Author Archives: Eric Franklin Shook™

Periodic Audio launches Rodium DAC

Periodic Audio launched their Rhodium DAC today, a mobile focused DAC that falls right in line with portable amplifiers and IEMs like the one’s Periodic Audio makes. This little DAC (also preamp/ IEM amplifer) aims to deliver a substantial upgrade in sound quality and versatility heretofore never heard from mobile devices. SPECIFICATIONS & PERFORMANCE Frequency Response 2 Hz to 192 kHz, +0/-3 dB Dynamic Range: 113 dB SNR: 108 dB A wt. THD: Less than 0.007% Output Power: 31 mW @ 32 Ohms Current Consumption: 23 mA @ 1 mW output More details about the Rhodum from Periodic Audio enclosed below. Enjoy! Press Release Below Periodic Audio’s Rhodium—A Digital Delight in a Pint-Sized Package A precision DAC that delivers category-leading performance and value March 2021—Ventura, CA—Periodic Audio proudly announces the Rhodium, an ultra-compact high-resolution DAC that offers the music lover incredible performance, value ($49), and versatility. “The Rhodium is a no-brainer for anyone looking to seriously boost their digital music’s sound quality,” said Periodic Audio co-founder Dan Wiggins. “Its simple plug-and-play design and tiny size make it perfect for music lovers working from home who may not have the space to dedicate to a full-size audio system. “Although the Rhodium [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

Zu Audio Omen Dirty Weekend Sale Starts Today

Zu Audio Omen Dirty Weekend Sale Starts Today at Noon (12pm) MST. These speakers sell out fast! Click the link below for buying information. https://www.zuaudio.com/odw Keep scrolling to see our review and product information. To read our review of the Zu Audio Omen Dirty Weekend Mk.II, click THIS LINK. Product Information Below QUALITY SOUND, AFFORDABLE PRICE Omen Dirty Weekend features the same nanotech full-range driver and super-tweeter as the standard Omen Mk.II, and is based on the Omen Mk.II, sans a few of the fancy bits to get the price down while keeping performance up. Omen Dirty Weekend is a high performance yet generally affordable, U.S. made loudspeaker that will deliver fantastic sound in any living room. Omen is not fussy with placement or with electronics, matching up nicely with most any amplifier or receiver—modern or vintage. Omen is also built to last a lifetime, like everything we make. Every component (cabinet material, adhesives, driver assemblies, etc…) is a quality part engineered and built to create a loudspeaker system that will continually satisfy and amaze decade after decade.  

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

Qobuz Becomes First Hi-Res, 24-bit Streaming Service Available on Sonos

Huge news announced from Qobuz and Sonos! The world becomes a bigger place today with millions of new, and existing, Sonos users now having access to Qobuz Hi-Res Streaming with just plug and play, no additional equipment needed. This marks the first ever availability of hi-res music streaming on the Sonos platform. Never will it have sounded so good. When I say millions, I mean millions. Back in 2018 during the filing of their IPO, it was reported that Sonos had over 19 million registered devices in close to 7 million homes world-wide. I can’t imagine what those numbers are now, just based on year-over-year earnings reports for the company. With multiple Sonos devices being common in the home setting, the Qobuz’ Family Plan Subscription now makes more sense than ever before. Details and more below. Press Release Below Qobuz Becomes First Hi-Res, 24-bit Streaming Service Available on Sonos March 24, 2021 — Qobuz, the music lovers’ Hi-Res streaming and download provider, is now the first music service to deliver 24-bit Hi-Res audio streaming on Sonos. Qobuz customers will be able to listen to studio-quality music on their Sonos speakers, preserving all of the details and color of original recordings, [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

Volti Audio introduces Lightning Razz, featuring a Fractal Burned Finish

Right on the heels of our two-part review of the Razz loudspeaker, Volti Audio founder and owner Greg Roberts releases a new wood finish unlike anything we’ve ever seen in high-end audio. The process is called Fractal Wood Burning, and it’s been a growing trend with custom woodworkers over the last few years. The process is time consuming, but the results can be downright stunning. Check out our two-part review of the Volti Razz located here: Part 1 by Marc Phillips, and Part 2 by Graig Neville Fractal Burning is tedious, and in the hands of amateurs it can be dangerous, as seen in this video. More about the Volti Audio Razz and the “Lightning” finish can be found in the press release below. Press Release Below “Lichtenberg Figuring” or “Fractal Burning” as it has become known, is a technique that uses high-voltage electrical currents to ‘burn’ dazzling tree-like figures into the wood finish of our speakers. The resulting figures are 3D in nature, burned down into the wood veneer of the cabinets, and then sprayed with a clear lacquer finish, creating a very interesting, and unique cabinet finish. Volti Audio can apply this technique to any of our speaker [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

AXPONA 2021 Rescheduled to Later Dates | BREAKING

With a clearer picture of the Coronavirus vaccination schedule in view, AXPONA has decided to adjust their upcoming show schedule to better reflect an actual (yet cautious) return to some type of normalcy. AXPONA new dates are October 29 – 31, 2021. Enclosed below is the notification letter I received of the new schedule this morning. In the letter AXPONA VP, Event Director Liz Miller Smith outlines the precautions and concerns of holding the forthcoming audio show with the most regard for participant safety. Hard to believe it’s been almost two years since we attended AXPONA 2019. Press Release Below Dear Eric Franklin Shook, We miss seeing you in person and are optimistic we can all gather again this year. Our team is closely monitoring the vaccine rollout, international travel rules, and state and local government regulations for holding indoor events in 2021. Based on this holistic perspective, and given that the summer months remain unpredictable, we have decided to take advantage of an opportunity to move AXPONA two months later from August 27 – 29 to October 29 – 31, 2021. Our sole priority is to hold AXPONA safely in 2021. There is an increasing concern among event organizers [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

INNUOS Announces PhoenixNET Network Switch

Sometimes you see a product and think, “This makes so much sense, I can’t believe I didn’t see it coming.” Innuos today released their new PhoenixNET switch that was designed from the outset as an audiophile grade product. The details below outline why it is a necessary compliment to any server based system, but especially in concert with other Innuos products. Currently our own Grover Neville is reviewing a Zenith server and PhoenixNET network switch combo. Press Release Below INNUOS ANNOUNCES THE RELEASE OF THE NEW PhoenixNET Audiophile-Grade Network Switch Innuos is excited to announce the release of their new PhoenixNET Audiophile-Grade Network Switch, designed from the ground up for network audio. The PhoenixNET is the realization of Innuos’ philosophy of simplicity and signal purity applied to the network switch. Having started with improvements to the Ethernet ports’ clock on their flagship STATEMENT, Innuos has now taken the concept to the next level with a completely new network switch design that focuses exclusively on audio use. The design of the PhoenixNET is focused on four areas: Minimize Network Switch Noise – Reduces high-frequency noise through a simpler 100Mbps network switch chip with no power switching regulators. Connected through high-end Isolation [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

Spotify Hifi lossless streaming announced by Billie Eilish & Finneas

Spotify announced earlier today its new audiophile streaming tier that will be available in select markets later this year. Joining the ranks of streaming services like TIDAL and Qobuz, which pioneered hi-res streaming, and the more recent late comer Amazon Music HD. I’m going to go ahead and claim this as the biggest news in hi-fi for 2021. Yeah, I know. Mainstream acceptance, always late to the game. But with welcoming arms, we’re ready to embrace the new blood. Currently Spotify Hifi no pricing has been released for the “music in CD-quality lossless audio format” streaming tier. A far cry up from the current 320kbps. I’m going to turn it over to Billie and Finneas to explain the benefits of Spotify Hifi (and hi-fi stereo systems) as it concerns the artists’ intent for presenting the music the way it was meant to be heard.

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

McIntosh MHA200 Vacuum Tube Headphone Amplifier

Tubes going in, and tubes going out Honey, they’ve shrunk the MC275 (or recently reviewed MC1502) and made it for driving headphones. If that’s not exciting news, what is? The McIntosh MHA200 is an all tube affair, and no you’re not seeing triple, that’s a pair of McIntosh’s Unity Coupled Circuit output transformers. McIntosh MHA200 Connectivity includes, A pair of 3-pin balanced and a single 4-pin balanced output, along with standard 1/4-inch stereo jack. Inputs accept both balanced and RCA. On the front, something interested which is detailed below, a load impedance knob. Shipping is expected to being in March 2021, and at a suggested retail price of $2,500 USD. More specific details and pictures are included in the press release below. Press Release Below McIntosh Announces MHA200 Vacuum Tube Headphone Amplifier Treat Your Headphones to McIntosh Vacuum Tube Amplification Binghamton, NY – February 4, 2021 – McIntosh, the global leader in prestigious home entertainment and ultimate-quality audio for 70 years, is proud to introduce the MHA200 Vacuum Tube Headphone Amplifier. The McIntosh MHA200 Vacuum Tube Headphone Amplifier is designed for discerning headphone enthusiasts who demand the most from their headphones. Its versatile set of connectivity options, including balanced inputs [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

McIntosh® to partner with Jeep® Grand Cherokee

Does everyone remember the seats of mid-to-late ’90s Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs as fondly as I do? I believe it was Road & Track or possibly several auto-mags of the day that deemed those seats to be the most comfortable of the automotive century. As for the audio systems that came stock in those mid-to-late ’90s GC’s, they left plenty to be desired. Myself installing a few aftermarket systems in them for friends and friends-of-friends around that time. But times change, and industry catches up with culture. Music matters, and is now more than ever considered a hallmark trait of the luxury auto experience. With that, McIntosh Labs has become the new music source for that ultimate comfort Jeep GC’s are known for. More in the press release below. Press Release Below 2021 Jeep® Grand Cherokee Ushers in Luxury Sound by McIntosh® An Exclusive World-Class Audio System for the World’s Most Awarded SUV BINGHAMTON, NY (January 7, 2021) – The new 2021 Jeep® Grand Cherokee, now with three rows of seating, will debut with the auto industry’s only sound system made by the legends in luxury home audio, McIntosh Laboratory. Available first in the 2021 Jeep® Grand Cherokee L, the [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile

Sonner Audio Legato Unum Loudspeaker | REVIEW

The story begins with my coverage of the Sonner Audio (website) Legato Unum at hi-fi shows, and what I found accompanying the brand. Touring the hi-fi show circus circuit I often found myself face-to-face with many of the audio industry’s most interesting characters. The bulk of them are pleasant and interesting people. A select few are extraordinarily engaging and charming. Gunny Surya, the President of Sonner Audio, easily fits into all of those aforementioned descriptions. If you care to explore our past show coverage of Sonner Audio loudspeakers, those articles can be found here, here, here, and here. Words and Photos by Eric Franklin Shook I feel very comfortable around people like Gunny Surya. His personality is not an act. The idea of him having a facade seems totally unfathomable. There is no artifice with him. Whether it’s the genuine passion he expresses for his company, or the earnest way he treats others with the same respect often reserved for long-time friends and family. It’s these little actions and details that collectively tell the same story: Gunny is true to himself and to those around him. He cares about what’s really important in life and so he guides Sonner Audio [...]

Original Resource is Part-Time Audiophile