April 19, 2020 § Leave a comment
“As far as the sound of the Rega P10 goes, it’s pretty flawless. If I were to nitpick, the P10 is merciless in revealing any and all transient information, similar to playing digital sources but with a certain additional alive-ness that may not fit every system or taste. I realize some of this observation might be due to the Dynavector, so take this comment as provisional. And don’t expect the Rega P10 to have any of that upper bass-low mid resonance which gives a warm yet smeary sound that can be flattering in some systems. Personally, I’d rather start with as much information off the record as I can get and adjust the upstream components accordingly.
For any serious, vinyl oriented audiophile searching for the kind of performance usually found at the BMW i8 level, but at an i3 price (approximately $5,495 without cartridge and $6,695 supplied with Rega’s Alpheta 3 MC cart), the P10 offers more than just great value. For a lot of folks, this might be as good as it gets.”
April 13, 2020 § Leave a comment
“The Gold Note Mediterraneo is a fine flagship turntable from this Tuscan firm. Unlike some other turntables it doesn’t demand learning the black arts of suspension set-up or any other arcane optimisation. It’s a fit-and-forget vinyl spinner for those seeking excellent build, elegant looks and sumptuous sound quality. Put your feet up, splash Aperol Spritz on ice and admire the Florentine Renaissance.”
March 23, 2020 § Leave a comment
” Perhaps more importantly though, it’s an enjoyable experience as much as it’s a physical and a cerebral one. You understand the intent of the musicians and composer fairly quickly, and the combination of first-rate detail, an articulate and expressive vocal, wide and deep soundstage when needed, good dynamics, fine coherence, and lots and lots of bass depth coming out of a background noise that falls to almost nothing, helps bring that intent to life, but not in a po-faced or dry manner. The odd part in this is surface noise; the Technics combo doesn’t shy away from noise or mask it in any way. It’s just that surface noise comes and goes so fast, it barely registers. Leading edges do the same and the sound of percussion is, as a result, almost eerily ‘right’, but it’s that handling of surface noise that really highlights just how good this turntable system really is.
March 21, 2020 § Leave a comment
“With Rymden’s Reflections and Odysseys [Jazzland] spinning at 45rpm (it sounded a bit sluggish at 33.3!) the double bass took the soundstage by storm with lots of texture and some lovely vibrato playing from Dan Berglund and deep bass notes from Henrik Schwarz’s synth. There was still plenty of space for the piano to get lyrical in; this turntable gives good melody, that’s for sure. Playing the next track ‘Bergen’ where the piano is stronger in the mix, made me think that the sound had improved since the beginning of the side, possibly a setup thing or maybe a ‘stylus warm-up situation’ even though this wasn’t the first slab of vinyl to be played on the occasion. Perhaps I was just relaxing into the music itself!
The Acoustic Solid Wood Round MPX is a substantial and beautifully made German turntable at an attractive price. It is also the most straightforward to set up high-mass record player I’ve encountered, with no need to tweak and fettle, which is quite an achievement. It gives you the effortless warmth of vinyl with a good dose of bass to boot, which is hard to achieve with less substantial alternatives. It is also a statement turntable for less than bonkers money, and that I suspect will make it very popular.
March 14, 2020 § Leave a comment
“I listened to all types of music while auditioning the Pro-Ject X2, not only for casual listening, but as a source for reviewing other types of gear that was passing through this system for audition. The $1495 Chord Huei phono stage was a great match for this turntable. I don’t think one needs to spend this much on a phono preamplifier to enjoy the Pro-Ject X2, but if one can afford it, I think it would be a great match. But again, one can still enjoy the X2 with a more modest phono stage. The Chord Huei made for an excellent review tool, and made it so I could accurately hear what the Pro-Ject X2 was sonically made of.
In the Huei review I talk about which LPs were in the record rack adjacent to the system, which contained albums by David Bowie, Killing Joke, Joy Division, King Crimson, and Michael Legrand. This list is a relatively limited one, and I suppose reveals what type of mood I was in during this review period! These records also revealed that the Pro-Ject X2 was able to handle very dramatic changes in amplitude due to the macrodynamic swings that are present on almost every album I played. The X2 proved that it was an excellent tracker, as I didn’t even think about whether or not this turntable / tonearm combination would be able to track these records. The records spun, I listened.”
March 1, 2020 § Leave a comment
“The synergy of the mmf-9.3 Walnut’s remarkable quietness, balanced and natural tonality, superb resolution, expressive drive and pacing, make it an overachieving entrant in this price range. Though I’ve yet to hear their flagship offering, the mmf-11, this penultimate offering from Music Hall, especially in this beautiful walnut finish, offers an incredible combination of exhilarating performance, strikingly good classic aesthetics, and most importantly, exceptional value. While there is quite a bit of competition in this class, the Music Hall mmf-9.3 distinguishes itself as a top performer, one that most LP lovers will find remarkable enough to be their “forever” turntable! Most highly recommended.”