Thoughts invited re a curious phenomenon re pre-owned BS Meridian gear

 Howard Popeck writes: There has been for some while a curious trend re the sale prices achieved for BS Meridian pre-owned equipment. The 500 series and 600 series do attract rather high prices whereas the G-series rarely do. Even the comparatively modest 200 series, now circa 28 years olds, achieves surprisingly high prices. The 101/105 […]

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ROB BUCKLAND: Howard Popeck interviews this Musician | Composer | Arranger | Educator

ROB BUCKLAND is internationally acclaimed as one of the most distinctive and versatile Saxophonists of his generation. Appearing as concerto and recital soloist, with his Equivox Trio (with pianist Peter Lawson and percussionist Simone Rebello), and with the Apollo Saxophone Quartet, Rob performs throughout the UK, Europe and Japan. Recent highlights include the British Premiere […]

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HARBETH: Driven by Marantz Pearl Lite?

I’ve bought from Harbeth the P3ESR and I ask myself if I should buy another amplifier. My listening room is about 9m² and I do not play loud! What do you think about  the brand LFD MKIII. Now I use a Marantz Pearl Lite. Shall I stay at Marantz or consider an LFD Zero LE […]

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“How can modern R&B-singers even pick up a microphone, after hearing this man?”

  Howard Popeck writes:  Quite so. Went to EVERY gig within the M25. Loud? I’ll say. Had to start to learn to lip-read as a consequence. Hard-faced birds, broken glass on the floor, broken teeth and broken noses in the loo – but not on me! ‘ Trrific’ – as the great man would say. […]

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Ask Mr. H: STAX 2020 + NAIM CD5-X

I have a Stax 20/20 basic system which I have acquired from a friend recently. My problem is when directly connected from my Naim CD5X CD player (RCA output) I get some distortion in sound as I crank up the volume to higher level on the energiser. My interconnects are QED approx £20 according to […]

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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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It’s not the recording process itself that is to blame. It’s …..

INTRO: The catalyst for this discussion is both the on-air and off-air discussions between the Lost Immortals team on our FM (streaming too) Sunday show @ 17:00 GMT. Our radio station control room is very far from hi-fi; more like no-fi. Cheap as chips speakers, bygone era headphones and so on. And yet, and yet […]

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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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Blues rock for the kiddies; Peter Green he ain’t!

Howard Popeck writes: Equilibrium – by Aynsley Lister / Lauded by some as the broad shoulders on which the long-awaited Blues revival sits, here what I wrote shortly before giving the CD away. Gave it away ‘cos there were so many for sale – for pennies – on eBay.  To me, not quite the blues […]

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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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From our archives: The amplifier designer hall of fame / “They were the ones that saw the market niches …”

Editor McCauley in conversation with Howard Popeck: So there are more figureheads than gifted designers. Is that what you’re saying? Not quite like that. In my direct personal experience I’ve met more figureheads than gifted designers. But that’s not to say that my experiences are representative of the entire industry. One has to take into […]

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MICHELL ENGINEERING: Synchro turntable test review

Howard Popeck writes: The Synchro was mid-priced turntable inspired by the original GyroDec, but with an inverted-pendulum suspension and a glass platter. It looked dazzling 20 years ago, and it still does today. In the John Michell tradition, all the working parts are exposed, superbly engineered and impeccably cosmetically finished. It has a cast-ring sub […]

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JAPANESE SERIOUS LOUDSPEAKERS: Apart from the Yamaha NS1000? How about the NS2000?

Gentlemen; other than the Yamaha NS1000, have the Japanese every built credible loudspeakers? I guess you are speaking historically, right? Well, yes, they did. Sony in fact. In the very early 1980s they released the SSG1 Series 2. It wasn’t cheap. Around £200 from memory, which was a small fortune then. However … This isn’t […]

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Neil McCauley (editor in chief) talks to Howard Popeck (features editor) about his respect for some vintage analogue receivers.

Q: So Howard, you’ve from time to time mentioned, in the context of receivers, the “good old days”. What does that mean? In the “good old days” the electronics for a hi fi system was all in one box that usually included a power amp, preamp and radio tuner. They were very convenient. Q: Convenient, […]

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MICHELL ENGINEERING: Synchro turntable test review

Howard Popeck writes as follows: The Synchro was mid-priced turntable inspired by the original GyroDec, but with an inverted-pendulum suspension and a glass platter. It looked dazzling 20 years ago, and it still does today. In the John Michell tradition, all the working parts are exposed, superbly engineered and impeccably cosmetically finished. It has a […]

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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 […]

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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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Ask Mr. H: MICHELL ENGINEERING: Orbe versus old Pink Triangle PT2, LFD Audio copper reference, SME 4 – and more

Hello. I am using an Orbe with and Audio Origami breathed-on Zeta arm with a Benz Glider plus an LFD Audio copper reference arm cable. I also have a PT2 which is in need of quite a bit of tlc – I mean to get it working properly – would you expect it to be […]

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From our archives: The amplifier designer hall of fame / John Curl, Mark Levinson (again), Dr. Richard Bews, Bob Stuart (again)

Hmm. Okay So anyway, a little while later were ushered into the listening room and were confronted by man-sized monoliths we later came to know as The Apogee, from Apogee. And a pair of the previously mechanically buzzing power amps, powered up with the preamp at max without a source playing and mechanically silent. Seeing […]

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From the archives: The amplifier designer hall of fame / Chris Bryant / Antony Michaelson (again) / Allen Boothroyd,

So no, we aren’t coming to the end. Not yet. (Long pause) Okay. I used to sell the Albarry monoblocs. Damn fine sound. Clever designer. Still sounds good today. Not a hero as such but worthy of an honourable mention. Then whoever designed the A&R A60. A truly great product. In its way a classic. […]

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A POINT OF VIEW: A new route to market for beleaguered and/or greedy audio makers? Part #2 of 3

It can’t happen here! Oh really? Well ….. take a look at the Dell computer company. They’ve become vast and have done so with having any retailers whatsoever. PCs and laptops are infinitely more complex that audio equipment. All an audio maker needs to do is to have the will and the know-how to set […]

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RADFORD REVIVAL: Howard Popeck speaks at length to people with interesting things to say: Radford Revival’s Will Moores

    Hello Will. Anyone with an iota of knowledge of Radford’s place in audio history could not fail the understand your motivation re Radford Revival. However I guess that the behind the scenes discussions, assurances re being the custodian of the heritage and related matters required considerable patience. Would you care to tell us […]

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From the 2003 archives: A frankly disturbing demonstration courtesy of a Musical Fidelity Tri-Vista KWP driving KEF Reference 205s

Howard Popeck writes: Following a frankly disturbing demonstration courtesy of Musical Fidelity at a recording studio recently I’m now listening to music via my £18k system in a totally different and increasingly unflattering light. Some of my cherished preconceptions have been overturned. Moreover I foresee implications for how the public and dealers might in future […]

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Ask Mr. H: MICHELL ENGINEERING: Synchro versus Mycro turntables

I was reading your observations on The Michell Synchro. Did you ever hear the Mycro? How was it by comparison? At one time Subjective Audio stocked the entire range of Michell Engineering turntables including the Prisma and the twin-platter Prisma. Sonically we heard little difference between the Mycro and the Synchro. This was pretty much […]

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