Day One of Hifi Pig’s Advent Calendar advertising promotion focuses on Tellurium Q’s innovative System Enhancement CDTQBOTTOM

“Moving forward to this year, 2014 Tellurium Q were asked if a distributor could source burn in discs to provide with a few of the very highest end cables. Tellurium Q talked with a producer but long story cut short they were not forthcoming which led to a eureka moment. Geoff having a background in materials chemistry and with Simon and him having already having researched sound generation and effects it seemed stupid not to develop our own.”

Read the full story. 


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Advertising PromotionTQ TOP

A Little history first:

Way back in 2002 Simon (who runs a small studio that Tellurium Q run early stage cable tests) and Geoff (a Director at Tellurium tqAV1Q) where working on various audio phenomena and testing them to see how effective they were. One such project was sound influence on meditative brain wave patterns for a CD training disc called “Quantum Meditation”  (see picture opposite).

Moving forward to this year, 2014 Tellurium Q were asked if a distributor could source burn in discs to provide with a few of the very highest end cables. Tellurium Q talked with a producer but long story cut short they were not forthcoming which led to a eureka moment. Geoff having a background in materials chemistry and with Simon and him having already researched sound generation and effects it seemed stupid not to develop our own.

This was our thinking:

Most music follows a form that can be calculated with a fourier transform analysis and time frequency analysis indicating it is not random, which simply means that your system can get into a “rut”. Like going to a gym and training only a few specific muscles for years and then wondering why your body is out of balance. This recording takes your system through a full workout of frequencies and tonal changes that is specifically designed to stretch your system’s components and bring new life into your music.

We place equal importance on all frequencies and even go into deep bass in a way that sub woofers will benefit from while working up through mids into the upper high frequency ranges in a non-sequential , non-Fourier way. There are also no pure ratio intervals to allow your system to slouch while it is having its work out. This is also one of the prime reasons that music played normally is slow to burn in components compared to this tool. Music does not cover your system’s range in a way that exercises the components sufficiently in a mechanical, electronic and magnetic sense to burn in your various components as efficiently.

This was the result:

We believe that the recording sounds unlike any burn in or system “perk up” CD that you will have heard for good reason and the feedback that we are starting to get is surprising us.

“This is just to let you know that I finally got the CD yesterday. I must say that after playing the whole CD just once, my entire system (not only Ultra Blacks) has improved dramatically. Your product is absolutely brilliant. (By the way, I used burn-in CDs by two well-known British companies for extended periods of time, but they are nowhere near as good.)” 

Jerzy from Poland

Find out more. 



Tidal (expect a Hifi Pig review in the next 24 hours) has announced the integration of its service within the ickStream music tidal.Screengrab
platform, which delivers music streaming services to home audio devices. ickStream’s recent support of the Logitech Squeezebox brings TIDAL to the popular device. The latest release of the ickStream app for the Squeezebox that includes TIDAL integration is available now.

ickStream is an API plug-in that works across various platforms, allowing users of supported devices to incorporate multiple streaming services into their systems. Tidal’s integration allows Squeezebox users to navigate and control the service through the Squeezebox controller and/or Logitech’s Squeezebox app, giving access to TIDAL’s lossless 16-bit/44.1 kHz FLAC and ALAC format service, with access to its 25 million-plus tracks.

“Having developed the ickStream API, we have been waiting for a service that champions the quality of the performance as well as the breadth of its catalogue,”said Joerg Schwieder, CEO of ickStream. “We very much see TIDAL as the ideal partnering streaming service, as it is designed for music lovers who appreciate the finest quality available. We are sure that our users are going to love it.”

“We were thrilled to have been approached by ickStream so early into our integration drive,” said Pål Bråtelund, Strategic Partnership Manager HiFi at Tidal.“Many of the ickStream team helped develop the Squeezebox and, therefore, have many years experience of streaming music. The number of customers in the UK and US using Squeezebox as their streaming music player is vast, and we are delighted that they can now hear TIDAL through their systems.”


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Photographs taken at the Poland Audio Show 2014. Thanks to Kris at Fidelity Art for supplying these photographs of the show which is the second biggest in Europe after Munich High-End.  More »

This new cable is composed of four copper conductors, isolated with polyethylene (XLPE) which the company says has “excellent akiko_powerchordHQisolation qualities and much better than the often used PVC”. The HQ (High Quality) cable is double shielded with aluminium foil and a copper braid.

There is a double symmetric grounding against EMI/RFI radiation which Akiko says “make Powercord HQ unique” the press release says.

The Akiko Audio Powercord HQ is already available and comes with three different  Akiko Audio connectors: copper, gold or rhodium.

Standard length: 1.5 meters. Prices from € 149.


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The new EVO3 Mosiac Genesis is a five-way mains conditioning unit in a half-width format, featuring three outlets for front-end IsoTek_mains_regeratorsource components and preamplifiers and two for high-current amplifiers, subwoofers and the like. It brings together IsoTek’s two “statement technologies” – which already feature separately in the brand’s top-of-range EVO3 Genesis and EVO3 Super Titan.

The front-end is driven by a mains regenerator, borrowed from IsoTek’s EVO3 Genesis, in which a unique sine wave generator builds a completely new mains waveform. This new waveform is synchronous with the incoming mains, to “protect against beat frequencies in the newly generated electricity supply”. The signal is then amplified by a class AB amplifier and fed to an output transformer, with copper foil between the primary and secondary outputs to “prevent any noise or distortion from passing through the unit”. The result is a continuous output of 150W (300W peak).

The EVO3 Mosaic Genesis also controls the mains voltage, ensuring that the output voltage is maintained at 230V +/- 2%.

Whatever the level of distortion of the incoming supply, the EVO3 Mosaic Genesis delivers low total harmonic distortion (THD) of between 0.05% and 0.17% with typical loads, remaining well below 0.3% with even the most complex loads.

The EVO3 Mosaic Genesis’ two high-current outlets feature IsoTek’s Direct-Coupled© technology which provides “optimal high-current low impedance filtering while fully maintaining the transient and dynamic performance of power amplifiers, monoblocks, active loudspeakers and subwoofers”. This high-current network is derived from that in the flagship EVO3 SuperTitan and provides a 75dB reduction in RFI while delivering 3,680W of continuous power continues the company’s press release.

The EVO3 Mosaic Genesis’ internal wiring is IsoTek’s newly-developed UP-OCC (Ultra Pure Ohno Continuous Cast) high purity copper solid core internal wire, which is silver plated before being insulated with Teflon. A fine Teflon strand is wound helically around the wire before a secondary Teflon tube is extruded over the top, creating an air gap between wire and insulating tube and forming an air dielectric which has virtually no capacitance.

The circuit design is a fully optimised ‘KERP’ path. KERP© (Kirchoff’s Equal Resistance Path) is a technology specifically developed for IsoTek’s EVO3 generation of products which ensures equal resistance and equal power delivery to all outlets.

The EVO3 Mosaic Genesis also guards against the effects of power spikes and surges, featuring 100,000A of instantaneous protection. IsoTek’s protection system uses a pyramid array of VDR (voltage dependant resistor) devices that react more aggressively as a fault becomes more dangerous.

The EVO3 Mosaic Genesis is available now in black or silver and is priced at £5,995 (including VAT).


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i-box, young British tech brand, today unveils the Slix Bluetooth wireless speaker. Small enough to pop in a pocket and robust ibox_bluetooth_speakerenough to be carried about (with a standard five-year guarantee to back up that promise), the seriously small and well-specified Slix looks perfect travel companion or an urban audio accessory.

Slix has a 2.1 driver configuration and it’s built to last, with a strong chassis and rugged, rubberised ‘caterpillar track’ surround.

Slix also has a high degree of water-resistance, with an ‘IPX’ rating of IPX5. This means it’s both splash-proof and weather-proof; it will be unaffected by rain, and you can safely take it into the bathroom and not worry about it receiving even prolonged splashes of water.

Slix measures just 155x58x28mm (WxHxD) and has a custom-tuned amplifier powering a pair of 1.5-inch full-range drivers, augmented by a passive bass radiator.

The inclusion of a ‘True Stereo Pairing’ mode, enables users to combine two Slix speakers via Bluetooth for genuine stereo sound and with this in mind, Slix can be bought as a special ‘double pack’ called Slix2.

It will pair with any Bluetooth-equipped device such as smartphones, tablets etc. Slix’s Bluetooth specification includes A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile) and EDR (Enhanced Data Rate) for high- performance wireless transmission.

A hands-free speakerphone facility adds further flexibility when Slix is paired with a smartphone, while the speaker’s built-in Lithium rechargeable battery supplies up to 10 hours playback from each charge. The package includes a micro USB charging cable, plus a 3.5mm audio cable to connect non-Bluetooth enabled music devices.

Slix is available at an SRP of £59.99. The stereo double-pack, Slix2, costs £99.99.


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Parasound has announced the launch of their new ZoneMaster Model 1250, a universal amplifier which can simultaneously powerparasound_multi-channel_amplifier
a home theatre surround system and additional zones with independent sources.

The ZoneMaster 12-channel power amplifier has connections for 24 speakers combined with 2-ohm stability, allowing the use of two speakers per channel. It’s rated at 12×50 watts into 8 ohms, and 12×90 into 4 ohms. Each channel pair can be bridged to deliver 6×160 watts into 8 ohms and 6×200 watts into 4 ohms RMS, all channels driven.

There are independent line inputs and level controls for each channel, two Bus inputs with looping outputs, plus a speaker-level input that can be routed to any zone. There are also independent 12-volt and audio triggers with looping trigger outputs for each zone, and a global 12-volt trigger.

Detachable Phoenix-style speaker connectors accept up to 12-gauge wire and the Model 1250 has a power consumption of just 0.5 watt standby power consumption to meet Energy Star and European Union specifications.

“The ZoneMaster Model 1250 is a game changer in a category populated by mediocre generic IC amplifiers,” said company president, Richard Schram. “The Class AB input stage and premium Class D power stage generate performance consistent with Parasound’s heritage. It is as useful for distributed audio as it is for home theater, where it could augment an AV receiver with 3×160 plus 4×50 watts.”

The Parasound ZoneMaster Model 1250 will be available from December with a UK SRP of £1,995.


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Millions Like Us is « The Story Of The Mod Revival 1977 -1989 » and it’s a wonderfully exuberant blast of tunes, many of which I know from my teens and some which are new to me. I was ten in 1977 but the mod revival was in full flow by the time I was in my second year or so of senior school. Along with the mod revival came two tone, ska and these were heady days indeed…my first proper gig was at the Wakefield Theatre where I went to see The Beat and it was rammed and perhaps one of the best gigs I’ve ever been to. Soon after I went to see The Jam at Leed’s City Hall and then I was all Oxford bags, Harrington jacket, Fred Perry shirts and pointy shoes…I wasn’t allowed a fishtail parka, would have looked daft in a mohair suit and my take on the “look” was very much garnered from what I read in the music press and what I was allowed to get away with. It was a brief love affair as far as I remember lasting a couple of years or so, but it’s brilliant to hear some of the tunes I played on my parents’ music centre and eventually my Amstrad set up getting a fresh airing on this 4CD collection. More »

The music media in the early to mid-sixties were alive with talk of a « folk boom » in the UK and indeed there was a burgeoning number of folk clubs open every night of the week, to the point that pretty much every town of any size had one. I remember as late as the early seventies as a young child there being a popular folk club in Wath-Upon-Dearne where my parents had a pub…and even they had a music room where folk music was the order of the day. A folk boom is a bit of a misnomer if we go by record sales, but, as Colin Harper’s excellent sleeve notes to The Eve Folk Recordings suggests, the folk “stars” of the day made their living not through record sales but through live performances and a life “on the road”. Harper also suggests that this movement was a true underground movement and the pressure on the performers not to sell out was huge. More »

Linn is giving away a great gift to all music lovers this Christmas with the chance to download a free daily track from a host of clairemartinmajor Linn artists – in Studio Master quality, the highest download quality available.

From 1st December Linn’s online advent calendar will offer 24 days of free downloads, giving everybody the chance to explore and expand their musical taste. Every day up until Christmas Eve, Linn will be giving music loversx the chance to discover a new piece from its music catalogue, with a different track free to download.

There’s sure to be something for everyone to enjoy, including a diverse selection of genres, in addition to well-known favourite artists such as: Britain’s First Lady of Jazz Claire Martin, the compelling Australian singer-songwriter Emily Barker, Scottish legend Dougie MacLean and many more. I downloaded some of the tunes last year and was suitably impressed…and who doesn’t love a freebie?

24-bit Studio Master downloads can be enjoyed using a dedicated network music player or via a laptop or PC, and are the highest quality music files available. They allow the listener to hear music exactly as it was recorded, before it was altered to fit on a CD or squashed down to MP3 size.


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Japanese cable and accessories company Furutech launch the new SK-III electrostatic brush, designed to remove unwanted Furutech SK-IIIstatic charge from a range of audio-visual media, enhancing sound and picture quality.

Originally developed by SFC of Japan, the patented SK-III electrostatic brush is a new and improved version of the earlier SK-II and has already proved to be a hit in its local market – including in some unexpected places.

“If it’s good enough for the Japanese Police Force…”, says Chris Green of Sound Fowndations, Furutech’s UK distributor, referring to the fact that the SK-III has become the Force’s trusted choice in crime scene investigations thanks to its reliability and effectiveness in removing tiny dust particles and static interference.

The SK-III uses a combination of natural goat hair surrounded by patented static discharge fibres made from specially structured and treated acrylic. The static discharge fibres are chemically coated with copper sulfide to be electrically conductive, and are set back 15mm from the tip of the brush so that only the soft goat hair touches your media.

The SK-III also features a new rhodium-coated metal grounding sleeve for enhanced conductivity, as well as 10% more super-fine static discharge fibres compared to its predecessor, the SK-II.

The SK-III electrostatic AV brush is available now, priced at £110.


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The guys at NuNu Distribution got in touch to tell us about the SSC Record Point 420 which is the new addition to the SSC range SSCrecordand can be used with most record players and aims to provide a good contact between the record and the platter and stabilise the record which the company say gives “less distortion and a more realistic sound image as a result”.

You can fit the SSC Record Point 420 easily.  “Simply place on the turntable spindle above your record to give the sound more dynamics, improving the sound with minimal cost” continues the press release. The Record Point has a diameter of 66mm, an overall height of 26mm and a weight of 420g.

Also available in the SSC range:

Big Points and Liftpoints

These are made for heavier or larger pieces of equipment.  The Liftpoints in particular are suited for placement under amplifiers, subwoofers or floor standing speakers, which may be screwed directly to them or simply placed on them. Both products will allow the transfer of the active forces caused by the mechanical energy of the components. Each Big Point has a loading capacity of 30Kg.

Netpoint 100, 200 and 300

The Netpoint family consists of three versions.  All of which use the same “web technology” as in previous products.

The 100’s have a felt pad on top and are housed in a black aluminium case.

The 200’s, have a threaded centre disk and come with various adapters to suit equipment with threaded removable feet.

The 300’s have an aluminium top disk with a counter-sunk hole to accept spiked components.

All are the same Diameter of 50mm and a Height of 10mm. Sold in sets of 4


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As we were in Paris last weekend visiting the Haute Fidélité show, Linn invited us along to Audio Synthèse, a high-end retailer in LINN_EXAKT1the city, to take a listen to the new Linn Exakt system. How could we refuse!

I’m sure most folk will be well aware of the Linn brand and I for one certainly lusted after the company’s LP12 back in the mid 80s. Indeed, as a new student with a full grant burning a hole in my pocket I ended up buying one…but could never actually afford to buy an arm for it. This reminds me of a story I was told not too long ago about a chap attending a hi-fi show in Japan. Apparently he’d bought an LP12 but lived in a small house with his extended family and the fact that he woke for work so early in the morning, combined with the (literally) paper thin walls of his house, meant that he was unable to play music on it. The story goes that every morning he would sit in front of the turntable, put on a record and imagine what it would sound like if he were actually able to play it with volume. Very Zen, but I digress….Read the full article.


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As we were in Paris last weekend visiting the Haute Fidélité show, Linn invited us along to Audio Synthèse, a high-end retailer in the city, to take a listen to the new Linn Exakt system. How could we refuse! More »




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Audio Research marks the UK launch of its new G Series components with an exclusive event at KJ West One, the high-end audioGS150 front copy retailer based in Central London.

Named in homage to Galileo, the G Series consists of three amplifiers: the GSPre preamplifier, GS150 power amplifier and, arriving a little further down the line, the GSi75 integrated amplifier. The styling is “gorgeously retro, harking back to classic Audio Research components” says the company’s press release and adds that the amps represent “state-of-the-art valve-based audio”.

Interestingly the new G Series introduces the KT150 output tube to the Audio Research range for the very first time.

Hifi Pig got a good look at the latest Audio Research kit at Munich High-End when Fine Sounds Group invited us to their launch and the finish on these amps is really superb, screams high-end and with perceived build quality being absolutely gorgeous. The covers for transformers are all individually finished, look seamless and visually the whole package manages to juxtapose the look of purposeful laboratory equipment with a luxury finish…Mrs Hifi Pig was certainly somewhat taken with the range’s looks as was I.

Brandon Lauer, Director of Marketing at Audio Research Corporation, will be on hand to answer any questions you might have at the launch event, alongside the teams from KJ West One and Absolute Sounds – Audio Research’s exclusive UK distributor.

The event takes place on Friday, 5th December 2014 from 6pm until 10pm and Saturday, 6th December 2014 from 10am until 5pm

Entry is strictly ticket only but you are able to register for free tickets here!


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Noble Audio has launched a universal-fit version of its flagship 10-driver in-ear monitor (IEM). The new K10 (£999) follows the success of the range-topping custom-fit model and is now available as a handcrafted IEM in Noble’s signature universal form factor.

The K10 (Kaiser 10) is a ten-armature IEM and is a low- impedance four-way design with ten drivers working in unison. “The K10’sNOBLE-K10 advanced driver array delivers a highly coherent presentation across a wide frequency range and delivers the best-ever performance from a portable IEM product” says the company’s latest press release.

The K10 design was first conceptualised several years ago. Noble Audio’s ‘Wizard’ (audiologist and co-owner Dr. John Moulton AuD CCC-A) and Noble’s Kaiser Soze, reverted back to their original design, using the knowledge they gained in recent years to refine the original product.

Despite packing an incredible ten drivers per side, the K10 is no larger than any other universal product in the Noble Audio range, sharing the same form factor as its IEM stable- mates. The K10 is also hand-finished — just like a custom Noble Audio IEM product, or the ‘Wizard’ IEMs, the look and feel of the body is seamless; the K10 is characteristically Noble.

The K10 is constructed from high-quality acrylic with gold-plated pentalobe screws. It features a detachable two-pin cable and has a 35-ohm impedance. Supplied accessories include the Storm Box (crush-proof carrying case); 12 pairs of ear tips (four kinds in three sizes); two Noble Audio bands or amp bands; a cleaning tool; a Noble cable and an ownership card.


  • 10 balanced-armature drivers per side
  • 2 precision-tuned bass drivers
  • 2 precision-tuned mid-frequency drivers
  • 2 precision-tuned mid-/high-frequency drivers
  • 2 precision-tuned high-frequency drivers
  • 2 precision-tuned super-high-frequency drivers
  • 4-way design
  • Impedance <35 ohms
  • Detachable cable with industry-standard 2-pin configuration
  • Hand-finished
  • Signature Noble Audio universal form factor
  • Gold plated pentalobe screws

The K10 is available now, priced at £999.


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Auralic North America Inc. and its parent company, Auralic Limited, have announced that TIDAL, the first lossless music streaming service with HD music videos and curated editorial, has been integrated in their ARIES Streamer Bridge.

AURALiC’s Lightning streaming is the industry’s first whole-house, high-resolution streaming solution that supports music playbacktidal up to Double-Rate DSD and DXD formats. The ARIES, the first product in the Lightning family, serves as a “bridge” between music on TIDAL‘s lossless online streaming services, or the consumer’s network storage, and their DAC — enabling DACs to stream high-resolution music quickly and wirelessly in virtually any sampling rate — without the need for a computer.

By full integration of the TIDAL streaming service within its technology, ARIES users will be able to access TIDAL to stream its extensive library of 25 million-plus tracks of high fidelity lossless music.

According to Xuanqian Wang, AURALiC’s CEO and President, “The full integration of TIDAL on Lightning streaming & ARIES significantly expands that ease of convenience with almost limitless selection of full resolution music. And, best of all, the consumer doesn’t need to use a computer.”

“We are delighted that AURALiC has fully integrated TIDAL into its Lightning/ARIES system, especially as the results have been so impressive,” said Pål Bråtelund, Strategic Partnership Manager HiFi at TIDAL. “We are committed to making TIDAL the go-to music streaming service for those that care about quality. Working alongside companies such as AURALiC is a delight, as they understand that once experienced, lossless quality brings people closer to the music and makes for a significantly more enjoyable listening experience.

You can expect a trio of reviews of TIDAL from three very different users very soon on Hifi Pig.


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The Haute Fidélité show in Paris is a must attend for us here at Hifi Pig. It’s a nice little show that is friendly, well attended and only four hours from us by rail. This year’s show was a good event too with there being plenty of punters through the door and a good and varied selection of kit on display. One of the things I enjoyed about this show was that there were plenty of women in attendance…perhaps it helped it being a Saturday in a good area of Paris. It’s also good for us to be able to meet up with old friends and have the chance to meet new ones. The great thing this year is everyone knows who Hifi Pig is and were keen to talk to us about their wares.
Rather than waffle on about each of the rooms we thought it would give Hifi Pig readers a better feel for the show by publishing a whole load of photographs we took at the Haute Fidélité show.
Enjoy! More »

The No 585 is engineered to be the finest integrated amplifier ever created by Mark Levinson and is the first of a new generationMLNews of products to be designed at HARMAN’s new state-of-the-art engineering facility located in Shelton, Connecticut.

It combines versatility with a Class AB amplifier delivering 200 watts per channel into 8 ohms and 350 watts per channel into 4 ohms and will accommodate a wide variety of digital music sources including high resolution 32-bit/192kHz computer audio and DSD over USB.  In an industry first, the No 585 incorporates HARMAN Clari-Fi™ processing, which applies proprietary signal-enhancement techniques to “restore the sound quality of any compressed file format”.

The No 585 integrated amplifier is built using a heavy-gauge chassis and card-cage architecture to isolate critical low-level analogue and digital circuitry, which comprises audiophile-grade internal components and premium rear-panel connectors.

The No 585 offers six digital and four analogue inputs including USB, optical, coaxial, AES/EBU XLR and RCA.  It employs fully discrete, mirror-imaged, dual-monaural analogue input and output circuitry, optimised for sonic integrity and uses individual signal switching relays for each of its four analogue stereo inputs: one XLR and three RCA. The volume controls use discrete 15-bit R-2R resistor ladder networks and low-noise analogue switches.

Its high-current, fully differential (balanced) Class AB power amplifier section utilises an oversized 900VA custom toroidal transformer with individual secondary windings for the left and right channels. Separate left and right channel regulated linear power supplies are used for all the analogue circuitry. Each amplifier channel employs 12 output transistors.


At the heart of the No. 585’s digital audio processing stage is an ESS Sabre 32-bit D/A converter with proprietary jitter elimination and fully balanced, discrete I/V (current-to-voltage) circuitry. The Cmedia USB audio processor is capable of asynchronous data transfer of high-resolution DSD and PCM files at up to 192kHz/32-bit resolution. For lower-resolution audio formats, HARMAN’s Clari-Fi signal processing reconstructs information and bandwidth that is lost in compressed file formats restoring higher-fidelity sound.  Clari-Fi™ does not add equalization, bass boost, or other effects to the listening experience.

The No 585 provides a stereo preamp/subwoofer output with a selectable 80Hz high-pass filter for use in a properly implemented 2.1-channel system, and includes Ethernet, RS-232, IR and 12V trigger ports to facilitate its use audio/video installations with integrated systems control. 

Typical retail price will be £10,500 and Mark Levinson No.585 Integrated Amplifier will be available December 2014.


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14 covers (10 on the normal version) and two original tunes, one penned in partnership with Jim Vallance and the other with Gretchen Peters ( this only on the Deluxe Edition) on this, the twelfth studio album from Canadian rocker Bryan Adams has tracks from writers such as Lennon and McCartney (Any Time At All), Bob Dylan (Lay Lady Lay), Chuck Berry (Rock and Roll Music) John Fogerty (Down on the Corner), Bobby Hebb (Sunny), Brian Wilson and Tony Asher (God Only Knows) plus a handful of others. More »

Crystal Acoustics has announced the launch of the Teevy 6, part of the new Reference Wireless Series of speakers from Crystal CASoundBArAcoustics, and utilises the new WiSound technology to create what the company’s press release describes as “an incredibly dispersive, dynamic and consistent audio delivery throughout every part of the room”.

The ‘WiSound’ design uses a larger-than-usual number of speaker drivers, firing in multiple directions, together with a DSP that uses the acoustic response of your room to improve the listener experience. The effect is that every listener hears the same sound regardless of where they are in the room.

The Teevy 6 features six, balanced drivers, including two 5.25in subwoofers that create bass performance all the way down to 38Hz.

The Teevy 6 features Apt-X Bluetooth, so you can connect and play music using any Bluetooth-enabled device, as well as having the option to experience superior sound quality if your device is Apt-X compatible.

Availability: November 2014

Price: £299


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Caroll Vanwelden is a Belgian singer and a graduate of the London Guildhall School of Music and Drama, but only after having passed her engineering degree in Brussels. Shakespeare Sonnets 2 is, needless to say, the second album of Vanweldens where she puts the bard’s sonnets to music. It’s out now on Jazznarts and my copy is downloaded from HIRESAUDIO.

Ok, I know this concept sounds a bit far-fetched and it really shouldn’t work, but the language used is interesting, involving and when combined with the jazz music herein is really pretty infectious. This is not noodly, or jazz that you need a beard, a pipe and a degree in pseudology to appreciate, indeed Since Brass Nor Stone, the third tune on the record, has a drum line that is veering towards drum and bass…it’s really very good. More »

Yesterday, at the press conference in New York, Consumer Electronics Association announced the winners of the honorary esteloninnovation award. Alfred & Partners’ newly launched Estelon Extreme has been selected as 2015 CES Best of Innovation Awards Honoree in the High Performance Home Audio/Video product category.

Products entered in this prestigious program are judged by a preeminent panel of independent industrial designers, engineers and members of the trade media honoring outstanding design and engineering in cutting edge consumer electronics.

Besides the use of a crushed marble based composite and already recognized Estelon shape, the most noticeable innovation is the speaker’s two modules. On the Estelon Extreme, user can remotely change the height of the upper module and get rid of unwanted reflections from the walls and ceiling that affect the sound quality. We certainly enjoyed the demonstration of the speakers at last years Munich High-End.

“I am extremely proud to be honored with the “Best of Innovation” Award. It gives me energy to work even harder on my ongoing R&D projects in changing the way people listen to music.” says Alfred Vassilkov, founder and designer of Estelon speakers. “This award confirms that I have really learned something during my 30 years of experience and I am happy to apply my knowledge to our products that provide the listener with unforgettable and “extreme” experience.”


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Well, Pink Floyd’s The Endless River has certainly been a long time coming… in fact it’s some twenty years since we were treated to a studio album from the Floyd, the last was 1994’s Division Bell. It’s no surprise then that this record was eagerly anticipated by the band’s legion of followers. This copy comes from HIRESAUDIO on Parlophone and warner Bros as a FLAC file, but there are standard CD, double vinyl and deluxe box sets available.

Floyd’s keyboardist, Rick Wright died of cancer in 2008 but this record is made from concepts and recordings made during the making of Division Bell and can be taken as very much a tribute to Wright… and he is indeed there on the record. The Endless River has taken two years of adding new parts and rerecording others and can be described as an ambient record with just one track (the final track)having a proper lyric…but still it is very much a Pink Floyd record – listen to it and it could be no other band. Production duties, are taken up by  Gilmour, Youth, Andy Jackson and  Phil Manzanera and the album was completed in Gilmour’s studios the Astoria and Medina Studios in Hove (UK). It is widely accepted that there will be no further releases from Pink Floyd after this. More »

THIEL Audio has announced the addition of a dedicated service facility in Lexington, KY, where THIEL was founded over 35 years 105ago. Operated by two longtime THIEL employees Lana Ruth and Rob Gillum, the new service facility will oversee service for a long legacy of legendary loudspeakers as well as all new products scheduled for introduction at CES 2015 and beyond.

Lana Ruth, who has been with THIEL for over 15 years, will be the point person for customer service while also coordinating shipping as well as logistics for THIEL’s international business. Rob Gillum has been with THIEL for over 25 years and will manage service and technical support for the company. Housing a vast array of parts and supplies, the new facility enables THIEL to service almost every legacy model—from grille, driver and crossover repair to all facets of cabinet and finish restoration.

“This new facility is part of the transformation of the THIEL brand and highlights our commitment to our dedicated customer base,” explained THIEL CEO John Wittman. “We are aware that many of our customers have cared for and enjoyed their THIEL speakers for decades, and servicing these legacy products is a point of pride for all of us,” Wittman stated.


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Flare Audio, has launched what they believe to be the world’s first ‘fully’ open headphones. The Reference R1, aimed at theFlareR1-6 pro audio and audiophile market, uses Flare’s new approach to produce distortion free sound, even at full volume, enabling true transfer and transmission of source material.

“Traditional headphone designs are based around two main formats, closed and open backed. Both of these traditional approaches suffer from sound distortions in some way caused by enclosed residual pressure interference (ERPI)” explains Flare Managing Director and R1 creator, Davies Roberts.

“Open back designs distort sound information on the compression stroke of the driver and add asymmetry to the waveform. Closed designs distort sound information on both sides of the waveform. This distortion moves the time domain of frequencies, compressing them into the wrong area of generation by the driver. ERPI inside a closed space creates a spring effect on the driver, which limits and distorts driver movement.”

Roberts says all drivers create sound by placing higher frequencies inside the movement of lower frequencies, i.e. 21Hz is created within the movement of 20Hz, 22Hz within 21Hz and so on. If a driver’s movement is restricted by ERPI the time domain of frequency information is also distorted. Flare describes this driver movement distortion as TDD (Time Domain Distortion).

In a typical headphone with one or more closed areas, the time domain of information will become disrupted. For example, if there is ERPI behind the driver then there will be reduced backward movement.

With the Reference R1, both of Flare’s patent-pending technologies (SpaceTM and VortexTM) have been applied to both sides of the driver to create the first ‘fully open’ true infinite baffle headphone that produces distortion free sound.

Flare’s vortex silencing technology spirals around both sides of the 40mm dynamic headphone drivers to remove all enclosed residual pressure interference (ERPI). ERPI is removed without it travelling across the driver or reflecting inside the headphone enclosure, leading to no audible enclosure based standing wave interference.

Balancing pressures between the front and rear sections enables linear driver movement (LDM), which creates total timbre accuracy says the company’s press release.

SpaceTM technology reduces enclosure wall vibration through 4 bolts that pull the rear plate and ear pad plates together with a constant compressive force on the DSV (dual sided vortex) disc. Space technology allows the use of lightweight materials to be used in the DSV disc whilst maintaining the structural strength of more rigid materials.

VortexTM technology removes residual air pressure that interferes with the movement of a driver and silences the sound pressure as it escapes into the air. DSV enables linear driver movement providing the listener with a completely natural sound experience. Linear driver movement mimics sound in nature creating highly accurate timbre, phase response, stereo imaging and 3D sound.

“Flare Reference R1 is a completely new listening experience and a vital tool for those wanting to hear everything in sound, without any listening product distortion,” explains Roberts. “Stereo imaging perfectly mimics nature, allowing full 360-degree image placement. Reverb tails and instrument distortion become highly detailed, allowing producers and engineers to have a tool to rely on to perfect their art. We believe the Reference R1 sets a new standard in personal sound listening for both professionals and audiophiles.”

The Reference R1’s are now available for pre-order direct from Flare at a special introductory price of £499 inc VAT.


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Denon has announced the latest generation of its lifestyle Network Music systems. The  new  CEOL  and CEOL Piccolo systems DENON-CEOL_N4_WT-connectivityare a pair of compact and minimalist designs that offer music playback from every audio source imaginable, all controlled by an App.

The CEOL provides access to your music collection via your home network, wherever it is stored – on a computer, network hard drive, or mobile device. With an integrated Wi-Fi and Ethernet cable connection, the CEOL supports AirPlay® and lossless streaming of high definition music files (FLAC HD/WAV/AIFF/ ALAC) from the home network. The CEOL also supports Bluetooth® streaming with NFC pairing, along with Spotify® Connect online music service, Internet radio and FM/AM radio. The CD player supports all of the usual CD formats and file types. The front panel USB port connects iPhones, iPods (with continuous battery charging even in standby mode), USB memory drive and USB-HDD. Rear panel digital optical (there  are  two)  and  analogue  audio inputs connect digital TVs and almost any other audio device.

The CEOL uses Denon’s digital amplifier design to deliver 65 watts per channel to the two-way speakers. The minimalist design features a dual layer acrylic top-panel with controls positioned for bookshelf or tabletop placement. Full control of the system is also possible from the dedicated Denon Hi-Fi Remote App for iOS and Android.

CEOL (N-9)

  • Supports AirPlay® for iDevice and iTunes music streaming
  • Bluetooth wireless streaming with NFC pairing for instant playback from mobile devices
  • Windows 8/RT  compatibility;  the  CEOL  is  displayed  as  loudspeakers  on  the Windows desktop, for direct streaming of audio
  • New Denon SC-N9 two-way speaker design
  • CD player supports WMA/MP3(CD-R/RW) playback
  • FM/AM Radio
  • Digital optical inputs (two) for system expansion with connection of digital audio sources including flat screen TV, TV set-top box, or game console
  • Rear panel  analogue  audio  input  for  system  expansion  with  connection  of analogue devices
  • Headphone output
  • Front panel USB port for connecting iDevices, smartphones and USB memory drives
  • Continuous iPod battery charge on USB port even in standby mode
  • 3 line large OLED for clear and wide view
  • Multi language Quick Setup guide on OLED
  • Interactive CD-Rom manual and WEB manual

The ultra compact CEOL Piccolo (N4) Network Music system has a diminutive footprint and can stream high definition music from devices including hard drives, computers, mobile devices and the internet, via Wi-Fi, Ethernet, Bluetooth® and USB. The CEOL Piccolo also features Spotify® Connect and Internet radio. These features are operated by top panel controls for desktop, tabletop or bookshelf positioning and like its bigger brother the new App.

CEOL Piccolo (N-4)

  • Audio streaming from hard drives, computers, mobile devices and the internet, via WiFi, Ethernet, Bluetooth® and USB
  • High definition playback of 24bit/192kHz (FLAC HD/WAV/AIFF/ ALAC), *Note: ALAC is up to 96kHz/24bit, audio formats for high quality streaming audio
  • Gapless audio streaming
  • Integrated diversity antennae for Wi-Fi streaming from network connected devices and drives; supports 11n
  • Spotify Connect online music service support and internet radio
  • Controllable with Denon Hi-Fi Remote App for iOS and Android
  • Ultra-compact
  • Windows 8/RT compatibility; the CEOL Piccolo is displayed as loudspeakers on the Windows desktop, for direct streaming of audio
  • Digital optical input for system expansion with connection of digital audio sources for improved sound quality via the CEOL Piccolo, including flat screen TV, TV settop box, or game consoles.
  • Rear panel analogue audio input for system expansion with connection of analogue devices
  • High quality headphone output

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“The Evolution Series from TARA Labs is truly beyond belief. It is quite simply the new watershed in the art and science of audio Grand Master Evolution_webcable design. The Evolution Series is in a class of its own, beyond all other audio cable products in the history of the audio industry worldwide” claims the latest press release from TARA Labs.

There are 3 distinct levels of audio cables in the Evolution Series, starting with the AIR Evolution Interconnects and Speaker Cables. The AIR Evolution Interconnect uses the multi-lumen air-tube concept invented by TARA Labs as used in the AIR Series Interconnects originally developed in 1986. However, the Evolution Interconnect is remarkably flexible in comparison.

The next level in the Evolution Series is the all-new ZERO Evolution Interconnect and OMEGA Evolution Speaker Cable. The ZERO Evolution Interconnect replaces the ZERO Gold Interconnect, and the OMEGA Evolution Speaker Cable replaces the MEGA Gold Speaker Cable.

To give a simple example, the new Evolution Interconnect boasts a low capacitance figure of just 2 pF per foot.

The ZERO Evolution Interconnect uses the same displaced and Floating Shield design together with a HFX Ground system to provide greater absorption of RF/EMI.

The Grandmaster Evolution Interconnect has a greater displacement between the shield and the conductors within the cable and The Grandmaster Evolution Speaker Cable is a very large loudspeaker cable design. Each positive and negative run, comprises 8 conductor groups helixed around Teflon air-tubes™ for a total of 288 conductors per channel.

TARA Labs cables are Designed, manufactured, and hand-crafted to the in the USA.


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KEF has announced the launch of a brand new high gloss piano white edition of its famous LS50 speaker. The original LS50 first 3630_KEF_LS50_Whiteappeared in 2012, has received numerous international awards and having heard them several times myself they sure are good.

The original LS50 was designed to celebrate KEF’s 50th anniversary, and was conceived as a ‘mini monitor’ derived from the legendary LS3/5a, to bring professional studio monitor performance into the home.

At the LS50’s heart beats the highly KEF Uni-Q driver as mentioned. The new high gloss piano white LS50s have a blue Uni-Q driver and should appeal to a wider audience than the original coloured LS50s I feel.


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Price: £800.00 (pair)

In our continued attempts to bring our readers great hifi news and hifi reviews here is a concise list of October’s NOVFRONTreviews on Hifi Pig.

Graham Audio’s LS5/9 loudspeakers

SLIC Innovations latest Eclispse C interconnects

Signature Alpha loudspeakers from French company Triangle

Beyerdynamic’s T61 portable headphones

Blue Horizon’s Proburn cable burn in and conditioning machine 

LH Labs Geek Out 1000 portable headphone amplifier.

The latest edition of the Hifi Pig Magazine is also out and avaialble for FREE download. Not only does it contain all the previous month’s reviews, but also album reviews, a great Classics piece from John Scott about the album “Eli and the Thirteenth Confession” by Laura Nyro, an in-depth Behind the Brands interview with Mark Sears of The Missing Link and Vinyl Passion and our latest regular feature Tipplers corner where Louis Bricka pairs booze with music. The cover story and a great article full of pictures and editorial, is our visit to iconic British hifi manufacturer Roksan. You can download the full Hifi Pig magazine for FREE .

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Naim today announced that its Uniti range of all-in-one players will now feature Bluetooth (aptX) and Spotify Connect. “Naim’s unitiCWBtoothcustomers are music lovers and these new features add convenience and flexibility to their ability to play music from many sources” say Naim.

Naim’s range of network players will also feature the new Spotify Connect functionality but not Bluetooth.

Naim’s Uniti range was first launched in May 2009 with the arrival of the original NaimUniti and since then the range has grown to encompass three more all-in-one players.

Existing streaming product customers can have Spotify Connect as a free software update.


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Merrill Audio Advanced Technology Labs, LLC has announced the Taranis Stereo Power Amplifier with Ncore Technology with a Tsanis_power_amplifierprice of $2,500.  The Taranis Stereo Power Amplifier is powered by the same NCORE technology as the $12,000 VERITAS Monoblocks and provides “very high value to audiophiles on a budget looking towards the VERITAS as the ultimate Audio power amplifier, in a cost effective stereo package” say Merrill.

Named after the Celtic God of Thunder, Taranis Stereo Power Amplifier will deliver 400 watts into 8 ohms and 600 watts into 4 ohms with S/N of 120db, and THD better than 0.005%.

“A full differential state of the art, ultra-fast input stage with 100k input impedance that is custom developed for the Taranis provides 26db of gain. With a high current drive, the input stage gives the output stage superb musical speed and detail” the company say.

The Taranis Stereo Power Amplifier is full featured with a steel chassis to limit EMI/RFI interference in and out, an LED power meter for each channel, LED indicators for power on, ready, clipping, over current and fatal error, silver plated pure copper speaker posts allow for bananas and spades,  Gold plated IEC from Furutech and Cardas silver over copper XLR inputs.

Upgrade options available are Stillpoints Ultra Mini Riser footers, Waveform Fidelity power cords and Synergistic Fuses.


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The Chord Company has launched a new entry-level interconnect cable that introduces the company’s proprietary ARAY ChordCLINE_interconnecttechniques at an affordable price. “The new C-line is the most technically advanced cable at its price point and beyond” says the company’s press release.

The Chord Company’s Tuned ARAY technology was originally developed for their flagship Sarum cable range, but the technology was introduced across a wider cable range, most recently digital and streaming products. The new C-line analogue RCA cable has become the most affordable interconnect to use elements of the ARAY construction technique in The Chord Company’s line-up.

The UK’s biggest specialist A/V cable manufacturer has been able to implement these ARAY techniques into an entry-level cable for the first time, thanks to a solid partnership with a trusted manufacturer that Chord has been working with on C-line for more than a year.

To gain the level of performance that ARAY techniques produce at such a price point, the C-line has become the first analogue interconnect that The Chord Company has had built to its specification; all other analogue interconnects in The Chord Company’s range are hand-built by Chord technicians at its Wiltshire facility. Like all Chord Company interconnects, every C-line will be carefully hand-tested and packaged in Wiltshire.

The C-line features pseudo-balanced oxygen-free copper conductors with fully floating shielding and is optimised for maximum performance with CD players, DACs, phono- stages, streamers and home-theatre systems. In addition to being constructed using ARAY techniques, C-line also benefits from unique direct gold-plating technology, plus over-moulded strain-relief for the cable’s plug terminations.

C Line specifications

  • Pseudo-balanced oxygen-free copper conductors
  • ARAY construction techniques
  • Direct gold-plating technology
  • Fully floating shielding
  • Over-moulded strain relief

C-line is available now priced at £45 for the 1.0m and £35 for the 0.5m version


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We all thought that this was pretty interesting… McIntosh provided the audio experience for the opening of Stevie Nicks’ 24 Karat Stevie_Nicks_-_1977Gold photography exhibition at the Morrison Hotel Gallery, New York, in October. The opening event showcased Stevie’s 24 Karat Gold exhibition: a photographic journey into the private world of the rock legend, through previously unseen self-portraits from her personal Polaroid collection, taken between 1975 and 1987.

From the mid-seventies, Stevie Nicks used her Polaroid camera to capture a number of self- portraits both at home and on tour around the world. The exhibition, which ran up until the 31st of October, shares the same name as her new solo album: 24 Karat Gold – Songs From The Vault. It was during the recording of 24 Karat Gold earlier in 2014, that Stevie decided to share her unseen self-portraits, each of which is individually signed and numbered.

Stevie said: “Some people don’t sleep at night — I am one of those people. These pictures were taken long after everyone had gone to bed. I would begin after midnight and go until four or five in the morning. I stopped at sunrise like a vampire! I never really thought anyone would ever see these pictures — they went into shoeboxes, where they remained. I did everything: I was the stylist, the makeup artist, the furniture-mover, the lighting director. It was my joy: I was the model.”

The exhibit was curated by rock legend Dave Stewart with guests enjoying Stevie’s new album, 24 Karat Gold – Songs From The Vault, through a McIntosh system comprising: MC1.2KW mono power amplifiers; a C50 preamp; MCD1100 CD player; MT5 turntable; a MEN220 room-correction system and XRT1K speakers.


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