HP’s PERFECT VINYL COLLECTION #001: Spirit ‘Spirit’ 1968

Out of my thousands of vinyl pressings the thought struck me that it might be interest, for me and perhaps for some of you to try and list my favourite 100. A big task, but not an unpleasant one. But for sanity’s sake I have to set a few limits. First, an era restriction. So, […]

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“Early Levinson was wonderful – the 28 and 25/26 pre’s with the 29, 27.5 and 23 power-amps had all the tube attributes without the foibles.”

    Editor’s note: Really? Not in my experience! I sold my ML-28 Mark Levinson preamp within days of buying it second hand. I was hoping for the sheer magic of the ML-6a and ML-7. Sadly by that time, that magic was nowhere to be seen, felt or heard. Yes the built quality was impeccable. […]

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Alberto Reyes Plays Bach, Chopin, Franck

I first encountered the cultivated and masterful pianism of Alberto Reyes on a hard-to-find 1995 Connoisseur Society release devoted to Liszt’s Verdi Paraphrases, and later had the pleasure of reviewing his all-Schumann double CD set in these pages (6/11). His newest release may be his best yet. Unlike certain pianists who view the Bach-Busoni Chaconne […]

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“I found some low sensitivity speakers(80 to 86dB)sounds much better at higher volume. Is this their inborn characteristic?”

A reader writes ….. “I found some low sensitivity speakers(80 to 86dB)sounds much better at higher volume. It seems to be a threshold volume for this type of speakers to sound right. At low volume, the tonal balance is usually no good. Examples are ATC passive monitors and my pioneer S-A4SPT-PM. Higher sensitivity speakers such […]

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QUAD: 303 treble anomalies?

Wonder if the brains trust has any advice for me. Just taken delivery of a lovely Quad 303, restored by Rob at AmpLabs (who’s been a perfect gent throughout) to match the original design but with old components swapped for new. I’m almost completely delighted with the results – warmth, intimacy, believability, it really draws […]

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Columbia Studio Albums Collection 1955-1966 (19CD Box Set) by The Dave Brubeck Quartet

CD1 1. Audrey 2. Jeepers Creepers 3. Pennies From Heaven 4. Why Do I Love You? 5. Stompin’ For Mili 6. Keepin’ Out Of Mischief Now 7. A Fine Romance 8. Brother, Can You Spare A Dime? CD2 1. Ode To A Cowboy [2011 Remaster] [Version] 2. Summer Song [2011 Remaster] [Version] 3. Yonder For […]

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Essential Listening: The Standells – Live On Tour – 1966 (CD)

Besides releasing two classic longplayers and many more singles (including the smash, “Gloria”), touring/behaving badly all across America and appearing on TV shows like ‘Upbeat’ and ‘Where The Action Is’, the Shadows of Knight also ruled at suburban Chicago’s hands-down hippest teen club, The Cellar. Over the decades, their Cellar performances have become the stuff […]

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HARBETH: Amp for Harbeth P3 ESR Croft, Brio R… ?

Having down scaled slightly and dropping on these little gems, I’m looking for suggestions for an amp to get the best out of them. So far I’ve tried my EAR 859 – beautiful but not quite capable of driving the bass solidly, a sugden a21A kindly lent to me, again beautiful if slightly restrained and […]

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Reconstructing Bach’s Magnificat, with John Butt and the Dunedin Consort

Bach’s initial Christmas Day Vespers as Thomaskantor was an overt display of music-making, with his Magnificat taking pride of place. For the Dunedin Consort’s new recording, John Butt has reconstructed the whole service as Bach might have celebrated it in 1723, writes David Vickers Continues HERE More music like this HERE

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The Yardbirds – Glimpses 1963 – 1968

Three years in the making an Official box set of rarities and unheard material. It also documents the bands transition from RnB stalwarts in the beginning into the Pop world and ultimately on to more experimental sounds and lastly to become a type of blueprint for what was to become Led Zeppelin. Features the most […]

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Mike Bloomfield – From His Head to His Heart to His Hands

Produced and curated by Al Kooper (who played with Mike Bloomfield on Bob Dylan’s Highway 61 Revisited sessions in 1965 and the Super Session album in 1968), From His Head to His Heart to His Hands premieres a wealth of previously unreleased tracks–including Bloomfield’s first demos for John Hammond Sr.in 1964 and his final public performance, climaxing with a track from […]

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John Lennon was paid in chocolate biscuits: 10 things we learnt from Whispering Bob’s memoirs

Whispering Bob Harris’s memoir is full of funny tales about the Beatles, The Stones, old jazz stars in medieval orgies and Manchester United. Martin Chilton writes:  Robert Plant said of BBC Radio 2 music presenter Whispering Bob Harris that he “champions the unknown, the obscure and the legendary with equal zest and detail”. Here are […]

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Bösendorfer (now Brodman acoustics) VC 7 test review by Howard Popeck

  Note: This is an extract from the original text of the review of an entire system by me that was published in Hi-Fi News a couple of years back. I’ve looked at it again – and I wouldn’t change a thing! Introduction I’m in favour of system reviews rather than A/B testing. I’m not […]

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HARBETH: Spare parts, ISO9001, ethics etc.

The thread starts …. This tread discusses Harbeth’s policy on spares and after care. Many companies have a business model where their products are relatively less expensive than ours and their spares parts division makes a significant contribution to their overall profitability. We design and manufacture for the longest possible service life – typically 20 […]

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