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    by Published on 01-14-2016 02:45 PM
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    2. 2016 Consumer Electronics Show
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    CES 2016 is in the can. I spent much of the four days at the high-end exhibits in the Venetian and a bit of time with manufacturer's electing to display at the Mirage. I didn't get over to the main convention center this year because I had too many people to meet with on the last day of the show. I always enjoy going to the convention center to see the computer side of Computer Audiophile, but it just wasn't in the cards this year. Note to self: don't schedule meetings all day every day of the show. ...
    by Published on 10-07-2015 10:56 AM
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    2. 2015 Rocky Mountain Audiofest
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    Rocky Mountain Audiofest 2015 is in the can. I had a terrific time at the show this year, even though I didn't make it to all the rooms. Please accept my apologies if I missed your rooms. I try to focus on quality rather than quantity and I spend quite a bit of time in most rooms I visit. Plus, I spend a large amount of time talking to people in the industry rather than listening to every room at the show. How else does one get inside scoops, unreleased product information, education on the finer points of digital audio, and secure the first review opportunity of a new product? For example, spending an hour with Bob Stuart from Meridian / MQA and Pål Bråtelund from Tidal, before our seminar, was very informative. The ability to ask Bob one-on-one questions about MQA and to learn more about Tidal since its change in ownership was priceless. It's nice to hear that Tidal isn't abandoning the HiFi enthusiast market despite what appears to be a huge shift in the type of content pushed by the service. I was happy to hear that Tidal is in this for the long haul. The service estimates the global market for streaming has about 1 billion potential customers. Streaming is in its infancy. With this in mind, the streaming service providers see hundreds of millions of people as future customers. Those suggesting that one service will "win" (Bob Lefsetz) or that Tidal is doomed from the start (almost all popular press), are pretty short-sighted. Believe it or not, that awkward Tidal press conference has helped them immensely and will be forgotten by all but those in the press very shortly. Heck, most future streaming customers will look at you with a blank stare and wonder what you're talking about if you mention that press conference. ...
    by Published on 06-01-2015 02:20 AM
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    2. 2015 The Show Newport
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    Today was the final day of the Newport show and I heard some great sound. I didn’t make it to nearly as many rooms today as I did on previous days because I got caught up talking to people about industry trends and neat products that are forthcoming. I also ran into CA reader joelha with his good friend and radio personality Dennis Prager. Dennis and I briefly reminisced about the time he came over to my house to hear my audio system. The whole thing is a story for another time, but I will say Dennis arrived at 11:00 PM, my wife and daughter were upstairs sleeping, and as Dennis puts it, “Turn up the volume because [he] likes to bath in it.” Needless to say there was a mini symphony gong on in my basement at ~100 db and Dennis was conducting from my listening chair (he used to be a conductor). Anyway, back to the topic at hand. I saw many rooms today using Aurender music servers, so I asked Aurender’s John-Paul Lizars for the details. He said there was a mix of N100H, N10, X100, and W20 servers throughout the show in use by both dealers and manufacturers. Sunny Components of Covina, CA featured Aurender in three rooms, Alma Music and Audio of La Jolla, CA used Aurender in two rooms, and Sweet Spot High End Audio featured an Aurender music server in its room. Manufacturers using Aurender included Goldmund, Dan D’Agostino Master Audio Systems, and Dynaudio. If that’s not enough Aurender for you, I also had a couple manufacturers ask me about my experience with the servers because they wanted to start using them in their own systems and at audio shows. I’d say Aurender has come a long way since I first saw the company and its single product, the S10, at the California Audio Show in 2011. ...
    by Published on 05-31-2015 01:30 AM
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    2. 2015 The Show Newport
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    The second official day of the Newport show was an interesting one for me. I heard a bunch of bad sound, a couple people wax on poetically about the “huge” vinyl resurgence, and absolutely awesome sound in the Meridian MQA room.

    Gavin Fish had the LH Labs room sounding very good using the new Vi DAC, Pass Labs components and Magico loudspeakers. Gavin brought in an interesting choice of flooring to counter some of the acoustical issues during setup and it worked very well. I was able to hear some real music in the LH Labs room, rather than sticks breaking or seals snoring in high resolution, and I really enjoyed the system. It was a system I could have spent quite a while listening to, but I had to move on.

    The best demo of the day, and most likely the entire show, goes to Meridian. Ken Forsythe put on the demonstration while talking everyone through the merits of MQA. I still have some questions and minor reservations about MQA, but when the rubber met the road and the play button was pressed, the sound quality was truly astounding. Listening to Frank Sinatra was totally awesome. Meridian also demonstrated streaming MQA from TIDAL through its Sooloos music system and the tracks sounded just as good. There were no issues streaming the content even though the hotel network was less than robust. ...
    by Published on 05-30-2015 03:22 AM
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    2. 2015 The Show Newport
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    It’s nearly midnight and I’m finally back in my room going over my notes and photos form the first official day of the show here in Newport (actually Irvine). The show was seriously packed with people today. The line to get into the show wrapped around the lobby and the line to get into some of the seminars was nearly as long. it was great to see all these people despite the inconvenience of waiting in line.

    I started the show this morning with a visit to Auralic to see and hear the new Aries Mini in addition to version 2 of the Lightning DS iOS application. The demonstration was very impressive. ...
    by Published on 05-29-2015 03:25 AM
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    2. 2015 The Show Newport
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    T.H.E. Show Newport Is (sort of) Underway. It was nice to move around the show without the crowds today, but several of the rooms we still being setup and had yet to get sound by late afternoon. No biggie though, today was a Press day and the official start of the show is Friday. I spent a good amount of time in the Audio Element room featuring dCS, VTL, and Wilson Audio. John Quick from dCS was using Roon, the new application from the team behind Sooloos who recently spun off from Meridian and started Roon Labs. I played a number of tracks in this room including Day In, Day Out from Billie Holiday’s Songs For Distingue Lovers. Despite some weird angles in the room, the sound was really nice. I encourage members of the Computer Audiophile Community attending the show to stop by, say high to John from dCS, play with Roon a bit, and listen to this system.
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