Features

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Michael Fremer Posted: Oct 31, 2013 12 comments
The editor visited VPI Industries today. The original purpose was to tour the factory and pick up a new VPI Direct Drive turntable for review.
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Michael Fremer Posted: Oct 03, 2013 9 comments
Here's your opportunity to tour Electric Mastering's new vintage cutting chain with "master of the cutting lathe" analog legend Sean Davies.
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Michael Fremer Posted: May 26, 2013 11 comments
After visiting the U.K. after Munich's High End show, I flew to Amsterdam. Record Industry pressing plant owner Ton Vermuelen picked me up at the airport and drove me to the Haarlem-based pressing plant he owns.
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Michael Fremer Posted: May 25, 2013 7 comments
After the Munich High End Show I went to the U.K. on some other business and while there paid a visit to Electric Mastering, the parent company of reissue label The Electric Recording Co.
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Michael Fremer Posted: May 19, 2013 4 comments
While in the U.K. last week I took a run in the famous Kensington Gardens with the GoPro on my head.
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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 25, 2013 23 comments
A young reader inherited a turntable and asked about a modestly priced system he could assemble around it. We know where this will lead and we can all cheer him on, mindful of the fun and fetishing to follow. And we can all sympathize with his bank account—assuming he has one!

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Michael Fremer Posted: Oct 01, 2012 9 comments
We have a copy to give away of Paul Simon's new concert Blu-ray disc "Live in New York City," courtesy Concord Music. WARNING: It will not play on your turntable!
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Michael Fremer Posted: Jun 01, 2012 8 comments
My feelings about CDs were expressed early and often. Here with VPI's Harry Weisfeld. It’s a nerdy question, but do you remember where you were when you heard your first Compact Disc? For me it was at a Los Angeles Audio Engineering Society convention in 1982.

I’m neither a recording engineer nor an AES member. My invitation was courtesy the head of the sound department at Walt Disney, where I was then supervising the soundtrack to the movie TRON.”

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Roger Hahn Posted: Jan 01, 2012 5 comments

Editor’s note: Sonny Rollins, the last of the pioneering bebop giants and a seminal figure in modern jazz throughout the second half of the 20th century, has entered his ninth decade still blowing full force.

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Randy Wells Posted: Jan 01, 2012 1 comments

The day I learned Steve Hoffman was going to re-master Crosby, Stills & Nash for an Audio Fidelity gold CD edition turned out to be the same day he actually did it. I found out early enough in the day to secure an invitation to Marsh Mastering in Los Angeles, and because I happened to be staying with friends that day only an hour away, managed to arrive in time to witness the entire session. CS&N has been a favorite since I was a teen, so for me, this was like winning the lottery.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

How bad were the original Beatles CDs issued back in 1987? So bad that even the clueless conditioned to believe that CDs represented an automatic sonic step up from vinyl noticed something was terribly wrong.

Amusing to some observers was the nature of the complaints: “they sound tinny,” “they sound flat,” “they sound thin and bright,” “they’re harsh and edgy,” “where’s the warmth?” etc.

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Robin Platts Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

August 22, 1983. A packed concert at the newly constructed BC Place stadium in Vancouver, British Columbia. Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel are halfway through a set on the last leg of their North American tour, billed as “A Summer Night with Simon and Garfunkel.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments
I wrote this article, originally published in Music Connection magazine, back in 1985 after becoming increasingly disgusted with and alarmed by the deteriorating sonic quality of new releases from familiar artists. Little did I realize then that 1985 was a 'golden age' of good sound compared to what most pop and rock recordings sound like in 2008! I remain grateful to editor Bud Scoppa for giving me the platform to spout a then unpopular view in a magazine read by Los Angeles engineers, artists and music business executives.

When The Absolute Sound's Harry Pearson announced he was looking for a new popular music editor, I applied for the job by sending him this article. He liked it enough to give me the job. That gave me an ideal platform from which to advocate saving the vinyl record and extolling its unique set of virtues, sonic and otherwise.

Watching the LP section at the huge Tower Records on Sunset shrink by the week, never did I imagine that in 2008 the LP would be back and Tower would be gone. —Michael Fremer, 1/15/08

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Keith Benson Posted: Aug 01, 2010 2 comments

Cleveland’s newest, and so far only vinyl pressing plant is open for business. Gotta Groove Records seeks to inject more life into two supposedly dormant entities: vinyl records and the city of Cleveland. While the latter has certainly had its troubles, the LP market continues to grow as young buyers discover its superiority over other formats.

Gotta Groove’s owner, Vince Slusarz, had always been into plastics (though it’s unclear how much of a role “The Graduate” played in his career).

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Roger Hahn Posted: May 01, 2010 0 comments

Our Man in New Orleans Roger Hahn concludes his report from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2009 and meditates on its future. You'll think you went!-ed.

New marketing trends had begun to establish an exploitable connection between highly educated consumers with gobs of disposable income and their fascination for the aura of “authenticity” naturally connected to the “roots” music world.

Corporate leaders began to understand this, too. In 1996, one of the world’s largest software vendors, Computer Associates, began holding its annual trade show in New Orleans and by 1998, had specifically connected attendance at the trade show with a Jazz Fest hospitality tent on festival grounds, spawning an unlikely influx of logo-bearing, polo-shirted Computer Associates employees.

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