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So far Julie Mullins has created 46 blog entries.

Munich High End 2019: Seen and Heard

By | May 24th, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , , |

Munich High End 2019: Seen and Heard

Editor's Note: The intended format of this report is a photo essay. My full, more traditional text-driven report on Electronics and sounds at the show will be forthcoming. Scroll and enjoy! Lifestyle Demos Like it or not, "lifestyle" audio continues to emerge, not only in the form of new products such as all-in-ones, but also could be seen in more serious audio setups from venerable companies who sought to create a more pleasingly home-like environment inside their demo rooms. Color Rules The use of vivid color—burnt orange and red in particular—for serious audio components' materials and/or finishes stood out at …… Read the full article

AXPONA 2019: Electronics

By | May 1st, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

AXPONA 2019: Electronics

It’s no secret that AXPONA has been experiencing a growth spurt. Last year marked a move to a new venue, the Renaissance Schaumberg Convention Center Hotel, in Schaumberg, IL, outside Chicago. In scope, attendance, and number of exhibits, it is giving RMAF in Denver a run for the money (though that show will also be held in a new, much larger venue this year, the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center). Although attendance was strong and the vibe positive, AXPONA is one helluva huge show.… Read the full article

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AudioQuest Niagara 1000 Low-Z Power Conditioner

By | March 14th, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: |

AudioQuest Niagara 1000 Low-Z Power Conditioner

Power is something we take for granted. We plug our gear into the wall outlets, and it works just fine. But when it comes to audio signals, plain old AC wall power just doesn’t do justice to hi-fi systems. Some nonbelievers might be thinking I’m spouting voodoo. But those who haven’t considered the old-school nature of our utility companies should take heed: What you can’t see (or believe you can’t hear) can harm—or at least get in the way of—your getting the most from your stereo system.… Read the full article

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PS Audio Sprout100 Integrated Amplifier

By | February 19th, 2019|Categories: Absolute Sound|Tags: |

PS Audio Sprout100 Integrated Amplifier

Very early on in my TAS tenure, in Issue 259, I had the pleasure of reviewing the original Sprout integrated amp, and it delighted me so much I bought the review sample. So when I found out there was an updated and upgraded Sprout100, naturally I was intrigued. After reading and editing so many reviews from TAS writers, then later having the opportunity to peruse their reviews of the next-generation versions of the same products, I now get my turn to take that route.… Read the full article

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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

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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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