Dan D’Agostino Momentum Integrated Amplifier w/DAC & Audio Streaming World Premiere $50,000 Review

February 18, 2019 § Leave a comment

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“My concentration changes focus throughout the piece, in sort of a meditative way as it ebbs and flows throughout the piece. I found this happening when listening to the MLife play my favorite power orchestral pieces. Regardless of how boisterous the music might become, my focus changes throughout the piece, focusing on different instruments, different sections of the orchestra, and to its soloists. As it does in real life. The dynamic distance the MLife can create with this large group of instrument is second to none in my experience, regardless of whether I’m listening to the internal DAC fed by the Ethernet connection or a source connected through an interconnect, digital or analog. The internal DAC of the MLife was the best at conveying the characteristics inherent to the MLife itself. And sounded the best out of all the sources. Yes, there will always be something special about playing LPs, and the MLife did not diminish this pleasure. But to have digital playback sound as good as the MLife could was new to me. And quite a pleasure.

One of the pleasures of a high-end system is being to step back in time, and thus come as close as humanly possible to what bewildered audiences heard in the very early 19th Century when Beethoven’s 3rd Symphony, or Eroica, was premiered. We’re hearing modern instruments, of course, but that’s not my point. At the time of its premier it was thought as too “structurally rigorous”, and at nearly 45 minutes, much too long. It was quite a ground-breaking piece of music. Now it is regarded as one of his most celebrated works, and for good reason. It probably surprises no one that my favorite movement is the Adagio, the second movement, which Beethoven titled “Marcia funebre”, or “Funeral March”. The DSD file of the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, conducted by: Kurt Masur Symphony is not only well read, it is a great recording. Via the MLife’s internal DAC it is amazing to hear how it enables the sections of the orchestra to occupy distinct areas within the huge soundstage, projecting itself between, behind and to the sides of the speakers, making the speakers very difficult to locate when closing my eyes.”

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