Audio News for February 28, 2012

by | Feb 28, 2012 | Audio News

Article on Return to Analog and Hi-Res for High Fidelity – We don’t usually link to other audio articles, but this one in USA Today has garnered quite a response in the comments that prove most interesting. It’s titled “Music lovers pursue technologies to return to high fidelity” and is full of misinformation, but does bring to public attention the matter of the popular data-reduced digital files and even standard CDs deleting a major part of the music signal. The thrust is that today’s listeners to MP3s and streaming Netcasts are missing the nuances of the original recordings. It seems unbelievable that it discusses audio-only Blu-ray discs and hi-res downloads, with no mention whatever of SACD! There is no differentiation of lossy and lossless digital files, and it says vinyl sounds better due to no compression. There is sometimes more compression required on some vinyl, but it still can sound better. And of course surround for music is barely referred to.
Stereophile Poll Shows SACD Preferred Format – A recent poll of Stereophile magazine readers’ music formats had these results: SACDs: 28%; Vinyl: 22%; Downloads: 21%; CDs: 17%; DVD-A: 5%; Radio (incl. Net radio): 0%.
IOGEAR Adapter Brings Surround to Stereo Headphones – IOGEAR has introduced the first USB audio adapter with DTS Surround Sensation for headphones. It connects to a computer’s USB 2.0 port, and the Theater Sound Xperience technology simulates a surround sound experience on any stereo headphones or speakers. Utilizing a vacuum tube-style design, the adapter takes two-channel audio and processes it—working on certain frequencies, volume intensity and time delay—with DTS Surround Sensation to give the effect of sounds occurring outside the boundaries of two channels. Three technologies are present in the USB Theater Sound Xperience: Voice Clarification, Bass Enhancement, and Soundstage Expansion. Two 3.5mm jacks are provided. The idea was to provide a boost in audio performance for those using their computers for watching DVDs and listening to music—a surround sound alternative when having five speakers or high-end headphones is not practical. The USB Theater Sound Xperience retails for $39.95.
Boston Acoustics Quits Auto Stereo Market – Speaker maker Boston Acoustics, part of D&M, is dropping out of the car audio aftermarket to focus on home audio. They had offered vehicle aftermarket equipment for over 25 years. The company is sharpening its focus on speakers, soundbars and radios.

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