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Anthem STR Preamplifier and STR Power Amplifier

By | November 12th, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , |

Anthem STR Preamplifier and STR Power Amplifier

For eight years, an Anthem Statement D2v processor has been at the heart of my audio system. Multichannel music is a priority for me and in 2011, when I purchased the D2v, there were not many other suitable products at anywhere near the Anthem’s price of $7499. Even now, the current iteration—the D2v 3D ($9499)—has few competitors, and the original pre/pro has continued to serve me dependably with both surround and two-channel sources. But time marches on. The D2v has nary a USB input and its Asahi Kasei Microdevices (AKM) DAC chip isn’t DSD capable.… Read the full article

VAC Statement 452iQ power amplifiers and Statement Line and Phono Preamps; Von Schweikert Ultra 11 Loudspeakers, Kronos Pro Turntable and Black Beauty Tonearm, Airtight Opus One Cartridge, Masterbuilt Ultra Cables, and Critical Mass Stands

By | November 3rd, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|













VAC Statement 452iQ power amplifiers and Statement Line and Phono Preamps; Von Schweikert Ultra 11 Loudspeakers, Kronos Pro Turntable and Black Beauty Tonearm, Airtight Opus One Cartridge, Masterbuilt Ultra Cables, and Critical Mass Stands | Stereophile.com


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VAC Introduces Statement 452 Musicbloc Power Amplifier at CAF 2019 

By | October 31st, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: |

Sarasota, FL – October 30, 2019 – VAC / Valve Amplification Company will introduce the finest amplifier in its twenty-nine year history at the 2019 Capital Audio Fest in Rockville, MD, November 1-3, 2019, in the Potomac Room of the Hilton Rockville.

Compared to the older award-winning Statement 450, the new Statement 452 has greater headroom for unfettered musical impact. VAC Founder/Designer Kevin Hayes stated, “You hear much more deeply into the recording space, catch delicate nuances in a singer’s phrasing you’ve not heard before; the music explodes with more detail and energy.… Read the full article

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Vandersteen Quatro Wood CT loudspeaker & M5-HPA monoblock power amplifier

By | October 25th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

“Stirring the stew” is what I’ve heard it called when a company introduces a new version of a product every three or four years. When a new product is launched, sales generally rise rapidly to a maximum and then slowly decline. If the stew is stirred every few years, plotting the product’s sales volume against time results in a sawtooth wave, without sales ever dropping close to zero.

Richard Vandersteen doesn’t appear to believe in stews or stirring. Vandersteen loudspeakers stay on the market for a long time, with infrequent updates.… Read the full article

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darTZeel NHB-468 monoblock power amplifier

By | October 17th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

What’s the point of reviewing a pair of monoblock amplifiers that costs more than most people spend on two or even several cars— and far more than most audiophiles spend on an entire music system? That’s a good question. Another is: Why should I write this review when, just seven years ago, I reviewed a pair of darTZeel monoblocks that look exactly like this new pair?

I realize that products such as the darTZeel NHB-468 ($170,000/pair) are for the very few, but the very few include far more people throughout the world than you may realize— people who can afford such costly audio products and who do buy them.… Read the full article

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Cambridge Audio Edge NQ & W pre and power amplifiers REVIEW

By | October 13th, 2019|Categories: AV Hub|

Cambridge Audio, which is part of Audio Partnership, has grown from its position in the 1990s when it was redefined as an entry-level hi-fi brand — solid yet affordable, a little like NAD, and re-established (by then in its third incarnation) as a house brand for the UK’s Richer Sounds hi-fi stores, with which Audio Partnership had, well, an audio partnership.

But in Australia, Cambridge Audio has instead held its own (and rather higher than entry-level) reputation.… Read the full article

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Luxman MQ-88uC Stereo Power Amplifier

By | October 8th, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: |

Luxman MQ-88uC Stereo Power Amplifier

In the pantheon of Japanese audio companies, Luxman holds a place of honor for significant contributions to the audio arts over many decades. In fact, several years ago it celebrated its 90th anniversary. What is not so well known is that Luxman has been manufacturing tube amplifiers continuously since 1961. I don’t know of any other audio company that can equal that track record. Luxman had the foresight in the mid-1970s to hire Tim de Paravicini as a design engineer. In particular, one of his designs, the MB-3045 monoblock, is one of my all-time favorites.… Read the full article

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Accustic Arts Audio Mono II monoblock power amplifier

By | October 1st, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Accustic Arts of Lauffen, Germany, was founded in 1997 by Fritz Schunk, who sold the company to Hans-Joachim “Jochen” Voss in 2016. Voss’s professional background had more to do with sweet spreads than sweet sounds—he spent 20 years doing sales and marketing, including with the Ferrero Group, which produces Nutella—but he happened to own some Accustic Arts components, and as a music-loving consumer with a special fondness for rock, had been in touch with Schunk for many years before the company went up for sale.… Read the full article

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Reimagining Net Neutrality: The Mola Mola Kaluga Class D Mono Power Amplifiers and Companion Makua Preamplifier (with onboard DAC and Phono Modules)

By | September 27th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , , , |

The Unbearable Joy of Thinking Outside the Box

Now that GTT Audio & Video head Bill Parish and I are finally back on friendly terms (heck, he even calls me on the phone occasionally to give me a hard time, and to ask when I plan to get around to finishing the reviews I promised to write, if ever), it seemed like the right time to share with the world my thoughts on a wonderful suite of electronics from the cutting edge design team at Mola Mola, the Dutch electronics wizards with the funny sounding name. … Read the full article

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Schiit Audio Aegir power amplifier

By | September 26th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Class-D audio amplifiers: What’s the argument for them? Class-A audio amplifiers: What’s the argument against them? Class-AB amplifiers: Why does everybody make them? Each of these amplifier output architectures has strengths and weaknesses. Each will interface more or less successfully with a given loudspeaker in a given room. Each has a distinctive sonic signature. Consequently, as knowledgeable audiophiles with a laundry list of system-building goals, we are required to choose the amplifier type that best suits our speakers, our room, and our individual musical-aesthetic predilections.… Read the full article

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