Stereophile

  1. At the Los Angeles Audio Show, held June 2–4, John Atkinson spoke with Zu Audio's founder, owner, and chief engineer Sean Casey about the Zu Audio Druid (pictured), Sean's background and his "unconventional" approach, and historic speaker designs. And toward the end of the video, Sean Casey turns the tables on JA by interviewing him about the role of the audio reviewer!
    Thu, 06/22/2017
  2. Dinesh Paliwal, CEO of Harman International Industries, was addressing engineers and the audio press in a crowded conference room at the opening of Harman Luxury Audio's new Engineering Center of Excellence (ECOE), in Shelton, Connecticut. Paliwal singled out as the ECOE's first beneficiary the Mark Levinson brand, with the goal of revitalizing it as Harman's flagship marque. (Other brands in the HII stable include Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Crown, AKG, Lexicon, and Revel.) To achieve this, he gave the ECOE team access to Harman's R&D budget of $400 million; brought on Todd Eichenbaum, formerly of Krell, to be its Director; and hired 11 more engineers.
    Thu, 06/22/2017
  3. My main task is to describe an audio component's basic character. How was it made? How did it fit into my system? How effectively did it deliver musical performances? My goal is to create stories that generate sounds and images in your mind—stories that will allow you to imagine how the component might perform in your system.

    I can hear the moans from all you objectivist guys: Please, Herb, spare us your purple prose.

    Thu, 06/22/2017
  4. "As the original L2 circuitry was virtually flawless, it was the emergence of new electronic components that opened up a possibility of [even better performance] . . ."

    So begins one of two booklets—one a collection of specifications and interior photos, the other a distinctly thorough user's manual—included with the new L2.1 Reference line-level preamplifier from Brooklyn's Lamm Industries, earlier products from which have impressed me as among the best available. Indeed, coming from almost anyone else, the above quote would strike me as trivial boasting—but I know from experience that there's nothing trivial about designer and company head Vladimir Lamm.

    Tue, 06/20/2017
  5. For digital playback, in recent months I've been breathing some rarefied air, pricewise. In December 2016, I reviewed dCS's Rossini Player and Clock, followed in May 2017 by Meridian's Ultra DAC, and in June by Chord's DAVE DAC. The Rossini Player costs $28,499 without the Clock, the Meridian $23,000, and though the DAVE is less expensive than either at $10,588, that's still a fair chunk of change. Even PS Audio's PerfectWave DirectStream DAC, which I bought following Art Dudley's review in September 2014, costs $6899 with the Network Bridge II, which hardly counts as "affordable."
    Tue, 06/20/2017
  6. Thursday evening, June 22, 5–9pm, F1 Audio (311 E Dundee Road, Palatine, IL 60074) is holding an event featuring Evolution series loudspeakers and electronics from TAD Labs and Isotek power conditioners. Attendees will also be able to audition rare, out-of-print Mobile Fidelity albums and test pressings from MoFi's UltraDisc One-Step series and take a test drive in the new Porsche 718 Boxster S and Macan Turbo, courtesy of The Porsche Exchange of Highland Park.
    Tue, 06/20/2017
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