I own 3,000 CDs and 4,000 LPs. They take up a lot of space in my apartment, and that's OK with me. They're lined up in metal racks, wood shelving, and stacked up in piles on the floor. But a lot of my friends with just a few hundred CDs are in a big hurry to dump them into their computers and get rid of the discs. I just had lunch yesterday with an audiophile friend who is in the midst of transferring all of his CDs as WAV files to his new HD. As always … Read more
Narrated by Forest Whitaker, Before the Music Dies, is a cautionary documentary focusing on the sad state of the music business. Or as someone so eloquently put it, "mixing music and art is a bad mix." The film is loaded with interviews and performances by Erykah Badu, Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews, and Branford Marsalis.
Since its release in November 2006, the film has screened more than 200 times in more than 130 North American markets. Before the Music Dies is available as a download and DVD. Check the Web site for more info.
UPDATE: An earlier version of this blog incorrectly described the technology used in an advertisement for the A&E's TV show Paranormal State. The technology, developed by the Holosonic Research Lab, uses a beam of ultrasound as a "virtual source", which changes into audible sound as it travels through the air. Please read the technology's inventor, F_J_Pompei's comment or visit the Holosonic Research Labs site to learn more.
The folks who heard the ad for A&E's TV show Paranormal State emitted from a billboard in New York City's Greenwich Village … Read more
Klipsch has just made a limited number of these available on its website, for just $249! This blog originally ran on November 29.
I have fond memories of Klipsch's three-piece iPod speaker. Back in 2005 it stood out in a field of itsy bitsy iPod speakers--the iFi came with a bona-fide 8-inch, 200 watt subwoofer and a pair of two-way satellite speakers. Wow, what a concept, speakers you could actually place far enough apart to create stereo imaging. Most of today's iPod speakers, including high-end contenders like Bowers & Wilkins' Zeppelin sound small because they are small. Yes, … Read more
I thought technology was or should be designed to serve us. Make life easier, and that as the technology evolved it would become smart enough to figure out what we're trying to do and accomplish the task at hand. But that rarely seems to be the case; you buy a cell phone, and it comes with a 150 page owner's manual. That's why John Tierney's "Why Nobody Likes a Smart Machine" piece in yesterday's New York Times struck a chord with me.
I guess it has something to do with the manufacturers loading … Read more
How grand is it? The entire system weighs 3,800 pounds, stands thirteen feet tall, and was designed to fill even the most lavish homes, and yes, palaces with sound! The system employs three stacked planar-magnetic arrays and eight-foot tall subwoofers. I've heard Wisdom's statuesque speakers at high-end shows and they really do produce a sense of scale that conventionally sized speakers can't muster. For those lucky enough to afford the very best, the Infinite Grande closes the gap between mere hi-fi and the sound of the real thing. The better the speaker the less you hear … Read more
I just heard a guy on the radio refer to Fountains of Wayne's "Traffic and Weather" CD as a lo-fi wonder. What's up with that? Most of the lo-fi recordings I've bought from street musicians sound like the band I heard on the street, which is definitely a good thing. Which is more than you can say about most of today's slickly produced pop and rock music CDs. They sound awful--voices never sound remotely human, guitars don't sound like guitars, and drums, forget about it, they bear absolutely no relationship to the actual … Read more
The site's mostly in Japanese so I can't relate much info, but these pictures tell me all I need to know. Oh, and it's not just extreme hi-fi, this guy's into cactus plants, antique lamps, and aquariums. I guess he's not married.
The Zu Audio Driud Mk. IV is the Audiophiliac's Speaker of the Year! As a former hi-fi salesman and now as a professional audio reviewer for twelve years I've heard thousands of speakers, but the Druid hit me hard. A total rock & roll animal, the skinny monolith/tower feels tremendously powerful, and my samples look extremely cool decked out in brilliant red metallic paint. I initially reviewed the speaker in the March, 2007 issue of Robb Report Home Entertainment. I'm still listening.
A number of American and Canadian speaker manufacturers now outsource production while maintaining sky … Read more
It's safe to say most, I mean like 99 percent, of music buyers don't give a hoot about sound quality. Why else would CD sales continue to plummet and worse than CD quality downloads go up every year?
OK, that's the mainstream, what about the other 1 percent; why have the audiophiles, according to a poll on the Stereophile website, already given up on SACD and DVD-Audio? Before I cite their feedback I'd like to point out that despite the naysayers, the super sound formats are still hanging on. Neil Young's latest release, "Chrome … Read more