FUNK / PINK TRIANGLE & BREUER: A few observations

  Howard – one of…no, the best turntable I ever heard was a special fully funked LP12. Sure it sat on a mountain of Mana, and was part of an awesome system…but it really out-shone the original modified (Ninja) LP12. So..if the Funk Firm could transform a Sondek like that, surely their own decks would […]

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CAD / Computer Audio Design: Their 1543 MKII DAC

They say ….. The world’s finest dedicated USB digital-to-analogue convertor has been upgraded. Computer Audio Design has announced a refit to its unique CAD 1543 DAC, now using proprietary EMI/RFI reduction materials, improved DAC circuit boards, single-crystal UP-OCC internal wiring and refined power supply filtering, to create the CAD 1543 MKII DAC. It retains the […]

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TO BE … OR NOT: Bi-amping?

PAUL MCGOWAN … There once was a day when power amplifiers struggled. The mainstays, tube amplifiers, couldn’t handle low frequencies well but had immaculate highs. The newcomers, solid state amps, produced prodigious bass but struggled with the high notes. None handled both. That’s when some bright person decided to combine the best of both worlds. […]

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Ask Mr. H: MERIDIAN: Their 101/105 pre power combination?

I read your comments about vintage Meridian equipment, very interesting. I have a 101 preamp and twin 105 power amps, and I’m amazed at how they still sound after 25 years. Such wallop – as close to live as I’ve come across. I recently heard Musical Fidelity’s much-praised A5 pre/power combination – very smooth and […]

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Aha! moments

Paul McGowan writes ….. Few things in life are as satisfying as an aha! moment: the solving of a tough problem, the solution to a puzzle, getting your stereo system dialed in. One of the more common aha! moments for people is when they try easing up on speaker toe in. Most speakers don’t want […]

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HIDDEN TRAPS

Paul McGowan writes: I have always found it curious when someone says to me “I am 100% vinyl in my system. No use for digital audio whatsoever.” Or, “I never listen to vinyl, too dated, sounds bad.” Or, “I have sold all my CD’s and gone just to SACD.” It’s curious because these extremes many […]

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SPENDOR: Compared to Avalon, Vandersteen and others

For a long time, I was on the Great Speaker Hunt, and started or added to a number of threads, particularly about the speaker makes referenced above, all of which I lived with. I was struggling with one of the real problems with (some) high end audio (as I see it): Hearing crisp highs with […]

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PS AUDIO: No power amplifier is more sensitive to the incoming AC power as a class D

Paul McGowan ….. No power amplifier is more sensitive to the incoming AC power as a class D and that makes it critical to run it off the best power you can manage whether that’s from a Power Plant or perhaps you’re lucky enough to live out in the country with out any neighbors mucking […]

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Ask Mr. H: Benchmark DAC

Have you heard a difference between the DAC performance of the Benchmark USB DAC and the Benchmark DAC-1 preamp and if so, which one is superior?  I have done this experiment on a number of occasions and have very rarely heard any difference at all. It might have been my imagination. And so it is […]

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WHITE NOISE: The outside edge

Reader Tom Richard writes “As a long-time bass player, I’ve always used cymbals to judge music reproduction. The worst systems give you white noise; the best present so much information. Can you hear the difference between standard wood tip drumsticks and nylon-tipped? The amazing differences between cymbals struck near their edge, in the middle and […]

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BENCHMARK MEDIA: Some observations about the Benchmark DAC1

IMO the DAC1’s true potential can only be realised when the extra bells and whistles (XLR output attenuators, physical volume pot) are switched off, and it is fed a digital signal that is attenuated, with dither at 24 bits, and upsampled well (e.g. SoX with -v) to 110.6kHz. If used via XLR, also the XLR […]

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PS AUDIO: Modulators

  In our ongoing series on class D amps and listener fatigue I made the point (hopefully) that the input stage is a critical path element in the chain – because if you can’t get this part right then everything else that follows only contributes to making things worse. It’s like putting bad gas in […]

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