retired as educators. Daunting task. Set up a room—a hospitality... Read More »

06-17-2016 | By Dave Clark

T.H.E. Show Newport 2016, Part Three

T.H.E. Show coverage continues...  about half way there! From Part One... Second year at the same location, the Hotel Irvine, room 441, and with us arriving late Wednesday afternoon after a full day of teaching. Tired, exhausted... and bittersweet as this was the next to last week before we retired as educators. Daunting task. Set up a... Read More »

06-17-2016 | By Dave Clark

T.H.E. Show Newport 2016, Part Two

T.H.E. Show coverage continues... with a second page. From Part One...  Second year at the same location, the Hotel Irvine, room 441, and with us arriving late Wednesday afternoon after a full day of teaching. Tired, exhausted... and bittersweet as this was the next to last week before we retired as educators. Daunting task. Set up a... Read More »

06-17-2016 | By Dave Clark

T.H.E. Show Newport 2016, Part One

Second year at the same location, the Hotel Irvine, room 441, and with us arriving late Wednesday afternoon after a full day of teaching. Tired, exhausted... and bittersweet as this was the next to last week before we retired as educators. Daunting task. Set up a room—a hospitality room with an audio system hitting well over a... Read More »

06-16-2016 | By Bob Neill

Notes of an Amateur: Tchaikovsky, David Matthews, Ben Johnston, JS Bach.

Tchaikovsky, Symphonies 1, 2, and 5. Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Vasily Petrenko. Onyx 4150 (2 CD's) Vasily Petrenko found the poetry in Shostakovich—what will he find in Tchaikovsky? Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2 are my favorite of the six and we seldom hear them: Winter Dreams and the Little Russian. People of my generation know... Read More » . . . Read More »

06-16-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Krakow Sonic Society Meeting 103 TARA LABS Evolution Series

Expensive cabling systems have become something 'common'—both for you, the readers of High Fidelity, and for us, the members of the Krakow Sonic Society. On one hand one might consider it a 'sign of our times', the average price of products of high-end companies sky-rocketed, but it's also also a sign of catching up with... Read More »

06-16-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Acoustic Revive Interconnect and Power Cable

It seems that High Fidelity was one of the first magazines in the world, and surely outside Japan, that received  Acoustic Revive cables based on PC-Triple C copper and published such a review (No. 126, October 1st 2014). The Japanese magazine Audio Accessory, printed their review a month before us in their September issue, dedicated... Read More »

06-15-2016 | By Michael Mercer

Behind the Booths & Back Vol.2 - T.H.E. Show Newport 2016

"There's always somethin'..." Howard Mercer I don't mean to bite off my friend and co-PF scribe Andy Schaubs' style by leading with a quote for this installment of Behind the Booths & Back, but given the fact that the quote came from my pops, it seemed fitting. His words danced around in my brain throughout... Read More »

06-11-2016 | By Brad Morrical

Munich 2016, Part 2: “Affordable” Standout Rooms

Now that I have highlighted the systems that for me were the top of the show, I will now turn attention briefly to a few systems that were still affordable by us mere mortals, and not just showcases in excess. By "affordable" I mean a system that comes in at less than the price of... Read More »

06-10-2016 | By Robert Schryer

Journeys in Audio Subjectivism – Part Five

(Not) Another $18,000 Challenge, or:  "Whoa! This system costs how much?!" "I like Downbeat, you know?" That was Graeme Humfrey, after I'd introduced myself as a PF writer. He's the proprietor of the latest audio shop to be handed my unsolicited musical challenge. "I mean, it's still great what you're doing," he added. "I want... Read More »

06-01-2016 | By Brian Moura

Report from AXPONA 2016

The 2016 edition of AXPONA (also known as Audio Expo North America) was held at the Westin O'Hare hotel in Rosemont, IL just a short distance away from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport from April 15-17, 2016. AXPONA is the premiere audio show in the Midwest. While one will see a number of high end and... Read More »

06-01-2016 | By David W. Robinson

Impressions: The Stillpoints ESS Reference Rack System

"Take him hence; to the rack with him! We'll touse you Joint by joint, but we will know his purpose." William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure The Stillpoints ESS Reference Rack with Grid Shelves (image courtesy of Stillpoints) Fine audio reviewing can be great, with passion driving you through the work and all the costs that... Read More »

05-28-2016 | By Marc Phillips

Todd Hunter Trio – Eat, Drink, Play

Like most audiophiles who are into jazz, I tend to reach way back into history for my sonic fixes. I'm talking late '50s and early '60s, of course, and maybe a few Three Blind Mice titles from the mid-'70s just to mix things up. The idea of choosing a modern jazz piece as a reference,... Read More »

05-28-2016 | By Brad Morrical

A Munich 2016 Show Report Part 1: My Top 5 Systems at the Munich High-End Show, Plus My “Affordable” Picks

As usual for the Munich show, the numbers of rooms that I can call truly excellent were quite limited. Now, one can debate as to whether this was due to "show conditions"; poor rooms with thin walls, poor electrical power (I have witnessed this first hand many years ago), poor choice in matching of components... Read More »

05-22-2016 | By David W. Robinson

Impressions: AXPONA 2016 and my Audio Oasis! Awards, Part 2

In part two, I cover the balance of my Audio Oasis! Awards for AXPONA 2016. As I said in part one, these notes are presented in no particular order, and so there is no greater or lesser in the sequence. Read on… ModWright/Ryan Loudspeakers/Aurender/PS Audio/Cardas/Shunyata/Massif Audio/GIK Acoustics/Audioquest room A portrait of Dan Wright of ModWright,... Read More »

05-22-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Clones Audio 25iR Integrated Amplifier

Funjoe, the owner of CLONES audio, left his well paid job of a graphic designer to take on his life's true passion—audio. He is not the first as there were others before him like Silvio Pereira of Audiopax to name one, and he won't be the last, but surely he is among few who made such... Read More »

05-22-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Audio Alto DMI 3H Integrated Amplifier

I'll elaborate on that later but let me start with information that products by Slovenian company Audio Alto are custom made—to be exact they are made to satisfy first of all needs and expectations of their designer, who says that "they reflect my [sound] philosophy". It's not only about perfect reproduction of the sound that preserves... Read More »

05-20-2016 | By Brian Moura

Jenna & Alex: Live Concert Broadcast in DSD

Jenna Mammina and Alex de Grassi (Photo: David Pappas) On April 21st, a bit of music history was made as singer Jenna Mammina and guitarist Alex de Grassi performed an hour long concert that was broadcast live over the Internet in Direct Stream Digital (DSD) 5.6 MHz Stereo. The concert was the first of its... Read More »

05-20-2016 | By Brian Moura

New Sony Receiver with 5.1 Multichannel DSD 5.6 MHz Playback

Sony STR-DN1070 AV Receiver with 5.1 Multichannel DSD 5.6 MHz Playback Sony Electronics has expanded their DSD series of High Resolution Audio products with the release of the new STR-DN1070 Audio Visual receiver. Sony describes the STR-DN1070 as a 7.2 Channel Home Theater AV Receiver with High-Resolution Audio and Video plus Native Multichannel Native DSD... Read More »

05-19-2016 | By David W. Robinson

Impressions: AXPONA 2016 and my Audio Oasis! Awards, Part 1

In which our hero meditates… [Sketch by Robinson, c. 1989, during a particularly boring faculty meeting…] So…another audio show in the books, and it's time to share the highlights as I heard them. I would normally have had these out to you all a couple of weeks ago, but lost that time to a necessary... Read More »

05-16-2016 | By Dave Clark

Audio Ramblings - The PS Audio BHK Signature 250 Stereo Power Amplifier

So back on track here… got the Aurender review (a truly wonderful product—read that HERE) done and so on to another product that I loved so much, I ended up buying the review sample… the PS Audio BHK Signature 250 Stereo Power Amplifier. Bought it? What about the legendary Clayton M200 amplifiers? Are you selling... Read More »

05-15-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Images of the High End Exhibition 2016 - Part 3

Tape cassettes recorded directly from an analog master tape, the so-called "Master Compact Cassette". And the box! The Hemiola Records company specializes in reel analog tapes that are master tape copies. The Tone Tool turntable, Sprocket model. Prices starting from €108 900—without the arm, of course. The Swiss Goldmund is a synonym for high-end. The person... Read More »

05-15-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Images of the High End Exhibition 2016 - Part 2

The Italians from Pathos have a sense of style—in the photo there is the new INPOL Heritage integrated amplifier, which resembles the INPOL topology developed by the company. In the system there was also the Endorphine CD player and Frontiers speakers. The inexpensive TEAC TN-300 turntables in any color and with a USB output. Mark... Read More »

05-15-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Images of the High End Exhibition 2016 - Part 1

Hideaki Nishikawa-san, the TechDAS constructor, is signing a printout with the May High Fidelity cover. "Japanese style? – Sure, with pleasure…" Einstein has prepared a premiere – The Tonearm, presented on the Air Force III turntable. The German Trigon company does not often surprise us with new products, but now demonstrated a few novelties at... Read More »

05-15-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

High End Exhibition 2016 - Munich, Germany

The original plan was completely different: the Old Pinacotheca (German: Alte Pinakothek - collections of paintings from the 14th to the 18th century), the New Pinacotheca (German: Neue Pinakothek - a collection of European art from classicism to art nouveau), perhaps even the Deutsches Museum (Masterpieces of Science and Technology)—the largest museum of this type... Read More »

05-15-2016 | By Matt Olivas

Foundations of Burden by Pallbearer

When listening to this album, I found it difficult to do so with a strict, examining state of mind. I wanted to capture all of the technicalities and mechanical bits within each song, so that I could later articulate what those ingredients did to either help or hurt the album. I wanted to listen to... Read More »

05-11-2016 | By Dave Clark

Audio Ramblings - The Aurender N100H Music Streamer and More

I have become quite lazy and it is all to blame on the technology that we use today to get our music out into the room. It all started with CDs allowing me to sit and listen to something like 60 mins of music while never stirring. Of course a lot of time I never... Read More »

05-04-2016 | By Marc Phillips

The 3.5.7 Ensemble’s Amongst the Smokestacks and Steeples

One of the advantages of writing about LPs and turntables for the last 18 years is that sometimes records just show up in my mailbox without warning or reasonable explanation. I know nothing about Chicago's Milk Factory Productions, and even less about The 3.5.7 Ensemble, but my intuition tells me that the same intrepid individual... Read More »

05-01-2016 | By Maurice Jeffries

AXPONA 2016: Bodies, Motion, Sound

Ever since the annual AXPONA/Chicago high-end show relocated in 2014 to the jazzy Westin O'Hare, located just down the street from the show's former home, the far more modest Doubletree Inn, I have approached this annual event with a combination of cautious optimism and mild trepidation. You see, whatever its shortcomings as a hotel (tired... Read More »

05-01-2016 | By Maurice Jeffries

High End Audio in the Age of Uncertainty

Plus a Few Album Recommendations Component Droughts, the Grumblings of Privileged Men, and Happy Endings For longer than I care to remember, I don't have any components to review, a situation I find both annoying and liberating. Liberating in the sense that I needed a respite - as well as the kind of perspective that... Read More »

04-24-2016 | By Brian Moura

Nativ Touchscreen Music System Tops Fund Raising Goal

Nativ Sound, an audio start-up based in Hong Kong working on a family of elegant touchscreen music components, has announced that they have passed their $100,000 fund raising goal on Indegogo in one week. This exceeds the company's original goal of reaching that milestone in 2 months. Nativ's family of music system components includes Nativ... Read More »

04-24-2016 | By Andy Schaub

The MOON Neo 280D and the MiND of Simaudio

"Shine on you crazy diamond"  - by Pink Floyd First of all, I should say that I like the Simaudio MOON Neo 280D ($2200) very much and that, with the optional MiND module, it provides for a one-box media server solution, WiFi support, DSD256-capable DAC, and all. Having said that, I did run into a... Read More »

04-24-2016 | By Karl Lozier

Music from Prokofiev, Sylvia, Gabrieli, and More!

Prokofiev, Scythian Suite & Symphony No. 3. Orchestra: Sao Paulo Symphony. Conductor: Marin Alsop. Recording: Naxos NBD0047 There certainly are significant differences in the music composed by Prokofiev compared to those famous Russian composers that preceded him. It is our good fortune to have his compositions available now. Yes, he turned out those compositions needed by performers in the... Read More »

04-24-2016 | By Robert S. Youman

Axpona 2016 – Into The Mystic

Hark, now hear the sailors cry Smell the sea and feel the sky Let your soul and spirit fly into the mystic And when that foghorn blows I will be coming home And when the foghorn blows I want to hear it I don't have to fear it and I want to rock your gypsy... Read More »

04-24-2016 | By Bob Neill

Notes of an Amateur: Ibragimova’s Mozart x 2; Return of Eighth Blackbird; Violist Paul Neubauer; Max Reger; and New Music for Flute and Piano.

Mozart, Sonatas for Violin and Piano, Alina Ibragimova, violin. Cédric Tiberghien, piano. 2 CD's. Hyperion CDA 68091. Most of us know when we're hearing the real Mozart and not a near miss, we know in our heads and elsewhere what is required of a genuine Mozart performance. Today we have the composer's Sonatas for Keyboard... Read More »

04-13-2016 | By David W. Robinson

Impressions: A Note from an Editor's Backside

Things can pile up. From time to time, especially when I get too busy, miscellaneous projects and notes accumulate. They don't warrant a major article, but they are items that I should mention to you. And this is a brief and very different sort of flash for you. Ergo 21 As a writer and editor,... Read More »

04-03-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Sikora Reference Turntable

Lublin is a city in the south-east part of Poland and the capital of Lublin Voivodeship (province). The name  Lublin, exactly the same as today which is quite rare, first appeared in chronicles in 1228. Just like Kraków comes from the name of Krak, a legendary ruler residing on Wawel Hill, also Lublin comes from... Read More »

04-03-2016 | By Bartosz Pacula

Seong-Jin Ho - The Man and His Music

The winner of the 17th International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition The 17th International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition which took place between the 1st and 23rd October 2015 in Warsaw was a tremendous artistic and, in a way, commercial success. It was not a coincidence—the National Fryderyk Chopin Institute responsible for organizing the competition, in cooperation... Read More »

03-27-2016 | By Dave Clark

Audio Ramblings - The Daedalus Audio DiD, iFi USB and DC iPurifiers, and Modified Rega Arm from audiomods

So in my last Audio Ramblings, I wrote… "Not sure how this came about, but man do I have a lot of stuff here to review… the PS Audio BHK250 amplifier and their AC12 and AC5 power cables, the Aurender N100H streamer, the Entreq Poseidon Grounding box and cables, several items from Synergistic Research (Black... Read More »

03-25-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Pylon Audio Sapphire 23 Loudspeakers

Considering the present times and other Pylon Audio products, 23 loudspeakers from the Sapphire series have untypical proportions. If they had been produced a few years ago, that would not have been strange. At that time, almost all loudspeakers offered by Pylon Audio, Monitor Audio and other manufacturers representing the base and medium price ranges... Read More »



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PS Audio PerfectWave Memory CD/DVD...

06-20-2016 | By Gregory Petan

On a recent visit to Bleeker Records in NYC, I asked the Owner how LP sales were doing. "Fine, but it is CDs that are really hot". I did my best Labrador Retriever head tilt and quipped "Really?" That was the best I could... Read More »
SW16 4
Dynamic Design’s Neutron SW16...

06-17-2016 | By Marshall Nack

An importer/distributor I know has taken to calling me "the stalwart reviewer." At first we both laughed, although I wasn't sure what he meant. On reflection, I decided I should be flattered. One of the benefits of longevity... Read More »
Audio Tekne TEA-2000 Phonostage

06-16-2016 | By Wojciech Pacuła

It happened only once before that High Fidelity tested the same product twice. It was the Nagra's PL-P preamplifier, that was firstly reviewed in our issue No. 19 (November  2005), and later in issue No 50 (November 2008).... Read More »
GORGON schematic
Gorgon Interconnect Cable from...

06-01-2016 | By Marshall Nack

"That is a…a…a power cord?" It's a guilty pleasure witnessing visitors' disbelief when I show them a Stage III Concepts cable. Even seasoned audiophiles are predictably wide-eyed. The uncommon (unnatural?) girth and... Read More »
iFi iDAC2 and iUSB3

06-01-2016 | By Victor Chavira

The impact of computers as a source for high quality musical enjoyment cannot be underestimated. Computers allow listeners to store and stream massive amounts of musical data from the convenience of a laptop or other device... Read More »
Audio Sensibility Cables: Musings...

05-24-2016 | By Bruce Kinch

"I can cable an entire audiophile system for $1000" This was back in May of last year, and I was on the phone with Steven Huang of Audio Sensibility Cables, based in Toronto, Canada. I'm an old-school audio cheapskate, and... Read More »
LampizatOr Euforia

05-23-2016 | By Larry Cox

Apparently, I left a few readers in the lurch by closing my LampizatOr Euforia review saying I'd discovered a difference making change and that I'd follow-up the review, but was too lazy to rewrite it before posting. I've... Read More »
Audioengine P4
Audioengine P4

05-15-2016 | By Paul Baterina

My girlfriend had surprised me with the Audioengine P4 as a birthday present. I've had them for a couple of years now, and I have to say, it's one of the best gifts I've ever received. A little about myself, I have a huge... Read More »
Marigo Labs Iridium v1.0 Power

05-11-2016 | By Robert S. Youman

I was introduced to various Marigo Labs wire products back in the early 1990s. Ron Hedrich, owner and chief designer, was just minutes away in the north shore suburbs of Chicago. Later, Ron moved body and and soul to the... Read More »
ZeroUno DAC Review – Part 2

05-06-2016 | By Roland Dietl

Introduction to Part Two Having described the sound of the ZeroUno in the foreground in the first part of this review, I will in this second part of my report consider the technical details of the DAC. During the time I have... Read More »
The Mytek Manhattan

05-04-2016 | By Dave Clark

Gee, what happened to the time? Yeah, that construct or concept that continually moves forward. Not only forward in the sense of progress (for some for sure, and for others… uh, 2016 people) but also in the sense of "where... Read More »
ZeroUno DAC Review – Part 1

05-04-2016 | By Roland Dietl

In early February I picked up a large wooden box in the office of HiFi Statement. With the active support of Dirk Sommer, we both lifted the crate into the trunk of my car. After arriving at home and unpacking everything... Read More »
Verity Audio Sarastro IIS

05-01-2016 | By Dirk Sommer

I had hoped that testing the Verity Sarastro IIS would be fun rather than hard work, but I would never have expected this premium speaker to also reveal some interesting things about the acoustics of my listening room. The... Read More »
The Mytek Brooklyn DSD DAC

04-27-2016 | By Dirk Sommer

About four years ago, the Mytek 192-DSD-DAC impressed me with its sound in a way that caused me to abstain from purchasing expensive D/A converters for quite a while. This is not bad at all in times of rapid new... Read More »
Audio Consulting Silver Rock...

04-26-2016 | By Marshall Nack

There are times when High End audio puts me in mind of the ancient Greek myth of Sisyphus. Condemned to an eternity of boulder rolling, he slowly pushed it uphill. Then, when the pinnacle was in sight, he watched helplessly,... Read More »
Victoria 7
From the Kipnis Studios (KSS):...

04-19-2016 | By Jeremy Kipnis

Common Beliefs  "GLASS Speakers? Oh, they MUST sound bright and edgy!" "Anyone using GLASS to make a speaker has to be using it only as a gimmick." "I can see right through the speaker. So it must not be properly engineered... Read More »


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industry news
VANA Ltd. Brings European Audio Team (E.A.T.) C-Major Turntable to US Market

  Bridging the price gap between far more costly premium products and lesser performing budget models, the C-Major turntable from European...

OPPO BDT-101CI Handles Professional Video Playback at 2016 Tribeca Film Festival®

At the recently concluded 2016 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by AT&T, OPPO Digital’s BDT-101CI Blu-ray Disc Transport played...

AURALiC Names Chris Morris Manager, Global Technical Support

   AURALIC North America Inc. and its parent company, AURALIC LIMITED, has announced promotion of Chris Morris to Manager, Global...

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Occupy Hifi
From the Sonic Satori Personal Audio Lab: Updates and Upgrades! By Michael Mercer

If you ever get tired of the way I choose to express the strange, wonderful, and occasionally morose journeys in my...

Quality Headphone Gear For The Rest Of Us Pt. 1 By Michael Mercer

I love writing about what we audio geeks call "reference-level" audio components. By reference-level we mean...

Needed An Audible Time Machine Tonight By Michael Mercer

I cherished this spectacular article Harry Pearson wrote for his HPSoundings blog a couple years ago about his stereo...

HIFI Statement
Resonessence Labs Veritas By Dirk Sommer

Schön, dass der deutsche Vertrieb es möglich gemacht hat: Der Resonessence Labs Veritas, der erste D/A-Wandler für...

Transrotor JR Tamino By Dirk Sommer

Mit seinen Topmodellen spielt Transrotor auch international in der aller höchsten Analog-Liga. Einen zu diesen...

HIGH END 2016: Messerundgang mit Helmut Baumgartner By Helmut Baumgartner

Eine neue High-End-Disziplin: Marathonlauf mit Kamera. Auf den letzten High-End-Messen hat unser Fotograf diese...

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