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So far Jon Iverson has created 1250 blog entries.

Ralph Breaks The Internet

By | March 15th, 2019|Categories: Sound + Vision|

Picture
Sound
Extras

Wreck It Ralph and his new BFF Vanellope have settled into a familiar routine—starring in their arcade games by day, playing other games after work, and hanging out later at Tapper’s (root) beer joint. But Vanellope’s Sugar Rush game breaks, and to find the part needed to fix it they sneak into a new WIFI portal at Game Central Station. It takes them to the totally unfamiliar world of the Internet, where chaos is inevitable given Ralph’s natural talent for wrecking things.

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Recommended Components: 2019 Edition

By | March 15th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Components listed here have been formally reviewed in Stereophile and have been found to be among the best available in each of four or five quality classes. Whether a component is listed in Class A or Class E, we highly recommend its purchase.

Each listing-in alphabetical order within classes-is followed by a brief description of the product’s sonic characteristics and a code indicating the Stereophile Volume and Issue in which that product’s report appeared. Thus the May 2018 issue is indicated as “Vol.41 No.5.”

Some products listed have not yet been reported on; these are marked (NR), for “Not Reviewed.” We recommend that you read any product’s entire review before seriously contemplating a purchase (products without reviews should therefore be treated with more caution)-many salient characteristics, peculiarities, and caveats appear in the reviews, but not here.… Read the full article

KEF R5 Surround Speaker System Review

By | March 13th, 2019|Categories: Sound + Vision|

Speakers
Performance
Build Quality
Value

Subwoofer
Performance
Features
Build Quality
Value

PRICE $10,200 (as tested)


AT A GLANCE

Plus

Sweet, clean highs
Superb dialogue clarity
Detailed but not aggressive sound

Minus

Slightly limited treble diffusion
R3s make for pricey surrounds


THE VERDICT

With a sweet balance on music and potent, but not aggressive, manner with movies, KEF’s R-series system delivers all-around outstanding performance.


KEF’S R Series speakers have long occupied the middle range of the British manufacturer’s offerings. While the previous R Series was starting to get a bit long in the tooth, I found the performance of those speakers to be superb, having reviewed the last generation R700 for Sound & Vision’s sister publication Stereophile in 2014.

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Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right . . .

By | March 12th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

The dichotomy between what is measured and what is heard has resurfaced in recent months. Jon Iverson discussed it in his “As We See It” in our December 2018 issue, and I followed up on the subject in my January 2019 “As We See It.” These further thoughts were triggered by an e-mail exchange I had last December with Stereophile‘s longtime copyeditor, Richard Lehnert.

In a note attached to his edit of Kal Rubinson’s review of the Revel F228Be loudspeaker in our February issue (p.87), Richard had written: “Unless you’re sitting in, say, one of the first five rows at a classical concert, there’s no such thing as ‘soundstaging.’ At concerts, regardless of the hall or numbers of musicians playing, I always try closing my eyes and listening: What I hear is a large but almost entirely undifferentiated soundfield—sort of an immense glob of ‘mono’ sound.… Read the full article

Recording of April 2019: Here If You Listen

By | March 12th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

David Crosby: Here If You Listen
BMG 538431461 (LP), 538429532 (CD), none (FLAC 24/48). 2018. David Crosby, Michael League, prods.; Fab Dupont, prod., eng., mix; Josh Welshman, eng.; Greg Calbi, mastering. ADD/DDD. TT: 45:08
Performance ****
Sonics *****

In 1967, the year the Byrds would fire him, David Crosby sits in a room—a small space, from the sound of it—with a cheap microphone and a recorder of dubious merit. He’s improvising some jazzy, open-tuned acoustic guitar strumming, adding nonlexical vocables on top.… Read the full article

First Man

By | March 8th, 2019|Categories: Sound + Vision|

Picture
Sound
Extras

With his most recent film, First Man, Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle has managed to do something remarkable: take one of the greatest achievements in all humankind and render it as cold as space itself. Astronaut Neil Armstrong (Ryan Gosling) sacrifices much and faces incredible challenges on his way to leaving those first-ever footprints on the moon.

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Analog vs Digital: Home-Brew Science at the Edge of the Art

By | March 7th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Publisher’s note: The following article, from the early days of Compact Disc, is presented with no claim for absoluteness. (In fact, just as we go to press in the spring of 1986, we received a manuscript from Philip Greenspun, Product Review Editor of Computer Music Journal (Cambridge, MA), who had precisely the opposite result when comparing CD to analog versions of the same recording, though it was unclear that his test procedures were as thorough as in the tests by these authors, footnote 1.) The tests described are neither single- nor double-blind, and the author’s decision to forego conversation while listening to the same products does not by any means guarantee lack of mutual influence—especially because their musical tastes are so well known to each other.… Read the full article

Magnepan MG2.6/R loudspeaker

By | March 7th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

91maggie26rAsk anyone in the street what they think of when they hear the word “loudspeaker” and odds are they’ll describe a wooden box with moving-coil drivers sitting in its front. But ask a Stereophile reader and it’s quite possible that he or she’ll describe a large, flat panel reminiscent of a room divider: in our 1989 reader survey, the most widely represented brand of loudspeaker was Magnepan, with a significant lead over Infinity and Vandersteen, the second and third most common speaker brands.… Read the full article

Moon 390 Network Player/Preamplifier Review

By | March 6th, 2019|Categories: Sound + Vision|

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value

PRICE $5,300


AT A GLANCE

Plus

Excellent sound quality
Strong feature set
Good ergonomics and control app

Minus

Pricey


THE VERDICT

Simaudio’s Moon 390 is a high-res stream machine that combines high-end sound with an extensive feature set and solid ergonomics.


Canada’s Simaudio has been designing and manufacturing audio electronic components from its home base in Quebec for almost four decades. While the company’s product lineup clearly skews toward the high end—a pair of its flagship Moon 888 monoblock amplifiers will run you around $120,000—the company also makes a wide range of other components with more approachable price tags.

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Shure Bluetooth 5.0 Earphone Communication Cable

By | March 5th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

It used to be on my commute that I’d see my fellow subway riders listening to music on their iPods with headphones from Beats, Bose, Sennheiser, Sony—and even, occasionally, from Grado. These days, however, iPhones and Android smartphones are ubiquitous, and while I still sometimes see a pair of Beats, many travelers now wear Bluetooth-connected Apple AirPods. I haven’t bought a pair of AirPods, so I don’t know how they sound, but at $159, I suspect they don’t compete with “legitimate” headphones.… Read the full article