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Stereophile May 2020


2nd Edition

Will the Circle Be Unbroken?
I loved New Orleans music before I even knew what it was. In the mid-1960s, I went to high school in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, which back then was a bleak, On the Waterfront landscape of dock workers and drifters hanging out in the pool halls along Bedford Avenue.

Parasound Halo JC 1+ monoblock power amplifier
Soon after I took over preparing Stereophile's biannual Recommended Components listing from the magazine's founder, J. Gordon Holt, in 1986, I ran into a problem. With so many products listed, the magazine was running out of the necessary pages to include them all.

Totem Acoustic Skylight loudspeaker
Reviewing a new loudspeaker from Totem feels like destiny--as if a formative moment 30 years ago has come full circle. That's because the first genuine audiophile speaker I ever owned was Totem's now-iconic Model 1, a product whose arrival altered many audiophiles' expectations of how much great--and wide-range--sound a small speaker can deliver.

Revinylization #6: Acoustic Sounds Bach & Vivaldi Reissues
I'm not in perfect agreement with my colleagues and friends who believe that RCA's Living Stereo LPs from the late 1950s and '60s are the best-sounding commercial classical recordings ever made.

Aavik Acoustics U-380 integrated amplifier
Finally--a way to get a handle on the sound of Aavik Acoustics electronics. I'd heard the Danish-made components many times at shows, but always in the context of Ansuz Acoustics cables and Børresen Acoustics loudspeakers.

T+A MP 3100 HV SACD player/streaming DAC
At the 2019 AXPONA, I took part in one of my first official meetings, as editor of Stereophile, with members of the manufacturing community: the German company T+A.

1st Edition

On Sunday, March 22, at 8pm, the state of New York shut down, governor's orders. Here in the Big City, most stores are closed--even Starbucks, or at least the ones near me. In my neighborhood, up on Broadway, a grocery store is open, and a drugstore, a hardware store, and a couple of bodegas.

John Atkinson: a Career in Audio
At the end of April, Adrian Low, the proprietor of Toronto retailer Audio Excellence, emailed me. "I've been interviewing audio luminaries for some time," Adrian wrote, "partly because I am so interested in how they started, their experiences, and also to share these with fellow audio enthusiasts."

AXPONA Moving On from Here
On May 5, Joel Davis, founder and CEO of JD Events (JDE), the company that mounts the annual AXPONA--Audio Expo North America--proposed a "rollover plan" settlement for companies that had committed funds to the canceled 2020 show, which had been scheduled for April, postponed until August, and then, finally, canceled.

Jim Campilongo: Telecaster Master & Audio Enthusiast
In a 2014 profile in the New Yorker, Paul Elie, author of the book Reinventing Bach, wrote, "There it was again: the stinging treble, the spooky overtones, the strings snapping and booming under his hands--the sound of a Tele being played as skillfully and exuberantly as it can be played."

Wolf Audio Systems Alpha 3 SX music server
I am a Sharpener. I can acknowledge being a Sharpener--someone who, as explained by Stereophile reviewer/psychology professor Robert Deutsch in our March 2009 issue, tends to look for and exaggerate differences--without feeling a need to enter a 12-step program or confess to a crime.

Revinylization #5: Craft Recordings & Charlie Parker's Savoy LPs
I was well over 50 when I first heard an original copy of Charlie Parker's "Ko-Ko." It was a happy accident. I received a call from the family of a well-to-do neighbor who had recently passed away, asking if I'd be interested in having his record collection.

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