PREMIERE DESIGN

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 24, 2011 0 comments
Intel and Apple today announced the introduction of a new computer I/O technology called Thunderbolt, which makes its debut on the latest MacBook Pro laptops. Yet another connection might seem the antithesis of cool, but this is big news for home-theater PCs.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 23, 2011 1 comments
Founded in 1925, Luxman is one of Japan's oldest and most respected audio companies whose products are distributed in the US by On a Higher Note. Submitted for your consideration here is the mighty B-1000f monoblock, Luxman's flagship amp developed over 15 years for the company's 80th anniversary in 2005.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 22, 2011 2 comments
Almost exactly one year ago, I profiled the Universal Power Amplifier from NBS, an American boutique audio company known mostly for its high-end cables. It also offers some audacious speakers, including the Eva (shown above) and Butter/Fly.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 17, 2011 3 comments
Carbon fiber seems to be the cabinet material of choice for many speaker makers these days, including Austrian Carboton, whose designs are described as "a sensual experience for your eyes, too."
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 16, 2011 5 comments
Note: This is NOT an UltimateAVmag.com contest; the name of the company profiled here is Win Analog.

One of the coolest-looking single-ended triode (SET) monoblock power amps I've seen in a long time comes from California-based Win Analog. Two versions are available—the S and V Series.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 15, 2011 0 comments
Theta Digital is one of the most venerable companies in high-end audio, offering many well-regarded products over 25 years. Even more impressive, many of those products are still available after years of upgrades and refinements. Take, for example, the Casablanca preamp/processor, which was first introduced 15 years ago. Its latest incarnation, the Casablanca III HD, adds HDMI 1.4 I/O and the ability to decode Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 10, 2011 5 comments
The Japanese know a thing or two about tube-based amplifiers, as demonstrated by Zanden Audio Systems, which recently released its new flagship monoblock, the 9600. This beauty joins a stable of phono and linestage preamps, a DAC, several other power amps, and a CD transport, offering everything you need for 2-channel bliss except for the speakers and cables—and a turntable if you're into vinyl.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 09, 2011 1 comments
Last week, I profiled the first power amp from Marten, which was introduced at CES in January. This Swedish maker is otherwise known for its high-end speakers, including the new Coltrane 2 that was also unveiled this year in Vegas.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 08, 2011 0 comments
In a joint venture between US-based Seymour AV and UK-based Screen Excellence, the aptly named Seymour-Screen Excellence (SSE) recently announced its new Reference Fixed Frame (RF) acoustically transparent projection screens. Initially available are two materials—Enlightor 2 and Enlightor 4K.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 07, 2011 6 comments
When you think about home-theater gear, what usually comes to mind are things like displays, source devices, processors, amplifiers, and speakers. But these are nothing more than very expensive boat anchors without AC power—and that power had better be clean if they are going to perform at their best. This is where PS Audio comes in with its new PerfectWave Power Plant 5 and 10 AC Power Regenerators.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 03, 2011 0 comments
Swedish Marten is well known for high-end speakers—I profiled the incredible Coltrane Supreme last June. But the company introduced something different at CES 2011—its first power amplifier, the M-Amp monoblock.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 01, 2011 3 comments
Based in Berkeley, California, Magico made a splash at CES with its new Q3 speaker, which is a slightly scaled-down version of the well-established—and more expensive—Q5. But what makes the Q5 so special?
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 31, 2011 0 comments
Bowers & Wilkins is well known for its superb high-end speakers, so it's really no surprise that this British company would enter the headphone market. However, I'm a bit surprised that its first offering in this arena—dubbed the P5—is a set of portable headphones intended for the iPod and other MP3 players.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 27, 2011 3 comments
MBL has its fingers in just about every audiophile pie there is, from CD players and DACs to preamps and integrated amps to power amps and speakers to cables, racks, and speaker stands. In terms of source devices, the company's ne plus ultra is the 1621A CD transport and 1611F digital-to-analog converter (DAC).
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jan 25, 2011 7 comments
If bigger is better, Boulder's new 3050 monoblock power amp is clearly among the best. This behemoth was unveiled at CES before being completely finished—the company is waiting for the transformers to arrive—but the specs are enough to make any audiophile drool.

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