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About Rafe Arnott

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So far Rafe Arnott has created 686 blog entries.

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2019: Parting Thoughts

By | September 21st, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|

One question that always seems to be raised around audio shows in the United States is “was this audio show a success?” It seems to me the correct answer to that question depends on both who the intended response is for, and how do they gauge success from their vantage point.

Bowers & Wilkins launch P-Series Wireless Headphones with PX7 Flagship

By | September 20th, 2019|Categories: Innerfidelity|

With an eye to keeping the technology wheel spinning in their favor, Bowers & Wilkins announced today that they are launching a new series of wireless headphones, that for North America include; the PX7 Flagship, the PX5 and the PI3 in-ear monitors.

All are wireless, Bluetooth-enabled and capable of streaming 24-bit/96kHz resolution files. The PX7 and PX5 thanks to their Qualcomm aptX Adaptive codec that is enhaced for audio quality and dynamically adjusts for latency among other things.

The PX7 features 43mm drivers, a frequency response of 10Hz~30kHz, input impedance of 20-kOhms, weighs just 310 grams thanks in part to carbon-fibre composite arms/chassis, and can go up to a claimed 30 hours of play time.Designed with aptX Adaptive Noise Cancellation, “enhanced Wear Sensing technologies” which enables the PX7 to pause and resume music playing when either earpiece is lifted on or off your ear, it also comes with USB-C charging (also doubles for wired audio connectivity via 3.5mm adaptor), and will retail for $399 USD.… Read the full article

Amazon HD Music launches, But Questions Remain

By | September 19th, 2019|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Amazon launched Amazon Music HD this Tuesday, and it promises to be quite interesting. The service is available for Prime Subscribers for $12.99 USD and non Prime subscribers for $14.99 USD. There is even a family plan available for $19.99 USD, or an additional $5 on top of your Amazon Music Unlimited subscription. Amazon Music HD is available in the USA, UK, Germany, and Japan, and offers albums in qualities up to 24/192. 

This is fairly big news for the audiophile world, that, up until recently has been served by Qobuz, and a few other services such as Deezer which has a limited catalogue, or TIDAL which only offers 16/44.1 and MQA files.… Read the full article

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2019: Rupert Neve Designs and Wavelength Audio

By | September 19th, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|

Studio legend Rupert Neve stepped into the personal audio market with the RNHP Precision headphone amplifier not too long ago, and the success of that launch doesn’t appear to have swayed him away from that audience.

Amazon Music HD launches: Cue “Flight of The Valkyries”

By | September 17th, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|

It was only a matter of time until, arguably, the biggest service provider on the planet brought Thor’s hammer down on the competition.

Crystal Castles S/T Review and the Nakamichi Dragon problem

By | September 16th, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|

Bands with “Crystal” in their name. That’s the LP section at Redcat Records where I stumbled across the self-titled album Crystal Castles, around which these musings are based.

RMAF 2019: The Wrap-up

By | September 16th, 2019|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2019 was an interesting journey. From a personal perspective, I had a great time, seeing friends, people like Jameson Mourafetis of F1 Audio, Eric Franklin Shook of Part-Time Audiophile and many others.

It coincided with a road trip through the Rockies on I-70, which is a gorgeous ride if you ever find yourself in a place to drive it. The Under-40 industry dinner hosted by Shook was spectacularly well attended and was truly a blast, drawing headphone and two-channel enthusiasts, press, dealers and manufacturers.… Read the full article

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2019: Schiit Audio and Sony

By | September 14th, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|

One of the biggest surprises from the weekend was not only the appearance of the international megacorp Sony, but also the product brought along in tow. Of equal interest was the most recent update to Schiit Audio’s mid-tier Bifrost 2 DAC partnered with Salk Sound.

RMAF 2019: Part Four with Etymotic & Final Audio

By | September 14th, 2019|Categories: Innerfidelity|

One of the final booths I stopped at, almost by accident, was the Etymotic Research booth. I’ve never really heard much from them that particularly grabbed my attention, but one of my friends urged me to go there. “They’ve got a new, reasonably-priced IEM that’s actually really good,” he said. What the heck, I figured I had time. I’m sure glad I did stop by, because I would have missed some exciting and excellent finds if I hadn’t.

The newly released ER2SE and ER2XR are priced at $160 USD and represent slight variations on a similar tuning.… Read the full article

Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2019: Primare and Bryston

By | September 12th, 2019|Categories: Audiostream|