Stereophile7 min letti
Letters
Years ago, I canceled my subscription because of the general East Coast urbanhipster vibe and other claptrap that seeps into equipment reviews. Then, today, I read this in Robert Schryer’s review of the Grandinote Shinai: “The Shinai mostly degassed
Stereophile4 min lettiComputers
Measurements
I measured the Volumio Primo with my Audio Precision SYS2722 system (see the January 2008 “As We See It”1). I used test-tone WAV and AIFF files on a USB stick inserted into one of the four USB Type A ports on the Primo’s rear. I selected the appropri
Stereophile12 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Industry Update
Julie Mullins It’s no secret that the pandemic has forced an unprecedented number of audio show cancellations and postponements, in 2020 and into this year. Now, High End Munich, which was canceled in 2020 and was slated for May 13–16, 2021, has been
Stereophile8 min letti
Book Review
Women in Independent Music UK 1977–1987 Various artists. Various producers. Cherry Red Records. CRCDBOX99. 4CD set and booklet The title of this set—4 CDs and a book—comes from British suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst’s call to arms for women to fight
Stereophile13 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Analog Corner
I feel compelled to repeat here an eerie occurrence I related a while back on AnalogPlanet. I reviewed, in the February 1999, Analog Corner column, the Cartridge Man’s Digital Stylus Force Gauge,1 which back then sold for $299. I still have it, but a
Stereophile3 min letti
Revinylization
The Story of the Grateful Dead, a 14-LP, 8-album collection of Grateful Dead recordings with booklet and deluxe packaging, from Vinyl Me, Please (VMP-A006, 2020), is intended as a curated sampling of the high points in the Dead’s extensive catalog. T
Stereophile10 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Gramophone Dreams
What I categorize as mainstream, dealer-based, fancy-pants streamers and big-speakers audio is actually only the gold-plated tip of a gigantic asteroid-like monolith that extends (underground) from New York to Hong Kong, from the Arctic Circle to Ant
Stereophile12 min letti
Record Reviews
EDITOR’S PICK NEWVELLE RECORDS SEASON FIVE Pablo Ablanedo, Dave Douglas, Sullivan Fortner, Elan Mehler, OWL Trio, Rufus Reid, Carmen Staaf, Patrick Zimmierli Newvelle Records NV025–30 (6 LP) 2020. Reviewed from 16/44 AIFF files. Elan Mehler, prod.; M
Stereophile3 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Linear Tube Audio Z10e (a Follow-up)
In Gramophone Dreams No.36,1 I wrote a rave report describing how well Linear Tube Audio’s Z10e 12W power amplifier/preamplifier/headphone amplifier drove my highsensitivity Zu Audio Soul Supreme and DeVore Fidelity O/93 floorstanding speakers. I was
Stereophile4 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Re-tales
Why is there so much separation between the professional audio and audiophile worlds? Is that separation by design, or even necessity? Is it naïve to believe that more crossover could benefit both sides? On the surface, audiophiles and recording engi
Stereophile28 min letti
R2d4’21
In an ordinary year, the name of this annual feature, published every February since 1991, is a harmless, even amusing joke. In last year’s opening essay, I evoked a heavily armed intruder perusing your record collection late at night and holding you
Stereophile6 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Manufacturers’ Comments
Musical Surroundings commends Michael Fremer for revisiting DS Audio optical phono cartridges and sharing his very positive experiences. We applaud his open-minded approach to new analog playback technologies. If you are in the market for a new $1200
Stereophile16 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Moonriver 404 Reference
Joy. It’s all about the joy. Joy manifests during those moments when the critical mind suspends, the lens clears, and only union between you and your experience exists. When joy arises, time stands still, all sense of separation vanishes, and only wo
Stereophile4 min letti
My Back Pages
It says something about the power of music that some individuals fading into dementia can still recognize the music they knew earlier in their lives. Not to denigrate new music, or music one hasn’t heard before, but our mental jukeboxes award top cha
Stereophile5 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Measurements
When I received the sample of the Moonriver 404 Reference that Jason Victor Serinus had auditioned, serial number DK201002153RE, it rattled when I unpacked it. I removed the top cover and saw that the amplifier had incurred damage during its transcon
Stereophile11 min lettiComputers
Okto Research dac8 Stereo
For his review of the Pink Faun 2.16x music server in the December 2020 issue, Kal Rubinson needed to use a Linux-compatible multichannel D/A processor. A little Googling uncovered the 8-channel dac8 PRO from Okto Research in the Czech Republic, so K
Stereophile4 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Measurements
I measured the Okto dac8 Stereo with my Audio Precision SYS2722 system (see the January 2008 “As We See It”1). Apple’s USB Prober utility identified the Okto as “dac8STEREO” from “OKTO RESEARCH” with the serial number string “000000.” The USB port op
Stereophile2 min lettiComputers
Okto Dac8 Pro Measurements
Kal Rubinson loaned me his 8-channel Okto dac8 PRO so I could compare its measured performance with that of the dac8 Stereo. From the front, the PRO looks identical to the Stereo. On the back, there are four AES/EBU inputs and one USB Type B port. Ap
Stereophile11 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Zesto Audio Leto Ultra II
What sort of audiophile are you? I think of myself as a critical listener, perhaps a purist, definitely an enthusiast, of music and audio, who enjoys both the journey and the nuts and bolts. I like my hi-fi direct, simple, and personal. Also, I guess
Stereophile4 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Measurements
The Zesto Leto Ultra II looks identical to the original Leto preamplifier that the late Robert J. Reina reviewed in April 2014,1 although its two 12AX7 tubes have been replaced by 12DW7s. (The Ultra II also has two 12AU7 tubes.) The manual warns agai
Stereophile12 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Benchmark HPA4
I am certain the quality of life I live is determined by two factors: who and what I give my attentions to, and my ability to observe all that I encounter with an open mind. This approach to living has served me well—especially during this review of
Stereophile4 min letti
As We See It
In my As We See It column in the January Stereophile, I wrote about stories we tell ourselves to make our lives and music better—personal stories like the one about my relationship to my Thorens TD-124 turntable, or about hanging out with your dad (o
Stereophile4 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Measurements
I measured the Benchmark HPA4’s performance with my Audio Precision SYS2722 system (see the January 2008 “As We See It”1), repeating some tests with the magazine’s sample of Audio Precision’s current top-line APx555. As a line preamplifier, the HPA4
Stereophile1 min letti
Stereophile
EDITOR JIM AUSTIN JIM.AUSTIN@STEREOPHILE.COM TECHNICAL EDITOR JOHN ATKINSON SENIOR CONTRIBUTING EDITORS MICHAEL FREMER, HERB REICHERT, KALMAN RUBINSON WEB PRODUCER JON IVERSON COPY EDITOR LINDA FELACO FOUNDER J. GORDON HOLT COVER PHOTO ERIC SWANSON A
Stereophile10 min lettiComputers
Volumio Primo
Is this all there is to it? I had done some superficial investigations of Volumio online, after the Primo was suggested to me for review. I had learned that the Volumio player software is available for several hardware platforms including Windows, Ma
Stereophile1 min letti
Stereophile
EDITOR JIM AUSTIN JIM.AUSTIN@STEREOPHILE.COM TECHNICAL EDITOR JOHN ATKINSON SENIOR CONTRIBUTING EDITORS MICHAEL FREMER, HERB REICHERT, KALMAN RUBINSON WEB PRODUCER JON IVERSON COPY EDITOR LINDA FELACO FOUNDER J. GORDON HOLT COVER PHOTO ERIC SWANSON A
Stereophile5 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Measurements
I tested the Marantz Model 30 with my Audio Precision SYS2722 system (see the January 2008 “As We See It”1). I looked first at its behavior via its line inputs, mostly with the volume control set to its maximum of “0.0,” then at lower settings. (The
Stereophile1 min letti
Adrianne Lenker
4AD 4AD0302CD (Auditioned as 16/44.1 stream on Qobuz; also available on LP). 2020. Adrianne Lenker and Philip Weinrobe, prods.; Philip Weinrobe, eng. Songs and Instrumentals are a pair of solo albums, sold as a set, by Adrianne Lenker, singer and gui
Stereophile7 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Letters
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. That is a famous tenet of physics. I have seen many claims by hi-fi wire makers and even reviewers that seem to me to be indeed extraordinary. We’re told that a few feet of power wire tightens bass
Stereophile12 min letti
Acora Acoustics SRB
I’m a sucker for materials, whether it’s finishes for loudspeakers and other audio equipment, a shoe’s fine, supple leather, a crisp cotton shirt, or a cozy cashmere scarf. Apart from their inherent sensuousness, materials can make a difference in th
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