Stereophile May 2019

Every month Stereophile magazine offers authoritative reviews, informed recommendations, helpful advice, and controversial opinions, all stemming from the revolutionary idea that audio components should be judged on how they reproduce music.

United States
AVTech Media Americas, Inc.
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12 Numéros

dans ce numéro

4 min
who watches the watchers?

When we launched Stereophile’s website at the end of 1997, we decided that we would not reprint the magazine’s most popular features, including the biannual “Recommended Components” listings and Michael Fremer’s monthly “Analog Corner” column. We were concerned that doing so would cannibalize magazine sales. As it turned out, we were wrong—and so the latest “Recommended Components” is available on our free-access website day-and-date with the publication of the April and October issues in which it appears. And starting with Mikey’s very first “Analog Corner,” from July 1995, I have been posting his column on our website. At the time of writing, I had just finished HTML-encoding Michael’s October 2004 column,1 and fell over an exchange between him and popular technology writer Walter Mossberg, at that time a contributor to…

10 min

What fun! Editor: Thank you for keeping Stereophile an “underground” publication of audio reviews. I feel like I am a member of a secret “Greek” society that conveys the truth to its members through cryptic messages in both the listening and, especially, in the measurements sections. Thank you, John Atkinson, for guiding your magazine to produce reviews that continue the model by [Hi-Fi News editor] John Crabbe that you emulate. —Craig Rutten Acoustic Transducers Laboratories MQA and ad blocking Editor: Since Stereophile’s technical credibility went south, with its continuing praise of MQA, I will no longer be buying the magazine at the newsstand. I will use an ad blocker when reading your music articles online, and I have written to all of your advertisers letting them know of my decision. —Kenneth Jonge What is our holy grail? I read…

7 min
industry update

UK: BRISTOL Paul Messenger This year, Audio T, organizers of the Bristol Hi-Fi Show, which took place February 22–25, celebrated 50 years in hi-fi, and have rebranded the event by omitting the tag “home cinema.” This change didn’t seem to shorten the long queues of attendees forming outside the Marriott City Centre Hotel Bristol each morning before the doors opened. An Audiojumble took place a week before this year’s Bristol Hi-Fi Show. I rarely report on such events—the English Audiojumble changes little from year to year—but while the event seemed busy as ever, this year I saw many more stalls selling new and used vinyl. This confirmed vinyl enthusiast was happy enough browsing the second-hand bins, but I thought it might be worth drawing readers’ attention to the continuing good health of the…

5 min
calendar of industry events

ATTENTION ALL AUDIO SOCIETIES: We have a page on the Stereophile website dedicated solely to you: If you’d like to have your audio-society information posted on the site, e-mail Chris Vogel at Please note that it is inappropriate for a retailer to promote a new product line in “Calendar” unless this is associated with a seminar or similar event. CALIFORNIA ▪ Saturday, May 18, 5–7:30pm: The Los Angeles & Orange County Audio Society will hold its monthly meeting at Brooks Berdan (110 W. Olive Avenue, Monrovia 91016). Sheila Berdan and her staff will host the Society and welcome all to see and hear what’s new at Brooks Berdan this year. Their guest speakers will be Chris Hagen, Principal System Engineer of Harman International Inc., and Isaac Markowitz, Performance Sales Account Manager of…

17 min
cutting-edge phonography from top wing and hifiction

For a phono cartridge to generate current and voltage, something must move: a coil of wire (as in a moving-coil cartridge), or a magnet (as in a moving-magnet type), or a tiny piece of iron (a moving-iron type). In those rare cartridges that depart from the electricity-generating principle of the ones described above, it can be a displacement-measuring device in which a moving shutter modulates a light source to vary a supplied voltage (as in an optical cartridge), or one in which voltage is modulated when a tiny chip of silicon crystal is squeezed by a moving element, which varies the chip’s electrical resistance (as in a strain-gauge cartridge). But regardless of what it is that moves in a cartridge, something has to. TOP WING SUZAKU (RED SPARROW) CORELESS STRAIGHT-FLUX CARTRIDGE…

13 min
simon brown the magician

There’s a noise I make when I’m having trouble with something inanimate: a deep, growly huff that starts in my diaphragm and comes out in one or two quick, staccato bursts. I huff this huff when I drop a tool or can’t budge a seized bolt or the bottom falls out of a trash bag. It annoys my family and scares my dog. I made that noise at least a half-dozen times while installing and setting up the Wand, a unipivot tonearm designed and manufactured by Design Build Listen Ltd., in Dunedin, New Zealand. That’s not to say the Wand is lacking in any way: It appears both well engineered and well made, and its thorough, eight-page installation manual is written with an evident zeal for perfectionism. Nevertheless, the Wand is…