AGD Production Vivace GaNTube Monoblock Amplifiers $15,000 Review

November 12, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“All in all, I can’t say enough good things about these amplifiers. While auditioning them, I couldn’t wait to share my findings with you. I truly believe that these are one of those disruptive products that can change one’s mind about how much better high-end audio can get—which is rare these days. I urge you to check these amplifiers out. Especially if you are really into the tube sound but don’t want to fuss with tubes going bad and high power bills. If you’re like me and you are a music addict, your system is on all day and it’s quite nice when you can simply hit play (using Roon of course!) without the entire song and dance warm-up process.”



November 6, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“The Wells Signature portrays the rest of music honestly, without the embellishments of tube gear. What many reviewers call “tube magic” my friend Joe Jurzec calls “enhancements,” additions to the signal that weren’t present at the performance. Of course, this effect will depend on your system. If your equipment tends toward the analytical, you may benefit from a little softening; but that is a deficiency in your system, and you shouldn’t try to correct one error with another.”

Linn Selekt DSM: First Listen $5,200 Review

November 6, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“During the listening sessions I really liked what I heard from the Selekt DSM in all configurations. Connected directly to Wilson Sabrina speakers the Selekt had tight control of the loudspeakers and delivered a very clean sounding source that hadn’t been compromised prior to hitting the speakers. The Selekt DSM sounded far superior to another brand’s product there for demonstration. In addition, when Linn engaged the Space Optimization feature on the Selekt, the sound quality was elevated even further. The newest version of Space Optimization is available on the Selekt DSM and given what I’ve heard in my own listening room in the past and what I heard in this system, it can be very advantageous. Space Optimization is digital done right and used for great benefit rather than using technology just because one can. ”

Pass Labs XA200.8 Monoblocks $44,000/pair Review

November 5, 2018 § Leave a comment

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‘It’s worth mentioning how well the 200.8s work with any source. I’ve used these monoblocks with about two dozen different sources, balanced and single ended with no problem. Using the Pass XS Pre and the Audio Research REF 6 (the only preamplifiers I have that sound equally good through the RCA and XLR outputs) with 20-foot runs of Cardas Clear cable, I could not notice any difference in sound quality. So rest assured, whatever your source it will partner up with these amps perfectly.

And it’s the same for the output. Whether using the most power hungry Magnepans, treacherous ESLs, etc., there was no speaker that the 200.8s had the least bit of difficulty with. I’ve never used an amplifier more benign in that sense than any of the Pass products. They are impervious to speaker and cable differences, making it all that much easier to hear said nuances. This is why I love using their amplifiers as a reference – they let everything else through.”

Uniti Atom Review $3500 Review

November 4, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“As others have reported there are a couple of killer features in the Uniti streamer. Chromecast support is one of them, but maybe turn off Google analytics; you do not need to give them stuff! I think it is terrific to get music from other sources like SoundCloud significantly expanding your horizons for music discovery. The Bluetooth support is a fun extension to allow others to play their music while in your home. The Atom is a Goldilocks device; the porridge is at the right temperature, and the bed is comfortable.”

Sprout 100 Review

November 3, 2018 § Leave a comment

Doshi Audio Monoblock V3.0 power amp $35,995/pair Review

October 29, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“I soon discovered how much the bias changed, depending on the time of day. Between 5 and 10:15pm, tubes biased for 190mV would drop to as low as 183mV. Conversely, tubes rebiased to 190mV at dinnertime would later rise to 196 or 197mV. Because each tube seemed to respond differently to voltage fluctuations, vigilance was essential to determine the correspondence of bias to sound. Ultimately, I contacted our locally owned utility company, which is considering installing a more powerful transformer that will provide more stable voltage during times of peak demand.
I wanted to discover a setting at which the tube-like warmth and sweetness I’d heard during Nick Doshi’s visit and at audio shows could be toned down a bit. With the bias centered at around 180mV, I was blown away by the air around Jamie Barton’s mezzo-soprano in the Sibelius song “Var det en dröm?” (Was It a Dream?), from All Who Wander (24-bit/96kHz WAV, Delos DE 3494). The way Brian Zeger’s piano hung in space on a three-dimensional soundstage was very special. Captivated, I continued. With Mahler’s Rückert-Lieder, the Doshis communicated Barton’s willingness to venture into the depths of emotional emptiness. I sat mesmerized by her instrument and artistry, hanging on every note.


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