October 19, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“The other big punch-pulling was with regard to where Selekt DSM sits in the Linn echelon. In it’s standard guise, it’s better than Majik, but it’s more expensive than Majik. The full-up Aktiv Akurate DSM system is better than Selekt DSM, but it’s also a very narrow, very expensive Linn-related option. But the big issue is that bit in-between, where Selekt DSM takes on an Akurate DSM with Akurate amps in a passive context. Now it gets nuanced. The full Katalyst-enabled Selekt DSM with its brace of on-board Class D amps gets extremely close in performance terms to the Akurate DSM and power amp combination, and in many respects outguns the older platform. And yet, Selekt DSM is cheaper than Akurate in this setting. In fairness, I can’t see many Akurate users side-shifting to Selekt DSM, but I also can’t see many freshly minted passive Akurate users now that Selekt DSM exists. It’s that good.”


Shazam Is Now Completely Ad-Free (Thanks to Apple)

September 25, 2018 § Leave a comment

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‘Apple Music vice president Oliver Schusser commented positively on the acquisition saying, “with a shared love of music and innovation, we are thrilled to bring our teams together to provide users even more great ways to discover, experience and enjoy music.”

Shazam helps its users identify over 20 million songs per day, so that’s a lot of ad revenue that Apple is giving up in favor of a different strategy. Shazam will be ad-free on both iPhone and Android, though Android users have access to Google’s superior Sound Search.”


September 14, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“UMIN X1 is a straightforward contemporary digital high-end audio apparatus. It can be obtained in the black or silver finish. The review sample as you’ve most probably already identified on the photographs arrived in a very nice Batman’s’ black tint. I like the modern, stealth look of the dark LUMIN X-1. When in action, the small monochrome blue display will indicate the song info and a circle marks the duration of the song. This ring can be tracked even from a few meters away. ”


September 10, 2018 § Leave a comment

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As a complete system, the AVM CS 5.2 is a remarkably versatile unit, providing access to internet radio, streaming services (TIDAL and Qobuz are supported) and USB digital, together with the conventional gamut of hi-fi sources. As a one-box solution for a minimalist, the AVM CS 5.2 has few peers, and the flexibility of its back panel connections makes it equally valid as a core component in a separates system, where its DAC and amplifier performance cede little to rivals at the likely price points. Add in the cool, understated good looks and impeccable build quality and it’s hardly surprising that AVM have a winner on their hands.”

Roon Labs Nucleus+ music server Review

August 17, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“Who knew Jason would have the B-52’s in his library? “Rock Lobster,” sourced from Tidal and the NUC, had excellent impact, with good low-frequency extension. Streaming the same track from Tidal via the Nucleus+, perhaps there was a touch more authority in the bass. Perhaps. With “Every Day I Have the Blues,” from the Morrison-DeFrancesco album, the sound through the NUC was less authoritative, less open. However, the comparison was unfair: Though both versions were 16/44.1, I was streaming from Tidal with the NUC, and playing a WAV file from local storage with the Nucleus+. Nevertheless, while changing to the Tidal stream with the Nucleus+ reduced the difference between the servers, the Nucleus+ sounded still a tad tidier.”

AURALiC Aries G1 network streamer review

August 16, 2018 § Leave a comment

Mojo Audio Deja Vu Music Server with Roon

August 4, 2018 § Leave a comment

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“But five years is a long time in the digital world. Much has happened. I did see and listen to various new alternatives including NUCs (‘Next Unit of Computing’ mini-computers) which were smaller, lighter, typically less expensive, and more energy efficient than a Mac mini. Like a Mac mini, a NUC is ‘headless’, e.g., you do not need to connect a monitor or keyboard to it except for setting it up with software and such. Once set up, controlling music play is accomplished by using a wirelessly connected app on a mobile device or tablet. I also checked out serious commercial high-end music servers, and I have been impressed at times. Suffice to say it has become clear that the Mac mini is on the way out; there are quite a number of alternatives.

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