Romanian company, Meze, will begin shipping their new headphones, the 99Classics, in November 2015.  Their Indiegogo campaign, which is still running, has already achieved their funding target.  The headphones, available in Silver or Gold finishes, are designed to be both comfortable and elegant and to deliver excellent sound quality.Meze_1

The construction uses high quality materials such as soft memory foam ear-pads, Walnut wood for the 99Classics Gold and Maple wood for the Silver ear cups. All wood comes from sustainable sources.Meze_2

The metal hardware is cast zinc and manganese spring steel and the internal components are made of durable ABS and silicone parts. There are no parts in the assembly that serve as decoration only. Although the 99Classics use real wood and are sturdy, they are not heavy, they weigh 290 grams. They are equipped with 40mm Neodymium Mylar Dynamic Drivers.Meze_3

Pricing is from 199US$ on their Super Earlybird offer to 310US$ after the Indiegogo campaign finishes.

 

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Yes vocalist John Anderson and renowned jazz fusion violinist Jean Luc Ponty first talked about recording together over 30 years ago. Now those discussions have become reality on the duo’s new CD Better Late Than Never.
Accompanied by a band of superb musicians whose credits include work with Ponty, Stanley Clarke, Chick Corea, George Duke, Pink and Michael Jackson, Anderson and Ponty revisit some of their own classics as well as delivering new material.tour-banner-apb-bltn
“A breakthrough feeling came as I sang with Jean Luc’s music” says Anderson. “To be in a band again is very exciting on many levels, we will play and sing our way around the world and have fun, for music is pleasure, music is all that is.”
Better Late than Never features Yes classics like Owner Of A Lonely Heart, Roundabout and Wondrous Stories.  In addition, Anderson brings lyrics and vocals to some of Ponty’s best-loved compositions.
“Collaborating with Jon who is such a creative singer/songwriter is unlike any project I have done before.” Ponty explains. “I knew that we had plenty of musical affinities to make it work, but the result is way beyond my expectations. It is also a lot of fun to reunite with these excellent musicians who played with me in the past, they really put their heart in this project and with Jon’s creative input we are not just rehashing the past but giving a new life to the music we started developing decades ago.”
Better Late Than Never will be released as a CD/DVD Deluxe Edition and a standalone CD version on25th September and will be accompanied by a world tour.
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Lampizator have announced a new DSD Only DAC called Eufonia. It will cost 1800 Euros plus taxes.

The company’s website claims that this signals the death of CD and there will be no more AES/EBU inputs and no more Toslink. The DAC will play normal normal red book CDs as DSD via the computer which they say will have a better sound quality than is achievable from PCM files directly.lampizatoreufonidsddac

The DSD engine in the Lamizator Eufonia is the same as in the Level 4, Big 5, Lite 7 and Big 7 DACs and the fully analogue tube stage is from their Amber project but with an improved circuit and tube section…

The Eufonia will auto detect DSD 64 and 128 and uses Amanero USB input 2 which is future proofed to 512x DSD. There will be auto muting of DSD artifacts and the Eufonia will use exclusively Jupiter Tin paper caps.

Tubes can be ECC81, ECC88, ECC82 or any equivalents and there’s a 6X5 tube rectifier diode in the tube power supply.

Outputs will be single ended with no option for XLR and it will be available with black or silver front panels.

 

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Following on from the recent news of their appointment of distribution for their new NADAC (Network Attached DAC) in the USA earlier this week,  Merging Technologies of Switzerland have announced their European and Australasian distributors.  Digital Audio Service are handling Germany and Austria, eMerging the UK, Merging Denmark takes Scandinavia, the Benelux region is taken care of by Edison, Italy by VDM and France by Synergie-Esoteric.  In Asia, new company Merging Fidelity will appoint local representatives in the Chinese Mainland, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Syncfish handle South Korea, Modi Digital will distribute in India and Electori of Japan will be distributing there and launching NADAC at the Tokyo International Audio Show running from 25th to 27th September.  Australia and New Zealand will be handled by ATT Audio Controls in Melbourne.NADAC_news_28Aug

Merging Technologies Sales and Marketing Manager, Chris Hollebone remarked; “We believe we have an exceptional team in the Asia/Pac Rim region.  There are still important countries where we need to find the right partners so we are taking out time to research companies that share our values.  This is a proven formula for success and we know that NADAC deserves the best possible support in this vital market.”

 

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Clarity, the hifi industry trade association, in conjunction with Queen and Universal Music is very pleased to announce the first UK public playback of “Queen: The Studio Collection” box set at the UK’s National Audio Show on 19 and 20 September 2015 – a week before the box set is released.  This fantastic opportunity for fans and audiophiles to hear the albums before they go on sale takes place at 12 noon on the Saturday and Sunday, during the hi-fi show, held at Whittlebury Hall, Northamptonshire.  Five years in the making “Queen: The Studio Collection” brings together the complete collection of 15 studio albums, re-mastered by the legendary Bob Ludwig and mastered for half speed vinyl cutting by Miles Showell at Abbey Road. Encased in a beautifully crafted box and complete with a lavishly illustrated 108-page book, featuring material from Queen’s archive and the personal archives of Brian May and Roger Taylor, these classic albums are presented in the highest possible audio quality for die-hard fans and audiophiles alike.Queen_Studio_news_august

Clarity members will put together a top quality hi-fi system which includes the £45,000 PMC MB2S XBD-A loudspeakers, as used by Miles Showell at Abbey Road. The ultra-high resolution system will show off the audio quality of the box set with incredible detail and help create a feeling of actually being at the recording sessions, reproducing the energy and atmosphere that was felt when Freddie, Brian, Roger and John originally put the tracks together.

The Show Must Go On at Whittlebury Hall, Whittlebury, NN12 8QH (next to Silverstone race track). Entry is by purchase of a National Audio Show ticket.

 

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The Elixir, from Budapest based Heed Audio is a compact five-input integrated amplifier with built-in phono stage and dedicated headphone amplifier, that is designed to provide the renowned Heed sound quality in a one box solution at a lower price point than the existing Heed products. A Class A headphone amplifier and enhanced MM phono stage provide increased functionally for users wanting a simple audio solution. Utilising the capacitor coupling principle borrowed from the Heed Audio TransCap amplifiers, such as the award winning Obelisk SI, ensures a similar sound quality and power output. The power amplifier output of 50W per channel at 8 ohms, or 65W into 4 ohms, provides plenty of power for the loudspeakers connected to the Elixir, enabling use of pretty well any model the user chooses. With four pairs of RCA line inputs, one pair of RCA MM phono inputs and two pairs of 4mm speaker connectors, along with a pair of pre-amp outputs, Elixir specifications are kept simple for the beginner, but afford expandability if so required.Elixir_heed_news

Alpar Huszti, Heed Audio’s marketing and sales manager, says the Elixir, “Is the perfect amp to kick-start the new range that is specifically targeted at those new to world of hi-fi.” He continues, “A lot of hard work and effort has gone into researching and developing this product to create an amp at such a low price that is on par with the higher priced Heed Audio amplifiers, making the Elixir perfect to consumers looking to the first step, or who are looking for a cost effective and fuss-free way of playing their newly rediscovered vinyl collection.”

Elixir is available in two colours;  elegant silver and  ember-like black and is priced at £750.

 

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German company Raumfeld have announced their Soundbar which comes complete with its own Subwoofer. Easy to integrate with any existing Raumfeld multi-room devices, the Soundbar boasts Integrated class D amplifier firing 6 x 70 mm midrange drivers with 180 watts and the Subwoofer a 200 watt class D amplifier with 3 x 130 mm long-throw bass drivers capable of an impressive 35 Hz low end.  They say that it is positively ‘Wunder Bar’!

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As with all Raumfeld products, the Raumfeld Soundbar can be returned within eight weeks of purchase if you are not completely convinced of the speakers’ exceptional sound quality and streaming functionality.  The Soundbar and Subwoofer are available in matte black and silk white from the end of September at £999.99 (incl. 20% VAT) for the set and comes with a voucher for three months of the music streaming service TIDAL HiFi, plus free shipping.

 

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The Chord Company, has launched Clearway — a high-performance, low-cost speaker cable that replaces Carnival SilverScreen and introduces a raft of advanced features.  During the development of Clearway, valuable research was carried out in relation to the behaviour of conductors and different dielectrics (insulation). For a long time, Chord has understood the importance of the relationship between conductor materials and insulation, and its silver-plated speaker cables make extensive use of PTFE as an insulation material.  Typically, cables that use oxygen-free copper as a conductor material will use either polyethylene or PVC as an insulating material. What sets The Chord Company’s Clearway speaker cable apart is its use of FEP: a derivative of PTFE with very similar performance characteristics.  The FEP-insulated conductors are built from multi-strand oxygen-free copper and are arranged in a twisted-pair configuration to reduce interference. The two conductors are then protected with a layer of soft PVC (which was chosen over polyethylene because of its flexibility), in order to correctly space the shielding in relation to the conductors and to minimise any mechanically induced noise.  High-performance shielding is specified and just like the award-winning Carnival SilverScreen, Chord Clearway speaker cable features two contra-wound high-density foil shields. Like many Chord speaker cables, the twin foils, combined with the twisted-pairconfiguration, make for a level of shielding that is effective to high frequencies. Finally, a clear protective PVC jacket is applied, which again serves to further reduce any mechanically induced noise; the reflective foil finish also assumes the colour of the immediate décor.

Nigel Finn, Technical Director of The Chord Company on Clearway says: “I am particularly pleased with the new Clearway. The cable has qualities that would normally be associated with considerably more expensive cables. The use of high-quality oxygen-free copper, FEP insulation and high-density foil shielding means that at £10, it will be pretty hard to produce a better-performing speaker cable. Chord has tested the cable in all levels of systems and in every case, whether entry-level or high-end, the levels of clarity, detail, dynamics and critically, musical coherence, are really impressive.”

Pricing and availability

Clearway: £10 p/m unterminated; various factory termination options include Chord’s exclusive UK-made 24-karat gold-plated banana plugs, direct gold-plated-copper spade connections and BFA Camcon connectors. Available now.

 

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California’s Noble Audio will be showing its full range and offering free impression-taking for its custom products at CanJam London 2015 this weekend. Noble Audio will be presenting demonstration models of the Noble 3, Noble 4, Noble 5, Noble 6, the ten-driver Kaiser 10U and the new Savant IEMs.Noble_canjam_1

Noble Audio’s UK agent, Gisele Flower, a high-profile professional audiologist with a regular consultancy in Harley Street, will also be on-hand offering free impression-taking (worth £50) for any purchase from the custom product line. Gisele is known as the ‘musician’s audiologist’ and her clients include some of the world’s best-known musicians and bands. Gisele will be at CanJam on Saturday the 29th for a limited period. The free impression-taking is available on a first-come first-served basis.Noble_canjam_2

CanJam London 2015, Hotel Russell, 1-8 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5BE

Saturday, August 29th, 2015, 9am to 6pm

Sunday, August 30th, 2015, 9am to 5pm

 

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The guys at Native DSD have just got in touch to tell us about their new compilation album called 8 Ensembles in 1 Bit(2015). It has tunes by Breno Virícimo Group, Thomas & Eva, The Pipays, Kobra Ensemble, Merel Vercammen & Ketevan Roinishvili, De Gebroeders Harteveld & Fretz, New Amsterdam Voices and Odd Pearls and is currently the best selling album on Native DSD.
Producer/Engineers Jared Sacks and Daan van Aalst have pooled their expertise in music production and recording in very high resolution audio. Their goal is to put together the best system for recording and reproducing music at the highest quality with recordings in the new DSD 256fs (quad rate DSD) format, although 8 Ensembles is available in DSD 256, 128 and 64.
The music on 8 Ensembles in 1 Bit is provided in both stereo and multichannel sound formats in the recorded resolution DSD 256fs (quad rate DSD.JL002

Tom Caulfield, the Mastering Engineer at Native DSD used specially developed software from Jussi Laako (the maker of the Signalyst HQ Player software player) for the conversion from DSD 256fs to DSD 128fs and DSD 64fs.

Once the three sets of Stereo and Multichannel DSD files were completed, the tracks were then converted from the DFF to the DSF file format. This enables Native DSD to add metadata to the recorded tracks. Finally the DSF tracks, cover art and album booklet in Acrobat PDF format are uploaded to Native DSD ‘s server where they can be purchased and downloaded.

Expect a review in the next few weeks.

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Bringing “Haute Horology” watchmaking techniques and Formula One materials to Hi End Audio, Kostas Metaxas 40 years artistry in the state-of-the-art is embodied in his latest audio sculpture – “a perfect marriage of the arts of engineering [electrical and mechanical] and the fine arts of sculptural form”.Ikarus_SCOOP.814

The IKARUS 2015 is machined from a solid block of either aircraft aluminium, copper or titanium. It’s totally bespoke and the modular electronics make it future-proof, says the company’s press release. The circuit boards can be CNC machined from 1mm solid silver coated clear polystyrene.Ikarus_SCOOP2biggervu.810

The new range is inspired by the breathtaking work of Ercole Spada and Pininfarina on racing cars of the 50’s and 60’s.

“It has taken little time for Australian firm MAS to receive worldwide attention. In France, the range of MAS Electronics has seduced us… Metaxas products belong to this rare category of electronics which achieve the essential and vital qualities of a good Hi Fi system which drive you to irresistibly listen and enjoy records one after the other”.Ikarus_SCOOP2biggervu.816

100% designed and engineered by Kostas Metaxas, each IKARUS is assembled by his sons – either Andreas or Alessandros Metaxas.

The familial passion in the fine and applied arts is inspired by the BUGATTI family.

 

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GoldenEar Technology New Triton Five tower speaker and the larger Triton Seven are available from UK dealers through Karma-AV. Several important refinements from the flagship Triton One speaker have imbued the Triton Five with better imaging and a more sophisticated overall sonic presentation for demanding two-channel and multi-channel audio applications.

The Five’s cabinet construction of non-parallel baffle, top and side walls acts to suppress internal standing waves while aligning the driver array with ear level at the listening position. Its box-less audio character is further enhanced by a narrow front baffle in concert with a diffraction-free grille cloth sock – which adds additional damping to the cabinet – and a sculpted piano-gloss black base, which provides stability.

Like the Triton One, Two, and Seven before it, the Five utilises a D’Appolito Array of two bass/midrange drivers and GT’s now familiar High Velocity Folded Ribbon tweeter. The HVFR tweeter is a variation of an accordion-like ribbon transducer – the Air Motion Transformer – invented by Oscar Heil. 20627339268_52927fb08f_z

Rather than vibrate when current is applied, the folded HVFR ribbon works like a squeeze box: the folds squeeze and expand with the current to produce sound waves. A larger radiating area is created, which is greater than the sum of four conventional one inch dome tweeters. The HVFR design also offers a wider dispersion pattern and higher efficiency.

Above and below the tweeter, the cast-basket 6″ bass/midrange drivers are engineered for an exceptionally long-throw, producing exceptional dynamic range and a deeper bass response. Their precisely-curved polypropylene cone design also delivers excellent midrange clarity and presence. 20815312135_cb74030187_z

Like the Triton One, the Five incorporates four side-mounted 8” sub-bass radiators (two on each side), located near the floor for optimum coupling to the room. Compared with the Triton Seven, the Five’s larger sub-bass radiating area, cabinet and drivers combine to produce deeper low-distortion bass quality and richer midrange detail from a sleek, attractively-sized, passive speaker.

Specifications:

Frequency Response: 26 Hz – 35 kHz

Efficiency: 90 dB

Nominal Impedance: compatible with 8 ohms

Driver complement: four 8″ planar infrasonic radiators; two 6″ high-definition cast-basket mid/bass drivers; single HFVR High-Velocity Folded Ribbon Tweeter

Rec Amp: 20 – 400 watt/channel

Dimensions: Speaker: 168mm W (front) x 206mm W (rear) x 314mm D x 1124 mm H (with base), Base: 279mm W x 419mm D

Availability September 2015

Typical retail prices inc VAT: £2000 pair

 

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It’s been a highly productive past 18 months or so for influential musical icons The Zombies. Led by founder members Rod Argent and Colin Blunstone, The Zombies have completed a raft of shows across the US, made their second celebrated appearance at SXSW festival, seen their enduring classic Time of The Season’ sampled by Eminem (‘Rhyme Or Reason’), received a nomination for the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame and completed a brand new studio album, produced by Chris Potter (The Verve, Urban Hymns), which follows their last album release, 2011’s ‘Breathe Out, Breathe In’. Not only that but the band rocked new music showcase The Great Escape in Brighton this year and created something really special with their live performance at this year’s Glastonbury.

Despite originally disbanding in 1967 (the band officially reformed in 2004), The Zombies have always found their music in demand from subsequent generations and now release “Still Got That Hunger” on 9th October.

The artwork for the new album has been created by Terry Quirk, the original artist of their iconic album‘Odessey and Oracle’, hailed by Rolling Stone Magazine and NME earlier this year as one of the greatest albums of all time.

The Zombies will shortly begin a month-long US tour incorporating their live debut of ‘Still Got That Hunger’, and will be returning to the UK (supported by Josh Flowers & The Wild) for further dates later this year.

UK TOUR DATES

November 10th 2015 London The Forum

December 1st 2015 Brighton Concorde 2

December 2nd 2015 Cardiff The Globe

December 3rd 2015 Bristol The Fleece

December 4th 2015 Birmingham Library, The Institute

December 5th 2015 Norwich Norwich Open

December 7th 2015 Leeds Brudenell Social Club

December 8th 2015 Glasgow Oran Mor

December 9th 2015 Manchester Manchester Club Academy

December 10th 2015 Liverpool Arts Club

December 12th 2015 Newcastle Upon Tyne Riverside

 

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An Audio Legend

Dieter Burmester died in August 2015 aged 69 after a short, serious illness in Berlin-Zehlendorf.Dieter_burmester

Dieter Burmester was born in Austria but moved at the age of six months with his parents to Germany. He grew up in Lüchow. He did an apprenticeship as a radio and television technician and did his military service with the Federal Border Guard from (BGS). From 1968 he studied electrical and telecommunications engineering in Berlin.  After his studies, he founded a small engineering firm and developed medical measurement devices and computer interfaces.

Burmester was a passionate musician, even before completing his studies, he played from August 1964 full time as a bassist and vocalist in the beat band The echoes Later named Some Folks, on tour.  Even after his studies he played at concerts and participated in various band projects. From 1999 to 2007 he played with his band Past Perfect. In addition, he collected guitarsand composed and made ​​music recordings in his private, professionally equipped studio.

In 1978 he founded in Berlin-Schöneberg Burmester Audio Systems GmbH. In addition to the audio systems, the company also has Burmester Automotive that produces sound systems for premium cars such as the Bugatti Veyron, Porsche Panamera and Mercedes Maybach. Burmester also make systems especially designed for the luxury yacht market.

On March 6, 2003, the Berlin Association of Independent Entrepreneurs Association (ASU) awarded him the title “Entrepreneur of the Year”. His wife Marianne will continue to run the company along with the 50 employees.

The above is a potted history of an audio legend. Dieter Burmester was to me a hero in more ways than one. He was passionate about music and was unashamed at producing a luxury brand that only the very wealthy, or ardent audiophile, could afford. Outside of audio Burmester is probably unknown to most people. I recall the first time I saw the 808 pre amp he first developed in the 80’s when it was in Subjective Audio’s window in Camden. It stopped me in my tracks because it was so distinctive in its glorious chromed finish, bling at its best. The pre amp is still made in mk5 form and is a legend. If I won the lottery Burmester would be the brand I would buy straight away. burmester808

Along with the recent death of Yes founder and bassist Chris Squire and jazz keyboard legend Joe Sample of the Crusaders last year, Dieter Burmester’s death has deeply saddened me. He leaves a rich legacy in his company which will continue to produce superb audio equipment and I hope that when the day comes for me to leave this mortal coil that maybe my legends will be up there and we can all party together.

RIP  Dieter Burmester.

Ian Ringstead

 

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Merging Technologies has announced that On a Higher Note, LLC has been appointed as the exclusive distributor for USA and Canada for its new NADAC products. This agreement covers the consumer market and the high-end audio industry, tapping On A Higher Note’s network of retailers and custom installers.NADAC-FrontLeft1-Transparent-Shadow

Considerable interest in NADAC has come from the professional community that has been Merging’s main market for 25 years. In recognition of the need to service that market with continuity, Independent Audio of Portland, Maine will add NADAC to its existing portfolio of Horus, Hapi, Pyramix and Ovation.

“Getting master quality audio into the home is the holy grail.” commented Merging’s President, Claude Cellier. “Our professional customers including artists, sound engineers, singers and producers have won hundreds of Grammys® over the years. NADAC makes their great sounding music accessible anywhere and allows these amazing recordings to be presented as the artists and producers intended.”
On a Higher Note’s Founder and President, Philip O’Hanlon, is excited about the first-to-market advantage Merging Technologies’ new integrated network DACs possess. “There is no doubt that the NADAC performs exceptionally well, offering high fidelity multi-channel analog to digital music conversion with the highest sampling rates and formats. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to bring this smart DXD and DSD compatible whole-home audio streaming solution to our dealer base. For the first time, music lovers can enjoy superb sonic transparency along with the convenience of being able to expand into a multi-zone, multi-source networked environment.”

The RAVENNA/AES67 network technology was specifically designed for audio use and removes traditional clocking and jitter problems between the host and the DAC. It also removes any cable length limitation allowing complete multi-room and multi-zone control with multiple hosts and multiple DACS being simply connected. Merging realised the potential of this technology and worked with the RAVENNA developers to ensure that DSD and DXD sampling rates could be easily handled with sufficient channels for the new immersive sound formats as well as the existing catalog of surround files.

 

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Blond:ish (DJ’s Anstascia and Vivie-Ann ) were conceived as an entity in Cherry Nightclub in Montreal way back in 2008, but now live in London, where they don’t really fit the stereotypical image of DJ/group.

The duo have announced the release of their first full-length album for later this year, which will be called “Welcome To The Present” and released on the excellent Kompakt label on October 23rd. Blond:ish have also announced further dates including Oasis Festival and Burning Man.Blondish

 

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Raumfeld, whose Stereo L loudspeakers we recently reviewed, announce that their entire portfolio of wireless speakers will be available in both matte black and silk white for presale from today.RMF_One-M_72dpi_01

Models previously only available in the brand’s original silk white colour such as  the Stereo L and the One M, can now be purchased in sleek matte black as well. As with all Raumfeld speakers, the Stereo L and One M come complete with built-in amplifiers, drivers and integrated streaming technology including a DAC – all controlled with the Raumfeld App.

The Raumfeld Stereo L and One M will be available in matte black from the end of August 2015. The Stereo L can be purchased for £1249.99 and the compact One M for £349.99. Both speakers come with a free TIDAL voucher (for a limited time only) worth £59.97.RMF_Stereo-L_Black_72dpi_05

Raumfeld also offers buyers the right to return Raumfeld speakers within eight weeks of purchase if they are not convinced of their exceptional sound quality.

 

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Cherry Red have announced the official release of what has been described as “the lost 2 Tone album”.Rhoda-Dakar-Sleeve-400x400

Rhoda Dakar joined The Bodysnatchers in 1979 after Shane McGowan introduced her to bassist Nicky Summers. After only their second gig the band signed to legendary UK record label 2 Tone. Nationwide gigs alongside Madness, The Selecter, The Specials,The Go-Gos and Toots & The Maytals followed, as did two UK chart hits; Let’s Do Rocksteady b/w Ruder Than You in March 1980 and Easy Life b/w Too Experienced (produced by label boss/The Specials founder Jerry Dammers) in July of the same year. These now much sought-after singles and their appearance on 2 Tone’s Dance Craze movie were to be The Bodysnatchers only commercial releases.

Alongside The Bodysnatchers Rhoda guested with The Specials on their More Specials album, joining them on tour around Europe and the US (including their final show in Boston). Following The Bodysnatchers breakup she joined Special AKA as lead singer. She co-wrote their politically essential single Nelson Mandela as well as The Boiler, a harrowing tale of rape, which although banned still managed to attain UK chart placement. In more recent times Rhoda has guested with Madness on their Liberty of Norton Folgate album, Apollo440, Dr Robert of The Blow Monkeys, recorded successful solo albums and become a much in demand DJ.

After years of being asked to do so, and to celebrate The Bodysnatchers 35th Anniversary, Rhoda assembled an all-star cast to in effect record The Bodysnatchers debut album. 2 Tone label mates Lynval Golding and Sir Horace Gentleman of The Specials star alongside members of Pama International, The Sidewalk Doctors and Intensified, who admirably capture the spirit of the times.
The majority of The Bodysnatchers songs had only ever been heard live, on ultra rare bootleg live cassettes or on their two John Peel sessions. Scratch the surface of the resulting upbeat album and you’ll hear Rhoda’s, the bands and 2 Tone’s defiant stance on social, political and economic injustice is as relevant today as it was three decades ago. This truly is a must hear record for fans of the band, label and genre alike.

Rhoda Dakar sings The Bodysnatchers is released on 6th November on Phoenix City.

 

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It is with great sadness but also a deep sense of gratitude for all of his achievements, Burmester Audiosysteme GmbH announces the unexpected death of the company founder and CEO Dieter Burmester. Dieter passed away after a short but severe illness in Berlin-Zehlendorf on August 15, 2015. Dieter Burmester was the founder and CEO of the company until his death.

Dieter Burmester’s mission had always been to create the perfect blend of musical sound, technological innovation and timeless design. Today, the brand Burmester has a global reputation for uncompromising sound and craftsmanship. Dieter Burmester was born in 1946. As a musician and engineer he embodies these ideals together with his team.Dieter_burmester

Ten years ago, Burmester accepted the challenge to implement the experience of high end sound into the automobile. Following the successful debut in the Bugatti Veyron Burmester now also offers high end sound for premium cars from Porsche and Mercedes-Benz.

Dieter Burmester was an internationally accepted and well-known pioneer of the high end industry. Many of his legendary audio components have turned into icons of the high end world.

His passion for music and the reproduction of music at the highest levels of quality had lead him to continuously break new ground. His creative energy and his captivating enthusiasm inspired him to develop and realize extraordinary projects.

Passing on his profound knowledge and his personal art of hearing to the team at Burmester Audio was a matter of the heart for Dieter Burmester. We thank Dieter for his decades of inspiration and knowledge and driven attention to detail. Together with his wife Marianne Burmester the team at Burmester will continue to run the company as he would have wished.

 

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Prog rock pioneer Steve Hackett has announced the release ‘Premonitions – The Charisma Recordings 1975-1983’, a comprehensive reissue project that includes his first 6 albums on the Charisma label, together with a wealth of previously unavailable recordings as well as remixes by Steven Wilson. ‘Premonitions’ is released on 16th October by Universal Music Catalogue/Virgin.Steve Hackett & Nad Sylvan 9_20 please credit Gene Steinman lo res

‘Premonitions’ comes in a Super Deluxe box set featuring a total of 135 songs on 10 CDs and 4 DVDs (5.1 mixes), plus an extensive booklet; included in this version are 67 previously unreleased recordings between old and new tracks, live and remixes.

“I’m pleased that Steven Wilson has done several new mixes in both surround and stereo” – Hackett has declared – “The box set will also contain a number of live shows from the era. I’ve enjoyed being involved with this comprehensive trip down memory lane. There’s also a substantial booklet containing a lot of background info along with many wonderful Armando Gallo shots, and Roger Dean has painted a beautiful picture for the cover. For me it’s a proud souvenir that highlights those years. I’ll play plenty of this early work at shows in the autumn which will include some numbers not played live for many moons, like ‘Icarus Ascending’ and ‘Star of Sirius’ plus all time faves such as ‘Every Day’ and ‘Spectral Mornings’.”

Hackett’s two most successful albums from the Charisma era, Please Don’t Touch and Spectral Mornings, will also be re-released separately in a deluxe expanded version with 5.1 mixes by Steven Wilson in 2016. Both records were previously reissued in 2005 as expanded single disc sets.96D17388-ECC9-4281-B7C0-8B92A93B7DFF

2015 marks 40 years from the release of Steve Hackett’s first solo record Voyage of the Acolyte; He was the first member of Genesis to release a solo album, before leaving the band in 1977. Hackett’s musical career has been blooming over the past four decades, establishing him as a loved icon and pioneer of the genre. His current studio album Wolflight was released in March to critical acclaim, charting at 31; it’s the first studio album of new material since Beyond the Shrouded Horizon in 2011 and explores past and contemporary cultures in a revolutionary journey.

The 40th anniversary celebrations continue with 19 UK shows on the ‘Acolyte to Wolflight with Genesis Revisited Tour’, where fans will have the opportunity to relive the Charisma years while discovering the guitarist’s more recent work, together with a selection of Genesis tracks previously unheard live.

Steve Hackett made his mark on prog rock in the Seventies with his astounding, innovative work as Genesis’ lead guitarist, before leaving in 1977 to pursue a solo career. Since the release of ‘Voyage of the Acolyte’ in 1975, he has continued his journey of discovery and he’s considered today one of the most influential pioneers of the genre.

 

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Hot on the heals of their nomination for the prestigious German Design Award 2016 (The German Design Council) for their TRIO and ZERO 1 loudspeakers, Pic_2AAvantgarde Acoustics have announced that the launch of their latest DUO speaker, the XD, is imminent.

The new speakers, which debut at this year’s Munich High-End, will have a redeveloped “XD Series” subwoofer system. There will be the DUO XD and the MEZZO XD in the range with a PRIMO XD available on request.Pic_2

“Omega” technology drivers, patent pending CPC crossovers, 1000 Watt XD subwoofer amplification and a ten band parametric DSP bass control unit will all be used in the new XD range of loudspeakers.Avantgarde_XD_amp_1

The current range of DUOs will stop in the fourth quarter of this year.Avantgarde_XD_amp_1_backplate

We heard the new DUO XD at Munich and absolutely loved them…

Price for the DUO XD is 27 900 Euros.

 

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Four years in the making and with 34 years of experience and unrivalled reputation behind the company, Parasound’s new Halo Integrated amplifier/DAC had to be something special … and different to most other integrated amps on the market today.hint_silver_front

The combination of highest quality components and the very latest technology result in a “superior” integrated amp, offering Halo separates performance in a single chassis.  Parasound’s Halo P5 inspired the preamp stage and advanced feature list, while its power amp stage employs the same John Curl circuit topology found it the Class A/AB A21 and A23 power amplifiers.  Its DAC decodes 384kHz PCM and native DSD using the latest ESS Sabre32 Reference version DAC.hint_silver_back

The Halo Integrated Amp boasts the impressive feature list below:

  • Halo Integrated: preamp and DAC;
  • Coax and optical accept PCM up to 192kHz/24-bit
  • Latest generation ESS Sabre32 Reference DAC (ES9018K2M)
  • Asynchronous USB 2.0 supports PCM up to 384kHz/32-bit
  • Native and DoP DSD decoding (Drivers for ASIO or WASAPI)
  • Premium motor-driven Alps potentiometer volume control
  • Dedicated high current headphone amplifier (TI TPA6120)
  • Phono input for MM & MC with 100 Ω or 47k Ω load
  • Front panel Aux input with automatic +12 dB gain stage

5 pairs of line level analogue inputs

1 pair XLR balanced analogue inputs

Balanced XLR and RCA left and right preamp outputs

Analogue bass management with high & low pass crossovers

Home theatre bypass input for surround sound integration

1 balanced XLR and 2 RCA subwoofer outputs

Bass and treble controls with relay bypass from remote or front panel

Rear panel IR input and IR loop output jacks

12 Volt input and output to triggers

Back-lit remote control with discrete buttons

0.5w standby power consumption meets Energy Star & EU specs  hint_black_inside

The new Halo Integrated Amplifier is available in black or silver and in the UK now at a retail price of £2699.

 

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James Loudspeaker has announced the addition of the MQ84/MQ84A mid/high frequency modules to their Mavericks home theatre lineup.

The Mavericks speaker system was specifically developed for ultra-high output home theatre applications, delivering wide bandwidth and low distortion along with the tremendous dynamic capability required to create a stunning cinema experience.

The MQ84/MQ84A is a 4-way loudspeaker available either with a built-in passive crossover (MQ84) or with an optional external active multi-channel amplifier/crossover (MQ84A) providing theatre design specialists and custom integrators with ample flexibility to achieve their exact system design objectives. The MQ84/MA84A has been constructed to the exact dimensions of the M152 dual 15-inch subwoofer, creating a stackable no-compromise full range loudspeaker solution for the ultimate high-resolution home or commercial theatre.MQ84

The MQ84/MQ84A loudspeaker delivers high efficiency and power handling through a broad frequency spectrum attributed to the finest internal components and masterful engineering. Tapping into the company’s roots in large venue sound reinforcement, the James Loudspeaker MQ84 utilizes a pro-audio compression driver coupled to a precise 20-degree x 90-degree precision coverage horn. This is an uncompromising approach to clarity in the vocal range so vital to an engaging cinematic experience. For the high frequency range, a proprietary and precisely angled quad tweeter array consisting of four 25-millimeter titanium dome tweeters is employed, giving the MQ84 very high output and power handling capabilities. A single 25-millimeter titanium dome tweeter is utilized for ultra-high frequencies. The MQ84’s mid-bass frequencies are handled authoritatively by a pair of 8-inch aluminium-cone woofers coupled to a shallow wave guide for increased efficiency.

“The MQ84 and MQ84A have been designed to deliver the ultimate immersive audio experience—lifelike dynamics and high output without any compression of the signal,” explained Michael Park, CTO at James Loudspeaker. “The enclosure geometry and internal bracing have been engineered to minimize loss of energy through vibration. The proprietary drivers are all of the highest quality. This is a loudspeaker capable of both the visceral impact and stunning musicality that together present a movie soundtrack or live concert event as the producers and directors had intended,” Park stated.

The James Loudspeaker MQ84 has an MSRP of $5500 each, the MQ84A has an MSRP of $4800 each. Both products are available now exclusively through authorized James Loudspeaker theatre design and installation specialists.

 

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The Wand 10.3in tonearm has been explicitly designed to be the longest arm that you can fit on a Linn Sondek LP12 or Technics SL1200 family turntable without having to make major modifications.
After a positive response to the 12in version of The Wand Unipivot Tonearm® Design Build Listen ltd are releasing a 10.3in version which promises 2/3 of the benefits of the 12in arm in a format that will fit many existing turntables.Wand 10.3in angled small

While 12in arms may improve tracing distortion performance by around 30% compared to ‘standard’ 9in arms, a 10.3in arm achieves close to 20% improvement in a format that is achievable for many users.

Designer, Simon Brown of Design Build Listen described himself as a 12in arm convert but has found that many people are unable to fit 12in arms to their treasured turntables. The 10.3in arm makes this possible for many users, the benefits being heard in the increase in subtle musical detail. The Wand 10.3in remains a medium mass arm (14g) enabling it to be used with a wide range of cartridges.Wand 10.3in Side-bookshelf Small

Dedicated mounting kits are available for both Linn LP12 and Technics SL1200 family turntables, to make it even easier.

The Wand 10.3in Tonearm is available as the full-spec “Plus’ model available through Retailers at a recommended price of £845.Wand 10.3in Technics Side Small

At the same time Design Build Listen have made a raft of improvements to The Wand Tonearm® culminating in Series 2 status, this includes a new Tungsten Carbide cup bearing, Laser sintered (3D printed) Titanium headshell and a change to brass as the base material for most of the arm parts. These combine to improve both sound quality and finish.

 

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Ministry of Sound today launches the new Audio M Wireless Speaker, a new audio device aimed at satisfying the many needs of today’s consumer of music and contemporary audio.

The new speaker comes in two versions: the Audio M (£149.99) a Bluetooth version offering apt-X Bluetooth, a True Wireless Stereo mode (in which you can pair two units to play your tunes in stereo), battery power for portability and added convenience, as well as the ability to remember the last seven devices it was paired with.

Then there’s the Audio M Plus (£199.99). This version adds full Wi-Fi and multi-room functionality to the Audio M’s list of attributes. As a result, Audio M Plus manages to combine a sonically high-performance yet compact and desktop-friendly design, with the ability to connect any number of units together as part of a cohesive, easy-to use multi- room music system, all controlled from the slick Ministry Audio app.MOS_speaker

Simply stream to Audio M Plus from your smartphone, tablet or any A2DP or DLNA devices, or from the internet via the Ministry Audio app. You can group speakers into up to eight groups, playing different songs to different groups while playing the same song to all the speakers in a single group.

In addition, the Audio M Plus – just like the Audio M – keeps convenience and portability front and centre. By offering the option of battery power as well as mains, the Audio M speakers make it easy for you to simply pick up your easily transported speaker and take it to a different room or, say, the garden.

Both Audio M and Audio M Plus have been sound-tuned by Ministry of Sound’s Ivor Novello-winning DJ and producer, Phil Faversham, who worked with his team of in-house sound engineers and DJs to ensure the speakers deliver a sound that’s powerful, dynamic, revealing and balanced – just like the sound system at the world-famous London club.

Both speakers offer a pleasing tap-and-swipe touch surface for controlling volume and skipping tracks, as well as NFC Bluetooth pairing.

Meanwhile, the Ministry Audio app (available now on iOS and Android) delivers world-class music streaming via Spotify Connect, as well as all eight channels of Ministry of Sound Radio (the world’s biggest dedicated dance music radio station), with more world-class streaming services scheduled to be added in the coming weeks.

The Ministry Audio app also offers users a unique, one-touch ‘Live From The Club’ feature: at the touch of a button, every Friday and Saturday night, you can live stream the party from London’s world-renowned Ministry of Sound nightclub, exactly as it happens.

Features

  • Connect via Bluetooth with aptX
  • Wireless Range up to 10 meters
  • Remembers the last 7 paired devices
  • NFC Bluetooth Pairing
  • Tap and Swipe Touch surface to change volume and skip tracks
  • Wirelessly connect 2 speakers in Stereo
  • Internal Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery
  • 10 hours playback (at 70% volume)
  • Line In
  • Compatibility
  • All A2DP supported devices
  • 5 mm audio input

 

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As the lead-in to the Danish brand’s 30th anniversary celebrations, Gryphon Audio Designs launches the Gryphon Diablo 300, a major overhaul of the internationally acclaimed Gryphon Diablo.

The original Diablo stood its ground for a full decade, before making way for a new, upgraded iteration of the technologies and components that made it quite possibly the most popular High End integrated amp of all time with thousands of units sold worldwide.DIABLO_300_FRIT

Fortunately, in designing the Diablo 300, the Gryphon crew had the luxury and privilege of being able to draw heavily on concepts, components and technological breakthroughs that emerged during the evolution of the recent  top of the line Gryphon Pandora preamplifier and Mephisto power amplifier.

Gryphon founder and CEO Flemming E. Rasmussen explains the importance of in-house trickle-down technology in the brand’s design concept, “One of the main purposes of our no-compromise, cost-no-object test bed platforms like the Pandora and Mephisto is to serve as a source of inspiration for somewhat more accessible components. For instance, the Diablo 300 can be fitted with an optional PCM/DSD DAC module based on the innovative, award-winning Gryphon Kalliope digital-to- analogue converter or an MM/MC phonostage based on our Legato Legacy phonostage.

Whether you’re out there on the digital cutting edge or one of the dedicated analogue enthusiasts who continues to enjoy the musical treasures only available on black vinyl disc, the Gryphon Diablo 300 can be tailored to suit your tastes at the time of original purchase or later as your needs evolve.

Forward thinking is a key element in what sets the Gryphon apart and a large part of the secret behind the long life of our products. DIABLO_300_BAGFRA (1)

The Diablo 300 ultra-transparent, fully balanced volume control derived from the Pandora preamp is executed via a microprocessor-controlled 43-step attenuator for precision in setting the desired listening level. Select resistors and relays ensure long life and perfect level matching with no more than two resistors in the signal path at any setting.

The extreme wideband frequency response of the Diablo 300 extends from 0.5 Hz to 350 kHz and its prodigious 300 Watt (8 Ohms) power output represents a full 25% increase over the original Diablo. The extreme high current capability of the Diablo 300 allows it to double its output to 600 Watts in a 4 Ohm load and a massive 950 Watts into 2 Ohms.DIABLO_300_AABEN

Like every Gryphon product, Gryphon Diablo 300 is designed by Gryphon founder and CEO Flemming E. Rasmussen and manufactured in Denmark.

Price 12.800 euro plus eventual local taxes.

 

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UK distributor Audio Emotion have  announced their new partnership with German High-End Audio brand Octave, highly regarded for their build quality and attention to detail,  “everything is manufactured in house.octave_amp

“Anyone who knows us or our business will understand our desire to partner with a company with such high standards and they reflect our own ‘no compromise’ approach to offering the best brands and the best service too”  say Audio Emotion, with Thomas Brieger of Octave adding:

“We do everything in house and our products are completely build in Germany. The heart of this company was founded 1968 as a transformer specialist. We made special high band solutions for the industry (Ultrasound industry and Harman Kardon for example) then 30 years ago the son of the owner started to build his first tube amps and Octave was born. Therefore we do our power supplies and each and every transformer (output transformer, Step-up transformer for phono modules,…) by ourselves. We still have all the winding machines in house. That gives us an unbelievable freedom to do our concept without any compromise”

After three years in development, Kent based manufacturer Kleio Audio is launching with the introduction of its first range of high quality electronics, the K1 series.  Founded in 2012, Kleio’s focus is on manufacturing high quality, great sounding products in the UK. Managing director Garry Wise (who you can read more about in our interview here) formed the business with the philosophy that, “It is paramount people feel a Kleio product makes them want to really listen to and enjoy their music.” Indeed music is the heart of the company’s focus as it also works with upcoming artists to help promote their music and has a number of artists lined up ready to work with the brand.

Kleio_engineering_news

The launch of Kleio is an example of the resurgence in small scale ‘craft’ hi-fi manufacturing that is happening in the UK. Importantly, the technology aspects of hi-fi design have been recognised by funding bodies as part of the Government’s wish to see technical innovation prosper. Kleio’s founding was supported by the Government Start-Up Loans Scheme and Kent County Council’s Small Business Boost (Regional Growth Fund) Loan Scheme, which contributed towards the initial electronic prototyping and enclosure development costs. Kleio is very proud to be a member of the official Made in Britain campaign, with all products assembled at the company’s Folkestone based workshop. Wherever possible components are sourced from the UK and Europe, such as enclosures from Sussex and PCBs from Kent.

Wise has assembled a carefully selected team of experts to help make the concept a reality. Chief audio designer John Cheriton has been involved in the electronics industry since 1978 and is responsible for the pre-amplifier circuitry and innovative power configurations. The careful selection and sourcing of the electronic components was overseen by team member Philip Saunders and software and audio engineer Simon Coachworth, a previous finalist in the Prince Philip Designer of the Year Award and part of a team that secured a Queen’s Award for Innovation, took ownership of the user functionality and product innovation. The aesthetic vision comes from a design house with many years’ experience of industrial design for the broadcast and professional audio industry and Nick Ebdon, graphic designer, is responsible for creating the visual brand image, including website, advertising and packaging. Office management and finance administration is in the hands of Francine Wise, who has over 11 years’ experience in blue-chip organisations and the local authority sector.

Kleio_K135_news

Excited about the launch of the new company, Garry Wise says, “While Kleio was officially formed in 2012, the idea was conceived in 2010. We spent two years working out how to make the vision a reality so we could launch with a solid engineering philosophy that sees us ‘do it properly’ without unnecessary gimmicks.” He continues, “Our product roadmap for the K1 series is finalised and over the coming months we will introduce a DAC, headphone amp, phono stage and network media player. What all of these products have in common, apart from the engineering, is a focus on music. We firmly believe that music has to be at the centre of what we do, hence our support for up and coming musicians as without this talent where will the next generation of music come from?”

The first products to come from the company are the K105 and K135 (pre and integrated amps).The K1 series will be available from dealers in late September 2015, with retail prices from £2000 – £4000.

 

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Polish company, LampizatOr have launched their new DSD Komputer, a Windows 2012 R2 Server machine which they say is ‘as no-compromise and as high spec as possible. Nothing is ordinary about it. Most of the parts can’t even be bought in regular computer stores, even on-line. A machine as such can’t be bought anywhere even at a much higher price – simply speaking no-one makes such machines and especially the real IT people would tell you it is insane.’ Lampizator_dsd_komputer

LampizatOr have created the Komputer to sonically match their Golden Gate DAC and make the bold claim that ‘this machine plays both PCM and DSD and can not be upgraded or beat because it is the best that PC technology has to offer’.

 

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Tellurium Q, UK manufacturer of audio cables, has announced a brand new digital RCA cable to compliment the ongoing development across its range of interconnects, speaker and digital cables.Tellurium_q_waveform_2_digital_interconnect

“The new Ultra Silver Waveform II digital RCA from Tellurium Q steps beyond the technology of the original Waveform and significantly improves on the acclaimed performance of the first versions with an even cleaner signal path” says the company’s recent press release.

The company say the circuitry in the Waveform II has been refined, developed and radically reworked to give an even purer signal path than before, stressing that a digital signal in a cable is an analogue, electrical pulse not a 1 or 0 stream.

The press release continues “The overall improvements bring you differentiated transparency and incredible transient reproduction, giving the most natural sounding Digital RCA so far”.

The Ultra Silver Waveform II is a direct replacement and upgrade to the Graphite Waveform DRCA.

Available now the new cable will cost £740 for 1m.

 

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Burson Audio announce a new division, Supreme Sound Audio Components.

Built to the same standards as all Burson Audio products, Supreme Sound Audio focuses on providing components for DIYers and OEM audio manufacturers.

“We’ve often been asked how we test our own Supreme Sound Op-amp designs. We’ve constructed a powerful, totally transparent in-house op-amp test platform that makes it easy to hear the actual sound of any single or dual op-amp you plug into it. Switching op-amps is a snap with absolutely no soldering! We call it the Lycan” says the Australian company’s recent press release.Burson_Lycan

Marking the launch of SSA Burson are offering for sale their Lycan Op-Amp Test Bench so you too can hear the difference between op-amps and discrete circuits… in a snap! It delivers over 2wpc @16ohm and the kit drives any headphone. SSA will continue development and add-ons will be released in the future.

The Lycan Test Bench includes a powerful headphone amp and an input section allowing you to roll op-amps…not just Burson Op Amps!

The Lycan Op-Amp Headphone amp and Preamp is shipping early September at $249USD without op-amps and $299USD with SSA op-amps. If you preorder and place a deposit, Supreme Sound Audio will take $50USD off when the unit is ready to ship. The offer ends the 1st of September, 2015.

 

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British hi-fi manufacturer Mitchell and Johnson, has appointed Auden Distribution as its exclusive UK representative, bringing a focused and responsive approach to the retailers’ needs as the company introduces its range of cost effective electronics.

Founded in July 2013, Auden Distribution provides a professional sales agency, distribution and brand building service for clients through its close relationship with a network of UK audiophile dealers. The experience gained over many years in the industry, in both the retail and distribution sectors, has allowed Auden Distribution to develop a small but portfolio of high quality brands, now enhanced with the addition of Mitchell and Johnson.MandJ_front_view

Bill Leigh, owner and managing director of Auden, says, “Along with many in the audio industry, I have got quite used to talking about products costing multiple thousands of pounds. Not for a minute do I doubt the value of those products, however there are many people who love music but are not in a position to buy at that level.” Bill adds, “For a while now I have been looking for a brand that can bring a high performance and excellent value offering. Now I have found it, Mitchell and Johnson brings exciting mid and lower priced audio to the market and I’m very pleased to be involved.”

Paul Mitchell, CEO of Mitchell and Johnson comments, “We are looking forward to working with Auden Distribution and are confident that this promises to be a fruitful relationship which will continue to increase sales growth, opening up the Mitchell and Johnson brand to even more consumers.” He continues, “We know, therefore, that in appointing Bill and his team at Auden, with their extensive experience, they will ensure that the retailers will receive the personal attention they deserve, from a company that really understands the market”.

 

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Oracle Audio Technologies has been producing audio components since 1979 when they released their first turntable, the AC Model, introducing pioneering new features and technologies to the analogue world! 69_delphi_mk_vi_full_view_1

The Delphi Mk I was released in 1980 and was improved over the decades maintaining both its simplistic, elegant design and an enviable reputation as one of the finest and one of the most beautiful record players.

The Delphi Mk VI was launched in late 2009 featuring their new Micro Vibration Stabilizer System which took its performance level to new heights! Oracle recognizes how the performance of the Delphi is intimately linked to the synergy between all of its components. 70_delphi_mk_vi_front_closeup_1

Now Oracle are proud to announce the arrival of the Delphi Mk VI Second Generation. This latest edition features a two-piece platter assembly which facilitates drive belt installation, whilst also reducing platter resonances. The motor drive electronic module was also modified harbouring a larger power reserve providing a 15% torque increase to the motor.ステレオサウンド4c1p-oracle コピー

The new Turbo Power Supply Mk II is so stable it outperformed Oracle’s reference batteries and other power sources and although it is offered as an option, Oracle strongly recommend that each Oracle Delphi Mk VI should be purchased with a Turbo Power Supply Mk II.

RRP from £8,595 inc VAT

 

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Melodika, one of the biggest Polish manufacturers of hi-fi cables, is expanding its Purple Rain offer with new power cables with grounding, terminated with Schuko plug and IEC C13 socket.

The distinguishing feature of new Melodika product is shielding and this shielding in greatest extent is responsible for minimizing  the impact of electromagnetic interference on other audio or video cables.

Melodika MDP cable is ideal not only for hi-fi purposes but also for medical, measurement, laboratory equipment and other devices sensitive to the effects of electromagnetic fields.   DSC_0279

Key features of the new power cable Melodika MDP from Purple Rain series:

  • conductor: Polish oxygen free copper OFC 99.99% (class 4N)
  • dense OFC shielding with 80% coverage
  • construction: 3×2.5mm2
  • insulation: triple PVC
  • Made in Poland
  • CE marking
  • maximum load: 10A
  • cable thickness: 12mm
  • cable felxibility: 60mm
  • Lenghts 0.5m, 1m, 1.5m, 2m, 2.5m, 3m, 4m

0.5m – 67,50 EUR, 1m – 70 EUR, 1.5m- 75 EUR, 2m – 80 EUR, 2.5m – 85 EUR, 3m – 90 EUR, 4m – 100 EUR

These are approximate prices and may vary in different countries.

 

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Dali Opticon is a seven-strong range of speakers consisting of the Opticon 1, 2, 5, 6, 8, LCR and Vokal. Available in Silk Matte White, Black or Walnut finishes and with High-Gloss White or Black front baffles, all models feature Dali’s own  woofer and tweeter modules, plus proprietary SMC (Soft Magnetic Compound) pole piece.

The key features of the range are:

  • Proprietary Dali tweeters and woofers
  • Hand-assembled, Danish built cabinet construction
  •  Unique SMC-based magnet motor system
  • Wood-fibre, low-loss cones
  • Hybrid Soft Dome/Ribbon tweeter across majority of range
  • Gold-plated bi-wiring and bi-amping on all models
  • Available in Silk Matte White, Black and Walnut

Dali_opticon_loudspeakers

Opticon 1
Small standmount. £499

Opticon 2
Stand-mount featuring a 6 1/2 inch wood-fibre woofer and a 28mm Soft Dome tweeter. £649

Opticon 5
Floorstanding taking advantage of Dali’s hybrid Soft Dome/Ribbon tweeter. £999

Opticon 6
Standing a metre high, features dual 6 1/2in bass drivers. £1199

Opticon 8
The flagship of the range, the Opticon 8is a floorstander. £1999

Opticon LCR
This wall-mounted Opticon is rotatable and equally at home working alone or as part of a full home cinema surround system. £499

Opticon Vokal
Centre speaker. £429

Available September.

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Goldnote introduce their new 1000 series with the CD-1000 CD player and PA -1175 stereo amplifier, their first stereo amplifier in over 20 years of designing electronics.  The overall look has been created by architect Stefano Bonifazi and they are designed and handmade in Florence, Tuscany, Italy.

CD-1000

High quality CD player with full resolution 24/192 USB, coax and optical vertically integrated converter.  It has a unique modular design providing a variety of external units including two Class-A tube output stages, atomic master clocks and high power supplies. The structure is made of solid machined steel and thick aluminium panels to guarantee low frequency resonance, vibration control and a low magnetic inertial field. There is also an option for a preamp and stereo analogue input stage.

Goldnote_CD_News

PA-1175

The PA-1175 merges the knowledge of the Goldnote Demidoff single ended amplifiers with a higher power rate, it is a 175Watt per channel @ 8ohm Stereo Power Amplifier bridgeable to have a mono 350Watt per channel.  The adjustable Goldnote  Damping Factor allows for easy switching between low sensitivity speakers and easy load monitors.

Goldnote have said that they have embarked on a major restructuring of their distribution network and are actively seeking new distributors for foreign markets.

 

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British loudspeaker manufacturer Flare Audio builds products on the principle of Waveform Integrity: the signal that goes into the loudspeaker is precisely replicated by the sound wave that comes out.  Flare believes the loudspeaker should be sonically invisible, allowing the driver to deliver sound without interference.  The company wanted to see if the effects of its Vortex™ technology which they believed to capture sound, could be scientifically verified, and so commissioned Salford University to put the technology through independent testing.  Scientists used three samples provided by Flare Audio for the test: 50%, 75% and 100% vortex designs milled from circular aluminium disks.  Once the measurements were made, processing was performed to extract the normal incidence transmission loss in dB of the samples in question and this data was then plotted with respect to frequency.  A steady increase in the transmission loss was shown from each of the samples with increased frequency.  Using the mathematical ‘mass law equation’ researchers also predicted how a solid plate of the same mass would behave and found that vortex silencing was just as effective. They also compared the performance of the vortex against that of a straight hole and found a significant difference in the behaviour of the vortex, which exhibited a higher transmission loss across almost all measured frequencies. This independent test data proves that vortex technology has the ability to silence sound whilst maintaining airflow which a solid material would restrict.

Davies Roberts, founder and CEO of flare Audio said: “We are really excited about the findings, which prove beyond any doubt that we are really onto something here, especially the finding that the silencing effect is as good as a solid plate of aluminium.  We believe that allowing increased air movement to pass through the vortex (but not sound) removes a driver’s non-linearity of movement (spring effect of air inside a sealed loudspeaker) as well as stopping sound interference from a port (ported loudspeaker). Asymmetry distortion (also known as DC Offset) is a hidden distortion that affects every traditional loudspeaker (at every frequency). The effect of a closed or pressure restricted system (the traditional approach to all speaker designs) distorts sound waves and causes asymmetry which changes the timbre of sound.”Vortex_graph

Audio consultant Dr. Rob Oldfield, who conducted the measurements at Salford, confirms:  “It’s clear that there is a significant level decrease between what enters the vortex and what leaves it, which suggests that there is some sound attenuation going on as sound propagates within the vortex. Interestingly we don’t know what happens to the sound energy in the case of the vortex.  We can only state the proportion of energy that is transmitted through the structure. Further tests could shed more light on this.”

Flare’s work with Salford University is on going and includes computational modelling which will show energy flow inside Flare’s Vortex™.  Flare is also looking into software to assist with particle flow analysis inside the vortexes.

 

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The clue about what makes the Madake special lies in its name: Madake is the Japanese term for a particular species of bamboo, Giant Timber Bamboo, often used in various types of traditional Japanese craftsmanship but now quite rare.  The Madake’s cantilever, rather than being made from the usual metal (aluminum, boron) or crystalline solid (ruby, sapphire, diamond), is fashioned from this specific bamboo. Why? Bamboo is light in weight but extremely rigid. And, unlike metals and stones which contain small inherent resonances, bamboo has excellent natural damping properties.Miyajima_Madake_news

Designer Noriyuki Miyajima, known to be a passionate artisan, went to great lengths to source the highest quality madake for the job and made an interesting discovery along the way: Thomas Edison’s General Electric company was founded to manufacture light bulbs made with madake filaments grown in one particular area of Japan. Edison had been trying to find a filament that would burn long enough to be of practical value for his invention. He sent researchers around the world in search of an appropriate material, testing the fibres of some 6,000 plant materials including more than 1,000 species of bamboo before discovering madake from the bamboo groves of Yawata, Kyoto. That discovery marked the beginning of the global electrical revolution.  So Noriyuki Miyajima went straight to the source and negotiated a supply of special madake from the Iwashimizu Hachiman-gu shrine in Yawata. However, the Madake’s cantilever is not 100% bamboo; the bamboo shaft is fitted with a short aluminium shaft, to which is attached the Shibata stylus. Like all Miyajima stereo cartridges, the Madake’s generator system features a unique patented Miyajima cross-ring design in which the cantilever fulcrum and coils are exactly positioned in the centre of the magnetic field. All of which is housed in a body of African Blackwood, known for its exceptional tonal and acoustic properties.

The Miyajima Madake cartridge is available now priced at £3,750 (including VAT @ 20%).

 

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Whitestone is the first platform for interactive music experiences. A place to create, collect, and truly experience music online. Whitestone has been created by a group of artists, designers and programmers with a vision to bring album art to the internet, using the medium to create special interactive editions of albums and videos. Streaming is just the beginning; they want to take it a step further.  One of the founders of Whitestone, Roey Tsemah told us:  ‘In 1939 Alex Steinweiss invented album artwork. Before he came up with the idea, records didn’t have any artwork, just a brown dust cover. The first album he illustrated made 800% more profit, it added value to the record and soon enough became an integral part of the culture of music. With the transition to MP3’s we lost the album, we lost the artwork, we were left with the cover and a tracklist. It’s about time we change that.’WS_Home_Steinweiss

‘We believe that true fans want to support artists. Our business model is based on the concept of the tip jar and fan contributions rather than advertisements. As a fan you can follow creators to get their feed. When you see something you like you can tip them – You decide how much, and your money goes directly to the person you intend to. Not only artists are creators – radio hosts and music bloggers for instance can get tipped as well, the stage is for everyone.’

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Whitestone are launching their Kickstarter funding campaign on Sunday 30th of August, keep an eye on Hifi Pig for more news about this exciting and creative project!

 

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It is with great delight that we can now announce the arrival of Hifi Pig Extra.
Hifi PIg Extra will be a subscription only E Magazine that will contain all the reviews we publish in the month BEFORE they are published on the website or in the free Hifi Pig Magazine.

There are loads more reviews, entertaining monthly columns from our contributors, a monthly feature highlighting iconic hifi, interviews, comments from hifi designers and loads more.

To give readers an idea of what they can expect from Hifi Pig Extra we’ve put together a bit of a teaser for you. Click the image to download yours now. JUDGEFRONT

An annual subscription will be £12 but if you get in soon you can register for our Early Bird Special where you can have the full year for just £10. Register here and we’ll send you details in the next couple of days. Only 1000 Early Bird Specials are available…when they are gone they are gone so please be quick.

We sincerely hope you enjoy the all new Hifi Pig Extra and feel it a worthwhile investment.

And why a judge on the front cover…. download it and you’ll find out!

Many thanks,

Stuart and the Hifi Pig Team

 

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Global football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has announced that he is a co-founder of a new consumer electronics company called ROC Live Life Loud that will deliver lifestyle products to his global fanbase. “Everything in my life is about performance and quality,” said Ronaldo. “We launched ROC Live Life Loud to give my fans around the world direct access to high design and the best sound quality on the market.”

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ROC LLL has a joint venture partnership with leading consumer electronics company Monster Products. Monster is designing and manufacturing an exclusive lifestyle electronics collection curated by Ronaldo. “Ronaldo is the best in the world, and we feel that Monster makes some of the best consumer electronics in the world,” said Head of Monster, Noel Lee. “So we believe that Ronaldo will open up our award winning products to a whole new global audience.”  Roc has secured a launch agreement with eBay for worldwide distribution. As the exclusive launch platform for ROC Live Life Loud, eBay’s 157 million customers worldwide will enjoy access to ROC’s new products.

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The ROC Sport line features Bluetooth on-ear (ROC Sport Freedom by Monster, £199.95) and in-ear headphones (ROC Sport SuperSlim by Monster, £129.95), a Bluetooth speaker (ROC Sport BackFloat by Monster, £149.95) and wired over-ear headphones (ROC Sport Black Platinum by Monster, £249.95) and will be available from October 2015. A second product range, ROC Luxe, will follow later this autumn.

 

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CanJam Europe, Europe’s first and biggest dedicated headphone show, opens it’s doors on September 26th and 27th in Essen, Germany. As of today, a total of 68 brands have already booked including Sennheiser, Grado and Beyerdynamic, Gibson, Oppo and Headphone Gallery. They will be offering visitors to the event the opportunity to try and compare hundreds of headpones, amplifiers, sources and other mobile hifi devices. Even more brands will be added in coming weeks and the show’s organisers are expecting to have 100 different brands at the show in total.  Many exhibitors will be presenting and premiering new products at the show, Audioquest will have their brand-new headphone Nighthawk available for testing, Audeze’s new portable EL-8 range of headphones will be there as well as Hifiman’s new flagship model HE-1000. Astell&Kern will present their flagship player AK380 and Asian brands like Aune and Lotoo from China or Phonon and Radius from Japan will have their first-ever appearance in Europe.  Visitors to CanJam Europe will be able to talk to developers and product managers at many of the show’s booths and listen to the experts at the free workshop and seminar program.  There will also be scientific and non-profit groups exhibiting: University Niederrhein’s engineering programme will demo their project concerning production engineering of headphones using 3D printers, and Hearsafe will be raising awareness for safe listening.IMG_2363-CJE

CanJam Europe is Europe’s leading headphone show and combines the variety of a trade show and the spirit of a community event. 2015 is the third year of the show, which is aimed at consumers, pro audio users and trade visitors interested in high-quality headphones and accessories. CanJam Europe is hosted at the Congress Centre, Essen, Germany.

 

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The Audio S Plus wireless Bluetooth speaker is the first in a range of new products designed in close collaboration with Ministry of Sound’s Club Development Director (and Ivor Novello-winning DJ and producer) Phil Faversham and his team, to bring the audio expertise behind Ministry’s sound system, ‘The Box’, into devices created for the consumer’s home. The Audio S Plus is a compact wireless speaker with an attractive, splash-proof design, a wireless range of up to 10 metres and wireless playback up to 15 hours – making it perfect to take with you on holiday. Also ideal for home and family use with its compact design, it features NFC pairing (for compatible devices) and a speakerphone function, while it also remembers the last seven devices it was paired with.Ministry_bluetooth_news

You can also use two Audio S Plus units and pair them in True Stereo. Whether you use it singly or in a pair, each Audio S Plus comes with a metal stand, allowing you to mount the speaker vertically.  The Audio S Plus can also be used in conjunction with the Ministry Audio app (on iOS and Android), which offers switching between Spotify streaming, internet radio, Ministry’s unique radio service or streaming from your local DLNA server. The app also gives you, every Friday and Saturday night, the option of ‘Live From The Club’ at the touch of a button you can live stream what’s happening at Ministry of Sound’s London nightclub.

Available now Price: £129.99

 

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The Tape Project (reel to reel analogue tape label), Bottlehead (tube based amplifier, preamplifier and headphone amplifier kits, high end tube audio products and reel to reel tape machine upgrade specialists) and Burwell and Sons Loudspeakers are hosting a special event at the California Audio Show where you can meet Jacqui Naylor. They will be playing tracks from Jacqui’s exclusive Tape Project release, The Number White, and discussing the technical challenges in the making of this album amidst the 21st century rebirth of audiophile tape listening.jacqui-naylor

Also at the event will be a full playback of a new Tape Project release from Jerry Garcia and David Grisman.garcia_grisman_

August 15, 2015, 5:30-7:30PM
California Audio Show
Third Floor, ‘San Francisco Suite’
Westin SFO Hotel, 1 Old Bayshore Highway, Millbrae, CA 94030

 

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Leema Acoustics is now shipping its DAC/preamp, Libra. A featured-packed high-resolution ‘digital hub’, the new Libra DAC/preamp (£5,995) allows users to get the latest sound quality from their digitally connected devices.

Designed and built by Lee Taylor and Mallory Nicholls (Leema), Libra’s simple-yet-elegant looks conceal a vast array of technologies. The new Libra crystallises Leema’s decades of experience in digital audio for professional studios worldwide.

Music lovers can now apply the very latest audio technology to their digitally stored music, connecting via USB and Bluetooth to phones, tablets, laptops and more. Plus, serious audiophiles can plug-in via a class-leading array of high-end connectivity options (including some ‘pro’ options. libra_fronangle_news

The high-resolution Libra DAC has been designed for today’s (and tomorrow’s) HD audio world and is fully future-proofed say Leema. In addition to standard audio playback from common devices, the Libra also offers extreme high-resolution playback  when used with the increasing number of high-res music downloads available today – Libra will playback: DSD 64; DSD 128, DXD and 384kHz PCM via USB – playing music at recording studio quality.

The new high-resolution DAC/preamp contains Leema Acoustics ’ new f ul ly balanced Quattro Infinity dual-mono DAC modules which are field-  replaceable; should conversion technology improve in the future, the modules can be  upgraded, giving long-lasting flexibility throughout the product’s lifespan. The advanced Quattro Infinity modules also feature user-selectable output filters, so you can tailor the sound to your own preference.

The Libra boasts a range of connectivity options for the digital age, bringing the latest digital audio engineering to a wide range of connected devices. The Libra offers three coaxial and three optical inputs, capable of accepting high-resolution 24-bit/192kHz audio. For super-high-end partnering equipment, the Libra also offers some more esoteric options, including two I2S inputs via RJ45 connectors. With fully programmable pin-allocation on one of these inputs in software, any high-end source with an I2S interface can easily be accommodated. Source components with professional standard AES/EBU outputs can also be connected: the Libra offers two input connections available via industry standard XLR connectors. Libra_rear_news

Leema’s M1 USB module provides a connection for computer audio replay from both Windows (driver software included), Macintosh and Linux machines. This interface is fully asynchronous, allowing the Libra to precisely regulate the data rate coming from the computer and deliver incredibly low jitter levels. This feature, together with full galvanic isolation using cutting-edge spinning-electron technology, ensures that music delivered over USB is as good as current technology will allow  says the company’s press release.

Libra can be used as a preamp – simply connect it to a power amp or active loudspeaker and your all set to play music. Libra offers three separate analogue inputs, each of which can be individually configured as unbalanced, via RCA Cinch connectors, or fully balanced via XLR connectors. The entire signal path, both digital and analogue, is fully balanced from the digital data stream, to the balanced analogue outputs.

The Libra is able to operate either as a conventional audio component with fixed output level, or as a pre-amplifier with full analogue volume control on-board. Outputs are provided via unbalanced RCA/Cinch connectors and balanced XLR connectors. Libra is also a full LIPS* controller and can control Leema Acoustics’ range of power amplifiers directly.

Libra also has an optional Bluetooth interface, allowing high-quality music replay from suitably equipped tablets, smartphones and other compatible devices, quickly, easily and wirelessly. For personal listening, a headphone amplifier is also included, further enabling the Libra as the ideal single-box D/A conversion solution. 

*LIPS is an acronym of Leema Intelligent Protocol System. It is a communication bus that enables Leema Acoustics components to communicate with other units in the range. The communication enables simple control of power on/off from one unit, right up to the control of all functions in a Leema Acoustics system, comprising up to 15 individual components.libra_no_li_news

The Libra DAC/preamp is priced at £5,995 and is available now.

 

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