Acoustic Sounds
The Vinyl Frontier The Story of the Voyager Golden Record

Here are notes on a selection from my favorite books on the history of recording technology, the history of the record business, and the interactions between recording technology, the record business, and the art of music. One example of what I mean by all that is, in the late 1920s, piezoelectric “crystal” microphones supplanted carbon microphones for radio broadcasting. Crystal microphones had a better signal-to-noise ratio than carbon microphones. Therefore, the... Read More

Comments: 2

At the bottom of every page is the site's "housekeeping" and indexing area where you can select and go directly to content columnized into "Features", "Music" and "Equipment". The contents are further broken down beneath each header. It's all there neatly segmented as hyperlinks. A newly added link under "Tracking Angle Information" takes you to the Meet the Writers page. In case you don't often head... Read More

Comments: 4

Schiit Audio's new $399 Skoll MM/MC phono preamp features fully discrete, differential Class A zero feedback gain stages and a fully passive RIAA network. No op-amps are in the circuit. Skoll’s gain stage is a compound JFET-BJT pair running on "massive" 64V rails for enhanced linearity and freedom from overload. The result is over 100dB signal to noise ratio for 40dB of gain, and up to 70dB of gain available.Additional features are relay switched inputs... Read More

Comments: 8

Chasing the Dragon returns with another superbly recorded classical music "warhorse" performed by the National Symphony Orchestra, U.K., this outing conducted by the orchestra's current musical director Anthony Inglis, with Leader Katerina Nazarova playing a Del Gesu violin valued, the annotation says, at 7 million pounds. The venue for this "Scheherazade" was Henry Wood Hall, an unused church turned into an orchestral rehearsal and recording... Read More

Comments: 8
OMA vs TechDAS

A new video on the TrackingAngle YouTube channel has gotten thousands of views in a few hours. It lets viewers hear the same record playing back on two different turntables using the same arm, cartridge and phono preamp. The goal was to put an end to "all turntables sound alike" trolls it certainly did that! The turntables are the OMA K3 prototype I own and a TechDAS Air Force III Premium both fitted with the same SAT CF1-12 arm and Lyra Atlas Lambda SL... Read More

Comments: 20
DGG's "Original Source" Series

After my last harrowing adventure through Deutsche Grammophon’s “Original Source Series”, I was hoping this next batch would prove less problematic and more up to the standards of what I had appreciated about the first few releases in the series such as the excellent Abbado Rite of Spring. Fortunately, with these two particular titles set to release officially on October 20th, my fears were abated. My colleague Mark Ward has already reviewed the romantic era thrillers... Read More

Comments: 9
The Dark Side of the Moon turntable

Pro-Ject has released a series of group and album related turntables, including a Yellow Submarine shaped one, a Metallica themed one and ones paying homage to The Beatles (all white), Sgt. Pepper's... (the drum image in the platter), The Rolling Stones, etc. but none as dramatic as this new one aimed at DSOTM fans. It includes an in the dark light show along with more substantial features listed below. The MSRP is $1999.

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Comments: 10
Pharoah Sanders 'Pharoah' (1977)

Pharoah Sanders’ 1977 album Pharoah is one of beauty and contentment, of family and love. You could even call it relaxed, a term unfit for his other 60s and 70s classics. The story behind it, however, is one of bitterness and disappointment—a complete contrast to the record’s majestic sound.The saxophonist, who’d not entered the studio for at least three years, found himself and his band in a large, concrete room with minimal adornment and a rather primitive recording... Read More

Comments: 1

Update! 10/8/2023 My inbox was filled with "first press" info. That's one of the great things about doing these videos and reviews. You learn stuff. So, I learn that supposedly the "first pressing" I have with date of 8-13-71 is an "east coast" pressing and doesn't sound nearly as good as one with a "W1" in the lead out groove and no date. So I search my storage space and I have one. I play it. It is much better... Read More

Comments: 14
Bricasti M3

The Bricasti M3 arrives in the familiar Bricasti black-anodized-and-silver enclosure, but with a smaller form factor. It is 14" W x 11.25" D x 2.5" H, and weighs 10 pounds. The M3 has AES, S/PDIF, Toslink (Optical), and USB digital inputs as standard. An RJ45 Ethernet connection is optional. Furthermore, you can specify that your S/PDIF connector will be a BNC jack, rather than an RCA jack. I highly recommend the BNC, even though my review sample did not have it. I know this from previous experience, because the Parasound Halo CD-1 transport has that rare and special thing, a BNC S/PDIF output jack. Compared to Bricasti’s other offerings, the M3 is actually kind of cuddly looking. If you have a moderately spacious desk (and some extra cabbage in your bankroll), I am sure that the balanced-headphone-optioned M3 would make for an amazing computer-stereo headphone-listening setup.

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Comments: 0
Ornette Coleman 'Round Trip: Ornette Coleman On Blue Note'

Binging Ornette Coleman’s discography, from his early Contemporary recordings to his historic Atlantic period then the Blue Note releases and beyond, is a truly enriching experience. One hears how his sound developed over his first decade of recordings, how certain musicians fit in his groups, how he started exploring other instruments beside his usual alto sax. Last year, Blue Note’s Tone Poet series released Round Trip, a 6LP box set containing his mid-late 1960s... Read More

Comments: 1
The Donnas

While hip-hop and boy bands dominated the musical climate of the millennium, The Donnas rekindled the aesthetics of old-fashioned rock and roll. Vocalist Brett Anderson, guitarist Allison Robertson, bassist Maya Ford, and drummer Torry Castellano joined forces in 1993 and formed the punk band Ragady Anne, later rechristened as The Electrocutes. Two years later, The Donnas emerged as an avenue for the girls to embrace a garage rock sound that didn’t deter from their hardcore origins. To distinguish this outfit, each member took on the “Donna” moniker followed by the first initial of their last names (Brett = Donna A et al). Upon the release of their self-titled debut album and a brief tour of Japan in 1997, The Donnas signed with Lookout Records, and this was during their senior year of high school! In hindsight, The Donnas became the vehicle destined to take off to stratospheric heights.

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Comments: 3
U-Turn Orbit Special

U-Turn Audio made a bold move last year, introducing the Orbit Theory turntable fitted with its new 220mm effective length OA3 gimbaled bearing tonearm, featuring a one piece molded, tapered magnesium armtube. The research and development costs of the made in USA arm must have been relatively high, yet the Theory sells for a very reasonable $999. Now the company has introduced a full line of turntables featuring a variant of that arm, with prices starting at $249.... Read More

Comments: 4