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What the hell is “high end audio” anyway?

By | August 4th, 2019|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: |

What the hell is “high end audio” anyway?

After 40 years of being an audio enthusiast, consumer (and someone covering this world for the last 17 of those years) I think we have a fundamental confusion in what we’re talking about.

To me, “high end audio” means something condescending, something unapproachable, something you can’t have. It means the secret handshake, the elite club.

I’d rather it not be that way.

In the world of cars, you have cars that get you from point a to point b reliably, like a Toyota RAV 4 or a Kia Soul, that are perfectly good cars (I’ve owned both of em) and they get the job done with no fuss.… Read the full article

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The JBL L-100 Classic

By | June 6th, 2019|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: |

The JBL L-100 Classic

In 1982 I wanted three things: A Nikon F2 with motor drive, a BMW 320i and a pair of JBL L-100s. I got two out of three. I needed the Nikon to earn a living, and a new 3-series was about 13k, well equipped. But I did get a pair of L-100s and they rocked.

But then I became an audiophile and I was too cool to have JBLs. I bought a pair of Magnepans and got serious about hifi.

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Why I don’t always listen to as much new music as I should

By | April 5th, 2019|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: |

Why I don’t always listen to as much new music as I should

I’m a hifi reviewer, with an excellent music system at my disposal and thanks to Tidal, Qobuz and Roon, I pretty much have the world’s biggest record store available 24/7. That’s better than the flying cars they promised me when I was in high school – really, it is.

So why don’t I explore new music every minute of the day?

In all fairness, I am still sampling as much as I have time for, but at this point in my life, day to day can get in the way more than I’d like.… Read the full article

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Motorcycle Money

By | March 16th, 2018|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: |

Motorcycle Money

A recent TONE Facebook post had a number of people pissing themselves in anger over a $5,300 Louis Vuitton record case that’s not even available anymore.

They all screamed “stupidity,” because after all, who would spend $5,300 on a box that holds only 50 records? (to be fair it does have an extra compartment for some CD’s and “accessories.”

Would I buy one? Probably not at $5,300, but I might for $2,000 – it is pretty cool. For those interested, LV will still make them through their custom shop, but that’s not the point.… Read the full article

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McIntosh Announces MA252 Integrated…

By | November 2nd, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: , , , , |

McIntosh Announces MA252 Integrated…

Today McIntosh announced the release of their new MC252 integrated amplifier, to a wide range of polarizing comments around the world.

With an MSRP of $3,500, this is a pretty kick ass little package. The approximately 12 x 18 inch footprint makes it about the size of a PrimaLuna amplifier, so it’s not going to take up a ton of space wherever you end up placing it, and at only 28 pounds, nearly anyone can lift it into place – pretty cool for McIntosh.

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Farewell, Gérard Chrétien

By | October 3rd, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: |

Farewell, Gérard Chrétien

I just heard the sad news that Focal’s Gérard Chrétien passed away on Sunday, October 1.

I had the pleasure of meeting him the first time about five years ago when I toured the Focal factory, with my friend John Bevier. Gérard was a wonderful host, giving me quite the tour, making sure I knew everything there was to know about Focal, making sure I fully understood the unique blend of technology, craftsmanship and passion that makes them tick.

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With Great Respect…

By | September 18th, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: , , |

Jeff Dorgay

With Great Respect…

Cleaning the closets a bit today, I ran across the first issue of The Absolute Sound.

From Sping of 1973. Damn, I’m getting old. I remember reading it at my neighbor, longtime friend, and sometime TONEAudio contributor Todd Sageser’s house. I used to look at the mighty Phase Linear 700 amplifier on the shelf, with its gigantic, glowing, power output meters in the mall at Schaak Electronics and wonder what it would be like to have that much power.

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Vinyl is better, well…kinda

By | September 2nd, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: , , , , , |

Vinyl is better, well…kinda

With all the horror surrounding last months article in The Wall Street Journal, on “the vinyl boom being over,” it appears that records are still being made and records are still being sold.

Certainly, tons of turntables, cartridges and phono preamplifiers are being produced as well. So is the sky falling or is it not?

But what a lot of enthusiasts, hipsters, and industry pundits (especially the ones that are old enough to have been around for the first go of the vinyl trip) seem to always forget is that just because something is imprinted on a slab of vinyl doesn’t mean it’s automatically awesome, it’s automatically better than a digital recording and that “digital sucks,” because it doesn’t.… Read the full article

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Bummer mix…

By | August 16th, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: , , , , |

Bummer mix…

The only thing I love more than cassettes is schmaltzy sci-fi movies, and I think most of you would admit that Guardians of the Galaxy, parts one and two are pretty silly. They had me with the Carfox as badass thing. But this is not a movie review.

TONE contributor Paul DeMara (also a mega cassette enthusiast) and I seemed to have the same epiphany to get our hands on the movie soundtracks practically the same day.

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R.I.P. Gregg Allman

By | May 27th, 2017|Categories: Tone Audio|Tags: , |

R.I.P. Gregg Allman

It’s sad news today to hear of Gregg Allman’s passing. It seems like only yesterday that I saw Allman put on an incredible performance at Portland’s Rose Garden, and we published Jaan Uhelszki’s intriguing interview. That was December of 2010. It is crazy how the time flies.

So, for those intrigued to view a snapshot, we pay homage both to Ms. Uhelszki and Mr. Allman today…

Gregg Allman never planned on becoming one of America’s most recognizable white blues singers. In fact, in the early days of his career, it was his brother Duane who did the singing in the Allman Joys, one of the rst incarnations of the bands that the brothers put together prior to founding the Allman Brothers Band.… Read the full article

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