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Ether 2 and Diana Phi: CANJAM at RMAF 2018

By | October 6th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

The well-dressed twenty-something’s eyes were wide open and he was rocking back-and-forth in his chair with a look of euphoria on his face.

“You gotta hear this!” He yelled at his friend who was hovering over his shoulder checking the track listing on the laptop that was part of the system feeding the new MrSpeakers Ether 2 headphones he was demoing.

They quickly swapped positions and queued-up the track again.

I glanced over expecting to see some rock, indie, electronica or EMD song title.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018: MrSpeakers Ether 2 and Abyss Diana Phi

By | October 6th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

The well-dressed twenty-something’s eyes were wide open and he was rocking back-and-forth in his chair with a look of euphoria on his face.

“You gotta hear this!” He yelled at his friend who was hovering over his shoulder checking the track listing on the laptop that was part of the system feeding the new MrSpeakers Ether 2 headphones he was demoing.

They quickly swapped positions and queued-up the track again.

I glanced over expecting to see some rock, indie, electronica or EMD song title.… Read the full article

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HIFIMAN launches Arya, Limited-Edition HE5se, Jade II ElectroStatic Headphone System and R2R2000 Streaming Audio Device at RMAF

By | October 4th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Wasting no time in making new product announcements, HIFIMAN has hit the ground running at speed in the mile-high city with multiple launches of their latest products. The company rolled four major announcements today, so let’s touch briefly on each one based on their press releases and then follow up with more detail after RMAF.

Let’s start with the new Arya headphone which is a planar-magnetic over-ear that adapts HE1000 V2-series driver technology at a lower price point ($1,599 USD).

“Our HE1000 series is an audiophile favorite.… Read the full article

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InnerFidelity Podcast No. 2

By | October 2nd, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Welcome to the second edition of the InnerFidelity Podcast which features an interview with Jason Stoddard, co-founder of Schiit Audio.

In this podcast Stoddard discusses the basics of audio design and what it’s like to run a company with explosive growth. He teases with the musings of a man tasked with keeping up with the technological curve, creating the next best thing and holding on to the reigns of a market that reshapes itself every few years.

Even though budget-audio product seekers within the personal-audio community can be fickle at times, Stoddard continues to drive the market forward with new options and constant innovation.… Read the full article

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RMAF 2018 with InnerFidelity

By | October 1st, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

The Denver airport is one of the strangest I’ve ever encountered, with a bizarre history rife with grist for online conspiracy-theorists and it’s a haul from the airport to the Denver Marriot Tech Centre, but once you’ve navigated those minor obstacles one of the best audiophile trade shows in North America awaits you.

I’ve been hitting RMAF for a number of years now and if you’ve never been, I find that there are manufacturers, distributors and high-fidelity designers that seem to only go to Denver as far as North American shows go, so it’s always a special one for me to attend because I get to see so many great people I just wouldn’t see anywhere else in the world.… Read the full article

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MrSpeakers Ether C Flow factory mod kit

By | September 28th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Dan Clark of MrSpeakers is a difficult man to get a hold of as he’s constantly working.

Few people in the industry spend as much time as Clark honing the bleeding edge of planar-magnetic headphone design as he does and the company always has something in the works. Whether it’s a new model, or upgrades for existing customers.

Clark has been very busy indeed on improving his existing Ether C Flow and is the type of engineer and designer who takes feedback from buyers and the headphone community at large seriously, which is why he’s got a newly designed upgrade kit in the works for the Ether C Flow and sent me a pair along with the kit so that I could compare the differences and report back to InnerFidelity readers.… Read the full article

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Sonarworks Reference 4 Headphone Edition Review

By | September 26th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Life in the Age of DSP

I recently received my pre-order Audeze Mobius, a collection of crossfeed software such as NX Waves, Goodhertz Canopener Studio and the subject of this review: Sonarworks Reference4 software.

To put it mildly it’s had me thinking about the place of DSP and correction in the land of audiophiledom.

In the recording studios and venues I work in, correction, while not ubiquitous, is quite common in the professional audio realm. However, just because a recording studio does it, does not necessarily mean it is right for every context.… Read the full article

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64 Audio Launches N8 Custom In-Ear Monitor

By | September 20th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

There’s more than one Vancouver along North America’s Left Coast. The one where I live is located in what we affectionally refer to as The Great White North because of our snowy winters, the other is farther south from me in Washington State and is where IEM manufacture 64 Audio calls home.

Considering our proximity, I figured I’d ring up the company and talk with founder Vitaliy Belonozhko on the phone to ask him about the company’s latest release the N8 or “Nate” as it’s pronounced according to 64 Audio, unfortunately he wasn’t available for comment today, but I’m hopeful he’ll get back to me soon so I can add a short Q&A with Belonozhko to this post regarding collaboration trends in headphone design.… Read the full article

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Quad ERA-1 review Part 1

By | September 17th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

Comparisons.

They’re as abundant as tomatoes at the grocers in conversations about everything from automobiles to watches, but are they always necessary?

Do you enjoy your steak frites any less if you haven’t tasted them at the other restaurant across town that’s well known for them?

I sincerely doubt it.

Yet, there are some who seem to want a comparison when doing reviews: Reviews of anything.

I get it. I like to make comparisons, but I’m not sure if they are paramount to a well-done review (steak metaphor), especially in high-fidelity, as many products can stand on their own.… Read the full article

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Cayin N5iiS review

By | September 12th, 2018|Categories: Innerfidelity|

The Landscape

You may recall reading John Darko’s ongoing series dubbed The DAP Days Are Over  in which he opines that dedicated portable audio players are becoming less and less relevant. It’s a viewpoint I encounter often. When great sounding smartphones like LG’s V30 exist, why would anyone still lug around a heavy brick specifically for playing music? 

I completely understand that point of view, yet I still think much can be said for the dedicated player – at least in certain situations.… Read the full article

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