China’s Newest Export is Classical Music – The China Philharmonic Orchestra (CPO) is touring New York City, LA and San Francisco. Musicians from the China National Opera House in Beijing performed in Puccini’s Turandot in the Budapest Spring Festival. At London’s Coliseum, the Shanghai Opera performed Thunderstorm, a newly-adapted Western-style Chinese work, and the Shanghai Sym. Orch. will be touring prestigious European festivals. The Beijing Sym. Orch. has completed seven European tours. The organizer of the tours said “We have many good classical music groups in China, but people abroad don’t know about them.” A conductor who has work both in China and the U.S. says “A product manufactured in China is not as important for China’s international profile. Cultural power is much more important.” One of the Chinese commentators says “We have a couple of good orchestras, but they’re not the Vienna Philharmonic.” The promoter has to decide if he will start from scratch or just buy an existing European company. Some European artists’ managers don’t like the sound of either option.
Meridian Eight-Channel Amp to Drive Multiple Pairs of Speakers – The new Meridian 258 Eight-Channel Power Amp delivers a premium experience, with a powerful and efficient way to drive passive speakers at a price point that’s profitable for the dealer and palatable by customers. Class D amplification produces 70 watts into an 8 ohm load, and it runs cool without the aid of cooling fans. It has an aluminum chassis and audiophile-grade internal components that fully support playback of hi-res audio content in whole-house audio systems. It is $2000.
Limitations of Apple’s Approach Shown by Samsung Deal – Samsung has bought audio giant Harman for $8 billion. This may not be disastrous for Apple’s automotive effort, but does show how the hardware philosophy of Apple (a no-compromise approach to hardware) can be a problem. Samsung already supplies infotainment systems to automakers including Audi, Toyota, BMW, Chrysler, Mercedes-Benz and Jeep. Harman claims 30 million cars feature its technology and it also provides custom audio and lighting solutions to clients and other solutions to a variety of customers. Harman lowers Samsung’s dependence on a smartphone business that has had some issues lately; and competition from Google is going to be a long-term problems.
Top Five Home Theater Systems for 2016 – were chosen by HNGN.com this month. The Onkyo HT-S7700 was 1 and Onkyo’s HT-S5800 was No. 2. Yamaha also had two choices, with their YHT-5920UBL as No. 3 and the YHT-4920UBL as No. 4. No. 5 was the Samsung HT-H6500. All are 5.1 speaker systems.