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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

Overture Room: Technics’ SL-1000RE-S turntable, Van Den Hul Master Signature Cartridge and Grail SB Phono Preamp, Magico M2 Loudspeakers, Esoteric Grandioso C1 Preamplifier and Grandioso M1 Amplifiers, Shunyata Cables, HRS Racks, Artnovation Room Tuning

By | November 6th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|













Overture Room: Technics’ SL-1000RE-S turntable, Van Den Hul Master Signature Cartridge and Grail SB Phono Preamp, Magico M2 Loudspeakers, Esoteric Grandioso C1 Preamplifier and Grandioso M1 Amplifiers, Shunyata Cables, HRS Racks, Artnovation Room Tuning | Stereophile.com


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A quick listen to the Allnic Audio L-1500 Line Preamplifier (sponsored post)

By | November 6th, 2019|Categories: Audiophillia|

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I recently got a call from David Beetles of Hammertone Audio, Allnic Audio’s distributor, about an end of line run of one of Allnic Audio’s products—the venerable and highly respected L-1500 Preamplifier. The preamplifier has been a mainstay of Allnic’s product line for 13 years.

But, this final run of the preamplifier has a few important upgrades not found on its predecessors. They include several upgrades trickled down from the magnificent (and my present reference preamplifier) the L-7000 (USD$16,500). Read my review here.… Read the full article

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Alta Audio Alec loudspeakers; Krell K-300p Phono Stage, Illusion line preamplifier, and Duo 300 XD amplifier; VPI HW-40 Anniversary Edition Turntable

By | November 2nd, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

The lighting in the Krell-Alta Audio room was bleak, gray, colorless. The only color in the room was the blue from the lights on Krell’s never-before-played-in-public K-300p phono preamplifier ($TBD), Krell Illusion line-level preamplifier ($7700), Krell Duo 300 XD amplifier, and Krell CEO Walter Schofield’s shiny blue jacket. Before lighting-induced dystopian melancholy took hold, I was greeted by the dual grins of Walter and the always fun story teller Michael Levy, CEO at Alta Audio.

As I sat down, Walter said, “Herb, did you ever think the old Krell sounded hard, gray, and transistor-y?” I said, “No Walter, I always thought the Krell KSA50 was one of the best amps ever.” He smiled (Schofield has a killer smile), and said, “The new Krell is organic and musical!” Now I smiled, “So show me.”

Then Michael Levy sprang up and said, “Herb, what do you think of my new speakers?” I said, “I can’t see them.… Read the full article

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VPI Vanquish Turntable, DS Audio Cartridge, Meitner Phono EQ, EMM Labs Streamer, DAC, Preamplifier and Amplifiers, Credo Audio Ltd. Loudspeakers, Kimber Cable

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

It’s easy to get lost at this hi-fi party. Do I follow my carefully chosen itinerary or my ears, leading me down seemingly endless hallways where music emanates from every corner and cranny?

One such adventure of the latter kind led me to John McGurk’s AudioShield room, where Credo Audio Switzerland, in conjunction with Meitner, EMM Labs and VPI, presented a system with a big, immersive soundstage.

As explained by Amadeus Meitner, the system included the DS Audio W2 optical cartridge ($4500), brand new VPI Vanquish Magnetic Direct Drive Turntable (prototype), EMM Labs DS EQ1 optical phono equalizer (prototype), EMM Labs NS1 Network Streamer ($4500, described by Jason Victor Serinus in his Munich show report), EMM Labs DV2 Integrated DAC ($30,000), EMM Labs Reference PRE Stereo Preamplifier ($25,000), and MTRX2 1KW Class A/B Mono Amplifiers ($85,000/pair) powering the Credo Audio, Cinema LTM loudspeakers ($170,000/pair).… Read the full article

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Zesto Audio Leto Ultra Preamplifier, Eros 300 Monoblocks, Andreos Deluxe Phono Stage, and Allasso Step-Up Transformer; Transrotor Apollon TMD Turntable; TriPlanar Tonearm; Benz Micro Cartridge; Opera Callas Diva Loudspeakers; HRS Racks; Cardas Cabling

By | October 18th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|













Zesto Audio Leto Ultra Preamplifier, Eros 300 Monoblocks, Andreos Deluxe Phono Stage, and Allasso Step-Up Transformer; Transrotor Apollon TMD Turntable; TriPlanar Tonearm; Benz Micro Cartridge; Opera Callas Diva Loudspeakers; HRS Racks; Cardas Cabling | Stereophile.com


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Lab12 Melto2 Phono Preamplifier | Review

By | October 6th, 2019|Categories: Part-Time Audiofile|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Lab 12 Melto2 Phono Pre

The Lab12 Melto2 phono preamplifier reminded me of how I sometimes get really excited about trying new outboard phono stages—and this is from a guy whose first article about phono preamps was dismissively titled “Little Black Boxes.” I find that a good phono pre is something that makes an immediate impression, a component that, in the first few minutes of operation, hands you its calling card and quickly informs you “this is what I’m about.”

This has happened three times in my life.… Read the full article

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The Gudebrod Audio 3T12V Tube Preamplifier Strikes a Nice Balance

By | October 4th, 2019|Categories: Positive Feedback|Tags: , |

Arlington Heights, IL – The music swirled about the room like wine in a sommelier’s mouth.

I’d first heard them in a packed Arlington Room at the Arlington Heights Historical Museum in February 2018. The frozen, yellow grass out front was thawing and inside, principals Eric Krupp and John Brunner were demonstrating their Gudebrod Audio 3T12V preamplifier and AC/120/3 line filters to the Chicago Audio Society with a pristine pair of Sonus Faber Amati Olympica 3 speakers.

“Initially, its presentation was a little softer in the highs—an affectation that some prefer,” I reported.… Read the full article

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Sutherland Engineering Little Loco phono preamplifier

By | October 4th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Descriptions of the sounds of products from Sutherland Engineering nearly always include “refined.” While that word is certainly justified, it would be more apt to use it as a verb: Ron Sutherland spends more time than any audio designer I’ve known studying and fine-tuning and refining every detail of his work. I have the impression he knows those products so well that when he decides to design a less expensive version of his newest and best models, he knows exactly what to do.… 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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