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The New MS500 Streamer and MCD600 SACD/CD Player from McIntosh Labs

By | May 17th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , , |

In perhaps the longest break between PR releases for McIntosh (which really isn’t that long at all) a new set of digital extravagance has been issued to the masses. Two new sources in the form of a streamer and disc spinner are due out for shipping in May for those in the market for some top flight gear.

The new SACD/CD player is dubbed the MCD600 at will retail for approximately $7k. In addition to both the previously mention media, the new 600 will also handle audio files via the USB flash drive port on the front panel including DSD.… Read the full article

Rafe Arnott to Become Editor of InnerFidelity and AudioStream

By | May 16th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead, Audiostream, Innerfidelity|Tags: , |

Yes, that is correct. Audio-Head contributor Rafe Arnott is the new editor for both InnerFidelity and AudioStream, and we couldn’t be more happy for the man. Rafe has helped out Audio-Head for the past few years and was instrumental in elevating our show coverage to new levels. His sharp wit is matched only by his keen eye for photography and the new position is a perfect fit for his many talents. We wish him the best of luck in the path in front of him and will miss his copy and imagery here very much.… Read the full article

Chord’s New Hugo TT 2 DAC & Headphone Amplifier

By | May 14th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , , , , |

It hasn’t been that long since everyone’s favorite UK audio maker released its Hugo line of desktop DACs and headphone amplifiers. The reception to the original lineup was firmly positive, starting with the original portable Hugo and then on to the TT (table top). Now at the open of Munich’s high end audio show, Chord has announced a follow up to the TT, with plenty of new tech and spec along for the ride.

The Chord Hugo TT 2 (£3,996, that’s the British pound) comes ripe with new digital filters from the prolific mind of digital designer Rob Watts on top of a Artix 7 FPGA chipset.… Read the full article

Tyll Hertsens Retires from Inner Fidelity

By | May 12th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , |

Its been a long trip for Tyll Hertsens of Inner Fidelity. One of the early men on the headphone scene, he helped craft the hobby into what it is today – first as a manufacturer and then as a prolific journalist. He was the measurement guy, and one of the few for years. He was also a joy to see at shows, always a positive attitude and plenty to share with the community in a sometimes competitive industry.

Now the next trip for Tyll is quickly forming on the horizon.… Read the full article

Astell & Kern Refreshes The Product Lines With A&norma and A&futura – SR15 & SE100

By | May 10th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Never one to let a product cycle get too long in the tooth, Astell and Kern announced today the beginnings of two new product lines to accompany the A&ultima (SP1000, $3.5k) portable digital player in a three tier, more concise organization of high fidelity products. Following a A&*** format and launching with a new player each, the A&norma SR15 will be priced at $699 with the mid tier A&futura landing at $1,699.

If you take a closer look at the norma above, you might notice that the screen appears to rest at an angle offset from the sides of the player.… Read the full article

The New Dan D’Agostino Relentless Mono Blocks

By | May 10th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , , , , |

Dan D’Agostino has always created some of the prettiest amplifiers in all of high end audio and his newest creation appears to follow suit in a similar fashion – but this level of pretty doesn’t come cheap. The new Relentless Mono’s come home at $250k a pair, but some of that budget no doubt has to go to pay for the casework as the entire chassis is machined from solid aluminum with copper inlays.

The unique heat sink featured on the Relentless started with Dan’s Momentum series and claims superior heat dissipation, even during maximum output.… Read the full article

Audirvana Comes To Windows 10

By | May 9th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , |

While not every audiophile is an Apple lover (many share a downright distaste for the brand) the Macalishish company has certainly laid its hands over many aspects of high fidelity digital playback. And even though there are a few great free and premium players for other platforms, many of both the hardware and software sides of digital coin have catered to the simple driverless, high resolution options available for Macs.

Today that changes for the once exclusive Audrivana player. Our positive experiences with the software in both improved sound quality and ease-of-use have landed it as the go-to player for many test runs, reviews and even late Saturday nights at the lab here.… Read the full article

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Merrill Audio’s New Element 118 Monos

By | May 7th, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , , |

Just in time for the high end show in Munich, New Jersey-based Merrill Audio has announced a new line of monos called the Element series starting with the Element 118 flagship ($36k). The new power amplifier pushes 800 watts into 8 ohms, 400 into 8. External aesthetics include rose gold faceplate/acoustical dampers and a touch screen interface.

The 118 will lead the charge for the new lineup but smaller options will also be introduced (116, 114) that will also include trickle down tech included in the flagship piece.… Read the full article

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AXPONA 2018 – That’s a Wrap

By | May 2nd, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , |

By Rafe Arnott

AXPONA 2018.

Three days, and three nights.

72 contiguous hours.

I mean, sure, there were only 22 literal hours of exhibition to clock at the venue, but I mean c’mon, even that should be plenty of time to see it all… right? Not even close when it comes to a monster audiophile show the size that AXPONA 2018 morphed into with brand new digs at the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Centre. This venue seemed to stretch as far as the eye could see, and you need not only your big-boy pants to pull up, but your big-boy shoes to lace up.… Read the full article

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ZMF Headphones – AXPONA 2018

By | May 2nd, 2018|Categories: Audiohead|Tags: , , , |

Zack from ZMF headphones is going for something different. His drivers use a less common biocellulose driver and he sports a unique affinity for wood selection, offering his newest piece the Auteur in basic Teak ($1.6k), but that’s just the start.

There will be a rotation of optional select breeds to pick from, starting with limited edition Blackwood ($1.9k) that’s already close to sunset. There is also new cables and a pair of amplifiers, which ZMF partnered with Amps and Sound to sell.… Read the full article

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