KLIPSCHORN vintage loudspeakers

September 30, 2018 § Leave a comment

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McIntosh MC611 Quad Balanced Power Amplifier $15,000 Review

September 30, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“The bass in particular exhibiting a muscular sinew to every thrum as Cole’s voice floats ethereally above and at the fore, running point-source on the track for every other instrument to track from, again clustering around his voice in a way that mimics a deep, V-shaped sound stage, but that also completely envelopes and stretches beyond the room. Here, near the end of the review I’m circling back to some of my opening impressions of the 611s: they have an uncanny ability to paint a sonic picture much larger than the four walls you find yourself listening to them in. And that, is one of the deepest points these amps impressed upon me, they can make small, intimate acoustic recordings of a guitar sound like it is being played directly in front of you or recreate the spatial cues of a massive recording studio filled with dozens of artists. The choice is yours, as the 611s will simply and transparently project whatever program you choose to play through them.”

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The making of McIntosh’s iconic amplifiers

September 30, 2018 § Leave a comment

Sonus Faber Aida loudspeaker $130,000/Pair Review

September 29, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“Here, in the same room, Sonus Faber’s new Aida produced some of the best low-frequency response I’ve heard—much like that of Marten’s Coltrane III, which made me realize how much better my room’s bass could be than what I’d been getting from the Wilson Alexandria XLF. The Wilson Alexx fixed that. And now the Aida II—which costs 6.5 times the price of the Amati Homage in 1999—fixes it even better.

The rest of what the Aida does—especially its ability to perfectly hang together without ever revealing a sonic seam (an amazing design feat, considering its considerable complexity), and how well it performed with every type of music I played, or against any checklist of sonic parameters you might come up with—produced the kind of sonic thrills and solid, believable musical performance to which $130,000 entitles you. And my experience tells me that you needn’t fear putting a pair of them in a room of relatively modest size.

Acoustic Signature Double X Turntable $5495 World Premiere Review

September 29, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“Enter the Acoustic Signature Double X. Its faults are few and minor. Play a recording and you will only hear the information contained in the recording as interpreted by the cartridge. I hate to tell you, but there is indeed a correlation between price and performance. Can you spend a lot less and still hear music? You already know the answer. As for me, could I settle for less musical verity? The answer is hell no! I would never stop wondering. Like the Peggy Lee song, “Is that all there is”. The Double X is the vehicle to bring all the escapist enjoyment your musical heart desires. It is made with all the Teutonic precision that allows Mega Cartridges of any price to perform for you.”

AURIS AUDIO NIRVANA HEAD PHONE AMP REVIEW

September 29, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“The Auris Audio Nirvana is one of those amps that performs great with every single headphone you throw at it. It seems to bring out the best of every headphone and especially the balanced output for me is really special.

As said, the Auris Nirvana is the perfect mix of Auris’ previous models and it combines the best of both amps to bring you to Nirvana, a place of perfect peace and happiness. Apart from the fact that it’s maybe too powerful there absolutely isn’t a single thing I don’t like about the amplifier. It again looks stunning and the separate power supply gives it an extra classy look. It sounds like you’re in heaven with a dynamic, wide and very well layered sound with a good amount of warmth and tube smoothness. The Nirvana gets sound (and looks) just right and it simply is impossible not to like.”

AURALiC VEGA G2 DAC REVIEW

September 28, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“Using the Streaming input, I called on Roon’s back-end DSP to upsample all files to DSD512. The Nucelus+ was handled the extra processing without issue but to achieve glitch-free performance, I had to select the Parallelize Sigma-Delta Modulator setting in Roon that enables the use of multiple CPU cores on the Nuclues+.

Being somewhat a purist when it comes to digital playback, I don’t often employ this kind of file modification when listening but upsampling everything to DSD512 sounded very nice and I suspect that many users will enjoy this feature. I heard a little more presence to the midrange as well as a slight increase in the prominence of the bass. The soundstage came on as even larger in terms of front to back measurement with the extra depth coming from a slightly more forward presentation. I felt that converting the PCM and (lower-rated) DSD files to DSD512 lent a more pleasing bloom to the overall sound.”

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