You won’t see it in the nighttime happy snaps of Berliners huddled in groups at Christmas markets, sipping on Glühwein. And you won’t see it in the opulence of KaDeWe’s seasonal displays, nor in Friedrichstraße’s understated lights. At this time of year, Berlin says Auf Wiedersehen to the sun until March to deliver day after day of slate grey skies and snow unable to make good on any threat. The temperature barely makes it above 5C (41F). Daylight vanishes at 3.30pm after showing up at 9am only to spend the day kicking around the house in its pyjamas.… Read the full article
Dynamically challenged? Being referred to as dynamic speakers makes the breed distinct from planars like classic MartinLogan, Quad and Magnepan. Following nomen est omen, one might conclude that dynamics would be a dynamic speaker’s greatest forté. But speaker designer Pat McGinty (of Meadowlark) explains why they’re more challenged than you might think.
He begins by explaining what creates the notion of slow bass. “Three common causes are poorly aligned vented enclosures, cheap drivers and elements that cause poor electrical damping.… Read the full article
Tell the Average Joe not versed in the double trouble of electrical noise and jitter that you dropped US$350 on a USB cable and s/he’ll likely question your sanity. Audiophiles know what Joe does not: that not all USB connections are born equal.
For this commentator, there’s no doubting the Curious USB cable’s audible superiority to vanilla wire – some of which doesn’t even meet the USB spec. The Curious also knocks out other audiophile-aimed offerings like AudioQuest’s Carbon. Old Yella lends music more pep, more detail and a better sense of space but without straying into the Carbon’s occasional brightness — a handful of reasons why the Curious has been my goto USB wire for the past three years.… Read the full article
Boxen Gross. Big speakers? Not for this commentator’s first visit to the Kreuzberg hi-fi store of the same name. Instead, I’m here to meet one Guido Schuetze – Brand Ambassador for Linn in Germany, Austria and Switzerland – for an extended introduction to the Scottish company’s first foray into a more mainstream-friendly all-in-one device: the Selekt DSM.
At its heart, Linn’s Selekt DSM is a streaming DAC – with Ethernet, USB, 2 x TOSLINK, 2 x coaxial and HDMI ARC inputs – plus MM/MC phono stage with options for integrated 50wpc (into 8 Ohms) in-house-designed Class D power amplifier and/or upgraded Katalyst DAC.… Read the full article
I read your doorstop article, and on a total whim I ordered these:
I put one on my Schiit Gungnir Multibit DAC and one on my First Watt M2 amp (both in my main system) and one on my Schiit Modi Uber 2 DAC (in my office system). The improvement was immediately obvious: better image stability and focus, and more “air” around the images. … Read the full article
Swing and Playmate. Channelling the ghost of Hugh Hefner, Melbourne’s Burson Audio’s have announced two new models: the respectively-named digital pre-amplifier (US$399) and 2-watt headphone amplifier w/DAC (US$399).
The Swing sports a line-level output to run as a DAC and variable gain RCA outputs for pre-amplifier duties. Inside, a sextet of Burson’s ‘Maximum Current Power Supplies’ (MCPS) each juice six different stages of the DAC.
However, with its headphone output occupying more internal real estate, the Playmate gets one less MCPS and a single set of variable gain RCAs.… Read the full article
I’m the chairman of the board.
I’m a Lincoln monologue,
I’m livin’ like a God,
— Iggy Pop
Hi-fi racks – we audiophiles use them to organise our components, to more attractively display them and, sometimes, to minimise the negative influence of vibrations, which not applied to mechanical devices like turntables but also electronics. Our amplifier and/or DAC’s circuitry can, to varying degrees, translate (airborne) mechanical vibrations into deleterious electrical noise – that’s microphony at work. The fewer the vibrations reaching our gear, the lower the electrical noise generated and the better the sound quality.… Read the full article
“Stop me, oh, stop me
Stop me if you think that you’ve heard this one before
Stop me, oh, stop me
Stop me if you think that you’ve heard this one before
I still love you, oh, I still love you
Slightly, only slightly less
Than I used to, my love”
— The Smiths
Sometimes we want steak, other times only sushi will do.
And so it goes with loudspeakers: we might lust for (full-range) floorstanders but either our room’s acoustics and/or our aesthetic sensibilities say otherwise: only standmounts can be accommodated.
Like food, it’s better to have too little than too much.
In our latest episode of the Darko.Audio podcast, Jeff Dorgay of TONEAudio and I discuss small loudspeakers with our informal chat romping through the following products (and more):
47 Labs Lens
Atacama Nexus 6i
DENSOTen Eclipse 510Z MKII
ELAC Debut 2.0
ELAC Uni-Fi UB5
Genelec 8341 ‘The Ones’
Michael Green Room Tunes
Martin Logan Motion 4i
Paradigm Monitor SE Atom
ProAc Tablette 10/Signature:
Raidho Acoustics D1.1
Sonus Faber Sonetto I
Wharfedale Diamond 9.1 / 10
A must listen for any apartment dweller or standmount loudspeaker enthusiast:
Prefer your amplification big n ballsy? Introducing a revision of the first stereo power amplifier from Florence’s Gold Note. Inside its 22kg aluminium and steel chassis, the PA-1175 MK2 sets a 640VA custom toroidal transformer to work on four ‘matched’ output transistors per channel for a fully-balanced circuit that nets 200wpc into 8 Ohms, extendable to 520wpc when bridged into mono.
According to the Italian manufacturer, a proprietary “BIAS constant current generator” ensures high-current delivery, low distortion of <0.01%THD @ 20Hz-20kHz and a slew rate – “the maximum rate at which an amplifier can respond to an abrupt change of input level” – of 20V/μs.… Read the full article