LATEST ADDITIONS

Review: James Parker, Lab: Keith Howard  |  Oct 21, 2019
hfnoutstandingThis may be the baby of the latest Gold range, but it has the company's usual impeccable design, fit and finish, and a big sound that belies its compact dimensions

The hierarchy of the Monitor Audio loudspeaker range – starting with Bronze, and progressing through Silver and Gold to the flagship Platinum series – is well-established, and so too is the company's rolling programme of updating the products line by line. In recent times this has run alongside a series of acquisitions – the company scooped up electronics manufacturer Roksan in 2016, and more recently added Blok, the maker of the STAX range of hi-fi stands and AV racks, to its stable.

Christopher Breunig  |  Oct 18, 2019
The Dresden musician's oboe and pianoforte playing pushed him into the role of conductor. Christopher Breunig looks at this great Straussian's extensive repertoire

Rummaging through a box of unsorted CDs I came across a 1972 orchestral concert by the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra [Scribendum SC 004]. The conductor was Rudolf Kempe, one of my most admired artists but someone I hadn't written about in this HFN series we began in July '14. (Incidentally, the soloist there, in Mozart's Piano Concerto K595, was Friedrich Gulda, liberally sprinkling decoration over his part, whereas his DG studio recording with VPO/Abbado is almost bereft of it.)

Review: Andrew Everard, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 16, 2019
hfnoutstandingA little over half the price of the mighty H590 amp, in a slimmer design and with very similar facilities and output, this new arrival from Norway is a sure-fire bargain

They're clearly fans of the old buckled swash at Hegel: having evoked Master And Commander in announcing its £9000 H590 flagship amplifier [HFN Oct '18], the Norwegian company says it's calling the new H390 'Robin Hood'. Why? Well, it's all a matter of re-distribution of wealth, apparently, for the £4900 debutant takes much of the ability of its big brother, and makes it available to those of us of humbler means.

Keith Howard  |  Oct 15, 2019
Keith Howard explains how and why HFN has expanded its test regime

Time flies when you're having fun. I bought the equipment to measure headphones for Hi-Fi News as long ago as May 2007, since when I've tested around 115 different models for the magazine. These have included circumaural (over-ear) designs, supra-aural (on-ear) and insert, active and passive, priced from under £100 to almost £5000.

Steve Sutherland  |  Oct 11, 2019
Stax meets rocksteady in this rousing reggae set, which has been described as one of the most uplifting LPs ever. Steve Sutherland listens to the recent 180g reissue

Sometimes things go wrong. Like when I was flown to San Francisco to interview Australian psychedelic popsters The Church and they wouldn't talk to me, over a grudge which to this day remains a mystery to me. Then there was the time I interviewed the brilliant and now sadly deceased Prince Far I and such was the depth of his gutteral growl and the deep slur of his diction that, on playing back the tape recording, neither myself nor anyone else I cared to play it to could decipher a single word he uttered...

Christopher Breunig  |  Oct 10, 2019  |  First Published: Nov 01, 1985
Christopher Breunig auditions the Well-Tempered Arm

What could be more apt than the UK launch of the Well-Tempered Arm at the end of Bach's tercentenary year? Ken Kessler brought you the first picture of this iconoclastic tonearm as part of his April '85 CES report and even before then, he had inveigled California-based designer William Firebaugh into letting us have a review sample.

Review: Ken Kessler, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 09, 2019
hfnoutstandingLess of a 'Special Edition' than a cosmetic refresh, six years of continuous production has still brought changes to bear in ARC's flagship digital offering. We investigate...

At this stage in the decline of Compact Disc's popularity, is there still a demand for CD players like the Audio Research REF CD9 SE at a heady £14,500? Apparently so, as the original REF CD9 [HFN May '13] remains popular enough to warrant an update. The addition of the esteemed 'SE' suffix on this occasion, however, does not signal as radical a change as seen, for example, in the move from the REF 75 power amp to the REF 75SE. But what Audio Research has done makes it just different enough to warrant the new badge.

Reviews: Hi-Fi News Team, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 08, 2019
This month we review and test releases from: Berliner Philharmoniker/Kirill Petrenko, Walter Wolfman Washington, Reto Bieri & Meta4, Fors Seulement and Netherlands Po/Marc Albrecht
Review: David Price, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 07, 2019
hfnoutstandingWith a nod to the past, plus the benefit of some 28 years' experience of design and manufacturing, Pro-Ject launches its most refined sub-£1000 turntable package yet

With that familiar sparkle in his eye, Pro-Ject's Heinz Lichtenegger unveiled a brand new CD player at the recent EISA Convention in Antwerp. What does this have to do with this new X1 turntable, you might ask? Well, he proudly explained that what he's now doing with CD spinners is precisely what he did with record players back in the early 1990s.

Review: Ken Kessler, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 04, 2019
hfnoutstandingTraditional 'resistor ladder' DACs are rarely seen these days but California-based MSB has made the technology its own and elevated performance to an entirely new level

Despite persistent rumours of the standalone DAC's demise, the industry continues to provide us with converters with capabilities far in excess of any digital sources commonly available. MSB's DACs fall into this category, and given the sheer brilliance of the Premier we're reviewing here, it's hard to fathom that this isn't even the top rung of the MSB family, coming in below the flagship Select and the Reference, and above the Discrete. That said, the bare-bones version is £19,500. Ulp.

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