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05-25-2017 | By Marc Phillips

Thurston Moore, Rock and Roll Consciousness

Ecstatic Peace!/Caroline Records CAROL015LP, $19.99 2-LPs Amazon.com For me there are two Sonic Youths. I really like one of them. They're edgy and noisy but still know how to create simple and concise indie-pop songs that really kick ass, songs like "Kool Thing" and "Bull in the Heather." They can even branch out and deliver... Read More »

05-24-2017 | By David W. Robinson

HiFi Pig, Part-Time Audiophile, and Positive Feedback Link-Up

The Higher End: HiFi Pig, Part-Time Audiophile, and Positive Feedback link-up In which our hero meditates… Those of you who have been reading Positive Feedback over the years are aware of the fact that from our beginning, 28 years ago, we have maintained friendly and open relationships with other publications. In fact, for quite a long... Read More »

05-24-2017 | By Tom Gibbs

AudioQuest DragonFly Black and Red DACs - Now with MQA!

The two newest entries in AudioQuest's DragonFly family of DACs are the Black ($99 USD) and the Red ($199 USD), with the core design approach appearing to me to be one of simplicity of use in accessing the majority of files one listens to on a daily basis, along with easy connectivity to a broad... Read More »

05-22-2017 | By Dave Clark

Audio Ramblings - The WyWires Diamond Loudspeaker Cables

So, we come to you with another cable review. Sorry, I know many of you believe that cables cannot have a sound or character—that is either they work or don't and any audible impact on the sound would suggest that something is broken… like my ears or inability to be swayed by hype or whatever…... Read More »

05-19-2017 | By Tony Damico

Freedom is Free, Chicano Batman

As I write this review, Chicano Batman takes the stage in the blaring sun of the Coachella Valley for the second time—two years ago, some had commented on how absurd it seemed that this Los Angeles-based tropical soul band hadn't played the iconic festival. Now, on the heels of hearing their third full length album, Freedom... Read More »

05-18-2017 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Soundsmith Zephyer MIMC Star Cartridge

Soundsmith Zephyer MIMC Star Cartridge The world's best turntables use Soundsmith because we've been designing and hand-building the world's best phono cartridges for more than thirty years. It is a very clear statement. Placing it on top of company's home page can seem bit megalomaniac. Peter Ledermann though, the director and chief engineer of Soundsmith,... Read More »

05-10-2017 | By Gary L Beard

AXPONA 2017: Pictures at an Audio Exhibition

Dateline: Westin Hotel, Rosemont, Ill., April 21-23rd, 2017 AXPONA! I get a serious kick out of listening to exotic, cost-no-object systems. In fact, I enjoy them so much, it's hard to tear myself away. Where reality and common sense meet, its clear I have little business in those rooms other than to experience some of the finest audio this... Read More »

05-09-2017 | By Bob Neill

Notes of an Amateur: Goerne Sings Schumann, Pacifica Quartet Play Brahms & Schumann, Samuel Adler's Quartets.

Einsam Keit. Schumann Lieder. Mathias Goerne, baritone, Markus Hinterhäuser, piano. Harmonia Mundi HMM 902243.  Coming to Matthias Goerne without expectations, which I'll concede is almost impossible, we are struck by the unique combination of weight and lyricism in his voice. Paralleled by the same quality in the piano. The perfect baritone can do this but... Read More »

05-07-2017 | By Pete Davey

My Digital Journey and the Mytek Brooklyn DAC

Nothing beats the convenience of digital music. For many years, I have stored and played back digital music (before the MP3) because of how easy it was. I loved having a huge collection of music just to play at the tip of my fingertips. Not only that, but it caused a surge of new music... Read More »

05-06-2017 | By Marc Phillips

Robt Sarazin Blake, Recitative

Same Room Records SSR030, double LP $25, double CD $20, download $15—robertsarazinblake.bandcamp.com Recitative is one of those albums you release after you've had your big breakthrough, after you've hit it big and now sales are guaranteed because everyone's watching to see what you'll do next. This is the album where you get the big budget,... Read More »

05-06-2017 | By Albert Grantowski

The Mother of All Music - Music of the Bushmen

Bushmen of the Kalahari When We Were Free: Bushman Music of the Kalahari Rhythm is the prominent element of the music on these CDs: claps, rattles, single-stringed instruments with mouth or can as a resonator, thumb pianos. This is sad, passionate music. Some of it sounds like a collective expression of misery set to hypnotic, repetitive... Read More »

05-05-2017 | By Greg Weaver

AXPONA 2017: A Personal Journey, and the Von Schweikert Audio ULTRA 11 Experience

Audio shows! Local, regional, national, international. I've been covering shows and have had the privilege of producing show reports for various outlets for over 25 years. I attended them as a consumer for over 15 more before that. When you've walked the halls of as many as I have, it might be understandable that it... Read More »

05-05-2017 | By David W. Robinson

Bill Parish Talks with PF's Jim Merod

Jim Merod was in NYC recently, helping to MC a special Jazz event at The Lincoln Center. While there, he took the time to visit with Bill Parish of GTT Audio, at his listening rooms in NJ. Bill took the time to get Jim's take on the listening experience in Bill's big reference room, one... Read More »

05-05-2017 | By Dean Seislove

The Neoteric Listener - The Sonneteer Orton Integrated Amplifier

Sonneteer may not be a familiar company to many of my American compatriots, but they've been in business since 1994 and have a line of audio products receiving favorable reviews worldwide. There's something quintessentially British about the Sonneteer name, so when Arcadia Audio Marketing, Sonneteer's U.S. distributor, asked if I would like to review Sonneteer's... Read More »

05-04-2017 | By Roger Skoff

Beauty, Audio, and Money

Roger Skoff writes about how our eyes, ears, and wallets may all be tied together The traffic on Pacific Coast Highway ("PCH") in Newport Beach, California is slow and awful, jammed most of the time with tourists, beach bums and bunnies, locals doing whatever they do, and others, from Orange County and elsewhere, on their... Read More »

05-01-2017 | By Positive Feedback

The Sun Rises in America - Reinventing Push/Pull: Some Dancing Advice from a 300B Maniac 

This article, by Harvey Rosenberg, originally ran when Positive Feedback was in print - Vol. 7, No. 6, 1998. During my short tenure as PF's Techno-Shaman of Coolosity I have suggested that you, while artifying your harmonic/space/time continuum in your expanded aural matrix, consider single-ended triode amplifiers with tube regulated power supplies, Nobu Shishido's Inverted Interstage... Read More »

05-01-2017 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Yayuma Audio Awareness Line ASP 01 Sound Processor

A general rule, which I try to follow selecting audio products for my tests and when performing the test boils down to credibility. On the one hand, my own, ultimately, what I write will stay online "forever" and it attests in my favor or against me, and on the other hand it defines a company... Read More »

04-28-2017 | By Stephen Francis Vasta

Victoria Terekiev, Wind from the East

PIPKOV: Bulgarian Suite for Piano, Op. 2. HADJIEV: Melodic Etudes. VLADIGEROV: Bulgarian Songs and Dances, Op. 25. Victoria Terekiev, piano. Gega New GR 31.  TT: 48.14 Downloads: amazon.com (mp3); getlinksoundcloud.com (mp3, 128 kbps) The album's title, Wind from the East, momentarily misled me: I was expecting music from rather further east, perhaps on the order of the... Read More »

04-28-2017 | By Steve Lefkowicz

and Steve Says… What About Affordable, Entry Level, and Budget Audio? ...and a Little Announcement About the LA Audio Show!

As anyone who has followed my work for the past twenty years or so know, I am all about lower cost, high value audio. I love finding equipment that punches above is price class and attempts to give real, solid, quality sound with the potential for long term satisfaction. I feel I have been pretty... Read More »

04-27-2017 | By Maurice Jeffries

The "New" AXPONA?

Devices and Desires: The Best of the Best at AXPONA 2017 Without question, last weekend's AXPONA show (April 21-23) in Rosemont, Illinois ranks amongst the best sounding AXPONAs in recent memory. Not since the show's rebirth at the Doubletree by Hilton O'Hare in 2013 has the Chi-town cavalcade boasted such superb sound quality overall. Yes,... Read More »

04-19-2017 | By John Marks

Brahms: The Four Symphonies, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons

This time Brahms. Our musical guide John Marks, of The Tannhauser Gate (http://www.thetannhausergate.com), leads us into a recent recording of four symphonies by Brahms. Andris Nelsons leads the Boston Symphony Orchestra in four of Brahms' compositions. John's reviews of worthy music is once again republished from TGG with pleasure here at Positive Feedback! The performances are brilliant, done... Read More »

04-18-2017 | By Robert Schryer

Journeys in Audio Subjectivism - Part Eight: Of Andrew Jones, Elac, and Spotted Dick

"The speaker that changed my life?" said Jones. "Easy. The Quad ESL57. It's the first true Hi-Fi speaker I heard once I got to university. I have almost always owned a pair." No surprise, then, that the ESL57's creator, Peter Walker, continues to inspire Jones's own work. "I had many conversations with Peter," said Jones.... Read More »

04-16-2017 | By Jeff Day

Lefson: French High-End Analog Audio Devices - The Lefson Resistor

I have been enjoying quite a lot of audio adventures over the last year or so while doing audio projects where I experimented with various wire types, capacitors, inductors, and resistors in audio circuits. As a result, my knowledge, skills, and confidence related to developing, modifying, and optimizing audio circuits have been progressing to where... Read More »

04-11-2017 | By John Marks

Camilla Tilling, "loves me… loves me not…"

In which our esteemed friend, John Marks of The Tannhauser Gate (www.thetannhausergate.com) introduces us to yet another worthy singer, she of a truly lovely voice, Camilla Tilling. I was not familiar with Ms. Tilling, but was very much taken by her fine performances on this recording by BIS.  As always, John is a sure guide to worthy... Read More »

03-31-2017 | By Jeremy Kipnis

From the Kipnis Studios (KSS): The View From The Top - An Interview with Tommy O’Brien of Digital Amplifier Company

Kipnis Studio Standard (KSS) - Stereo Loudspeaker & Amplifier Testing Array with (Left to Right) Ologe Model FIVE, Ceratec Effeqct Mk. IV, and Waterfall Audio Niagara, Hurricane, & Elora Evo Glass Loudspeakers being powered by the Golden Cherry Amps from Tommy O'Brien at Digital Amplifier Co. (plus Nero Barky von Schnauzer - my assistant). The tiny... Read More »

03-23-2017 | By Claude Lemaire

Top 500 SuperSonic List - Part 3

This is an ongoing project by Claude Lemaire of Soundevaluations. In a slight variation of sorts, and at the risk of foregoing a bit of diversity, for Part 3, I elected to pit back-to-back two selections sharing a common thread between them. 21. Buzz Brass, Mélanie Barney, The Planets. Fidelio Music Inc. FALP028 (2012), (2x45 rpm). Genre: classical, modern... Read More »

03-10-2017 | By Wojciech Pacuła

Krakow Sonic Society Meeting 108 - Kondo ONGAKU Integrated Amplifier

It was clear from the moment I knew I would receive Kondo OnGaku amplifier for a review that I would also want to listen to it together with my friends from Krakow Sonic Society. These meetings give us not only a chance to meet, talk and listen to some music together but most of all to... Read More »



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Kuzma 4 Point 14" Tonearm

05-26-2017 | By Albert Porter

I've owned a turntable in one form or another since my preteen years. I clearly remember the excitement of picking out a record, cueing the tonearm and being moved by the music. Back then I didn't give much thought as to how... Read More »

Einstein Audio Components – The...

05-25-2017 | By Dirk Sommer

With technical contributions by Jürgen Saile. While working on Einstein's complete audio system with its laudable analogue source, in Part 1 of this review (which you can find HERE) we had traveled from cartridge to tone... Read More »

Einstein Audio Components – The...

05-25-2017 | By Dirk Sommer

Anyone who has ever looked into the hi-fi world in a little bit more intensive way knows that the arbitrary combination of well-reputed audio components does not necessarily lead to a guaranteed musical enjoyment. In the... Read More »

Thales TTT Compact II Turntable...

05-24-2017 | By Marshall Nack

From time to time, an item is plucked from the mildewed bins of analog history by one of the reissue houses. Occasionally the dredging action strikes gold; most of the time it would have been best to leave the slumber... Read More »

Pass Labs INT-60 Integrated...

05-23-2017 | By Gary L Beard

A few times I've been lucky enough to review a product before the rest of the audio-press get their red-hot hands on it, but mostly I've been Gary-come-lately to the audio-party. I'm grateful of course, for opportunities to... Read More »

The Audia Flight Strumento n°1 mk2...

05-14-2017 | By Dirk Sommer

The Audia Flight Strumento n°1 mk2 Preamp Many audiophiles believe that they can get along without any preamplifier in these digital times. However, I do not share this point of view: To me a preamplifier is an... Read More »

van den Hul Colibri XGW...

05-10-2017 | By Myles B. Astor

I'll save you the trouble and time of skipping the discussion and jumping directly to the conclusions for the low down on the van den Hul Colibri Stradivarius XGW Stradivarius cartridge. For the record, A.J. (short for Aalt... Read More »

Makin' Magic with Protons and...

05-07-2017 | By Larry Cox

Jack Bybee's iQSE or internal Quantum Signal Enhancer (iQSE) differs from the AC Purifiers I wrote about last month. As you'd expect the signal from your component runs through the AC Purifiers. It is with some bother I note... Read More »

Scansonic MB-5 Loudspeakers

05-07-2017 | By Pete Davey

There has always been something magical about the Raidho line of speakers. Why do I mention Raidho in an article about Scansonic speakers? Great question—well, if you didn't know, these are designed by Michael Børresen,... Read More »

Ayon Audio Vulcan Evo Amplifiers

05-06-2017 | By Brad Morrical

Ayon Audio has over the last 15 years become one of the best known high end tube amplifier manufacturers, at least here in Europe. In particular, they have become known as one of the premier manufacturers of single ended... Read More »

Esperanto Audio Black S/PDIF Cable

05-05-2017 | By Michael Zisserson

Michael Zisserson's review of the Esperanto Audio Black S/PDIF Cable is published with a disclosure. Michael has done some professional work for John Marks in the realm of speaker design, and this should be disclosed so that... Read More »

Audiophile Analog and Digital...

05-05-2017 | By Robert H. Levi

Stein Music The Perfect Interface,  Pi Slip Stein Music's Pi Interface Sheet under your LP and prepare for sonic improvement most every time. Whether you have a mat or bare surface on your turntable, these superbly designed... Read More »

A Second Look at the AURALiC Altair...

05-01-2017 | By Michael Wechsberg

A couple of years ago I wrote one of the first in the nation reviews of the AURALiC Vega DAC (read my Vega review HERE). I found the experience of using the Vega revelatory, especially on high resolution downloads. Since... Read More »

Larsen Model 4 Loudspeaker

04-26-2017 | By Larry Cox

In 2013 I wrote about Sweden's Larsen Hifi Model 8 speakers (HERE) a veritable bargain at $6,995 for those with such resources. The musical and organic sounding Model 8 notably provided exceptionally deep bass (~24Hz) from a... Read More »

KEF LS50 Wireless Loudspeakers

04-24-2017 | By Danny Kaey

We are witnessing an entirely new generation of HiFi. Gone [going?] are the singularly designed, specifically functioning, one trick ponies; all hail the Swiss army knives arriving in lifestyle. Case in point, KEF's latest... Read More »

Ultimate Ears Pro 18+ Custom IEMs

04-21-2017 | By Smit Patel

With their headquarters based in sunny-side California, Ultimate Ears was initially founded in 1995 by Jerry and Mindy Harvey. The former of which has played such an influential role in the design of headphones that within... Read More »


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industry news
Nagra Video Links from Munich 2017 - Days 1-3 are Now Up!

Nagra has shared three videos from Munich 2017. If you'd like to check them out, you'll find them at the following links: Day 1:  Video...

Pass Labs XP-12 Preamplifier and XP-17 Phono Stage at Munich HIGHEND Show

Munich HIGHEND Show, May 18, 2017 — At Pass Labs, we don't change our products unless we feel that the changes are significant...

AURALiC Introduces Premium G Series Streaming Audio Components

HighEnd – Munich Germany – 18th May 2017 – In an era of unprecedented technological development throughout the world of high-end...

Merging Technology - Innovation at High End Munich 2017

RAVENNA set to become new benchmark for connectivity The introduction of MERGING+NADAC and then MERGING+PLAYER shook the high end audio...

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Part-Time Audiophile
ELAC Uni-Fi UF5 floor standing speakers By John Richardson

What we have from the outside is, as I mentioned, a pair of fairly conventional-looking narrow-baffle towers. Each...

Fostex TH-610, Massdrop TH-X00, and TH-X00 Ebony By Brian Hunter

Fostex has a long history in the audio business. The company was founded in 1973, but its parent company Foster...

darTZeel CTH-8550 integrated amplifier (with Siltech) By Rafe Arnott

The $25,000 USD gold, and Ferrari-red, solid-state integrated amplifier from Switzerland exuded raw sex appeal as it...

“Affordable high-end” — is that like “jumbo shrimp”? By John Stancavage

How many Simolians do you have to part with these days to get good sound? I mean, really? Is it even possible, or just...

HIFI Statement
High End Munich 2017 By Positive Feedback

Our Partner in Europe, Dirk Sommer of HIFI Statement, offers a plethora of images from Day 1 of the High End Munich...

Einstein Audio Components Komplettanlage - Teil 1 By Dirk Sommer

Wer sich auch nur ein wenig intensiver mit Hifi beschäftigt hat, weiß, dass die willkürliche Kombination auch von...

Crayon Audio CFA-1.2 By Wolfgang Kemper

Ein alter Bekannter? Für einige von uns ist sicherlich. Auf den Norddeutschen HiFi-Tagen brachte eine gelungene...

ZeroUno Plus By Roland Dietl

Vor ungefähr einem Jahr hatte ich mit dem ZeroUno DAC einen Digital-Analog-Wandler zum Test, der wie eine kleine...