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On 07.12.2011 the exchange rate between Polish zloty and Norwegian krona was 0.5797 to for example turn 29.000 Norwegian into 16.811 Polish. Skogrand’s website has a currency converter to make things easy for international customers. Just remember to add customs and ship fees to arrive at real prices.

Sound. A selection of recordings used in the test: Cold Cave, Cherish The Light Years, Matador Records/Hostess, O:E9212J, CD (2011); David Sylvian, Sleepwalkers, P-Vine Records, PVCP-8790, CD (2011); Dinah Washington, After Hours With Miss “D”, EmArcy/Verve, Verve Master Edition, 760562, CD (2004); Jean Michel Jarré, Téo & Téa, Aero Productions/Warner Bros, 2564699766, CD+DVD (2007); Marilyn Moore, Moody Marilyn Moore, Bethlehem/JVC, VICJ-61467, mini LP, K2HD CD (2007); Melody Gardot, My One And Only Thrill, Verve/Universal, 1796783, CD (2009).

Miles Davis, Seven Steps To Heaven, Columbia/Sony Music/Analogue Productions, CAPJ-8851, SACD/CD (2010); Nosowska, 8, Supersam Music, SM 01, CD (2011); Radiohead, The King of Limbs, Ticker Tape Ltd., TICK-001CDJ, Blu-spec CD (2011); Wes Montgomery & Wynton Kelly Trio, Smokin’ at the Half Note, Verve, 2103476, Verve Master Edition, CD (2005).

SC Air Markarian 421. One of the most popular ways of putting together a hifi system is matching individual components such that one component corrects or compensates for the flaws or undesirable characteristics of another. For example if we have expressive slightly bright loudspeakers we temper their character with a rather warm and certainly not analytical amplifier and a neutral source. Final tweaks are done with cables. This makes sense and is successful too. But only up to a certain level.

Once we arrive at the high end, this method no longer works. In the high end nothing in the signal path can ever be ‘improved’ by another element. We can only worsen things. In all good systems each component simply supports the others in harmony and all are enabled to maximally present their assets.

It’s why each time I evaluate loudspeaker cables I bow before the people of Tara Labs. My Omega Onyx reference cable time and again demonstrates what a cable should and should not do. I’m not saying it’s the best in the world. There’s nothing like it. There can only be membership in an advanced class. The rest depends on preferences and integration with a given system. Even so this has proven to be an incredibly universal cable, one of the best I’ve come across and certainly the best I’ve used. Even the top Acrolink didn’t do this well nor was it as neutral in the best sense of the word.

This is why I was very interested in what the SC AIR Markarian 421 would do in my system. Its timbre proved very close to the Tara Labs. It exhibited a very full-bodied sound where each sub range was fully and completely saturated without anything being sharpened or emphasized.