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Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 30, 2015
Let's get right to it. Here's guest Editor, Jamie Fletcher, from a new article on HotHardware in response to Cables, Bits, and Noise: How Cables Can Make A Sound Difference:
"The article is a classic case of misunderstanding. It starts off by complaining about switch mode power supplies causing problems with RCA cables - well, yes, that can happen. Why? RCA cables are analog and provide a direct path to the audio pipeline (DACs and Amps). They are streaming AC signals, in the audible range, not digital data."
That's their opening point and it's just plain old fashioned wrong.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 25, 2015
Photo credit: Taylor Swift

As reported by Digital Trends, Taylor Swift, who in a highly publicized move pulled her music from Spotfiy, has made most of her catalog (not 1989) available to Tidal's lossless streaming service. This news comes on the heels of Jay Z's successful purchase of Tidal's parent company.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 23, 2015
John Atkinson gives Neil Young's PonoPlayer the once over including his usual measurement suite. How does this $399 high-res player hold up? Read it for yourself on Stereophile.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 23, 2015
image credit RIAA

According to the Recording Industry Association of America's 2014 Report, CD sales topped out at $1.85 billion while total revenues from streaming, including ads and Internet radio, reached $1.87 billion overtaking CDs for the first time.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 18, 2015
According to mastering engineer and producer Ian Sheppard the answer is yes. From his article YouTube just put the final nail in the Loudness War’s coffin:
"It means that YouTube have been using loudness normalisation on their music videos – and they’ve been doing it since December last year. Everything plays at a similar loudness, regardless of how it was mastered. And no-one has noticed."
So what?
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 16, 2015
We've been following the ups and downs of Jay Z's bid for TIDAL since it was first announced back in January. To refresh, the buyout bid was for 464 million kronor ($56m) and in March a few of Aspirio's shareholders, TIDAL's parent company, balked. Now, the Swedish publishing company E24 is reporting that those dissenting shareholders have rethought their position and have accepted Jay Z's bid. Congratulations, everyone.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 11, 2015
From the company that changed the definition of thermostat, Nest appears to be getting into the home audio business. You have to wonder what they'll come up with. Nest founder and CEO, Tony Fadell, also called the “father of the iPod” for his involvement in the early development of that game changing device, most certainly has his eye on the "connected hi-fi" market where Sonos currently sits, atop.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 11, 2015
image credit: Bandcamp

Bandcamp, which was founded in 2008 by Ethan Diamond and Shawn Grunberger, reported it has paid out $100 million to artists selling music on the Bandcamp site.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 09, 2015
photo credit: Meridian

From the press release:

Employing TIDAL streaming technology together with a pair of Meridian Special Edition DSP7200 Digital Active Loudspeakers and a Meridian 818 Reference Audio Core, the team successfully demonstrated that listeners can experience the full quality and intricacy of recordings, authenticated in the studio – using incredibly ‘streaming-friendly’ files.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 09, 2015
In general, we've seen the "mainstream press" mangle the issue of high-res audio. From shoddy reporting to flat out misinformation, high-res has gotten a bad rap. To be fair, Neil Young has oversold and generalized when speaking about high-res versus CD-quality, and the fact that the Pono store sells mostly CD-quality material only helps to confuse an already confusing issue. But that's not a license for being plain stupid (yes, I'm looking at you Yahoo, Gizmodo and Ars Technica) and it's nice to see someone take a closer look at high-res audio going beyond a few minutes of A/B "testing". Kudos to Wilson Rothman of the WSJ for doing some real reporting and listening.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 04, 2015
TheLocal.se has reported that Jay Z's 464 million kronor bid ($56m) for Tidal has been rebuffed by over 10 percent of the minority owners of Wimp's parent company Aspiro.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Feb 24, 2015
The Technics Tracks High-Res Download Store opens today for residents of the UK and Germany. Technics claims "tens of thousands" of 24-bit/192kHz tracks at launch, "hundreds of thousands" of 24-bit tracks, as well as an "extensive collection of 16-bit/44.1kHz CD quality tracks." The service was custom built by 7digital, a leading open digital music platform operator.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Feb 23, 2015
Attention audiophiles: duck and cover! Another questionable product aimed squarely at us so we're in for it now (again)! While Sony claims the SR-64HXA, a Class 10 64GB microSDXC card which will cost ¥18,500 (roughly $155), produces less electrical noise when reading data as compared to a standard microSD card, the mainstream press ain't buyin' it and they're throwing stones our way (again).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Feb 16, 2015
With firmware update v1.0.5, the Pono Player now plays DSD64 and DSD128 files. I dragged and dropped a few DSD albums into my player and I'm listening to The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan from Acoustic Sounds and it sounds just lovely. Like analog.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Feb 10, 2015
Audio manufacturer PS Audio and recording company Blue Coast Records, who specialize in DSD recordings, have each offered a high res challenge to the writers who could not hear the differences high res audio offers when reviewing Neil Young's Pono Player (you can read my review here. Spoiler Alert: I heard a difference).

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