“Exemplary”: Hi-Fi Critic reviews the DS Audio 002 optical phono cartridge

Are optical cartridges new? Well, yes and no. They originally surfaced in the 1960s and were lauded for their high fidelity, but quickly disappeared again as they had a heat problem caused by the light source used at the time. By the time the requisite technology had sufficiently advanced (in the form of light-emitting diodes which produce little heat), audio was dominated by the rise of the CD and there was little interest in vinyl replay. But in 2013, Japanese company DS Audio began to revisit the technology.

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Thorens launches a brand new R2R deck, Dave Denyer reports from Munich and Ken Kessler discovers audiophile cassettes

Catch up with the latest R2R news and reviews over at The Reel-to-Reel Rambler, where David Denyer and fellow hi-fi journalists Ken Kessler and Neville Roberts delve into the world of open reel tape.

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Keeping it clean: Hi-Fi Plus reviews the key accessories a vinyl lover needs to keep records and decks in tip-top nick and performing at their best

“Record cleaning only scratches the surface (pun intended),” writes Hi-Fi Plus’ Andrew Harrison. “Every aspect of vinyl replay can come in for scrutiny.” A good part of this comes down to the nature of the technology itself: “dragging a rock through a groove and translating these movements into electrical signals” is naturally prone to errors from rotation, geometry, mechanical movements, the ingress of dust and dirt, etc etc. Thankfully there’s “a vibrant world of vinyl beyond the turntable and the record itself” to help keep everything running smoothly, and Harrison has chosen a selection of some of the best.

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New Miyajima Saboten L phono cartridge: natural materials for a natural sound

PRESS RELEASE

Designer Noriyuki Miyajima has earned a worldwide following for his superb artisan phono cartridges. Each new model is the result of passionate research and development, and every single cartridge is crafted in-house by Miyajima’s small dedicated team.

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Audio Analogue adds to ‘Anniversary’ line with Bellini & Donizetti pre/power amplifiers

PRESS RELEASE

In 2016, Italian hi-fi brand Audio Analogue celebrated its twentieth birthday by launching a line of bang-up-to-date ‘Anniversary’ editions of the company’s earlier classic amplifiers. Now, the Puccini and Maestro integrated models are joined by the new Bellini preamplifier and Donizetti power amplifier.

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“One of the very best pre/power combos” Aesthetix Janus and Atlas amplifier among What Hi-Fi?’s recommendations for “the best hi-fi money can buy”

When it comes to investing in your love of music, “sometimes, only the best will do,” says What Hi-Fi? in the magazine’s June issue. If you want (and can afford) the best sound possible, What Hi-Fi?’s reviewers offer their list of recommended high-end kit. And if it’s the full five stars you’re after, look out for Aesthetix’ Saturn series of amplifiers.

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“Maximise your potential”: Hi-Fi Choice gives DS Audio’s ST-50 stylus cleaner the full five stars

“Making adjustments to your system to release previously unheard excellence needn’t break the bank,” says Hi-Fi Choice. DS Audio’s ST-50 stylus cleaner is among the magazine’s top six picks for maximising audio performance.

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“The very definition of what I am seeking today in an integrated amplifier”: The Absolute Sound is over the moon with the Aesthetix Mimas

Built to uncompromising standards, California-based Aesthetix Audio’s hi-fi components fall squarely into the elite separates camp. Only one thing was missing from the company’s stellar line up of ultra high-performance components: an integrated amplifier. Now, Aesthetix has “remedied this in grand style” with its first integrated model, the Mimas. Neil Gader of The Absolute Sound magazine is suitably bowled over.

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“The right box, in the right place, at the right time”: Hi-Fi Plus reviews Exposure’s highly versatile XM CD player

Could Exposure’s XM series of hi-fi components be the gift that just keeps on giving? “When it comes to upping the versatility and value stakes, [Exposure’s] new XM CD player is really three rather fine products in one,” says Roy Gregory, in the latest issue of Hi-Fi Plus.

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