Michael Lavorgna

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Michael Lavorgna  |  May 17, 2016

From The Art of Listening website:

The Art of Listening is a documentary film about the journey music takes to reach a listener’s ear, from the intent of an instrument maker and composer, to the producers and engineers who capture and preserve an artist’s voice. This journey is narrated by intimate conversations with artists, engineers and producers about the philosophy of their work and the intent behind each musical note they create.
Michael Lavorgna  |  May 13, 2016
Narcissus, Caravaggio (1594-96)

"Systems lean." So read my notes in reference to the experience of listening to lots of systems at the High End Show 2016 in Munich. Systems lean.

Michael Lavorgna  |  May 10, 2016
While the Sonore microRendu ($640) did not make an appearance in Munich, it was waiting for me in-barn when I arrived back home last night. The first I did this morning, after making coffee, is connect the little microRendu to my hi-fi, set its output for Roon, and hit Play. First impressions: Wow!
Michael Lavorgna  |  May 03, 2016
Observant readers may have noted two changes to AudioStream: a new menu structure and a new tag line. Both changes were made to better reflect the content to be found on AudioStream as well as our focus on computer audio serving music.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 27, 2016
me in the woods contemplating why just 2 comments

This email sums up my thoughts:

This is baffling.

Here somebody, with real credentials, explains why listening is the real test—it encompasses the entire system and the interactions within.

He also explains how measurements, albeit hardly the traditional simpleton measurements used for way more than half a century, can be performed that expose the system limitations.

Not only that, but he explains just what many of the interactions may be and why they are detrimental. This not some amateur (moi) going off on the subject - it’s a guy actually in the business with decades of experience.

So, something for both "objectivists" and "subjectivists".

Yet, nobody seems to care one bit. All I hear is crickets.

What do you take from that?

My answer, I don't know. Do you?
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 19, 2016
Back when our daughters were in grammar school, one of their superintendents said, "We have to be ready to be ready." I'll never forget that sentence and how preposterous it sounded (and still does). As people interested in the quality of our experience when listening to reproduced music, do we have to be ready to be ready?
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 13, 2016
"Why don't you write about apps?" a friend suggested. Yea, why don't I? As regular readers may have noticed, some of the Download of the Week picks are available on Bandcamp. Within that group, some are records available directly from the artist, my favorite kind. The idea that the person(s) making the music get my money is a comforting thought.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 06, 2016
When I travel, I travel with music. And my iPhone. And my MacBook Pro. For a while now, I've been carrying along my PonoPlayer for most of the music part, but I find myself, once settled into my hotel room, looking around Tidal on my MacBook for the new. But the PonoPlayer doesn't...stream. It just serves. The PonoPlayer also requires that I pack its charging cable and wall adapter and it, itself, which is not really big deal; like carrying a Toblerone candy bar in your bag along with a Twizzler and Chunky.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Apr 03, 2016
Here I sit, reading the Sunday New York Times listening to music through three different AudioQuest DragonFly DACs—v1.2 (see review) and the new Black v1.5 ($99) and the new Red ($199)—plugged into my MacBook Pro while at the other end resides a pair of AudioQuest NightHawk headphones. I figure, the idea that I'm reading the NY Times will piss some people off and the idea that I'm listening to different DACs and hearing a difference will piss some people off, too.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 22, 2016
The field of Sonification turns data into sound. From the fascinating article in The Economist titled, "Sonification: Now hear this":
"...scientists still rely on their eyes and algorithms to spot interesting phenomena. That looks set to change as more scientists, engineers and even designers and artists look to exploit better what the seismologists and Voyager scientists knew decades ago: sound can be the key to scientific discovery."
Why listen and not look?
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 22, 2016
Thanks to reader Angelo P. for pointing me to How to Listen to Music: Escaping algorithms and musical ruts, a review of Ben Ratliff’s book Every Song Ever: 20 Ways to Listen in an Age of Musical Plenty. Spencer Kornhaber discusses Ratliff's book and puts it into our musically abundant context:
"At least since the advent of Napster, in 1999, the Internet’s potential effect on listeners (if not on industry coffers and artists) has often been portrayed as radical and utopian. Music bloggers, the iPod’s massive storage capabilities, and, most recently, the virtually unlimited browsing potential afforded by streaming—the convergence would surely pave the way for a generation to whom eclecticism was normal. Human curiosity could finally triumph over genre tribalism and lowest-common-denominator marketing. The super-listener would rise."
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 16, 2016
Sorta. I was admitted to Hunterdon Medical Center on Sunday, after being released from the ER on Saturday (oops), with what turned out to be the flu and pneumonia (ouch). Things are looking up and I should be outta here sometime tomorrow. Unfortunately this has put a dent in my schedule, so there will be no review posted tomorrow and apologies for not getting back to emails.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 15, 2016
Comparing live music to recorded music is a fool's errand for any number of reasons. Anyone who attends concerts of any kind can attest to this simple fact. I'll lead in with one big fat fact that differentiates live vs. recording—people.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 09, 2016
Some people are interested in just the facts, just the measured performance of their hi-fi gear so they can be assured the sound they hear is as accurate as possible. Some suggest that there is a direct correlation between accuracy and enjoyment and if you feel comfortable and reassured with this approach, I've got the perfect hi-fi for you.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 02, 2016
How's that for click bait? Here's the original title of the article from The Vinyl Factory website I'm referring to, "The Dangers Of Digital: Brian Eno On Technology And Modern Music". That's even more intriguing, no?

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