SuperMegaUltraGroovy Announces FuzzMeasure 4
Redesigned For OS X Yosemite
From the same brilliant software company that created TapeDeck (probably the best software audio recorder ever designed for the Mac), SuperMegaUltraGroovy just announced the release of FuzzMeasure 4 professional audio and acoustic measurement software, now updated for Mac OS X Yosemite and much improved.  Read More


59th AES Conference on Sound Reinforcement,

July 15-17, 2015

The Audio Engineering Society (AES) will hold its 59th International Conference, focusing on Sound Reinforcement Engineering and Technology, on July 15-17, 2015, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. This is the first AES International Conference to focus on Sound Reinforcement in more than 25 years Read More


Audio Precision Appoints Jayant Datta
as new Chief Technology Officer
Audio Precision announced the appointment of Jayant Datta as Chief Technology Officer, with responsibilities that will focus on the organization's technology strategy, product platform evolution, and innovation efforts. In his role as CTO, Datta will closely collaborate with Tom Kite, Ph.D., VP of Engineering, and Bruce Hofer, Co-Founder and Chief Analog Engineer.   Read More


RCF Enters Headphone Market with Iconica Series
Every day, new companies are entering the headphone market but not all the companies are established driver manufacturers with the expertise and resources of the Reggio Emilia company. The new "Iconica by RCF" headphones elegantly combine a distinctive life-style design with the specifications required by recording engineers and DJs.   Read More


Merging Technologies Innovative Network Attached DAC Introduced in Europe and US

Fresh from an historic launch at the High End Show in Munich, Merging's revolutionary audiophile D/A converter, NADAC, will now be introduced at T.H.E. Show Newport, in the US. High End enthusiasts will be able to experience the full advantage of Merging's network approach, particularly suited to DSD source files and high-resolution formats.  Read More

PreSonus Studio One 3 Might Well Be the Next Standard DAW 

Now available, following a very restrained introduction, PreSonus Studio One digital audio workstation (DAW) software version 3 is already getting praise and rave reviews from users worldwide. It seems PreSonus has succeeded, against all odds and fierce competition, in redefining the standard in music production. Studio One version 3 successfully consolidates PreSonus' efforts Read More


Yamaha Rivage PM10 Makes InfoComm 2015 Debut 

Following a preliminary presentation in Japan, at the InterBEE 2014 Show and a presentation at the Prolight+Sound 2015 in Frankfurt, Germany, Yamaha Professional Audio has announced the new Rivage PM10 Digital Mixing Console will make its US debut at the InfoComm 2015 show, in Orlando, FL. And Rivage will also work with the soon-to-be-released Steinberg Nuendo 7.   Read More


MQA Support Continues to Grow at High End 2015

This year's Munich High End show saw MQA support soar above the 100 mark. The music encoding and streaming format was publicly demonstrated for the first time at a show and it was confirmed that MQA is to be established as a separate business entity from Meridian Audio to license the technology.   Read More 


Oliver A. Masciarotte
Guest Editorial


A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Pono...


Derided by mainstream media and interweb bloviators without a shred of audio credibility or expertise, the PonoPlayer went from an overpriced exemplar of conspicuous consumption prior to delivery to an outstanding example of careful engineering and innovative product management once buyers got to actually listen. Once thought of as a pure physical manifestation of artistic hubris, this little yellow Toblerone has proven itself to be arguably the finest example of an affordable, portable HRA player available: the Walkman for our decade.


Running on a FOSS platform, Android to be specific, PonoPlayer has had its functionality upgraded twice since I received mine early in the delivery process. The first was when the player acquired the ability to natively decode DSD data, and the second was the recent addition of PonoRevealer. Working in conjunction with the cross-platform PonoMusic World application, PonoRevealer enables real-time playback comparison of lossy and lossless versions transcoded from the same HRA parent.


PonoMusic provided a multi-rate, multi-format version of the Neil Young chestnut, "Heart of Gold," to use as an out-of-the-gate comparison. Rather than succumbing to the "I can't hear it (any difference between HRA and low-resolution versions) so you're a fool" argument so common these days, PonoRevealer lets everyone shut up and simply listen. As I've said before; if you can't hear a difference, it only means you are not able to hear a difference, your ancillary playback gear is subpar, or you're refusing to admit that which you cannot explain.


Since the PonoPlayer is a highly resolving product, one of the sticking points of HRA comparisons is eliminated. In a minimalist playback configuration, all you need for exceptional sound quality is a Pono and a high-quality pair of on, over, or in-ear headphones. These days, flat subjective response, very low distortion, and broad bandwidth are fairly easy to obtain in a reasonably priced set of cans. If you think that $500 to $1,000 is an outrageous amount of money to spend on headphones, consider what a hi-fi set of loudspeakers, cabling, and a Class-A power amp would set you back. Bearing that in mind, investing in a PonoPlayer and nice cans from Alclair, Audeze, Noble, or Sennheiser doesn't seem so ludicrous. Besides, headphones take the room out of the equation, making listening anywhere an exercise in exactitude.


Okay, back to PonoRevealer. Using it is easy enough. If you're content with a 1972-vintage transfer from analog tape, then you can start with the PonoMusic-supplied "Heart of Gold" in 256k MP3, 256k AAC, plus 44.1k/16, 96k/24, and 192k/24 LPCM. Unfortunately, that track is barely of sufficient fidelity and complexity to let you hear the difference that progressively tossing out more and more data produces. I would rather they had used a modern, high-quality, born-digital track recorded at 176.4 LPCM, but anyway, simply select one or more tracks in the appallingly bad PonoMusic World interface, then fire off the Create Pono Revealer (sic) Track command. The app will SRC the parent file down to lower sample rate PCM, transcode to lossy versions, and move the whole file package onto the player for comparison.


On the PonoPlayer, there's a special tab just for 

PonoRevealer. Selecting and playing a package starts playback of the MP3 and enables a SWITCH RESOLUTION button. That function lets you pick the resolution/format in real time, without interrupting playback.


This is the first time the functionality previously available only in the AURoundTripAAC AU plug-in or Sonnox's Fraunhofer Pro-Codec has been placed in the hands of the average audiophile. With such a simple but powerful tool, consumers can now refine their critical listening skills while informing future purchasing decisions and empowering them to better navigate the sometimes murky waters of audiophilia. Rock on, Pono!



"Subjective adjustment of any design is difficult at best and loudspeaker systems have been probably made to sound worse with the 'golden ears' approach just as often as they have been improved. While there have been many instances of manufacturers who did not rely upon objective measurement at all and been successful, there have also been just as many whose loudspeakers were not successful for the same reasons."

Vance Dickason - Loudspeaker Design Cookbook 7th Edition Order here


From the Vault

Diffraction Doesn't Have
to Be a Problem 

By David Ralph


This article shows an easy way to control baffle diffraction using a stepped baffle example. The author experiments with the use of felt, directly applied to the baffle, and measures the results. Each piece of felt and its placement has different results. The article clearly demonstrates the diffraction effect on speakers and the benefits of having it under control. An article originally published in audioXpress, June 2005.


Voice Coil Spotlight

Green Audio and Then Some 

By Mike Klasco


What are my two cents on criteria for sustainable product design? Bioplastics, sustainable, biodegradable, or end-of-life recyclable attributes are all aspects of a truly green product. I think that a conscionable green design philosophy focuses on the total integration of "good citizen" eco-friendly materials and processes and long, useful life. Originally published in Voice Coil, February 2011.   Read the Full Article


AX June 2015: Digital Login
Pro, Consumer, Commercial Applications | DIY Audio Projects | Audio Industry News | Audio Show Reports | And More 
VC June 2015: Digital Login
Industry News & Developments | Products & Services | Test Bench | Acoustic Patents | Industry Watch | And More