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Our analog love is not limited to 70s Jazz Fusion and Rock. Also up-to-date vinyl co-released with CD got a spin. Though the fun part of handling a big black disc was present also with these modern releases, their drawback was sound quality. Too many recordings mastered for CD got dumped to vinyl with just basic RIAA correction because vinyl is hot so put it out, they’ll buy it regardless must have been the motto. Not a good idea. The Serbian phonostage ruthlessly exposed the harsh-sounding reality of vinyl's current fad. Fortunately there are exceptions where proper TLC was applied to the analog remasters. An example, no kidding, is the 45rpm 180gr release of ZZ Top's La Futura.

Completely different was the mono recording of an organ recital by Edouard Commette of certain Bach Preludes, Toccatas and Fugues [BWV 544, 538 and 566] issued in 1963. Though the organist had some fingering issues at the start, the large 50-stop organ of the St. Jean cathedral in Lyon is portrayed in all its glory in the room - and it is a big organ that can really ‘rock’. Another rocking classic to be mentioned is of course Stravinky's The Rite Of Spring. If you have not yet read Alex Ross’ The Rest Is Noise now is the time to get the book and with it enormous insights into modern music and the people involved with it.

Our 1979 RCA Red Label version of Rite is by the London Symphony Orchestra under Eduardo Mata. If this piece of music does not spirit you away to another dimension, there's something very wrong with your hifi. With the Trafomatic Reference One Phono and Zu DL-103 combination leading the way, the full orchestral forces spread out behind and between our big hornspeakers. Tympani roared and the woodwind and brass sections blasted while the story Igor Stravinsky tells—basically on life and death—rolled by just like real life, its pace and rhythm in constant turmoil and Stravinsky the master of irregular metrics and complex arrangements for novel tone-color combinations.

The art of analog music reproduction is truly the art of combining the best-matched components fine-tuned with proper adjustments. With the Trafomatic Reference One Phono, this matching is made easier and better. Using his unique way of getting the RIAA deemphasis filter network out of the way, Sasa Cokic [during Norwegian Horton Show at left] has opened up the emerging sound much further than before. Complex musical signal like that of dense classical music has far more room to breathe and occupy all of its unfurled dimensions. The very low self noise of this phono stage gets much more from the precious audio signal and thus also passes on more to the next component in the hifi chain and eventually to your thirsty ears.

Being the most crucial part in the analogue signal’s journey at the very beginning where it is faintest and most fragile, the Phono One cares and accompanies that signal from its tiniest incarnation towards full maturity. These first steps make or break the entire system. Sasa Cokic has designed that caring nurturing environment in which the precious music signal is lifted from the groove with great care and expertise. His Trafomatic Audio Reference Phono One deserves wide acclaim from all vinyl lovers around the globe!

Condition of component received: Excellent.
Reusability of packing: Many times over.
Website comments: Phono stage not on website yet at time of publication. Overall the website is clean, informative and in English.
Completeness of delivery: Perfect. Included everything necessary.
Pricing: Very competitive.
Human interactions: Outstanding.
Remark: A well made very good-sounding phonostage from a designer not afraid to share his unique ideas openly with the public for the common love of music.

click on each schematic for larger version

Trafomatic Audio website
Kaivalya amp website