The first product of this new manufacturer from Greece is an interesting and ambitious attempt to enter into one of the most active market segments in a quite sensitive price level. But if the value of a venture lies -at least to some extent- in the size of the challenge faced, this could be a giant first step, since Ideon Audio seems to have made the right decisions, skillfully balancing between some difficult choices and offering their Ayazi USB DAC the chance to emerge amid some competition which is much more than significant!
The numbers rarely lie and in this case are in agreement with the overall feel: The organizers have every reason to be satisfied with this year's IFA, which appeared to be greater in volume terms and more complete in market coverage than ever, although its significance for the audiovisual systems sector, in particular, could raise some serious debate… In any case, take a look at the photos they are quite interesting!
SCM19, ATC's entry level "Hi-Fi" series top stand-mount model, proved to be one of the best compact loudspeakers you can buy in this price range, especially if what you are looking for is some real high fidelity behavior. How did they manage this? Read the review to find out…
Based on a very interesting set of ideas, with a long history but few examples of a practical application, the Benchmark AHB2 could serve as a convincing example of what the future of power amplifiers can be. Combine it with a renowned D/A Converter like the DAC2 HGC, and what you have is a top quality system from which only the loudspeakers are missing!
News & Industry Update
Gold Note recently unveiled the details for their new phono preamplifier, the PH-10. This is a design engineered to allow ultra precise adjustments and features two separate RCA inputs to independently connect two different tonearms and to match each cartridge specs.
Bowers & Wilkins announced the P9 Signature, their best sounding and most luxurious headphone to date. Engineered by the same team responsible for the class-leading 800 D3 loudspeaker, P9 Signature is Bowers & Wilkins’ largest over-ear headphone and exemplifies all of the acoustic and design innovation amassed during its 50-year journey.
ATC has developed two new center channel speakers for multichannel system applications. Available in two sizes and emulating their successful Entry Series SCM7 and SCM11 loudspeaker counterparts, the new C1C and C3C designs will deliver dynamic wide-bandwidth accuracy and outstanding vocal intelligibility at the center of compact 5.1 channel ATC systems for audiophile film and music devotees, the company says.
Naim Audio recently revealed some information about their upcoming new family of all-in-one streaming platform. The new Unity consists of three all-in-one players, the reference audiophile Uniti Nova, the multi-functional CD operating Uniti Star, the compact yet powerful Uniti Atom and the music server Core.
Tivoli Audio officially announced the worldwide availability of the new product line ART. The first offerings of the collection consist of two Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled speakers, named the CUBE and ORB.
AURALiC released Version 4.0 of their Lightning device firmware for Aries, Aries LE and Aries Mini, a version which utilizes AURALiC’s latest Lightning Playback Engine V2, introduces several new features and a major improvement in sound quality.
SF16 is the first “all-in-one” integrated audio system that provides powerful performance, a truly easy installing mode and usability and, in the pure Sonus Faber style, is also an elegant piece of furniture with a deep luxury appeal.
Cowon unveiled the Plenue M2, the flagship device of the Plenue series, to succeed the Plenue M, featuring the eye-catching Isometric Edge design with a front face multi function static button, higher internal memory capacity, doubled to 128GB, and a built-in high performance amp, which is crucial for HD sound playback.
To offer to a listener the privilege to adjust various system parameters, using only his ears and his subjective criterion for correctness, is something open to a feasibility discussion, but Reinhard Thoeress' phono preamplifier encourages this behavior anyway: It is a very versatile device, for the demanding vinyl listener who is willing to deal with each of his records individually and to improve the overall result one click at a time…
To say the least, with such an elegant appearance and a sufficiently reasonable price, the 99 Classics can hardly go unnoticed. Antonio Meze's company effort is more than impressive and worthy of any audiophile's attention. We had the opportunity to live for some time with Meze's top headphones model and this is our verdict.