June 2019
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Stilling Heartbreak from Weinberg

By | June 22nd, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Lithuanian conductor Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla’s (b. 1986) rendition of Polish-Jewish composer Mieczysław Weinberg’s (1919–1996) final symphony, which is dedicated “to the memory of those who were murdered in the Warsaw Ghetto,” has all the earmarks of a life-affirming Record to Die For. Rarely have I heard such hallowed silence, absolute control, and reverence for life and beauty from a conductor so young. For those willing to explore the mysteries of exquisite sadness amidst suffering, this recording cries out.

Weinberg’s six-movement, 54-minute Symphony No.… Read the full article

Mark Levinson No.5805 integrated amplifier

By | June 20th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Mark Levinson isn’t known as a budget brand, and most people would not consider $8500 a budget price for anything short of a new car. One could argue, though, that Levinson’s new No.5805 integrated amplifier ($8500 with DAC and phono stage) is a budget component—combining high performance and build quality with a price tag that’s moderate by hi-fi standards. Plus, there’s a lot of functionality in one box.

Say you want to build a very good audio system in the fewest possible steps and boxes.… Read the full article

Recording of July 2019: Takin' Off

By | June 20th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Herbie Hancock: Takin’ Off
Herbie Hancock, piano; Freddie Hubbard, trumpet; Dexter Gordon, tenor saxophone; Butch Warren, double bass; Billy Higgins, drums.
Blue Note Records 84109 (LP), 1962, 2019. Alfred Lion, prod.; Rudy Van Gelder, eng.; Don Was, Cem Kurosman, reissue prods.; Kevin Gray, reissue eng. AAA. TT: 39:01
Performance ****
Sonics ****½

From 1962 until now, and counting all formats except downloads, there have been no fewer than 62 releases of Herbie Hancock’s debut album, Takin’ Off—more than any of his other albums except Maiden Voyage (1965) and Head Hunters (1973).… Read the full article

In L.A.: The North American Debut of the DeVore O/Reference Loudspeaker System

By | June 20th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

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Common Wave Hi-Fi is proud to host John Devore for the North American debut of his long awaited Orangutan Reference speaker system.
Wed, 06/19/2019
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How Does the Music Make You Feel?

By | June 18th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Stereophile‘s first change in editorial leadership in 33 years calls for a restatement of the magazine’s core principles.

Stereophile was founded in 1962 by J. Gordon Holt, on the premise that the best way to review an audio component is to listen to it. Following Holt as editor, John Atkinson turned that premise into a viable concern—a real magazine—and, in 1989, added a regular suite of measurements to Stereophile‘s otherwise subjective mix.

With his commitment to listening first, JGH created a new genre of audio publications; many others followed in its wake, of which only a handful survive.… Read the full article

Kuzma Stabi R turntable

By | June 18th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

I’ve been the proud owner of a Kuzma Stabi S turntable and Stogi S tonearm since 2001. The combination was an impulse purchase, made after seeing and hearing it in action at Stereophile‘s Home Entertainment Show at the New York Hilton. Even under unruly show conditions, the Kuzma player created rock-solid images and played music with serious jump factor. With its matte brass finish, tubular bell looks, and overtly industrial design, the Slovenian-made Stabi S/Stogi S was steampunk before steampunk.… Read the full article

An Audio/Video Event in Silverdale, Washington

By | June 17th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

On 26 June at 6pm, Kitsap AV in Silverdale, WA, will be hosting an event at which representatives from several manufacturers—Greg Topp from KLH, Dave Kakenmaster from GoldenEar, Stan Beil from Audioquest, Matt Silberstein from Market Share, and Jordan Gerber from Bob Carver Corporation—will be showing off new products from their lines. Local Rock artist Tony Reed, from Mos Generator and Devils Child Records, will be here as well. Chris Deering, from his new company Deep Dive AV, will be sharing his expertise in audio/video calibration.

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The July Issue is Here

By | June 17th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

The July issue—now in mailboxes and on newsstands—features the world’s first review of Mark Levinson’s fully loaded (and affordable by Levinson standards) No.5805 integrated amplifier, reviews of audio products from CH Precision (a big amplifier), Vanatoo (affordable active speakers), PrimaLuna (a new flagship preamplifier), and Kuzma (their Stabi R turntable). in Analog Corner, Michael Fremer dives deep into Charles Kirmuss’s ultrasonic record bath; In Listening, Art Dudley listens to three variations on the BBC minimonitor theme; in Music in the Round, Kal Rubinson auditions what may be the most sophisticated multichannel preamp ever sold for domestic use.… Read the full article

Getting Real

By | June 14th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

If you: 1) live in an apartment, condo, townhouse, dorm, or share a house or apartment with someone;

2) are going to, have recently graduated from, or have never gone to college and are not working at all, are working a minimum-wage job, or have just gotten your first job but have loans, Visa/MasterCard/American Express bills, a brand-new car payment, and can’t afford to eat anything but macaroni and cheese anyway;

3) love music and want to get into hi-fi but can’t imagine spending $9000 on a pair of speakers, $2750 on a preamplifier, $7950 for a pair of monoblock power amps, $7900 for a CD transport, and/or $14,000 on a CD processor because you don’t even know what a CD processor is, don’t even make $9000 a year, can’t tell the difference between the Yorx stereo system your dad bought for you when you were in junior high and the ProAc Response Whatevers you saw in the local hi-fi store last weekend when you and your friends decided to see if anyone at Stereophile knows what they’re talking about in the first place; or

4) want your music to sound “good,” whatever that means, because ever since you started reading Stereophile, you’ve gotten your priorities all confused and/or challenged, and you didn’t even know you had priorities—then you just might be living in the Real World.… Read the full article

Theta DS Pro Generation V digital processor

By | June 14th, 2019|Categories: Stereophile|

Some high-end audio companies develop reputations for having a particular “sound.” This reputation develops when every product the company makes has a similar sonic flavor. These products appeal to certain customers who like the company’s sound, and who therefore tend to stay with that company’s products year after year. Unfortunately, such an approach can limit a manufacturer’s appeal to a broader audience.

This situation has been especially true for Theta Digital, a pioneer in advancing digital playback, and one of the first US companies to market an outboard digital processor.… Read the full article