Joining Jeff Fritz on this episode of SoundStage! Talks is Hans-Ole Vitus, CTO and founder of AVA Group A/S—parent company to Vitus Audio. Vitus, as he’s known, discusses his transition from CEO to CTO, the new Vitus Audio website, and the three product lines Vitus Audio produces: Reference, Signature, and Masterpiece. Vitus also teases what’s coming in 2022 and 2023 in terms of new products and updates.
I loved High End 2022, this year’s edition of the largest audio show in the world, which took place from May 19 to 22 in Munich, Germany. It was great to be back after two COVID-19 years at home. The show was a smashing success with lots of product introductions and many terrific-sounding systems. You can read the SoundStage! Network’s coverage of the event, which I contributed to, on SoundStage! Global. Also check out Jonathan Gorse’s “Munich High End 2022: The Cream of Analogue,” published in this space on June 1. Jonathan is a devoted vinyl aficionado and had some favorite analog—um, analogue (Jonathan’s a Brit)—products to tell you about.
This past week a reader wrote to me with a simple question: “Jeff, good morning. Why have you never reviewed Avalon loudspeakers? And thus they do not make it to your ‘Definitive List of Loudspeaker Brands’? Thank you!”
Swordsmiths, samurai, and a little magic
You may be surprised to hear that moving-coil cartridges can trace their origins all the way back to 1946, when Ortofon developed a prototype. Since its commercial launch in 1948, the moving coil (MC) has become firmly established as the ne plus ultra for vinyl replay. The MC market is well served, with major manufacturers like Ortofon and Audio-Technica offering a wide variety of designs ranging in price from $200 to over $1000 (all prices in USD). Despite the scale of such firms and their impressive performance engineering capabilities, there’s another sector of the market that remains primarily the domain of smaller, niche operators.
It’s a cruel joke. It’s the gods laughing at us. The lovers of LPs—I hesitate to call us record collectors—are the most tightly wound subcategory of audiophiles. We fuss and obsess over the tiniest variations in cartridge alignment, hundredths of a gram in tracking force, single degrees of VTA. And the irony of it is we’re subject to—at the mercy of—the smallest, invisible particles of dirt lodged into record grooves. We can clearly hear dirt and contaminants that we can’t even see.
Virgin Records/UMC RMLP 3
Musical Performance: ****
Sound Quality: ****
Overall Enjoyment: ****
Stranded was Roxy Music’s third album in less than 18 months. Its second album, For Your Pleasure, had been released just eight months earlier, in March 1973. Brian Eno, a cofounder of the group, left soon after For Your Pleasure, to be replaced by Eddie Jobson on keyboards, synthesizers, and violin. Bassist John Gustafson also joined the group, and the lineup on Stranded, which included Bryan Ferry on vocals, Phil Manzanera on guitar, Andy Mackay on sax, and Paul Thompson on drums, would remain fixed for two more albums.
In this SoundStage! Talks episode, Konstantinos Pilios—the CEO of Pilium Audio, which is based in Athens, Greece—talks with SoundStage! editor-in-chief Jeff Fritz. Find out how this young Greek company has risen to such prominence in the ultra high end. Learn about Pilium’s existing product line, and what’s coming to market soon. Also, how does the exercise industry figure into Pilium’s history? Watch to find out!
This profile of Perlisten CEO Dan Roemer is intended as a precursor to the review of Perlisten’s R7t loudspeaker, which will be published on July 15.
Make no mistake, Munich’s High End is no ordinary hi-fi show—the scale is so jaw-dropping that you need to recalibrate your senses. The show comprised three vast exhibition floors, each seemingly the size of a major indoor concert arena, housing 550 exhibition rooms and 1500 brands. It was an awe-inspiring demonstration of the scale, richness, and power of the global audio industry. Everyone from the exhibitors to the visitors seemed to be revelling in the experience—in short, this show is to audio what Le Mans is to motor racing.
Dynaudio has been designing and building loudspeakers for more than 40 years. In that time, the company has contributed some fairly significant products, like the Consequence loudspeaker back in 1983, the Evidence Master in 1989, the Confidence C1 Signature in 2011, and of course, the Special Forty in 2017.
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