What’s best: the Audeze LCDi4 (US$2495) or the Noble Audio Katana (US$1850)? The answer depends on who is asking. For the indoor listener with no-one to disturb with an open-backed planar, the choice can fall to sound quality alone — the LCD-i4 — but for the everyday train/plane traveller, the open-backed design of the Audeze is a no go. We need an IEM that won’t leak sound and will simultaneously passively isolate us from external noise intrusion — the Katana.… Read the full article
Standmount loudspeakers. Many US show exhibitors stay away because experience says attendees don’t take ’em seriously enough. “They walk in, they clock the standmounts and they walk straight out,” said one Californian electronics manufacturer at an RMAF long gone.
If standmount loudspeakers have an image problem, it wasn’t evident at the 2017 Warsaw AV Show. Numerous exhibitors opted for the easier room integration afforded by smaller boxes. Lest we forget: room integration is more critical to sound quality than upstream electronics.… Read the full article
by Eric Shook
Another Unassuming Room Wows Again.
Small rooms with small speakers don’t always draw the biggest crowds, and that’s a really sad thing, because more than a fair share of my favorite rooms at audio shows are the under 60 watt amplifier, bookshelf speaker, and simple system variety. There’s a good market for bedroom or second room systems out there. Also, systems for people who don’t want the imposing presence of audio equipment as it pertains for living room decor.… Read the full article
A little vague and a somewhat brief – that’s the news from Italian digital audio manufacturer Aqua Technologies who this week have announced the forthcoming availability of the xHD – an update to their flagship Formula DAC.
The xHD update will see the same in-house developed R2R modules but marshalled by all new firmware code running on a nearby Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA).
Via Facebook and email newsletter, Aqua assert that “This update has required significant optimization of code for the main FPGA of R2R ladder DAC which has improved sound quality.”
The update will also see a brand new USB board that marries a (second) ‘re-clocking’ FPGA to an upgraded XMOS receiver chip: the xCore XE216.… Read the full article