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    by Published on 04-20-2016 11:44 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. The Music In Me
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    I know- Hitler is the worst human ever! I mean, he was so bad, he _______ (you fill in the blank). So what could I mean by “a new low?” I mean… how low could he go? Well, it seems he could go to twelve, maybe eleven cycles, but what would be the point in that? So today we discuss subsonics, as soon as we get there.

    If you know anyone from the old hippie days in the Bay Area, and you ask, they’ll uniformly tell you that the Summer of Love was in 1967. Some people have even trademarked or copy-written the date and set it in stone. In 1987 they celebrated the twentieth anniversary, etc. So everyone says the Summer of Love was in 1967, but the summer of love was in 1966. I know; I was there before Time magazine wrote a story about it in January, 1967, and by the summer, 300 people a day were moving into the Haight, which was when the hard drugs, the rip-offs, scuffles and other non-peaceful crimes overwhelmed the peaceful people who’d been there for the real deal, and most of them left, many for the hinterlands of northern California where they began following Mendel’s methods and developed the stronger weed we now enjoy. I remember a Stones concert in Oakland in the late Eighties when Mick went back to his dressing room for a breather and a costume change while Keith does the two songs he does every show. Mick introduced him and disappeared while Keith walked up to the mic and said, “Hello, Humboldt County!” ...
    by Published on 04-07-2016 08:16 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Q & A
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    Shortly after attending CES 2016, where MQA was a very hot topic, I realized that there was more speculation about MQA than available facts. Nonetheless, it seemed like everyone had an opinion about MQA. Most people had never heard the final output of the MQA process, an actual song or two, but they were still very eager to render an opinion. Some armchair engineers jumped at the chance to speculate what was going on, based on little to no information. In addition, other learned folks even rushed to judgement about MQA without fully understanding what they were "analyzing." Once I started to see this speculation controlling the narrative and leading interested CA readers down a path that wasn't necessary illuminated by facts, I figured it was a good idea to go right to the source. I talked to MQA's Bob Stuart about some of the questions people had and some of the speculation that was swirling around not only CA but the entire HiFi community. I proposed a question and answer "session" where the CA readers could ask anything they wanted, without censorship, and Bob would respond. Without hesitation Bob agreed. In order to accumulate a good number of questions and to give Bob a decent amount of time to formulate thorough answers, the questioning period was open for one week, after which Bob curated the questions and started writing his responses. Bob was the first to say, "All questions will be answered." As such, the time between the end of the questioning period and the publishing of the answers needed to be ample. I'm sure Bob could have whipped up some talking-point type answers in a day or so, but that's not what he wanted to do and that's not what those asking the questions wanted to receive. Fortunately good things come to those who wait. This week Bob sent me a thirty page document, including eighty-two questions, graphics, references, and a glossary. What follows is a word-for-word reproduction of this substantial document. ...
    by Published on 03-30-2016 10:51 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Bits & Bytes
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    In 2006 Peachtree Audio started bringing its first product, the Decco integrated amplifier with USB input, around to dealers in the US. Most of the dealers initially told the Peachtree Audio team that the product would never sell and that nobody was going to connect a computer to piece of HiFi equipment via USB. Dealer Stereo Exchange in New York City completely understood the impact computer audio would have in the high end sector and jumped onboard right away. Not too long after, 300+ dealers took on the Peachtree Audio products and the company was off to a blistering start. After 10 years, and a learning experience or two later, Peachtree Audio was back at Stereo Exchange to launch version 2.0 of the company and kick things into high gear with some major changes to the product line and the way its products are made. ...
    by Published on 03-18-2016 11:31 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. The Music In Me
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    This’ll be a short one, because I want to get right to the music.

    A few years ago I had some friends over and I played them what you’re about to hear (video below). I asked them to listen carefully and then guess what the instrument was. No one got it, although the one I thought was the closest was… wait for it… the saw. Yes, the common saw, which can be considerably more expressive than you might have thought if you’ve never seen one played. Yes, I said it: played. But let’s not quibble; we’re not here to discuss the saw or saw-playing. That’s right, I said it again: playing.

    Moving on, the instrument under discussion today is the Theremin: both what you know about it and what you thought you knew about it. I’ve a feeling that of all the people in the world I could be writing for, in all the world, this is the group most likely to know about the Theremin. In fact, I’m hoping to see input from some of you who know more than we have here. Let’s see. ...
    by Published on 02-29-2016 09:54 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Bits & Bytes,
    3. Network Audio
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    Got a USB DAC that you'd like to put on your network? Been looking for a network DAC that supports a plethora of sample rates and protocols? Want to remove a Mac or traditional PC form your listening room? The Sonicorbiter SE may help you with these first-world problems. The Sonicorbiter SE isn't a DAC but it can breath new life and capabilities into almost any DAC available.

    The Sonicorbiter SE is an Ethernet to USB (or TosLink) converter. It uses software developed by Andrew Gillis of Small Green Computer / Vortexbox fame, that runs on unmodified Cubox hardware. Sure the tiny ( 2" x 2" x 2") Cubox is a neat piece of hardware, but the Sonicorbiter SE is all about software. This is where the real value lies. It's possible to duplicate much of the Sonicorbiter SE's functionality on one's own by purchasing a Cubox or Raspberry Pi based solution, but let's get real. Nothing is more expensive than our time. If people want to spend countless hours trying to duplicate what's already available, then more power to them. I however, highly recommend outsourcing this work to Sonore by purchasing the Sonicorbiter SE (likely sold out as we speak). Plus, as of right now Joe Sixpack or Joe Bloggs can't create their own RoonReady device without working with the Roon Labs team to get the license and to get the product certified. Sonore had those boxes checked before any other company in the world.

    I've been using a Sonicorbiter SE for a few weeks and totally love this little device. What's not to love about a $300 network endpoint? Well, there are a few items but I don't believe they are show stoppers. Again, this thing is $300! In this hobby that same $300 won't buy you one meter of cable. ...
    by Published on 02-19-2016 01:23 PM
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    How many stories start with, “I know a guy…”? I know! But, having said that, I know a guy who knows a guy who knew a guy and that’s how come we’re here. The guy I know got a tape from a guy he knows who told him not to make any copies of it, and that guy got it from the guy he knew who made the tape and gave him a copy, telling him not to make any copies, but that guy made a copy and gave it to my guy, telling him not to make any copies, and he made a copy for me, telling me not to make any copies. And I haven’t until now.

    I sort of wish this stuff was already on the internet, so I’m not the guy who got it put there, but my guy says I can use it, so it’s going to be today’s essay and Bob’s yer uncle. I couldn’t find it on the net, and I’m hoping no one cares and I hope I’m not breaking any laws, and it’s been over thirty years… I’m glad he made a copy for me and I hope you’ll be, too.

    I talk about rock ‘n’ roll with friends and I write about it here, and of all the permutations that rock has broken up into, what I like most is pure rock ‘n’ roll. No sound effects, no auto-tuning, no large ensembles, no strings, horns or elaborate orchestrations, and no frills. Straight-ahead, balls-to-the-wall, all-out rock ‘n’ roll. Say, as practiced by the early Jerry Lee Lewis. ...

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