Stereophile Staff  |  Oct 17, 1999  |  0 comments
Madrigal Audio Labs designed the original Mark Levinson No.30 nearly 10 years ago with the idea that, as a Reference Series product, it would never be made obsolete. John Atkinson reviews the No.30's latest upgrade, the Mark Levinson No.30.6 Reference D/A processor, after sending his personal unit from 1992 back to the factory for the required work. What he got back included new D/A converters in the unit's twin towers. Was it worth the effort, and does this processor still define the state of the art? You'll want to read his report to find out.
Jon Iverson  |  Oct 17, 1999  |  0 comments
Trying to get a grip on where the new high-end audio formats, DVD-Audio and SACD, might be going? A logical place to start might be to check with the factories getting ready to crank out the discs and see how the orders have so far stacked up. After conducting just such a survey, the International Recording Media Association (IRMA) released last week the first projections for next year's worldwide marketplace introduction of DVD-Audio and SACD.
Stereophile Staff  |  Oct 17, 1999  |  0 comments
One of the most amazing things about the march of technology is the way quality goes up as prices go down. Only a few years ago, CD recorders were among the rarest and most expensive audio components. Now they're beginning to appear at budget prices.
John Atkinson  |  Oct 17, 1999  |  0 comments
The Mark Levinson No.30 has enjoyed a continuing residence in Class A of Stereophile's "Recommended Components" listing since it was reviewed in our February 1992 issue (Vol.15 No.2). Madrigal includes the No.30 in its "Reference" series, by which they mean that the unit will not become obsolete. Thus, when new technology became available, the No.30.5 update was introduced, consisting of a single digital-receiver printed circuit board to replace the original's three boards, and a new digital-filtering board. This revision was favorably reviewed by Stereophile in October 1994 (Vol.17 No.10).
Stereophile  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments

Some of us collect gear from way back, while others have just updated their entire systems. How far back does your equipment go? Anything collectible?

What's the oldest piece of audio gear that you still use, and how old is it?
It's over 40 years old
7% (17 votes)
It's 30-40 years old
14% (37 votes)
It's 20-30 years old
31% (80 votes)
It's 10-20 years old
23% (58 votes)
It's 5-10 years old
13% (33 votes)
It's 3-5 years old
5% (13 votes)
It's 2-3 years old
4% (9 votes)
It's 1-2 years old
1% (3 votes)
It's less than 1 year old!
2% (6 votes)
Total votes: 256
Jon Iverson  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments
Last week, IBM announced a new device that it says will allow mobile users to add an extra 10 gigabytes (GB) of hard-drive capacity to their notebook PCs. Why is this important to audio fans? IBM is intending the new drive, called the Travelstar E, to primarily appeal to those wanting to take extended music libraries with them on the road.
Jon Iverson  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments
This may come as no surprise to Stereophile's website audience, but a report released last week finds that the heaviest users of the World Wide Web are also avid consumers of traditional media, listening to CDs and radio and watching television as they point their browsers to e-commerce, informational, and recreational sites.
Barry Willis  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments
High-end digital audio's rapid advancements are pushing integrated circuit designers to exceed their previous limits. San Diego-based AKM Semiconductor has joined the chip elite with two new digital-to-analog devices that further push the performance envelope. The AK4394 is a 24-bit/192kHz stereo DAC based on Asahi Kasei Microsystems' advanced multi-bit delta-sigma technology. Its sibling, the AK4356, is a 24-bit/192kHz, six-channel DAC based on the same technology, but boasting a useful and fascinating array of features.
Stereophile Staff  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments
The ultra-High End may be stagnant in some areas, but the rebound in mainstream consumer electronics is visible everywhere. Canton, Massachusetts-based Tweeter Home Entertainment Group has announced record results for the quarter ended September 30, 1999: an increase of 39.5%, or $74.6 million compared to $53.5 million in the same period last year. The results are similar to those posted recently by nationwide electronics chain Best Buy, which also had a record quarter. Tweeter's comparable store sales increased 5.2%, not counting results from the recently acquired Home Entertainment and DOW Stereo/Video chains.
Stereophile Staff  |  Oct 10, 1999  |  0 comments
In his review of the Wadia 830 CD player, Brian Damkroger states: "My take on the Wadia was that: a) it probably wasn't going to sound that much better than the best of the $1000-ish players I had around, and b) even if it did, the differences wouldn't matter enough to me to justify its cost. My audio path took a dramatic turn one weekend, however, when a pair of cable manufacturers stopped by to demo their new products." Read about his journey and the ultimate audio destination will be revealed.