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Thursday, 01 May 2003 ,  Written by Brian Kahn
Morel Nova 5.1 Home Theater System
Introduction At $999, the Nova 5.1 speaker system is the entry-level micro system from Morel, Israel’s leading loudspeaker company. The satellites in this system are tiny metallic half-spheres that can be mounted anywhere a softball would fit. For less than a thousand bucks (USD), you get five satellites that can fit into the smallest of spaces, and a powered 10-inch subwoofer. While this is becoming more and more common, it is still rare to find speakers in this size and price class that don’t sound like an AM radio broadcast coming out of a drugstore clock-radio. In the U.S., the Morel name is not as widely known as it is in Europe, where it has a considerable and heralded reputation. Morel was founded over 25 years ago in Israel’s southern region and has been a leading provider of OEM speaker components in Europe since that time. In the U.S., Morel offers a variety of different ...
Saturday, 01 March 2003 ,  Written by Bryan Southard
Mark Levinson No. 390S CD Processor
Introduction Many music enthusiasts have placed their digital playback purchase plans on hold indefinitely, awaiting the end of the seemingly never-ending digital format wars that have plagued this industry for far too long. Nobody wants to lay down large green for a digital playback system that becomes outdated before the new smell has worn off. While all this is being played out by the mainstream Asian electronics conglomerates, companies like Madrigal continue to produce CD players at the highest conceivable level. What will be the next digital format is anyone’s guess, yet one constant remains – the desire to milk absolutely everything you can from your existing compact disc collection. Let’s face it, regardless of what the future holds, you will be listening to the bulk of your existing disc collection for eternity. CD playback technology continues to advance, making the best of yesteryear sound lethargic and dull by comparison. An example of an advanced design ...
Saturday, 01 February 2003 ,  Written by Augie Bettencourt
MartinLogan Aeon Loudspeakers
Introduction I can still remember my first experience with electrostatic speakers many years ago, along with the intrigue they created. Since that time, electrostatic speakers have evolved, solidifying their strengths and addressing their weaknesses. As a MartinLogan customer, I was specifically curious as to how the much smaller and lower-priced Aeons would compare to both my personal Prodigies and to other comparably-priced speakers in the same category. Since my first listening experience with these speakers more than 10 years ago, MartinLogan has risen to become the most popular electrostatic speaker manufacturer, having earned a reputation for building some of the best-sounding speakers in the world. The MartinLogan Aeons are floor-standing hybrid electrostatic loudspeakers that can either be used as your main loudspeakers or as surround speakers in a complete MartinLogan theater setup. The Aeons have a reported frequency response of 43 Hz – 22,000 kHz, a sensitivity rating of 89 dB and a four-ohm impedance rating. The Aeons stand ...
Wednesday, 01 January 2003 ,  Written by Bryan Southard
Mark Levinson No. 436 Monaural Power Amplifier
Introduction When purchasing automobiles, you are presented with a selection that varies from simple low-cost transportation merely designed to supply the most basic features and a means from point A to point B, to vehicles that are the very essence of performance and artistic expression. When purchasing audio/video products, you have an equally enchanting array of choices, designed to fit every budget and performance desire. The Mark Levinson No436 is a product designed for the audio/video enthusiast who demands nothing short of the highest performance that money can buy. Madrigal is no stranger to this level of performance with lines that include Revel and Proceed and are no stranger to me, as I own and use Revel Salon loudspeakers and the Mark Levinson No32 line-stage preamplifier in my reference system. The No436 is a rack-mountable 350-watt Class AB monaural power amplifier that measures 15.5 inches in width, 20.5 inches in depth and nearly a 4 RU ...
Wednesday, 01 January 2003 ,  Written by Thomas Garcia
Monitor Audio Silver S Full Metal Theater Loudspeaker System
Introduction When considering all the components of any home theater system, very few factors can affect the final outcome as much as the selection of loudspeakers. It is amazing how comparably-priced speakers from different manufacturers, which are competently designed, and have similar technologies, can sound very different from one another. This is why the auditioning of loudspeakers is such an important, and sometimes challenging process. Although recommendations can be a great starting point, it is very important for you to listen and make decisions based upon your own preferences and personal requirements. In addition, when it comes to assembling a balanced, effective and enjoyable home theater speaker system, there's a lot to be said for a consistent design among all the speakers. Although many music enthusiasts have augmented two-channel systems by selecting potentially excellent center and surround speakers from various manufacturers while creating a home theater sound system, the end result is often less than satisfying. A ...
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