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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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 ...
Friday, 13 November 2015 ,  Written by Andre Marc
iFi Micro iUSB 3.0 & Gemini USB Cable Reviews
iFi, the U.K. based high end audio company, has fleshed out their product line over the past few years at a pace that is impressive by any measure. iFi was founded as the more affordable arm of Abbingdon Music Research, who are known for some heavy hitting, and state of the art components. iFi has captured the imagination of many audiophiles and the press with their too good to be true prices, and original designs. The best part is even though they now enjoy a loyal customer base, they have continued to improve the products.In both my systems I currently use the Micro iDSD DAC, which costs $499 and may be one of the great bargains in digital source components today. I use it with the $229 Micro iUSB power supply as well. On my desktop I use the Nano ...
Friday, 26 June 2015 ,  Written by Andre Marc
In Appreciation of the Harbeth Compact 7 ES-3
The Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 stand mounted loudspeakers have the distinction of being in residence in this reviewer's system for seven consecutive years. The speakers, in a distinguished cherry finish, are not only an excellent reviewer’s tool, but a music lover’s dream. These British boxes have been reviewed numerous times in print, and online. The speaker has in been the Harbeth line in previous iterations for a number of years, but the ES-3 really brought something special to the table.Out of the box, there is something magical about these unassuming classic-looking British monitors. Good stands get the best out of them, and my listening room they sit on custom ordered Sound Anchor stands. The stands, without question, are worth the extra expense. Good speaker cables are offer another payoff. I have have in rotation, depending on amplifier, Transparent, QED (as recommended ...
Wednesday, 29 June 2011 ,  Written by Andre Marc
IOGEAR Wireless HD Computer to TV Kit and USB 2.0 External HD Audio / Video Adapter Review
I’ve often wanted an easy, direct way to share photos and videos from my computer especially when I have company over.  I prefer to comfortably recline in my chair while narrating vacation photos and videos instead of having a bunch of people crowding around my computer screen and creating a claustrophobic environment.Rather than invest in a traditional projector setup, hassle with wires and worry about the video and sound quality, IOGEAR now offers a solution that allows me to use my 55” LCD HDTV as a second computer screen. I can also hook it up to my AV receiver via HDMI input and have surround sound along with the HD video. My computer is instantly transformed into a multimedia player that’s able to play more media formats than any player out there, especially since I can find and download any ...
Monday, 06 June 2011 ,  Written by Mike Flacy
iTunes Moves into the Cloud
After many months of speculation, Steve Jobs announced that iTunes would be finally utilizing cloud storage upon the release of iOS5 in the Fall of 2011.  The new service, aptly called iCloud, stores music, video, books, apps and photos as well as syncs them over all your devices (non-Apple devices included and up to 10).  For instance, if you purchased a new album on your iPhone, it would automatically be synced to your PC & iPad the next time they are connected to the Internet.  The completely free iCloud service replaces MobileMe, a similar concept that Apple attempted to charge a yearly fee of $99.   Apple is also rolling out iTunes Match.  Likely coming from their recent acquisition of LaLa, iTunes Match will take all the songs that you have downloaded from other sources over the years and match them ...
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