equipment reviews
This Month's Featured Equipment Reviews
ZenWave Cables and SurgeX ZenWave Edition Review
REDGUM BLACK RGi35ENR Integrated Amplifier Review
Linear Tube Audio MicroZOTL 2.0 Headphone Amp & Preamp Review
iFi Micro iUSB 3.0 & Gemini USB Cable Reviews
Marantz M-CR611 Network CD Receiver Review
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Accessories (34) Acoustics, EQ & Room Tuning (18) AV Cables (21)
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Tuesday, 24 January 2017 ,  Written by Andre Marc
Burson Cable+ Active RCA Cable Review
A lot of excellent HiFi products are designed and produced in Australia, and none more than Burson Audio belong in the upper tier of offerings from Down Under. Not only do Burson’s products sound excellent, but they also do not make cookie cutter gear, and inject original thinking into the process. I reviewed and loved Burson’s superb Conductor DAC/Preamp and Timekeeper power amp combo sometime ago, and have tried to keep up with the company’s recent products. Burson built their reputation on headphone amps, DACs and, more recently, their op-amps which have been getting rave reviews. Having corresponded occasionally with the fellows at Burson, it was obvious that they think out of the box, and really do like looking at things from unique angles. This is a great thing, because there are already enough by-the-book audio designs on the market. ...
Monday, 05 December 2016 ,  Written by Andre Marc
Okki Nokki RCM-II Record Cleaning Machine
At the beginning of the year, a good friend called me over to his garage and surprised me with a gift of around 500 vintage vinyl records he had little patience to deal with. I gladly took them off his hands. When I got home and started sifting through the albums, I realized there were hundreds of original pressings of classic rock, jazz, blues, and classical titles. I was stoked. Except for one thing, I had long disposed of my last analog front end. Time to do some shopping, with affordable, low maintenance gear as a priority.After taking suggestions from some industry pros, and I ended up with the new Rega Planar 3 for my main system, and the Pro-Ject Debut Carbon DC for my office. I also picked up some high-value phono stages from Lounge Audio, Graham Slee, and ...
Friday, 28 October 2016 ,  Written by Andre Marc

Black Rhodium Foxtrot Speaker and Symphony Interconnect Cables
There have never been more purveyors of audio cables marketed to the audiophile community than there are currently. New companies appear monthly, and at every audio show there are new smiling faces displaying their new cable products. You could argue that there many of these new entities that are offering nothing new, and just copying tried and true designs with attractive cosmetics. You could also argue that so many choices is a great thing for consumers, and I would tend to agree. But there are also many ways to filter out the contenders from the pretenders. First, look for those who have stood the test of time, with satisfied customers, a good number of impartial reviews, and a varied product line. One such company is the British firm Black Rhodium Cables. Black Rhodium has been making high-end audio cables in ...
Tuesday, 23 August 2016 ,  Written by Andre Marc
Sonore microRendu Ethernet to USB Streamer Review
In 2016 network file players and streamers are king. This is because just about everyone who has done comparisons has found that mass produced, consumer grade, off the shelf computers are not state of the art, by any stretch. There are those who still pay for premium playback software, cripple non essential functions, tweak with expensive power supplies and isolation devices to try to wrangle the best from their laptops or desktop machines. The amount of frustration often seen expressed on online message boards is astounding. Users become exasperated with disruptive commercial operating system updates, hardware incompatibilities, and a whack-a-mole approach. No surprise they often to turn to multiple layers of software, so called “digital” power conditioning, and even further out there solutions. If one has a large digital library, and especially a library with more than one system to ...
Monday, 01 August 2016 ,  Written by Andre Marc
Intona High Speed USB Isolator Review
It is no secret that digital audio transmitted via USB is not perfect. USB was never intended for high performance audio, but eventually overtook S/PDIF as the most common connection method. Virtually all digital sources components like streamers, file players, and servers have USB outputs, and no DAC manufacturer would be taken seriously in 2016 without a high quality USB input. USB has several key advantages over S/PDIF. First, it allows the DAC to acted as the master clock, which reduces jitter and improves timing accuracy. Secondly, and probably of more interest to the average audiophile, it allows for decoding of any format, and any resolution. Everything from Redbook CD and 24 bit PCM to DSD256. As to be expected in the audiophile market, products related to improving the sound of USB surfaced several years ago, and it continues to ...
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