Day twenty four of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU telling Hifi Pig readers about their one day salestu with 10% off everything.

Read the fulil story here

 

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Starts 8.00am Christmas Eve
Ends 10.00pm Christmas Eve

Fujitsu Tel Limited has launched the free ECLIPSE TD Remote for Android application for the TD -M1 home audio wireless TD Remote for Android ECLIPSE TD-M1 screenshot 2speaker system. The new app enables Android users to wirelessly control the TD-M1 system, which until now has only streamed audio wirelessly via AirPlay, with remote control functionality supported via the TD Remote application, (exclusive only to iOS devices).

The new TD Remote for Android application, which is available now on Google PlayTM, offers a wide range of functionality when the TD-M1 and Android device are connected via Wi-Fi. Functions include: wireless audio playback from an Android device: sort and display music  on an Android device by genre, artist, album, and song; switching between power-on and network standby and volume adjustment, plus some useful functions that cannot be undertaken on the speaker unit, such as a dimmer (LED brightness adjustment) and auto- standby (automatic switching to network-standby when there is no operation or signal input for a certain period).

 

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Day twenty three of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers Hugh Masekela “Hope” on Vinyl at a great price.

“The Vinyl Adventure have a limited number of this excellent LP together with 50 Mobile Fidelity ant static inner sleeves for onlyhope

£60 delivered in the UK or £40 without the sleeves.

 

Analogue Productions – AAPJ 82020 – 200 Gram Virgin Vinyl – 753088820212

Mastered By  Kevin Gray at Acoustech Mastering

Limited Edition – 45RPM – Two Disc –  Pressed at QRP Quality Record Productions”

 

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The Vinyl Adventure have a limited number of this excellent LP together with 50 Mobile Fidelity ant static inner sleeves for onlyhope

£60 delivered in the UK or £40 without the sleeves.

 

Analogue Productions – AAPJ 82020 – 200 Gram Virgin Vinyl – 753088820212

Mastered By  Kevin Gray at Acoustech Mastering

Limited Edition – 45RPM – Two Disc –  Pressed at QRP Quality Record Productions

“…Hope is one of those intensely visceral, large as life, and immediately present recordings that will make pretty much any system sound at least very good, and will cause better ones to raise goose bumps.” – Wayne Garcia, The Absolute Sound,

“A stunning demo disc to test or show off any stereo system.” – Playback,

“Here’s another masterpiece from Chad Kassem and Kevin Gray…you would swear that you are listening to a master tape in your living room…this one is great for showing off what your stereo system can do.” – Jeff Dorgay, Tone Audio

“…Believe me, this double 45 makes the CD sound like digital dog crap. It you thought the CD version sounded good, you ain’t heard nuttin’ yet.” – Michael Fremer,

— “Wow! Hugh Masekela never sounded more real – the BEST Masekela album, a definitive must have!” – Danny Kaey, Positive-Feedback Online

A longtime audiophile demonstration disc, “Hope” will show off your system’s dynamic range as well as any record ever released. Hugh Masekela, the outstanding South African trumpeter, assembled a seven-piece group and recorded this great set live at Washington, D.C.’s Blues Alley. The songs stretch over a period of nearly five decades and serve as an informal guided tour of Masekela’s life. The songs are honest and bare, and as for the sound – WOW!

“Horns are brilliant, rich and brassy-bright; drums have the kind of punch-to-the-gut power they have up-close, the soundstage ismofi_sleeves_fixed huge, and on “Grazzin’ in th Grass,” the sound has the kind of blowback power seen in old Memorex ads.” – Wayne Garcia, TAS August 2008.

This was a live show by Masekela and his band recorded at Washington D.C.’s Blues Alley back in l993, and first released on standard CD in 2004. The high quality original mix plus Analogue Productions’ superb mastering has resulted in a terrific, very transparent sonic with great impact.

This was the first time Masekela was playing with an all-African band in about 30 years. Each of the dozen tracks has detailed notes by Masekela. Five of them are by Masekela and the rest primarily songs from various African cultures.  The languages are Zulu, Sotho, Shangaan, and Pidgin English. The first track is a song by Miriam Makeba which translates as The Healers, and was inspired by her mother who was a native healer. The song Mandela (Bring Him Back Home) is self-explanatory. But it’s not all vocals – there’s some great trumpet and Flugelhorn solos from Masekela as well as his reed man. The most familiar tune here will probably be his big pop hit Grazin’ in the Grass. The gorgeous Love Bird is an instrumental and the most requested song in South Africa. The last of the tracks is a ten-minute Masekela original, Stimela (The Coal Train). It begins with a moving narration about the terrible feelings the miners working near Johannesburg had when they heard the whistle of the coal train which had brought them from their various settlements to a miserable and dangerous life underground in the mines.

Not only is the music of the highest quality, the musicianship peerless but the sound quality, particularly for a live environment is equally stunning. The realism, space and depth is astounding, the detail wonderful. We are blessed that such an excellent engineer was on hand that night to capture the performance. And that Analogue productions elected to put this out on the 45rpm dbl lp set that we have here. You can’t get better sound than this and you really should snap this up before it is gone.

LP 1
1. Abangoma (The Healers)
2. Languta
3. Grazing in the Grass
4. Nomali
LP 2
1. Marketplace
2. Ntyilo Ntyilo (The Love Bird)
3. Stimela (The Coal Train)

 


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Luxman was created in 1925 when radio broadcasting started in Japan and has long offered its great acoustics to the audio world.   Luxman has been highly rated both at home and abroad as an excellent brand for high quality audio products.L-590AX

People are open to natural things, standing on guard against unnatural things. Natural sound free from artificial processing gives birth to an opportunity for intimate dialog between people and music.d05

The natural and genuine influence of music upon listener imagination forms the basis for Luxman to depend on in manufacturing its products. Musicians pour their passion in musicwhile recording engineers record it precisely.

luxman da-100

MCRU have available a strictly limited range of Luxman amplifiers and SACD players with 25% off the list price, please visit the MCRU Luxman section of the website for details.

Day twenty two of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers 25% off selected L-590AXLuxman products.

“Luxman was created in 1925 when radio broadcasting started in Japan and has long offered its great acoustics to the audio world.   Luxman has been highly rated both at home and abroad as an excellent brand for high quality audio products.

People are open to natural things, standing on guard against unnatural things. Natural sound free from artificial processing gives birth to an opportunity for intimate dialog between people and music.

The natural and genuine influence of music upon listener imagination forms the basis for Luxman to depend on in manufacturing its products. Musicians pour their passion in musicwhile recording engineers record it precisely”.

Read the full story here. 

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Day Twenty One of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers a grmcru-large-oak-cone-feeteat deal on their Giant Oak Feet.

“Wood is an excellent support material for hifi applications due to its resonance absorption properties, oak in particular has proven to be very effective for hifi equipment supports.

MCRU have a range of oak feet from 10mm diameter upwards, the largest in the range measure 50mm outside diameter x 31mm tall and will accept weights up to 10kg per foot.

MCRU are offering a set of 3 of out largest feet (we recommend 2 at the front and 1 at the back in the middle for your equipment) which normally retail for £35 for only £20 delivered in the UK.

Stocks are limited so buy early to avoid dis-appointment. If you would like a set of 4 feet instead these are £25 a set delivered”

Read the full story here.

 

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Wood is an excellent support material for hifi applications due to its resonance absorption properties, oak in particular has provenmcru-large-oak-cone-feet to be very effective for hifi equipment supports.

MCRU have a range of oak feet from 10mm diameter upwards, the largest in the range measure 50mm outside diameter x 31mm tall and will accept weights up to 10kg per foot.

MCRU are offering a set of 3 of out largest feet (we recommend 2 at the front and 1 at the back in the middle for your equipment) which normally retail for £35 for only £20 delivered in the UK.

Stocks are limited so buy early to avoid dis-appointment. If you would like a set of 4 feet instead these are £25 a set delivered.

The feet are a Hi-Fi Choice 5 star reviewed item.

Postage in the UK is included in the price.

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MCRU are the UK’s leading dealer for Black Rhodium cables. Designed in the UK and a true made in Great Britain company, Blacksambavs1 Rhodium make some of the finest sounding cables in hi-fi.

To celebrate their latest award winning cable review of the Samba VS-1 loudspeaker cables, MCRU are offering them as a 3 metre stereo pair with a “free” set of  MCRU special edition twist interconnects fitted with KLE Copper Harmony RCA plugs, a deal not to be missed.

The Samba VS-1 is £599 for a 3 metre stereo pair, the SE twist interconnects are a 1.5 metre stereo pair.

The latest review of the Samba VS-1 is here.  

Quotes on the Samba VS-1……

“. . very open, clean and expansive image.”

“The cable comes across as very neutral with a hint of extra treble extension. .”

“Bass control is excellent and highly tuneful. . .”

“. .it’s the ‘see through’ quality of the stereo image that feels most special here.”

“Stevie’s lush organ notes, rich vocals, funky bass rifts and explosive rim shots are all beautifully layered in a highly transparent and very wide sound stage.”

“. . . the Samba easily makes sense of the pile driving bass riff, thunderous drums, searing electric buzz-sawing vocals, enabling previously unappreciated acoustic guitars and congas to come through cleanly.”

“. . it works brilliantly with stripped out material.”

“It almost seems to gently aid the contrast of your music, enabling midband detail and vocals in particular to press slightly forward out of the mix, while deeper bass and the gaps between the notes take a step backwards.”

“Silences subjectively seem a little darker but no detail is lost.”

“ . . .this added level of contrast enables fine details around the decay of notes to ebb away much more convincingly.”

“This cable performs even stronger with valve amplification.’

“The quality of the midband communication comes nto its own and the extended treble detail and bass control lend support where most needed with valves.”

“The Samba VS-1 is ideally suited to orchestral music and classical fans will appreciate its ability to tease out complex layers of rich instrumentation.”

“. . it is equally at home with more intimate music where the perceived low distortion enables subtle

voices and acoustic instruments to communicate their full emotional content.”

The cables come with our usual 30 day money back guarantee.

 


Day Twenty of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readersambavs1s Black Rhodium’s Samba VS-1 loudspeaker cables plus a special free set of interconnects.
MCRU are the UK’s leading dealer for Black Rhodium cables. Designed in the UK and a true made in Great Britain company, Black Rhodium make some of the finest sounding cables in hi-fi.

To celebrate their latest award winning cable review of the Samba VS-1 loudspeaker cables, MCRU are offering them as a 3 metre stereo pair with a “free” set of  MCRU special edition twist interconnects fitted with KLE Copper Harmony RCA plugs, a deal not to be missed.

Read the full story here. 

 

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British Hi-Fi brand Musical Fidelity will seek to build on its first on-ear model – the MF100 – with a new higher specification and MF200performance product: the MF200 priced at £229 and available in December 2014.

“The new MF200 headphones follow Musical Fidelity’s philosophy that their products should give an accurate, faithful and transparent reproduction of the original recording – avoiding the fashion for ‘tuning’ sound” the company say.

The redesigned enclosure structure both inside and out uses new and more inert materials and the 40mm drivers have been selected and paired for “very tight tolerance” and are punched from a single sheet of material to ensure a constant thickness.

Primarily a closed design the MF200s also include a series of fine vents to “reproduce the more spacious sound normally associated with open-back headphones”.

The MF200 feature machined and polished metal, soft-touch leather and a “high quality finish throughout”.

The MF200 features a rubberised cable and a choice of either padded leather of alcantara suede, interchangeable, ear pads with memory foam insert.

The ear-pieces can be folded when not in use.

An in-line mic/mute control makes taking or making calls easy for smartphone users. 

MF200 – Specifications

Impedance: 64ohm +/-10%

Sensitivity: 99dB +/-3dB

Max. Input Power: 30mW

Rated Power: 10mW

Frequency Range: 20Hz ~ 20KHz

Cable Length: 1.3m +/-5%

Driver Dimension: 41mm Dynamic Type

Plug Type: 3.5mm 4P

 

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Linn has announced the integration of TIDAL’s new lossless music streaming service into its range of Linn DS network music klimax-dsm-silverplayers.  This new development enables all existing and new Linn DS owners to stream over 25 million tracks at CD-quality, directly through their system.

TIDAL has built an extensive catalogue of lossless music, highlighted by distribution agreements signed with major labels Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group. Additionally, TIDAL has been working with many independent labels to offer consumers a comprehensive catalogue that includes a vast array of genres to suit all musical preferences.

TIDAL services are accessed on Linn DS players through Linn’s control app, Linn Kazoo, which is available to download free from www.linn.co.uk. In celebration of this new partnership, TIDAL and Linn are offering Linn DS owners an exclusive free 60-day trial of TIDAL, so they can try the service for themselves.

Commenting on the partnership, Pål Bråtelund, Strategic Partnership Manager HiFi of TIDAL said:

“I am extremely proud that TIDAL is now available on Linn systems. Like Linn, we at TIDAL also try our best to deliver quality without getting in the way of the true purpose – creating special music experiences. Yes, it is about great technology, but it’s also for the love of music. Linn has always been an industry leader within audio, and is continuing to lead the way by integrating our lossless music streaming service. Christmas comes early this year to music lovers.”

Gilad Tiefenbrun, Managing Director at Linn said:

“Linn has taken a pivotal role in establishing the market for high resolution music by making our recordings available to download at 24-bit Studio Master quality through linnrecords.com and offering playback of these through our world-leading Linn DS players. We are delighted to be working closely with TIDAL who share this strong commitment to delivering high quality music by making their lossless streaming service available to our customers in a seamless way for the first time.”

 

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PMC Loudspeakers will take centre stage at the forthcoming International CES in the Auro-3D demonstration suite, to “immerse PMC_twenty26 Group_rfvisitors in a new standard of sound reproduction and high resolution audio, which is more realistic than anything that has gone before”.

The PMC twenty series will be utilised for all the channels in the 9.1 Auro-3D system on demonstration at the Venetian Exhibit Suite 31-336. The front left and right channels will be handled by the recently released three-way flagship from the range, the twenty.26. Centre channel duties fall on the twenty.C and the rear channels will be provided by the twenty.23 compact floorstanders.

“Where Auro-3D takes its name from is in the adding of a third dimension of sound, namely front and rear height channels”. The diminutive twenty.21 speakers will provide this all important height information to create the cocoon-like sound sensation. Low frequency effects will be provided courtesy of the TLE1 active subwoofer.

“Auro-3D’s immersive sound technology, with height channels providing that hitherto missing dimension, is a leap forward for the reproduction of movies, gaming, broadcast and multi-media soundtracks” says the press release, with PMC’s creative director, Keith Tonge, adding, “The entirely realistic immersion in sound offered by Auro-3D has to be experienced to be believed. We are very proud to be involved with Auro’s demonstration at the International CES and know that the visitors to the company’s suite will be blown away, not only by the sound experience, but by the clarity and realism provided by the twenty series.”

For more than 30 years, Wharfedale’s famous Diamond speakers have served as the classic entry point for many a budding musicDiamond_200_Group_Email[1] lover…they were ccertainlymy first “real” loudspeaker and I enjoyed them immensely.  Now, with the introduction of the all-new Diamond 200 Series, Wharfedale is saying that it “has once again raised the bar for affordable, high-performance loudspeakers”.

Replacing the Diamond 100 Series, Diamond 200 comprises two standmount speakers and three floorstanding models, plus a centre speaker for home cinema use. “Given that the speakers’ predecessors were so highly rated for their sound quality, Wharfedale’s engineers took an evolutionary approach, precisely targeting key areas to improve in order to make an already great loudspeaker range deliver even better value for money” says the company’s latest press release.

Enhancements across the range include:

  • New cabinet construction – a sandwich of particleboard between MDF, which has enabled improvements both aesthetic and sonic.
  • New lacquered baffle design further enhances aesthetic qualities.
  • Improved bass motor system with larger magnets makes the speakers easier to drive and boosts transient acoustic power.
  • Enhanced ‘Slot-Loaded Distributed Port’ – improved airflow control lowers turbulence and hence reduces low-frequency distortion.
  • Upgraded crossover networks further improve the integration between the drive units.

Prices are from just shy of £150

 

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“Has Icon Audio founder David Shaw designed the ultimate triode amplifier?”, asks the company’s latest press release. Previewed ICONMB81_monobloc_amplifersat September’s National Audio Show and created to fulfil a personal ambition, these gargantuan amps will be sold in limited numbers as a special edition.

“If I’m completely honest,” says Shaw, “for much of the past year I’ve been building my own birthday present – and this is it!”. After discovering a quantity of ‘new old stock’ Russian GU81 transmitter valves, Shaw began to work on a prototype amplifier that would achieve a long-held goal: to effectively drive any modern low-efficiency high-end speaker to realistic levels.

At 260 mm tall, 100 mm in diameter and weighing in at 1 kg, the GU81 is a BIG valve. Although the GU81 remains in production, Shaw still favoured the ‘new old stock’ valves for the MB81.

Shaw has long been a fan of triode operation believing it the purest form of valve amplification. But triodes typically have a downside too: limited power output, which to overcome presents real a design challenge.  Says Shaw, “Our pursuit for making ever-better amplifiers often leads us into uncharted territory. This is such an example and it’s been a genuine labour of love. I’ve spent many, many months designing and listening, listening and redesigning.”

In the Icon Audio MB81, Shaw has produced a triode monoblock that can deliver an astonishing amount of power into even the most demanding of loads. These massive amps are about 50% bigger than the current Icon flagship MB845MkIIm and weigh around 100 kg per pair.  The specification is impressive: 250 watts RMS continuous output into an 8 ohm load whilst “complex” tertiary output transformers minimise distortion while allowing “unbeatable bass power and authority”.

“Following our work with other big triodes, we wanted to build an amplifier that would deliver plenty of power to drive the largest inefficient speakers with ease in pure triode mode, in very large rooms,” explains Shaw.

“Although many large speakers are generally efficient,” he adds, “their complex crossovers full of capacitors and inductors often present a difficult load for an amplifier, especially if it’s running with less than ideal power.”

 

Icon Audio believe the MB81 to be the world’s first ever push-pull GU81 amplifier. While it was initially developed as a personal gift for Shaw himself, he plans to produce a small number for sale as a very special limited edition. “This is probably the most amazing amplifier we’ve ever made,” says Shaw, “so it would seem churlish not to share it”.

Price will be £12,500 a pair.

 

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To realize the full potential of the “Techy” this bearing is essential. Precision manufactured not a modified stock bearing, easy to fitbearings with full installation instructions. Only £445 delivered in the UK from MCRU stock and supplied with a “Free” set of Techniboots isolation feet which fit over the stock Techy feet, worth £40, all sent post free in the UK.
From Hifi Pig “We’re on a bit of a journey with the infamous DJ spinner, the Technics 1210. Some have a bit of a love affair with the turntable whereas others loathe it. Personally I fall into the Love It camp, though in its stock form, whilst a reasonable way of getting music from the vinyl grooves, it doesn’t really cut it in some company.BOOTSHowever, there’s a growing community out there in audiophileland who are taking the humble Technics turntable and modifying it extensively and keeping only the basic chassis and motor unit.

In this latest tinkering exercise I procured a Mike New replacement bearing from the folks at Mains Cables R Us to see if this could rinse out any further improvements from the turntable. Included in the review are a number of photographs to show just how easy the fitting of the bearing is



Day nineteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers some great upgrades to the Technics 1210/1200 tunrtable.

“To realize the full potential of the “Techy” this bearing is essential. Precision manufactured not a modified stock bearing, easy to fitbearings with full installation instructions. Only £445 delivered in the UK from MCRU stock and supplied with a “Free” set of Techniboots isolation feet which fit over the stock Techy feet, worth £40, all sent post free in the UK.”

Read the full story here.

 

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Day eighteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers the iFI Audio I-DSD Micro Headphone Amp / DAC.

“There are portable DAC’s, there are portable headphone amplifiers. There are also full sized versions of both which sit on the ifi_audio_micro_idsd_diag (1)equipment rack. Very rarely is there a portable DAC that can replace most full sized equivalents. But there has never been an equivalent to the iFI Micro DAC as far as the author knows. Certainly not at under £500 either.

 

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There are portable DAC’s, there are portable headphone amplifiers. There are also full sized versions of both which sit on the ifi_audio_micro_idsd_diag (1)equipment rack. Very rarely is there a portable DAC that can replace most full sized equivalents. But there has never been an equivalent to the iFI Micro DAC as far as the author knows. Certainly not at under £500 either.

Recently appearing in Hi-Fi+ magazine the editor Chris Martens described the Micro as a “gift” which means for the price of £415 the unit does so much and does it so well its difficult to imagine anything better ever being available for anywhere near the asking price, so it’s not just a bargain but a gift.

See the MCRU website for full details of this little gem of a product, suffice to say it handles every known audio format natively with no internal conversion taking place, if you have DXD files listen and be amazed, likewise DSD and 24/192 sound exceptional, even standard red book CD quality has something about it when listened to through the iFI Micro. It will drive almost all headphones and again sounds superb, MCRU use HiFiMan HE-560’s and the realism of the music being played is stunning.

The unit can also be used as a stand alone DAC as well as a portable music player, as the former it also excels whatever source ifi_audio_micro_idsd_bottomyou connect it to, macbook, music server, laptop anything. It will even spruce up old CD players with digital outputs (s-pdif). We could waffle on for hours about it but have to go and make some cables now so rest assured if sound quality and convenience are top of your list then treat yourself to one of the bargains of the year.

The iFI Micro I-DSD DAC / Headphone Amplifier is available from MCRU for £415 here.

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tva-logo1
The Vinyl Adventure is a newly formed company specializing in audiophile vinyl and accessories. No mass market titles will everharry-belafonte-at-carnegie-hall-2lp-200g-vinyl
feature in their product portfolio as all the vinyl is carefully chosen for sound quality first and foremost.
The labels TVA feature are mostly Mobile Fidelity and Reference Recordings, the full website will launch in late January but in the mean-time Hifi Pig have secured a cracking deal for of all their members on a “must have” audiophile pressing of Harry Belafonte Live at Carnegie Hall re-issue on 180g vinyl from Speakers Corner Records
The Vinyl Adventure is owned and run by MCRU + F8 Creates who are both companies who are obsessed with vinyl, don’t miss out on this offer and make your turntable sparkle at Christmas with Mr Belafonte himself singing in your listening room.
Harry Belafonte Live At Carnegie Hall 200g Vinyl
Nagaoka No. 102 Anti Static Record Inner Sleeves x 50
£50 delivered in the UK
LP1
1.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – Introduction / Darlin’ Cora
2.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – Sylvie
3.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – Cotton Fields
4.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – John Henry
5.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – Take My Mother Home
6.  Act 1: The Moods of the American Negro – The Marching Saints
7.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Day O
8.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Jamaica Farewell
9.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Man Piaba
10. Act 2: In The Caribbean – All My trials
LP2
1.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Mama Look A Boo Boo
2.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Come Back Lisa
3.  Act 2: In The Caribbean – Man Smart (Woman Smarter)
4.  Act 3: Round The World – Hava Nageela
5.  Act 3: Round The World – Danny Boy
6.  Act 3: Round The World – Merci Bon Dieu (from the “Haitian Suite”)
7.  Act 3: Round The World – Cu Cu Ru Cu Cu Paloma
8.  Act 3: Round The World – Shenandoah
9.  Act 3: Round The World – Matilda



Day seventeen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from The Vinyl Adventure offering Harry Belafonte Live At harry-belafonte-at-carnegie-hall-2lp-200g-vinylCarnegie Hall 180g Vinyl for a very special and Hifi Pig exclusive price.

“The labels TVA feature are mostly Mobile Fidelity and Reference Recordings, the full website will launch in late January but in the mean-time Hifi Pig have secured a cracking deal for of all their members on a “must have” audiophile pressing of Harry Belafonte Live at Carnegie Hall re-issue on 200g vinyl from Speakers Corner Records”

Read the full story here

 

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Devialet has announced DIALOG and PHANTOM (1690 EUR) (pictured), the new Devialet “revolutions” phantom_devialet

DIALOG is an intelligent audio router which, in association with the new Devialet application, is said to make your life easier:
– unique interface combining all your digital contents (stored or online) in an intuitive and smooth way, whatever the file formats (from MP3 to HD audio)
– communication and synchronisation between your Devialet products throughout your home, via a dedicated and powerful network which is open to all your guests
– accessible from your smartphone, tablet or computer, DIALOG is compatible with all Devialet products*.

PHANTOM is a wireless “Implosive Sound Center”, that can be used stand-alone or together in your preferred music, home theatre or multi-zone set-up. Phantom is said to be the result of over three years of R&D and combines all the Devialet exclusive technologies (including ADH® and SAM®), miniaturized into a small enclosure, as well as brand new, acoustical technology, HBI® (Heart Bass Implosion). “It produces an ultra-dense sound which you don’t just hear, you feel it!” say Devialet

Along with the D-Premier, the Devialet 120, 200, 250, 400 et 800, DIALOG and PHANTOM make up the new Devialet audio eco-system.

More news when we have it.

 

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Audison has announced the introduction of the Audison bit Play HD, the first high-resolution music player specifically for Hard Drive lidautomotive applications. The bit Play HD is a hideaway component that can be used as part of a complete aftermarket package or added to most factory car audio systems as an enhancement. Intended to be professionally installed by any one of Audison’s network of authorized retailers, control of the bit Play HD can be managed from any Apple or Android phone or tablet.

With the recent introduction of home and portable players to the market, Audison say it is proud to be the first to bring this format to aftermarket car audio. The Audison bit Play HD will play FLAC audio files up to 24-bit/96KHz as well as 16-bit/44.1 files (CD quality) and even MP3 files.

Audison has developed apps for Apple and Android devices that enables complete control of the bit Play HD from the phone or tablets. The bit Play HD generates a Wi-Fi signal within the vehicle for reliable wireless connectivity. For head units equipped with a video input, the bit Play HD can be connected via HDMI or Composite outputs, enabling users to view the interface and directly control file navigation functions and all internal settings of the bit Play HD via supplied remote control. For storage of content, the bit Play HD SSD comes standard with an internal 240GB SSD hard drive that is said to be both fast and insensitive to the vibration and shaking that occur while driving. Users can also select the bit Play HD without the internal hard drive if they prefer to supply their own storage. Both bitPlay models can be used with two drives connected simultaneously (one internal, one external) for expanded storage capacity.

The Audison bit Play HD and bit Play HD SSD are available now from authorized Audison dealers with respective MSRP’s of $649 and $799.

 

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Day sixteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion is from MCRU offering Hifi PIg readers a special offer on linear-power-supply-for-naim-unitiservethe Regulated Linear Power Supply for the Naim Unitiserve.

“The power supply is designed and manufactured in the UK by Longdog Audio who are also responsible for a multitude of award winning power supplies sold by MCRU. EVERY product we have submitted for review in the UK Hi-Fi press has won the top accolade, with several  hundred power supplies sold throughout the world this is a well proven design.”

Read the full story here. 

 

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This offer is only available via Hi-Fi Pig, the unit retails at £995, we are offering it for a limited period for £895 delivered in the UK linear-power-supply-for-naim-unitiservewith a free IsoTek EVO3 Premier mains lead included.

The power supply is designed and manufactured in the UK by Longdog Audio who are also responsible for a multitude of award winning power supplies sold by MCRU. EVERY product we have submitted for review in the UK Hi-Fi press has won the top accolade, with several  hundred power supplies sold throughout the world this is a well proven design.

This PSU was designed specifically to power the Naim Unitiserve which requires 12V DC at 4.8 amps. Un-like the existing power brick supplied with the unit our supply is a fully regulated linear design and according to the first customer to use it it makes the sound much better as we would expect. It is well documented that switch mode power supplies can degrade sound quality, a linear design takes away a lot of the grunge that a smps injects into the mains system resulting in far better sound quality which after all is why we listen to music in the first place.

The Longdog Audio 5A power supply is designed as a high quality low noise power source for the current generation of computer based audio components. Even the most costly digital audio source from established high quality audio manufacturers are supplied as standard with a small, efficient (and cheap) switch mode power supply (SMPS). Modern SMPS’s are wonders of electrical technology, offering many features, small size, wide range of input voltages, high current output. But the one thing the all fail at to some extent is the job they are actually used for, providing smooth, quiet, regulated power to feed the audio sources. Looking at the output of a typical SMPS (using an oscilloscope), shows they produce a sea of noise on top of the direct current. A typical 12v DC power supply may produce 500mv or so of wide band noise. As someone in the HiFi industry was heard to say, many years ago, “source first”. Well, to the digital components that we are using today, the original source of any audio that it produces starts with the power supply. Yes, its possible to clean up the noise to some extent by the use of filtration, but for every reduction of noise the filter will add a corresponding increase in power supply impedance, and that means that the power supply is less able to cope with the changing demands of the component.

As the demands of the component change, the DC level of the supply changes at the same time. This is a phenomenon that is beloved in the guitar amplifier world, and there its called “Sag”. In guitar amps it increases the distortion and adds more “character” to the sound. But “character” and distortion are the last thing we want to introduce to our HiFi components. Longdog Audio has been supplying solutions to the problems of SMPS’s for some years now, we have been making small ultra low noise linear power supplies and providing them to power DAC’s and other small source components. However getting such a low noise with a linear (non switching) supply does come with a cost, that cost is efficiency. Each of the regulation stages in a LDA linear supply requires 3 volt or so of headroom to work with. So a 12v output supply, will need to start with a 18v source. The supply uk to iecdiscards the excess voltage in the form of heat. That works just fine
if the supply is expecting to supply 500ma or so of current. A 12v 500ma supply will be creating 3W of heat, noting troublesome to dissipate from the casework of the supply. However if we try and simply scale this solution up to 5A or more, we start having to deal with 30W-80W of heat. Suddenly our nice quiet power supply starts to resemble a large class A amplifier, and starts to grow large heatsinks to dissipate this unwanted energy.

The Longdog Audio 5A supply avoids this problem by making use of the latest semiconductor technology. High current MOSFET transistors are now available that can be used to regulate power with less than half a volt voltage drop, that means a 12v 5A supply can operate with only 2.5W of wasted heat. However to control these devices, we need a voltage that is still much higher than the required output voltage. So to provide the quietness of a linear supply with the efficiency of a SMPS, the LDA design makes use of voltage doubling techniques to get the best of both worlds.
High current, high efficiency and quiet power. The LDA design is so efficient that it does not require the use of external heatsinks, making use of its quality aluminium casework to dissipate the small amount of heat generated. This means that the supply can be operated continuously at full power yet still only become warm to the touch

The unit is made in 230V and 120V versions, we ship globally and supply the appropriate mains power cable to suit your country in with the package. The unit connects to your Unitiserve via a short cable terminated with a 4 pin DIN connector to connect to the power supply and an audiophile Oyaide DC plug to connect to your Unitiserve. The lead is 1 metre long as standard.

On/off switch and IEC mains power inlet on the rear, the unit has a green LED on the front panel. Specially chosen rubber feet are fitted to absorb micro vibrations.

Dimensions 205mm wide | 320mm deep | 130mm tall.

230V | 120V AC Input

12V DC 4.8 amps output




Not available anywhere else, MCRU will be presenting a short series of exclusive deals only available on Hifi Pig. There is a paypalnova buy now button included for purchasing direct from this site.

Today we offer all “PIG” viewers the chance to get onto the IsoTek Systems ladder to better sound quality through effective mains conditioning/filtration.

The IsoTek GII Nova has been around for a few years, it was originally manufactured for AV + Hi-Fi use and optimized for front end equipment such as pre-amps, dvd and blu ray players, phono stages and tuners. It features 6 direct coupled six stage primary and five stage secondary filter circuits with each outlet individually filtered. IsoTek use adaptive gating which automatically senses the requirements of the load.

The GII Nova will handle low powered amplifiers like the Cyrus range as an example, many customers prefer to plug their power amps direct into the wall socket but we always suggest try both and see.

The GII Nova is limited stock now and MCRU have only a handful left in Black, list price was £3300 (mainly due to the very mcru-no-5-mains-power-leadexpensive chokes inside the unit) but they are now reduced to £1650 and still come with full IsoTek warranty and are brand new and boxed.

The MCRU Hifi Pig exclusive offer is a GII Nova (which incidentally uses the superb RDC cone feet to rest on) bundled with a MCRU No. 5 mains power lead worth £165 absolutely “free” the No. 5 uses 4mm sq conductors and the excellent Furutech FI-1363 pure copper mains plug fitted with the correct connector to power the NOVA.

A review of the No. 5 is here




Day fifteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion has MCRU offering Hifi Pig readers and exclusive offer to purchase the IsoTek GII Nova bundled with a MCRU No. 5 mains power lead at a significant discount. nova

“The IsoTek GII Nova has been around for a few years, it was originally manufactured for AV + Hi-Fi use and optimized for front end equipment such as pre-amps, dvd and blu ray players, phono stages and tuners. It features 6 direct coupled six stage primary and five stage secondary filter circuits with each outlet individually filtered. IsoTek use adaptive gating which automatically senses the requirements of the load”.

Read the full offer here

 

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If you want reference-quality headphones that take you closer to the music, Audeze’s LCD-X have to be heard.LCD-X AABK-SeatedL-12514

Audeze’s Award winning headphones are based on planar magnetic technology, which offers numerous benefits over traditional headphone design – see our tech boxout below for more details!

The LCD-X is an extremely efficient headphone that extracts the maximum power out of low-powered amplifiers and portable devices – and truly sings when powered by a headphone amp!

It’s also the most neutral of all Audeze’s LCD Collection. That’s why it’s favoured by recording engineers and musicians alike for its fast, dynamic and accurate sound.

Featuring Fazor Technology

Audeze’s patent-pending Fazor elements improve clarity, focus and the already spectacular holographic imaging. Two Fazor Fazor-Element-Diagram (1)elements are placed just outside the two magnet structures that surround the diaphragm. They guide and manage the flow of sound around the magnets and are standard on all LCD headphones.

Think of sound waves as ripples in a pond. Drop a pebble in the water, the ripples spread out undisturbed. Drop two pebbles and the ripples interfere with each other just like speakers in a room. Wave interference, while not as severe in headphones, remains an obstacle to top performance.

Fazor Features

  • Loads the diaphragm with a symmetrical acoustic load
  • Improves acoustic impedance-matching that extends high frequency response and increases efficiencyLCD-X-AABK-HangingF-12514
  • Acoustically transparent so sound waves generated by the surface of the moving diaphragm pass through the magnetic structure undegraded
  • Improved phase response at high frequencies
  • Improved Impulse response

All Audeze headphones are hand-crafted in California by sound engineers.  They are available from all good specialist retailers; the LCD-X has a suggested retail price of £1399.

Acclaim for the LCD-X headphones:

 

‘For accuracy, musicality and supreme comfort I love my Audeze LCD-X headphones – they make music sound so good!’John Davis, Mastering professional – responsible for remastering Led Zeppelin’s back catalogue, plus mastering for U2, REM, Primal Scream, Royal Blood, FKA Twigs, Lana Del Rey and more.

 

“Beautifully-finished and equally beautiful-sounding, deliciously smooth, unambiguously stable and accurate imaging with a lack of coloration in the midrange and treble. John Atkinson, Stereophile

 

“The LCD-X is now my favorite headphone for recreational listening and studio monitoring.”–MICHAEL MERCER, POSITIVE FEEDBACK
“High-end audio is all about the pursuit of excellence, and Audeze headphones exemplify that philosophy.”–STEVE GUTTENBERG, CNET
“The sense of space is enormous, sounding more like speakers in a room than drivers next to your ears.”–GEOFFREY MORRISON, FORBES
“The smallest details, the shortest transients, were all a clear and well defined as I could imagine possible. Deep bass had no boominess or chestiness. There was not a hint of over-sibilance.”– JOHN E. JOHNSON, SECRETS OF HOME THEATER AND HIFI
“The LCD-X is proof that Audeze listens to its customers and respects their opinions … Instrument separation and imaging are amazing … X marks the spot!”– DAN-ALEXANDRU GHEORGHE, HEADMANIA.ORG

 

Audeze LCD-X Features and SpecificationsLCD-X AABK-StandL-12514

Style Open circumaural
Transducer type Planar magnetic
Magnetic structure Proprietary self-closing design
Magnet type High-grade Neodymium
Diaphragm area 39.8sq cm (6.17sq in)
Maximum power 15W (for 200 ms)
Optimal power 1-4W
SPL > 130dB with 15W
Frequency response 5Hz – 20kHz extension to 50kHz
THD < 1%
Impedance 20 ohms
Efficiency 95dB / 1mW
Weight 600g
Cable length 2.5m (8.2 ft)

Package Includes

2.5m (8.2ft) 6.35mm (1/4in) to dual 4-pin mini-XLR cable
2.5m (8.2ft) 4-pin XLR to dual 4-pin mini-XLR cable
6.35mm (1/4in) to 3.5mm (1/8in) stereo adapter
Ruggedized travel case
Warranty documents

 

More about Planar Magnetic Technology

Planar magnetic speaker technology is a dramatic departure from traditional dynamic speakers. The unique design and functionality of planar magnetic transducers (or “drivers”) overcome many limitations inherent in cone drivers.

Planar magnetic transducers typically consist of two main components: a diaphragm with circuit and magnet arrays. The “planar” in planar magnetics refers to the magnetic field that’s distributed in the same plane (parallel) to the diaphragm. Planar magnetic diaphragms are thin and lightweight compared to much heavier moving-coil or dome diaphragms found in “dynamic” drivers. This thin diaphragm is suspended in the magnetic fields created by the magnetic arrays.

Unlike a dynamic driver with a cone or dome attached to a voice coil, a planar magnetic diaphragm has a printed circuit spread across the surface of a thin-film substrate. When the circuit is energized with an audio signal it interacts with the magnetic field and produces an electromagnetic force that moves the diaphragm back and forth creating sound.

Planar magnetic transducers offer numerous benefits:LCD-X-AABK-SeatedL-Glam-10914

  • Responsiveness:  Since the force created by the magnetic field is distributed across most of the diaphragm surface, the planar magnetic diaphragm moves faster and with far greater accuracy to the input signal.
  • Frequency and Distortion:  The magnetic force that drives the lightweight diaphragm delivers rapid acceleration thus achieving a wide frequency response, low distortion and excellent sound quality.
  • Durability:  Because the circuit pattern is spread flat across the diaphragm surface it can dissipate the heat generated by the current passing through it more efficiently. Additionally, planar magnetic transducers have few moving parts and can maintain performance without any sonic degradation. Dynamic drivers continuously degrade in performance over their life due to a multitude of moving parts and use of glue joints.
  • Amplifier Friendly: The circuits found in planar magnetic diaphragms present an almost purely resistive load to amplifiers, making it easy to drive.  The impedance over the entire frequency range is completely flat vs. dynamic speaker, which could have variances in impedance values over the frequency range.

Audeze employs a number of proprietary techniques that improve upon basic planar magnetic design, including the integration of unique, ultra-thin diaphragms and stronger and more optimized magnetic fields and circuit patterns. Audeze’s goal is to bring the best in planar magnetic design and continuing to improve the personal audio experience.

Day fourteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion focuses on the Audeze LCD-X Headphones.

“If you want reference-quality headphones that take you closer to the music, Audeze’s LCD-X have to be heard.

LCD-X AABK-SeatedL-12514

Audeze’s Award winning headphones are based on planar magnetic technology, which offers numerous benefits over traditional headphone design – see our tech boxout below for more details!

The LCD-X is an extremely efficient headphone that extracts the maximum power out of low-powered amplifiers and portable devices – and truly sings when powered by a headphone amp!

It’s also the most neutral of all Audeze’s LCD Collection. That’s why it’s favoured by recording engineers and musicians alike for its fast, dynamic and accurate sound.

 

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Day thirteen of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion highlights the Astell&Kern AK120 II. AK120 Ⅱ_01

“Class-leading sound quality, unbeatable format support, streaming functionality, gorgeous look and feel – and now free high-res

music when you buy. No wonder Astell&Kern is acclaimed to make the world’s best portable players!

The gorgeous model under the spotlight here is the AK120 II, an update to the popular AK120 with a fresh design that gives a nod to both the original models and the new AK240”

 

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Class-leading sound quality, unbeatable format support, streaming functionality, gorgeous look and feel – and now free high-res AK120 Ⅱ_01music when you buy. No wonder Astell&Kern is acclaimed to make the world’s best portable players!

The gorgeous model under the spotlight here is the AK120 II, an update to the popular AK120 with a fresh design that gives a nod to both the original models and the new AK240.

The AK120 II replaces the AK120’s Wolfson WM8740 DAC with the Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC chipset found in the flagship AK240.  Again like the AK240, the AK120 II features double DACs that output audio signals independently to each channel, making the AK120 II a true dual mono (dual monaural) setup like those found in expensive hi-fi equipment.

The dual Cirrus Logic CS4398 DAC chips found in the AK120 II dedicates each DAC chip to a completely separate left and right channel. In result, the AK120 II provides far superior depth, clarity, and spaciousness to the audio. By providing a much clearer sound with lower distortion, the AK120 II truly replicates how the original music was recorded.

Both players include Wi-Fi connectivity, allowing users to stream music from any computer or NAS drive located on the same network.  From low-bitrate MP3s to studio master quality 24bit music files, all can be accessed and enjoyed as easily as music stored on the player itself.

Firmware updates are also performed over the air, eliminating the need to connect the player to a computer to update. AK120 Ⅱ_09

A recent firmware upgrade has added the ability for AK120 II users to download music direct from music service, Qobuz, via a new A&K by Qobuz app (also available for the AK100 II and AK240).

This allows AK120 II users to:

  • Browse all the tracks of the world’s largest HD musical catalogue
  • Listen to extracts of tracks in High Definition, and to order them straight from the device
  • Access full updated content and information relating to songs and albums
  • Download purchases made on Qobuz.com directly onto the HD audio player via Wi-Fi

And until June 2015, you can claim £50 of free Qobuz downloads with the purchase of any Astell&Kern player. See www.qobuz.com/ak for more details.

Like the flagship AK240, the AK120 II features balanced and unbalanced analog outputs, giving audiophiles a wider range of listening options.  With a 3.31” AMOLED screen, the player displays more information than the first generation models in a crystal clear, high resolution display.

Single-rate and double-rate DSD playback is supported via DSD to PCM conversion done in real-time via the player’s software.  InAK120 Ⅱ_10 addition to DSD support, the Astell&Kern portable players support 24-bit, up to 192khz digital audio files, and Apple lossless formats in addition to many other lossy music formats users may currently have.

The AK120 II features 128GB of internal memory, plus a microSD card slot that supports up to 128GB cards – giving you 256GB of storage.

Finally, the AK120 II can also be used as a USB DAC, allowing the user to connect the unit to a computer to provide higher quality sound processing than most sound cards available today.

The player comes with a high-quality black leather case, with a docking cradle available as an optional extra.

The AK120 II is available now, from a wide range of quality audio retailers, priced £1499.

General specifications

  • Model – AK120 II
  • Body colour – Stone Silver
  • Body material – Aluminium
  • Display – 3.31inch WVGA (480 x 800) AMOLED Touchscreen
  • Supported Audio Formats – WAV, FLAC, WMA, MP3, OGG, APE(Normal, High, Fast), AAC, ALAC, AIFF, DFF, DSF
  • Sample rate – FLAC, WAV, ALAC, AIFF : 8kHz ~ 192kHz (8/16/24bits per Sample)
    / DSD : DSD64 (1bit 2.8MHz), Stereo / DSD128 (1bit 5.6MHz), Stereo
  • Output Level – Unbalance 2.1Vrms / Balance 2.3Vrms (Condition No Load)
  • DAC – Cirrus Logic CS4398 x2 (Dual DAC)
  • Decoding – Support up to 24bit/192kHz Bit to Bit Decoding
  • Input – USB Micro-B input (for charging & data transfer (PC & MAC))
    / Connection Mode : MTP (Media Device)
  • Outputs – headphones (3.5mm) / Optical Out (3.5mm) / Balanced Out (2.5mm, only 4-pole supported)
  • Wi-Fi – 802.11 b/g/n (2.4GHz)
  • Bluetooth – V4.0
  • Dimensions – 2.16 ”(55 mm) [W] x 4.64 ”(118 mm) [H] x 0.58 ”(14.9 mm) [D]
  • Weight – 6.24 oz (177 g)
  • Feature Enhancements – Firmware upgrades supported (OTA)

Audio Performance

  • Frequency Response – ±0.023dB (Condition: 20Hz~20kHz) Unbalance & Balance
    / ±0.3dB (Condition: 10Hz~70kHz) Unbalance & Balance
  • Signal to Noise Ratio – 116dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance / 117dB @ 1kHz, Balance
  • Crosstalk – 130dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance / 135dB @ 1kHz, Balance
  • THD+N – 0.0007% @ 1kHz, Unbalance / 0.0005% @ 1kHz, Balance
  • IMD SMPTE – 0.0004% 800Hz 10kHz(4:1) Unbalance / 0.0003% 800Hz 10kHz(4:1) Balance
  • Output Impedance – Balanced out 2.5mm (1ohm) / PHONES 3.5mm (2ohm)

Clock source

  • Clock Jitter – 50ps (Typ)

Battery

  • Capacity – 3,250mAh 3.7V Li-Polymer Battery

Memory

  • Built-in Memory – 128GB [NAND]
  • External Memory – microSD (Max 128GB) x1

OS

  • Supported OS – Windows XP, Windows 7,8 (32/64bit), MAC OS X 10.7 and up

Unilet Sound & Vision and its sister company Custom Cable has announced the launch of Headroom Show, the new consumer HEadroomaudio show dedicated to the finest portable audio and digital streaming products available.  Held at Europe’s premier recording studio complex, Metropolis, in Chiswick, south west London, Headroom brings together over 35 of the world’s premium audio brands, giving visitors the chance to see, touch and hear one of the largest collection of portable and digital audio products in the same place ever assembled in the UK.

From upgrading in-ear buds to listening on high-end over-ear headphones, anyone interested in personal audio should attend Headroom.  Digital audio is also highly catered for with portable and desk-top audio products and music streaming services featured heavily.  Visitors will not only have the opportunity to try out the latest products available (some of which will have their UK premier at Headroom) but they will also be able to meet the manufacturer representatives and get to learn more about the products and technology behind the designs.  Brands already confirmed include Sennheiser, Astell & Kern, Audeze, Chord Electronics, Shure, Audioquest, Musical Fidelity, Ultrasone, STAX, HiFiMan, Grado, KEF, Bowers & Wilkins, Oppo, Schiit Audio,  Audio Technica, ADL, Meridian, Burson, B&O, Bryston, Arcam, Parrot, Atomic Floyd, Fostex, Light Harmonic, Yamaha, Geek, CEntrance, PMC, Melco Audio, Pioneer and Resonessence with more being added on a daily basis.

Over the course of the two day show, Metropolis has also flung open its doors to allow visitors a rare opportunity to see behind the scenes of Europe’s busiest recording studio complex. Metropolis staff will be on sight to give an insight to what really happens during a recording or re-mastering session.

Headroom is not just about products – it is also about education.  Throughout the course of the two-day show, presentations from some of the UK audio industry’s most qualified personnel will look to unravel the mysteries behind digital audio technology and music streaming services.  So far presentations confirmed include: home audio networking, CD quality music streaming, digital music conversion and music mastering. Check out the website for a full list and time slots throughout the show.

Tickets to the event are available now and are priced at £10.00 per person with under 15’s given free entry if they are accompanied by an Adult.  Tickets for each day are limited so please book now to avoid disappointment.

Visitors will also be entered into numerous competitions and prize draws with details to be announced shortly.

The Detail:

Dates – Friday 30th January (doors open from 1pm until 7pm)
Saturday 31st January (doors open from 9am until 5pm)

Place – Metropolis Studios, The Power House, 70 Chiswick High Road, London W4 1SY

2 years after launching the original Magni and Modi (two of the most popular personal audio products, ever), Schiit are magni2newsannouncing Magni 2 and Modi 2…and their Uber partners!

In total, four products encompass the second-gen Magni/Modi line:

Magni 2. All-new discrete headphone amp with 1.2W RMS per channel and switchable high/low gain, together with a refined constant-feedback gain stage. “The update of what’s arguably the most popular headphone amp, ever”. $99.

Magni 2 Uber. All-new discrete headphone amp with 1.5W RMS per channel, switchable high/low gain, preamp outputs, and even more sophisticated constant-feedback gain stage. Also includes new 24VA wall transformer (3x larger than Magni) and aluminum top chassis and knob. $149.

Modi 2. All-new USB asynchronous DAC with switchable USB Class 1 and Class 2 modes. USB Class 1 remains driverless for all supported computers, USB Class 2 adds 24/192 capability, but requires drivers for Windows. “The update of one of the most popular USB DACs ever”. $99.

Modi 2 Uber. All-new USB, optical, and coaxial three-input DAC running full USB Class 2 for 24/192 capability through all inputs. Essentially a mini Bifrost. AC linear power supply with included 8VA wall transformer. Aluminum pushbutton and top chassis. $149.

 

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Day twelve of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion asks Are You Dreaming Of A White Christmas with KEF.

“KEF’s LS50 is one of the most widely-renowned and multi-award-winning loudspeakers of the 21st century so far.  What’s more, HiFiPig_LS50this model is now available in a brand new high gloss, piano white edition!  Featuring the very latest KEF technology, including the critically acclaimed Uni-Q driver array in an attractive blue finish, the LS50 delivers a rich, multi-dimensional soundstage experience that is all out of proportion to their size.”

 

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Dreaming of a White Christmas?

KEF’s LS50 is one of the most widely-renowned and multi-award-winning loudspeakers of the 21st century so far.  What’s more, HiFiPig_LS50this model is now available in a brand new high gloss, piano white edition!  Featuring the very latest KEF technology, including the critically acclaimed Uni-Q driver array in an attractive blue finish, the LS50 delivers a rich, multi-dimensional soundstage experience that is all out of proportion to their size.

Now available for pre-order, find your nearest retailer here, or visit our online KEF Store.

The original LS50 was designed to celebrate KEF’s 50th anniversary, and was conceived as a ‘mini monitor’ derived from the legendary LS3/5a, to bring professional studio monitor performance into the home. Through patented acoustic designs, together with state of the art technologies from the KEF Blade loudspeaker, the LS50 provides the ultimate studio experience – even in the smallest of spaces.

At the LS50’s heart beats the highly acclaimed KEF Uni-Q driver, capable of mastering an exceptional range of dynamic highs andKEF LS50 lows over a large listening area. The stylish new high gloss piano white LS50s have an attractive blue Uni-Q driver, and feature all the advanced, state-of-the-art audio technology and high-tech design that have made the LS50 one of the most critically acclaimed loudspeakers around.

The KEF LS50 has been a resounding success since its introduction in 2012, winning multiple awards and accolades, including being recently honoured with the What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision Readers’ Award for Product of the Year, for the second consecutive year.

‘The terrific KEF LS50 standmounters show no sign of losing their sparkle after dazzling our readers for a second successive year’.

Always at the forefront of loudspeaker design and technology, KEF’s technical expertise and innovative designs grace anything LS50_Front_RGB_lofrom discreet Custom Install Ci speakers to multi-award winning home theatre systems and class-leading, serious Hi-Fi stereo speakers. Since 1961 KEF has been the most forward thinking and technologically advanced Hi-Fi manufacturer in the world.

The newly launched High Gloss Piano White LS50 continues this legacy, read more about the multi-award winning mini monitors here.

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Started 4 years ago (is that all!!) Mains Cables R Us began because it’s owner David Brook needed a mains extension block for MEhis AV system and the subsequent purchase he received from ebay begged the question “can I do better myself ?”

Fast forward and David’s 30+ years as an audiophile has helped the company to rise from humble beginnings to now being major dealers for many of the world’s most respected hifi accessory brands. The role call of brands supported by MCRU (who re-branded from Mains Cables R Us when David realized cables was only a small part of his main sales range) ranges from small boutique brands up to the major players in the hifi accessory world.

dacIsoTek Systems, Furutech, Clearaudio, WBT, Black Rhodium, Supra, Tellurium Q, Oyaide, SLiC Innovations, MoME2 (1)bile Fidelity, Benz Micro, iFI Audio, Longdog Audio and many more.

Having tinkered with mains cables for decades David’s knowledge and experience in that area and his passion for all things analogue have helped the company succeed in what is essentially still a cottage industry. As well as 2 websites (the 2nd being The Vinyl Adventure which is a new website being launched shortly) 3 ebay stores, amazon shop and blog/facebook/twitter presence)  you cannot beat the personal touch and David spends a lot of his time talking to customers about how to get every last bit of performance from their hifi systems.

evo3-mosaicAs 2015 approaches MCRU have many new and exciting projects in the pipeline, the most exciting being the launch of a new goldMusic First Audio Phono Amplifier for which MCRU will be dealers for. They firmly believe analogue never died and David’s 2 x Technics SL1200’s from his DJ’ing days in the 80’s are still working well having been heavily modified through all the up-grade tips he first discovered on The Art Of Sound forum. To see what we are all about please visit our websitewww.mcru.co.uk

athena dctThe final comment we leave to the late great DJ Mr John Robert Parker Ravenscroft better known as John Peel who sadly passed away in 2004, his quote will forever remind us of his legendary status in music circles….Vinyl Is Not Dead, It Just Needs A New Turntable……

Day eleven of Hif Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion introduces Mains Cables R Us.

“Started 4 years ago (is that all!!) Mains Cables R Us began because it’s owner David Brook needed a mains extension block for MEhis AV system and the subsequent purchase he received from ebay begged the question “can I do better myself ?””

Read the full story here. 

 

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French manufacturer Métronome Technologie was founded in 1987 and the brand has developed since then to earn a global kalista-ultimatereputation for its digital audio players. The company designs and manufactures all their products in France at its workshop located in Roquemaure near Toulouse.

From 6 to 9 January 2015, Métronome will attend CES as an exhibitor for the first time in their history and will present in association with their cable maker partner Absolue Creations.

During CES, Métronome will unveil their new devices: the CD player Le Player® and the DSD-ready DAC C8 +. The unique and prestigious CD transport Kalista (pictured) will also play for the pleasure of visitor’s eyes and ears – now I’ve had the pleasure of casting my eyes over this one in the flesh and it really is something to behold.

 

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Burson Audio has announced the introduction of the new Conductor Virtuoso USB DAC, Headphone amplifier and Preamplifier Conductor-Virtuoso-2that can be used to drive headphones of desktop systems. The new Virtuoso supersedes all previous Conductor models.

Burson say that it has “significantly upgraded and refined previous generations of the Conductor. Besides big power, the Conductor Virtuoso includes a new, stunning 100-step volume control with a fresh and easy-to-read display. When the Virtuoso is turned on the volume indicators appear on the face of the thick, antiresonant aluminum front plate”.

Consumers can choose from two interchangeable DAC boards with different sonic characteristics, and the modular design should make for no-fuss upgrades. Another important consideration say Burson is that the Conductor Virtuoso doesn’t use densely-packed opamps, but instead all discrete circuitry which they say offers superior tonality, clarity and a lower noise floor.

The remote control is carved from solid aluminum with no visible screws.

The Conductor Virtuoso is shipping now with the ESS9018 Sabre DAC at $1,995USD / €1,850 Euros. The Burr Brown PCM1793 version is priced at $1,495USD / €1,451 Euros.

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Seasons greetings from all at Music First Audio

Music First Audio
www.mfaudio.co.uk

Henley Designs have announced a new distribution agreement with Unison Research for their range of electronics and uroneloudspeakers. Managing Director of Henley Designs Ltd., Laurence Armstrong, said of the new relationship:

We’re thrilled to be working with Unison Research. They have a skilled   and   dedicated   team   of   audio   experts   who   perfectly complement the quality of the products they manufacture. The high-end audio market is vibrant, and we feel Unison Research should be a key consideration for anyone in the UK that’s interested in true high-end sound. Their valve technology is second to none, and we’re excited about some of the innovations they have in mind for future releases.”

From January 1st 2015, Henley Designs will be offering sales and support for all Unison Research enquiries in the UK and Ireland. After many years of expertly handling the Unison Research brand in the UK, UKD will also continue to support the warranty on all products purchased prior to the handover date.

As part of the new distribution arrangement UK customers will have full access to the valve and hybrid ‘Unico’ electronics ranges, as well as the loudspeaker models produced by Unison Research. The sister company of Unison Research, Opera Loudspeakers, will also be accessible through Henley Designs.

 

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Schiit Audio has introduced Fulla, its new micro-sized DAC/headphone amp combo for use with virtually any computer. The USB-schiit-logopowered Fulla delivers up to 24/96 HD audio with a digital to analog converter, together with a headphone amp with up to 10x the power of a typical computer headphone output port. Priced at $79, the Fulla is the most affordable dongle DAC/amp available today say Schiit.

“Best of all, Fulla has a real, analog volume knob on it—a feature that makes it easier to use than any other dongle-DAC,” said Jason Stoddard, Co-Founder of Schiit Audio. “There’s no software volume, no drivers, no digital volume processing—just plug in, turn the knob, and you have great music.”

Fulla uses many of the same parts as other Schiit products, from the CM6631A asynchronous USB input receiver, to the AK4396 digital to analog converter. Combined with thin-film resistors, and Analog Devices ADA4610 and AD8397 output devices, Fulla is said to provide “excellent sound quality beyond its modest price”.

Fulla also features a custom steel and aluminum chassis. “We made a conscious decision to keep Fulla simple and concentrate on sound quality first,” continued Jason Stoddard. “Fuller’s designed to take with you, and use on multiple computers, so plug and play operation was very important. We also wanted to get away from complex or gimmicky feature sets that might require custom applications for different OSes. The result is a small, good-sounding, and quite powerful little device that sets the bar on value for money.”

Like all Schiit products, Fulla is made in the USA, with the vast majority of its total production cost going to companies manufacturing in the USA, and local assembly, testing, and support through Schiit’s Valencia, CA offices.

Fulla, (in Norse legend, a goddess, a “bountiful healer,”) is available to order now.

 

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Hifi Pig is putting its head above the festive parapet and backing John Otway in his bid to get a Christmas No. 1 in the UK.

Two-hit wonder John Otway is hoping to make it a hat-trick by taking the number 1 UK single slot this Christmas with his single OKjohn_otway_christmas_number_one Father Christmas, which is a reworking of his “almost-very-nearly-a-hit” DK 50/80 with Wild Willy Barrett which reached 45 in the UK singles chart in 1980.

Otway has odds of 25 to 1 that he will hit the number one spot this Christmas and he has something of a secret weapon in the form of his hordes of loyal fans whose collective purchasing power gave Otway a number 9 hit for his 50th birthday with Bunsen Burner in 2002.

Those same fans also voted Otway’s “Beware Of The Flowers Cause I’m Sure They’re Going To Get You Yeah” as the Seventh Greatest Lyric Of All Time in an online poll.

With a fan base like that behind him, who knows what could happen. So, if you would like to see a rock and roll original winning the race to the Christmas No. 1 rather than the usual X Factor winner, you could do worse than to put OK Father Christmas in someone’s stocking this year.

It’s class…have a listen and then go buy it…

 

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McIntosh Laboratory has launched its first-ever headphone. MCHEAD2

“The McIntosh-designed headphone driver in the new MHP1000 has been carefully engineered to complement any current or legacy McIntosh headphone amplifier, plus a wide range of third-party electronics” says the company’s press release, continuing “The MHP1000 has been voiced to deliver a smooth yet transparent, full-bodied, non- fatiguing output, and is both supremely comfortable and easy to listen to over long periods. Its closed-back, circumaural design eliminates external noise and distractions for a fully immersive personal listening experience”.

Specifications

Transducer type:                     Dynamic, 40mm-diameter 3-layer compound diaphragm with

viscoelastic centre layer

Operation:                               Circumaural, closed-back, bass-ported

Frequency response:              5Hz to 20kHz

Impedance nominal:               200 ohms

Nominal SPL:                          97db (1Mw @ 500Hz)

Max SPL:                                122dB (300Mw @ 500Hz)

Magnetic circuit:                     One Tesla annular neodymium magnet motor assembly Headband and ear

Pads:                                      Leather

Detachable cables included:  1x 1-metre cable with 3.5mm stereo connector; 1x 3-metre cable with 6.3mm stereo

Weight:                                   464 grams

Price and availability

The MHP1000 sells for £1,995 and is available now.

 

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