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About Julie Mullins

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So far Julie Mullins has created 42 blog entries.

Marantz Is Back: 40th-Anniversary Marantz KI Ruby Series

By | November 9th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , |

Marantz Is Back: 40th-Anniversary Marantz KI Ruby Series

Now under the auspices of Sound United (along with Denon, Classé Audio, and other brands), Marantz is back on the map. The classic audio company has been celebrating its 40thanniversary this year with recent launches of its KI Ruby limited-edition series components in Europe and the U.S. Along with a number of (mostly) European-based audio journalists and a handful of sales folks, I had the good fortune to attend a special launch event in Amsterdam held at an incredible venue: the renowned Concertgebouw concert hall.… Read the full article

RMAF 2018 – Electronics $15k and Up

By | November 1st, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , , , |

RMAF 2018 – Electronics $15k and Up

Most Significant New Products VAC Statement 450i iQ integrated amplifier This new and state-of-the-art Statement 450i iQ integrated amp from Kevin Hayes of Valve Amplification Company (VAC) makes a statement indeed and epitomizes extreme audio. Standing—literally, as it’s a unique vertical design—nearly 4 feet tall and weighing in at 460 pounds, the VAC 450 iQ integrated is extremely striking, gorgeous-sounding, and not surprisingly, expensive at $150k. Essentially it combines the 450 S iQ power amp, the Statement Linestage, and the Statement Phonostage.… Read the full article

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Hegel Music Systems Event: New Products, Live Music

By | September 14th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , |

Hegel Music Systems Event: New Products, Live Music

Hegel Music Systems hosted an industry event on August 23 for selected dealers and press where the company shared an overview of its most recent products launched, plus a more in-depth look into its latest technologies and approaches to high-end electronics. For the occasion, which took place at the Ritz-Carlton in White Plains, NY, the Norwegian company offered more than just a standard new product intro and demo: The special event also featured an intimate performance by emerging art-pop singer, pianist, and composer Anette Askvik, who also hails from Norway.… Read the full article

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KEF LS50 Wireless Nocturne Active Loudspeaker System

By | August 14th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: |

KEF LS50 Wireless Nocturne Active Loudspeaker System

I’ve always been something of a night owl. And perhaps like many of you I enjoy listening to music later in the evenings. Lights low, wine glass in hand, ready to relax into stereo sound. For some reason I’ve also always gotten a kick out of stuff that glows: from amplifier tubes and fireflies to bioluminescent sea creatures, neon signs, and even a pair of glow-in-the-dark earrings. My fondness for such whimsy unexpectedly found its way to a modern hi-fi offering perfect for nighttime: the special Nocturne edition of KEF’s updated LS50 Wireless loudspeaker system that features intricate geometric patterns …… Read the full article

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Sonus faber Sonetto Loudspeaker Event in Kansas City, Part Two

By | August 3rd, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Sonus faber Sonetto Loudspeaker Event in Kansas City, Part Two

Note: This is Part Two of this Sonus faber listening event coverage. Read Part One here. New Sonetto Loudspeakers Demo'd at the 1900 Building The celebration of the new Sonus faber Sonetto loudspeaker collection is noteworthy news for a few reasons, the first of which is fiscal. The eight Sonetto loudspeakers can be purchased for surprisingly less than princely sums (starting at about a grand), especially in comparison to the company’s other high-end speakers, whose prices extend well into the five-figure range (and beyond).… Read the full article

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Sonus faber Sonetto Loudspeaker Event in Kansas City, Part One

By | July 27th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , |

Sonus faber Sonetto Loudspeaker Event in Kansas City, Part One

Sonus faber has been branching out over the last few years through its product offerings and beyond—in addition to celebrating its 35thanniversary this year. There were the introductions of its Homage line and Aida flagship redesign, before that, its lifestyle all-in-one Sf16 and chic Prana headphones. And at a recent event at the unique 1900 Building venue in Kansas City, MO, the Italian high-end loudspeaker manufacturer forayed further into uncharted territory with a new, affordable line of Sonetto loudspeakers—and the first installation of Sonus faber speakers in such an ambitiously versatile commercial application.… Read the full article

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Burmester Phase 3 System

By | July 18th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , |

Burmester Phase 3 System

Call it “lifestyle at the high end.” Yes, I know “lifestyle” can be a dirty word in some audiophile circles, but the Berlin-based Burmester brand has never shied away from bringing luxurious aesthetics to its high-end components. Yet there’s always been plenty of substance behind the style. Designed for music lovers who aren’t “typical” audiophiles, the company’s new, unique, and user-friendly Phase 3 all-in-one system adds dramatic flash and panache to the solid build-quality and stellar sonics the German manufacturer is known for.… Read the full article

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MoFi Electronics UltraDeck+ Turntable and StudioPhono Phonostage

By | June 12th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , |

MoFi Electronics UltraDeck+ Turntable and StudioPhono Phonostage

When it comes to audiophilia, great sound starts with the source. And of all the audiophile gear out there, it’s the turntable that stands—or spins—alone as an enduring symbol for high fidelity. From the earliest turn-of-the-20th-century Victrolas and vintage portable Crosleys, to the Linn Sondeks of the hobby’s heydey, DJs’ beloved Technics SL-1200s, and today’s Acoustic Signature Invictus behemoth, in its basic design fundamentals the turntable represents high-end audio culture par excellence. I went to see a Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra performance with my audiophile dad a few weeks ago and asked for a closer look at his cufflinks.… Read the full article

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Inside the AVM Factory and Products

By | June 4th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , |

Inside the AVM Factory and Products

Photos by Jonathan Valin. After last year’s Munich High End show Jonathan Valin, Julie Mullins, and I visited the headquarters of AVM in Malsch, Germany, a few hours by car from Munich (well, it was a couple of hours at 170kph on the Autobahn). AVM may be a relatively new name to North American audiophiles but the company has had a large presence in Europe since its founding in 1986, first within Germany then in Austria and Switzerland, and beyond. Started by two engineers, Robert Winiarski and Gunther Mania, AVM found early success with its M1 mono amp (more than …… Read the full article

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Munich High End Show 2018: Electronics $15k and Up

By | May 30th, 2018|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Munich High End Show 2018: Electronics $15k and Up

Five Most Significant Product Introductions Dan D’Agostino Master Audio Systems Relentless monoblock amplifier Let’s begins with the big one: D’Agostino’s Relentless monoblock power amp was on proud static display (behind red velvet ropes, no less). It’s rated at 1500W (clips at 1640W into 8 ohms) and is said to have no drop in rail voltage to output stage at any power output. Its fully balanced topology cancels distortion, which is 0.006% at full output power. The behemoth boasts 100 output transistors per amp and stays in Class A up to 100W before shifting to Class AB.… Read the full article

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