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Album Reviews
Michael Fremer Feb 23, 2014 13 comments
The first stereo release from The Electric Recording Company is a reissue of Columbia SAX 2386 first released in 1959 . It is a much sought after record as the used prices for clean copies are nothing short of astronomical— $3000 and up. Kogan was born in the Ukraine in 1924 and died of a heart attack in 1982 at age 58 a few days after playing this piece in Vienna. His western discography isn't extensive and the few he recorded for the Columbia division of EMI are the most collectible.

Cartridge Reviews
Michael Fremer Feb 21, 2014 6 comments
I reviewed the Transfiguration Phoenix for Stereophile five years ago. This is not really the same cartridge though it retains the same name. In 2012 the low output moving coil cartridge was updated to include larger gauge pure silver coil wire wound on the square permalloy core used on the now discontinued top of the line Transfiguration Orpheus. The revised Phoenix also shares the Orpheus's damping system and uses a variant of the Orpheus's yoke less, double ring magnet technology featuring a powerful neodymium ring in the rear and a samarium cobalt one in front.
Cartridge Reviews
Michael Fremer Feb 20, 2014 13 comments
I was lucky enough to see the St. Petersburg Philharmonic play Carnegie Hall recently. They did Prokofiev's Violin Concerto with Julia Fischer, who played wonderfully and then Rachmaninoff's Second Symphony. We get great seats courtesy Joe Kubala of Kubala-Sosna cables who had a scheduling conflict and kindly thought of me. We had to drive through a snow storm to get there but it was well worth it.

Set-Up Tips
Michael Fremer Feb 20, 2014 18 comments
How did this one get neglected? Take a look at the photo supplied by WAM engineering. It shows a stylus in a cantilever. Notice it has been affixed into the cantilever at an angle instead of being parallel to the cantilever. If you use the cantilever to set the zenith angle on this cartridge, which is what I and everyone else recommends, the stylus will not be tangential to the grooves at the null points though it might accidentally be so somewhere else.

Album Reviews
Michael Fremer Feb 12, 2014 52 comments
Was Mel Tormé a jazz or cabaret singer? Or was he both? Some music "purists" actually argue such things. Mr. Tormé's recorded vocal and interpretive talents demonstrate his ability to work both rooms. He wasn't worried about being pigeonholed one way or the other. Though rhythmically adept and an excellent scat singer, the “Velvet Fog” could also croon.

Interviews
Michael Fremer Feb 11, 2014 6 comments
This year's Fest for Beatles Fans coincided with the 50th anniversary of their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, February 9th, 1964. The "invasion" festivities began earlier of course, including one event held Thursday February 6th at the 92nd St. "Y". That one featured Peter Asher (of Peter and Gordon, who also signed James Taylor to Apple and went on to become a major producer/manager), performer Billy J. Kramer, Beatle secretary Frida Kelly and Vince Calandra. The event was hosted by British actor/comedian and Beatle fan Martin Lewis. Donovan was a no-show due to a friend's death.

News
Michael Fremer Feb 09, 2014 8 comments
Did you compare the two files? The one that most readers identified as harsher and brighter was found to be running .1% faster than the other, so Mr. Distler, slowed it down and again posted the files. I both listened and I looked at them using Audacity. So you could say I "cheated" but it doesn't matter. Forget what I heard.

News
Michael Fremer Feb 08, 2014 33 comments
Was the recent cable test result wherein approximately 80% of the participants heard a difference and described it consistent with my original observations due to a variable other than the cables (leaving aside that we did note the junction box variable as a possible cause)?

News
Michael Fremer Feb 07, 2014 29 comments
Based on numbers publicly disclosed or provided to analogplanet.com by most of the world's vinyl pressing plants, the total number of records pressed worldwide in 2013 was well in excess of 30,759,242.

Michael Fremer Feb 06, 2014 12 comments
I posted a comment under the story:

"3 arrested after theft of $5M Stradivarius violin"