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Brama Collection – New from Vinnie Rossi and named after the Italian word for desire comes a range of preamplifier, integrated and stereo power amplifier. Industrial styling is compliments of Olivier Raymond of Porsche Design/Mercedes Benz. Features include a remote-switchable fully balanced 300B/transistor line stage [$33'995], 350/500wpc into 4Ω class AB Mosfet power for the integrated/stereo amps [$38'995/$33'995], a 100-step precision resistor ladder volume, fully balanced i/o, home theater bypass, memory functions and input-specific selections of gain, triode percentage, balance, phase and stereo/mono mode.

The FMJ Bluetooth remote offers adjustable backlighting, ambient light sensing, an accelerometer, USB charging and firmware updates. The linestage offers -12dB, -6dB, 0dB, +6dB and +12dB gain, triode mode in 25% increments and 12-step balance control. The 6063R billet-machined bead-blasted and laser-engraved aluminum enclosures use analog gauges with precision air-core movements, machined aluminum hands and adjustable backlighting. Sapphire glass and polished stainless steel bezels integrate them into the front panel.

The precision stepped rotaries are Swiss, the power transformers are 1'750VA for all models, all PSU are dual mono and use super-regulated outputs with protection against over/under voltage/current and temp. Diagnostics are sent to the remote display. Performance specs for the preamplifier are less than 0.01%/1% THD in transistor/triode mode, ±0.5dB bandwidth of 5Hz-100kHz and S/NR of better than 110dB. The amplifiers are 2Ω stable, with ±0.5dB bandwidth of 5Hz-100kHz, 18/26dB of adjustable voltage gain and sub 0.01Ω output impedance.

Weight per component is from 45-50kg.

Shaken 'n' stirred – Cocktail Audio's new N25 Amp [€1'199] is. Fresh from South Korea, this 75wpc streaming amp with 4.6" display—a version without built-in amp is also available—has Deezer, Tidal, Amazon Music et all plus DAB+ even an FM tuner mixed in. Ditto aptX, aptX LL and aptX HD plus USB 3.0, Toslink, coax and HDMI ARC. Number crunching is by dual core ARM Cortex A9 processor and ES9018MkII to cover DSD, MQA and PCM up to 24/192.

Elysian dales – Hello 1 [€3'690/pr], Wharfedale's new monitor in their Elysian range. At 49x26x28.5cm HxWxD and 15kg, it's smaller than the existing 2 and 4. It's a 7" 2-way with AMT tweeter and downfiring 49Hz slot port venting into a plinth. Curved side walls undermine pronounced standing waves and finish options are high-gloss black, white or nut tree veneer. A matching €590/pr stand picks up the same finish in its own plinth.

Stop the iFixation – Hello new 'uRange' of Aavik integrateds. The U-180 [€9K], U-280 [€15K] and U-580 [€30K] add integrateds with DACs and pre-outs to the Dansk portfolio. Hello Pascal-based class D, resonant switching power supplies, BurrBrown DAC and plenty of proprietary Ansuz noise attenuation tech. Socketry is 3 x RCA inputs, 1 x RCA output, dual BNC digital, dual Toslink and single USB. Remote control is by included Apple wand.

Melco midrange – It's the N50-S38 [£4'999], the brand's "best-ever solid-state affordability" so their mid-priced SSD-based digital music library. "Improvements include an enhanced mother board with select 3.84TB SSD coupled to a new rigid layered SSD cradle plus a new dynamic PSU with 25% more output. Re-engineered isolation feet are included." The rear panel includes four specific USB ports: USB 3.0; expansion and backup plus a dedicated output ready for connection to USB DACs, USB DAC-equipped amplifiers or active speakers. There also dedicated dual Ethernet ports "which provide a dedicated player port in addition to the LAN port to minimize unwanted effects of noise on the music signal and present network audio players with a direct high data-integrity connection. The N50-S38 also benefits from a high-quality Oled display with push-button control plus Melco’s Intelligent Music Library suite comprising MinimServer and SongKong software. It is Roon Ready, DSD compatible and offers app control via DLNA/UPnP with support for Tidal, Qobuz and vTuner streaming. Qobuz Downloader and HighResAudio.com also enable direct error-free high-res downloads without the need for a computer."

Not a lead zeppelin – It's about the other Zeppelin [€799], 2007's iconic floating egg speaker from Bowers & Wilkins. Like the Matrix, it just reloaded. For 2021 the iPod dock finds itself replaced by aptX Bluetooth or Apple AirPlay 2 streaming via Apple or Android app control. B&W's own Music App integrates all the usual streaming clients like Spotify Connect, Deezer, Qobuz and Tidal. Even voice control Alexa factors. The concealed driver array is a central 15cm woofer, two 9cm mids and two dome tweeters. 240 watts total drive the lot. A firmware upgrade promised for Q2 2022 will add multi-room talents. Available finishes are pearl grey or midnight grey. Defeatable ambient lighting is included.

Walnutters – Scansonic's Lars Venning wants you to know that like Børresen, their MB-B line of speakers is now available in a premium walnut veneer finish as shown.

Pre net – German firm Audionet have been around before there was a worldwide net. So have CD players. It's only fitting then that Audionet's new Planck² [€14'490] and Art G5 [€8'490] would honor the format at an uncompromised level. The 23kg flagship top loader integrates a slate plinth for premium resonance control, runs a class A output stage and can process external sources via USB-B, coax and Toslink. Similarly the CD signal can output externally via 3 x S/PDIF and AES/EBU. Analog out runs on XLR or RCA. The smaller machine shown combines MDF, aluminium and granite with the Philips VAU 1254/31LF transport and a DC-coupled signal path.

X-rated pros – That'll be Beyerdynamic's new DT 700 [€249] and DT900 [€249] in the Pro X range of over-ear headphones. Both use the same neodymium-powered triple-layer dynamic driver with copper-plated voice coil wiring but the 700 is sealed, the 900 open-backed. Included are 180 and 300cm long cables which terminate on the headphone end in mini XLR whilst 3.5mm and 6.35mm plugs serve the load end. The memory-foam ear cushions sleeve in velours and basic performance specs are 48Ω impedance and 5-40'000Hz bandwidth.

Blocked eros? – Titan Audio's new Eros Mains Block v2.0 [£750] would unblock it; at least on your power line. Internal hookup wiring is single-crystal copper, there's an external grounding post, the aluminium legs have neoprene protectors and the actual aluminium casing is internally coated with a sound-deadening compound. Eros comes with six UK, US or EU outlets and is of the passive powery delivery not filter/conditioner persuasion.

Hubby dearest – Lumin's new P1 combines a network music player and digital preamp into a digital audio hub. Aside from a plethora of digital inputs, there's one XLR and RCA analog input mirrored by RCA and XLR analog outputs. Twin ES9028Pro DACs support PCM384 and DSD512 and there's fibre networking. A dual-toroid power supply remains linear not switching and Leedh Processing as embraced also by Soulution and Métronome offers lossless digital volume control. The Roon Ready Austrian-made remote control combines acrylic and zink and Lumin's IR receiver is compatible with universal remotes, phones and automation systems. HDMI ARC integrates ideally with a 2.0 video system and all popular streaming services and codecs like Spotify, MQA, Roon, Tidal and Qobuz are supported. Finish is black or silver

Warlock bravado? – Not exactly. It's the Warwick Bravura [€2'100 silver, €2'500 black] and its companion Sonoma amplifier. The Bravura bravado is the result of a 3-year R&D cycle to refine the original electrostatic Sonoma system with a new stator design and a 3'580mm² magnesium diaphragm of less than 0.2g moving mass. The hand-stitched headband trickles down from the Aperio flagship. Even the low-capacitance cable created in collaboration with Atlas and Lemo is new. Claimed bandwidth is 10Hz-60kHz, weight is 403g, cable length 2m.

Over the Roon moon – That's Métronome's Digital Sharing Converter by now being Roon Ready Certified. This French streaming DAC includes the patented Leedh digital volume control also embraced by Lumin and Soulution to function as a non-lossy preamplifier in amp-direct mode. The machine also supports DSD512 and aside from tablet remotes, can be navigated via its 5-inch touch screen.

After 4 comes 5 – Hello LCD-5, the new $4'500 flagship planarmagnetic from Audeze with 1/3rd less weight as the propaganda puts it. That now means a more manageable 420g. There's a new pattern of Parallel Uniforce voice coils on the 90mm membranes, Audeze speak for traces of varying widths "to keep impedance low and provide increased voltage headroom by altering the current density within each trace. This also allows increased space between the magnets." The earpads feature new sculpting with internally sloped walls which mean less contact area to reduce wear fatigue. The neodymium N50 motor creates 90dB/1mW sensitivity at 14Ω impedance

Lorenzo Audio Labs – From Kroma Audio's co-founder Miguel Lorenzo Castro and Joseph M. Gallart comes a new audio brand. Between each other, these gents claim over 20 years designing and manufacturing speakers, working OEM for other brands and putting in time as hifi distributor and audio magazine publisher. Their LM5 monitor is a front-ported 2-way with ¾" tweeter and 6½" carbon-fiber mid/woofer whose cabinet is built from phenolic wood laminate augmented by Panzerholz details and Mundorf/Pathaudio hard-wired filter components. Matching stands are included. The LM1 floorstander is a big 4-way design with super tweeter, 1" compression tweeter, 11" paper/ALNiCo midrange and paper/AlNiCo 16" woofer with twin rear vents. At 200kg/ea., this is a true heavyweight and 96dB sensitivity with 20Hz-35kHz bandwidth confirm the ambitions. No pricing info accompanied the press release but close-ups of Lorenzo's elite finishing suggest the luxury leagues particularly for their flagship. Time will tell.

Out of sorts? – If you are about ingress of noise at your hifi's open plugs, Ansuz have their new Sortz range of "anti-aerial" noise reduction devices which plug into unused RCA, BNC or XLR connectors. USB and LAN versions will follow. Inside each device's hidden coil sits a zirconium bar used for its "unprecedented resonance control". Meanwhile the outer aluminum casing comes in three finishes. Depending on version, skins include layers of zirconium, tungsten and aluminum titanium nitride. Common to all is the final cryogenic treatment. The RCA or BNC versions cost €680/€1'000/€1'400 each for the standard, Supreme and Signature, €900/€1'340/€1'800 for the XLR equivalents.

TotalSub? – The sub-d100 is TotalDAC's passive companion subwoofer to their d100 speaker so uses the same woofers and enclosure dimensions. "The external crossover connects from the main stereo amplifier to the subwoofer amplifier's XLR input. We recommend our Amp-1 in 1kW mono version." Each sub runs 2 x 12" neodymium-powered woofers in a sealed Baltic Birch ply enclosure with 98dB/m/W sensitivity and a -6dB/18Hz cut-off. It measures 32x47x118cm WxDxH and weighs 37kg without xover and amplifier.

 

dCBL-CAT7u – Behind that alphabet soup hides SOtM's new very best CAT7 network cable just released. It consists of four differential transmission cables each with a compound aluminum shield then covered by a shared outer braided copper shield all run through the company's proprietary noise-decoupling module the terminated in Telegärtner plugs. This cable supports up to 1'600MHz signal at the 10/100/1000Base-T and 10GBase-T Ethernet standards. Pricing is $700/800/900 for 1/2/3m respectively. Longer lengths by request.

Built like a tank – Those were Simon Lee's exact words describing his forthcoming All-in-One temporarily named the SiMON [~€7K]. It combines a bipolar power amp with a full-featured DAC, CD player, FM tuner, Bluetooth, phono stage and headphone amp. Rear panel socketry includes 1 x AES/EBU, 1 x USB, 1 x LAN, 2 x coax and 2 x Toslink in, coax out then 2 x RCA inputs, 1 x XLR, phono, home-theater bypass and a pre-out on RCA plus biwire speaker terminals and inputs for an FM and BT antenna. First availability is expected for Q4 this year. There are also the D1 reference DAC, T1 reference transport and M1 monoblocks to go separate. In fact, "we've developed more than 12 new products over the last 4 years". Interested parties should contact Mr. Lee directly at simon55kr at naver.com for the latest about his company Simon Audio Lab.

Call me Reference – You'll have to with Elac's new Uni-Fi UBR62 [€848/pr], UFR52 [€1'698/pr] and UCR52 €549/ea.]. That lot just gained a new Reference suffix. The monitor and tower get a new bigger 165mm aluminum membrane, the tweeter has grown too, there are new biwire terminals, more substantial braces and matte black + walnut or matte white + oak color schemes. For the full details on the Reference upgrade for these three models, reference their website.

2.0 – Innuos roll out their new operating system innuOS 2.0 as well as proprietary control app Innuos Sense now available for all Innuos MkII/Mk3 servers and streamers as well as all other powered-by-innuOS devices like Lumin's. "InnuOS 2.0 represents a profound change on both the UI and backend of the music servers and allows complete music library playback and management through a smartphone, tablet or computer. As bonus, the Innuos Sense app is free and available for download for all iOS and Android users." Also, "Innuos is reinforcing its software development team to continue developing innuOS based on customer feedback. For that we launched Feedback Zone which users can access. Upon registration, they can propose new features, check on known issues and vote for the most relevant features they want to see next. Most recently, one of the most voted features—sorting albums by artist name and not only album title—just incorporated in the new 2.0.6 update. As proud as we are of this, we couldn’t leave behind our trusted fans who've been with us from the start. So we're so pleased to introduce the Zen Mk1 trade-in program for all our early adopters who want to experience the innuOS 2.0 platform" said Nuno Vitorino, CTO and co-owner of Innuos. From now until the 31st of December 2021, customers will be able trade in their existing MkI units and receive a discount on an upgrade to any of the Zen Mk3 Series or Statement servers.

Ub go über – Celebrating 10 years in biz, Italy's Ubsound bow the Multico ML68 [€15'000/pr] ,a bass-reflex speaker with 4 x 21cm coaxial drivers, one of them downfiring. Basic specs are 21Hz – 26kHz bandwidth ±3dB, 8Ω nominal impedance, 93dB/W/m sensitivity, dimensions of 26x92x31 WxHxD and weight of 20kg. The port curved by 45° vents out the front and finish is deep black in satin matte.

Ultima shrink – It's Chord's new class A/B Anni [€1'549] which shrinks their Ultima circuit topology into a tiny desktop integrated for head/speakerfi where its 10wpc lift higher. Add a Qutest DAC and Huei phono stage and you've got yourself this bonsai triple stack. Anni's outputs are on 3.5mm/6.35mm headfi and 4mm bananas. The volume control doubles as selector for two line-level inputs. A separate 2-stage gain control adapts the circuit to different loads. A 15V external power adapter provides the go juice. Black is the color du jour and the photo shows it in the bottom position when parked in the matching micro stand. Small stands tall?

T+A go to 200 – The German brand's 200 range expands to the black or silver DAC 200 [€5'490], multi player MP 200 [€4'390] and power amp A 200 [€3'790]. The converter operates a dual-differential quad BurrBrown DAC for up to 32/768 PCM with user-selectable Bezier filters (two NOS types) and a proprietary 1-bit converter for DSD up to 1024. USB, AES/EBU and S/PDIF inputs are standard, two HDMI optional. One analog input is included. Volume control uses a relay-switched resistor array and there's even a discrete headphone amp with balanced 4.4mm output. The aptly named multi player combines a slot-loading CD transport, FM and DAB+ tuner, Bluetooth, Roon-ready streaming client and support for Tidal, Deezer and Qobuz. There's USB, Toslink and coax. Outputs are on digital exclusively. The power amp with RCA/XLR inputs and XLR out for loop-thru delivers 250wpc into 4Ω or half that into 8Ω.

More. Free. Lossless. – It's Lumin's expanding app whose firmware v14.2 update just added 47 different .flac-based internet radio stations including Radio Paradise, Sector, 95dFM, Czech Radio, Fréquence³, Super Stereo and more. Mother Earth Radio HiRes streams in 24/96 resolution in fact. All of that is now built into the Internet Radio tab of the Lumin app.