From the 2009 archives: My small part in the Musical Fidelity story – by Howard Popeck

Hi Howard. What’s your part in the Musical Fidelity story. And what do you think of their current offers? Thanks. Ronnie Hmm. Interesting question. Thank you. In a nutshell … It’s all too easy to associate the brand with the man (or woman) behind the brand. Easy, but unproductive. The point being that currently, and […]

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MERIDIAN: Their 101, 103 & 103D amplifiers revisited and …. the elusive 102

Gentlemen – what can you tell me about the Meridian 101/103D amplifiers from the 1970s? They look like a bargain on e-bay. The 101 series preamps are tremendous value on the used market today fetching ridiculously low prices given the clarity and transparency of the reproduction. They use DIN plugs throughout, other than later versions […]

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Audiophile interview: Ms. Nathalie Fougues, senior designer at newly emergent French audio maker Why Not

Hello Nathalie. How did your interest in music reproduction start? My interest in music is natural; I am as thrilled by the music of nature as I am the sounds of people and their music. From birdsong and wind to industrial rhythms; all sounds interesting me. For a few years I studied music theory and […]

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Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Geoffrey Owen, main-man at Helius Designs

Hello Geoff, and thank you agreeing to be interviewed about social media in our shrinking audiophile world. So …. my first question; what’s your perception of the importance or irrelevance of Facebook in reaching out to potential audiophile buyers? Ah. Hmm. Howard, I suspect that you’re interviewing the wrong person. When I started writing novels […]

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Howard Popeck wonders if his vinyl records are filters?

You might be surprised by the fact that many new vinyl releases today actually are recorded, mixed and mastered digitally before being transferred to vinyl. Are you? Perhaps not; in which case, no matter. It probably won’t negatively influence what follows here. Many studios today are digital based and it’s easier for musicians to record […]

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HARBETH: Alan Shaw in conversation with Howard Popeck

Hello Alan and thank you for finding the time to respond to the following question: Why is there such diversity between audiophile values and the audio engineering establishment’s values? “This can be explained by an almost total lack of appreciation that physics – basic high school physics – governs every single aspect of audio bar […]

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TOWNSHEND ENGINEERING: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Max Townshend

From our archives : Howard Popeck: Not many people know you’re a qualified engineer. What engineering discipline was your first degree? Max: Bachelor of Engineering, Electrical, specialising in communications. Where did you study? University of Western Australia So what happened after that? I accepted a commission in the Royal Australian Air Force where I was […]

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Why use good headphones?

Aggravating a dealer or two! Whether dealers like it or not, there are certain things that headphones can achieve which even the world’s finest stand-alone hifi systems can’t. There’s no magic to this. It’s purely the fact that the driver mechanism of the headphone is within an inch or two of the receptive areas of […]

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Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Mr Phillipe Bernard, the driving force behind French audio maker Atelier de Synergie Acoustique

Hello Philippe. How did your interest in music reproduction start? It started when I was very young! First, listening to my father’s big valve radio and then to his mono record player (I lightened the phono cartridge…) In 1970, I bought a turntable, the Braun PS500 – the best in Europe! It cost me four […]

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SOLEDGE: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Mr. Raphaël Bini, the driving force behind French audio maker Soledge High End Wireless Audio System.

Hello Raphaël. How did your interest in music reproduction start? Well, I suppose everything starts with music listening during as a youth, with a father playing music, either on a piano or guitar, or on his HiFi system. Then, my father being an electrician and repairing TV sets, meant that I grew up with electronic […]

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MANA ACOUSTICS / JOHN WATSON: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Mana Acoustics’ John Watson – the complete interview

How did your interest in music reproduction start John? I guess I was always into music from a very early age. My Father was an electrical and mechanical engineer and used to build his own Hi-Fi back in the Fifties, so music played a big part in my formative years. You’re probably best known, even […]

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HELIUS DESIGNS: In conversation with Howard Popeck – part three

Geoffrey – what is your response to the statement ‘How many channels do you think it takes to make a music listener happy; One. Mono’s fine. I’ve never heard anybody bitch about Louis Armstrong, saying, “I would enjoy it if it were only stereo” Now this question is interesting from several perspectives and I’m going […]

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HELIUS DESIGNS: in conversation with Howard Popeck – part two

Geoffrey ….. When it comes to listening to what you’ve designed, do you worry that you can find yourself liking something which is actually wrong? How do you keep yourself on track? In the context of tonearms it’s difficult to imagine what I could do to make it sound ‘wrong’. This part of the system […]

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KINGREX: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Audiophile maker and design-house KingRex makers of the T20, DDC, UC 384 USB DDC and the JB3

Regarding the inventor. How did their interest in music reproduction start? During my high school days, pop music industry was rapidly booming and I was, like other teenagers, very obsessed with it. Yes, it was eighties. The first thing I did when I returned from school was to turn on the radio and listen to […]

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HELIUS DESIGNS: in conversation with Howard Popeck – part one

Geoffrey ….. why is there such diversity between audiophile values and the audio engineering establishment’s values? I’m not sure there is – indeed, I would argue that, more often than not, audio engineers are just audiophiles who have taken their interest to the next level and gone pro. Perhaps I should start by suggesting that […]

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PAUL BURTON: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Burton Somervell – marginalised magnificence

Howard Popeck writes: This is, as far as I know, the final interview with the late Colin Howard, former production director of BS Meridian, founder of London HiFi Services, innovator, designer and the co-founder of Burton Somervell speakers. I conducted this interview some years ago and only discovered it yesterday. It has never previously been […]

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ARGENTUN: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Mr. Richard Szafraniec of newly emergent Polish audiophile company Argentum

Preliminary note: We’ve been both amazed and delighted by our readership’s positive response to our series of interviews with innovative small, intellectually agile makers from outside of the traditional countries associated with state-of-the-art audio / stereo. In particular our series on newly emergent French makers. Today we turn our attention to Polish organisations you might […]

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LFD AUDIO: A New Service Exclusively For LFD Audio Community Members:

An increasing number of calls I receive are requesting that I apply my specialist LFD Audio knowledge and experience to the question of surplus LFD Audio equipment on the auction sites and if it is a a good / appropriate match for the loudspeakers they are using, or are thinking of buying. I am happy […]

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LFD AUDIO: The Practical Reality (Unpalatable Truth) About Resale Values Of Pre-Owned Audio Equipment. Part #2 Or …. What Price Will You Actually Get For Your Surplus Lfd Equipment?

Good question, right? Right! Since 2011 I have been monitoring the AVERAGE ACHIEVED prices for pre-owned LFD Audio equipment SOLD PRIVATELY. Here are some examples. If what you are looking for isn’t listed here please send me a private message and I’ll give it some thought. Linestage LS1 £244 Linestage LS2 £490 Any other LFD […]

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The Practical Reality (Unpalatable Truth) About Resale Values Of Pre-Owned Audio Equipment. PART #1

It’s not unusual for owners wishing to dispose of surplus equipment to expect the highest possible prices. Unfortunately they are, in the main, unrealistic in their expectations. The owner’s perception of value may well (a frequently does) differ significantly from the buying public’s perspective. There are as I see it the following facets contributing to […]

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