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Stereophile Noe 2019


2nd Edition

Listening #204: the New Garrard 301
Some loss of innocence is expected with both age and experience. Because I tick both boxes, and in spite of my best efforts to the contrary, I'm often a bit blase in the face of new review samples. I wasn't with this one.

Luxman SQ-N150 integrated amplifier
In 2007, Luxman Corporation released the SQ-N100 tubed integrated amplifier as part of the company's NeoClassico Series, which focused on smaller, space-saving designs. The 12Wpc (into 6 ohms) SQ-N100 proved very popular, both in Japan and internationally, possibly owing to its use of EL84 pentode power tubes.

Stereophile's Products of 2019
The first vote I ever cast was in 1964, when I was 10 years old. Our fifth-grade teacher, a psychotic harpy who fined students 25 cents if they dropped a pencil, directed us to elect a Class President and a Class Treasurer: positions of indeterminate powers, although it was generally understood that they did not include the ability to wage war or annex adjoining classrooms.

From the Archives: Stereophile's Products of 1994
No magazine can help but concentrate on the present, and tend to downplay what happened in the irretrievable past as being less important than the new and the exciting. I instituted Stereophile's annual "Products of the Year" feature in 1992, therefore, to give recognition to those components that had proved capable of giving pleasure beyond the formal review period.

Recording of December 2019: Abbey Road (3-LP Anniversary Edition)
Here are seven things you need to know about the three-LP, newly remixed--by Giles Martin and Sam Okell--and remastered version of Abbey Road, all of said re-ing done in honor of the album's 50th anniversary...

Qobuz Lowers Pricing, Some Other Streaming Services Respond
New York, NY. On November 8, at the very small New York Audio Show, Paris-based music streaming service Qobuz announced that it has streamlined its subscription plans, lowered prices, and discontinued MP3 streaming. At a press event, Dan Mackta, Managing Director of Qobuz USA, said that Qobuz now offers "Studio Premier" subscriptions for $14.99/month or $149.99 for a full year.

On Genre
Before I became Stereophile's editor--when I still had time for such things--I would occasionally pack up a camera and some lenses, get in my truck, and drive, usually south, in pursuit of good images and sounds. I'd spend a couple of weeks on the road, stopping to take pictures whenever I came across a picturesque town or valley or an abandoned drive-in theater.

From the Archives: Timbre Technology TT-1 D/A processor
As the sides of the slim-line Timbre Technology TT-1 DAC are radiused rather than flat, it's elegant compared to its typical boxy competition. While the TT-1's handsome shape stands out more than your average audiophile device, its curved sides help create a stronger, less resonant shape than the usual box.

1st Edition

Report From Capital Audiofest 2019
Herb Reichert and Ken Micallef report live and uncover dozens of high-end audio gems!

Grand Prix Audio Monza equipment supports
Why? That's the question that many will ask about the new Grand Prix Monza equipment rack, prices for which start at $19,000 for a four-tier, 42"-tall rack and can even stretch to $29,500 for my review sample, which comprises a double-width, fourtier, 42"-tall rack (two side-by-side stacks of four shelves each) with two matching Monza amp stands.

Manfred Eicher: "You Can't Record Everybody"
There has never been a record producer like Manfred Eicher, founder and sole proprietor of ECM records, the German-based jazz (and sometimes classical) label that celebrates its 50th anniversary this month.

Beethoven for Four, in All Its Glory
As the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven approaches, artists worldwide have begun issuing complete recordings of his oeuvre. At the top of a fast-growing list, three stand out...

Trenner & Friedl Osiris loudspeaker
Austrian loudspeaker manufacturer Trenner & Friedl has a thing for coaxial drivers. They're used in at least three of the company's eight loudspeaker models, including the diminutive Sun bookshelf speaker and the large floorstanding Taliesin.

The Ghost in the Machine
I remember as a toddler sitting in the kitchen on a highchair, watching my mother smoke a cigarette, apply red lipstick, and tune a turquoise table radio from one news station to another.

Vandersteen Quatro Wood CT loudspeaker & M5-HPA monoblock power amplifier
"Stirring the stew" is what I've heard it called when a company introduces a new version of a product every three or four years. When a new product is launched, sales generally rise rapidly to a maximum and then slowly decline.

Recording of November 2019: The Soft Parade (50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)
he Soft Parade has long been the Doors' most under-valued album. After the revolutionary impact of the band's first two LPs, The Doors and Strange Days, and the commercial consolidation of the band's popularity on the third, Waiting for the Sun, Soft Parade was perceived as a fall from grace.

Monitor Audio Gold 300 loudspeaker
About a year after settling into my new house, I decided to buy a pair of Monitor Audio Silver 10 floorstanding loudspeakers, which I had reviewed in 2014 for our sister publication Sound & Vision. I wound up buying three of them, with the intention of cannibalizing the drivers and crossover from one to make my own three-way center-channel speaker.

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