Product-related news items of general interest should be accompanied by a formal press release with basic descriptions, finish options, pricing, a photo 598px or wider and a valid web link. Event news should have venue, date, ticket and registration information plus a logo and website link. We only publish product news on items you can actually buy now. We won't publish product news about items a manufacturer promises to build if enough people pre-pay (crowd funding).

The bridge under the Linden – Kinda. Today is about Lindemann, their Limetree family and within that, their new Network II [€995] and Bridge II [€795]. What's new in these gen2 versions? For the Network II, it's an ES9038 Sabre DAC, sub 500fs clock, high-quality analog volume control, high-current headphone output and IR remote. The volume control has separate settings for headfi and line-out, the balance control covers ±6dB in 1dB steps and the headphone output has a 0/12dB gain option. There are also 7 different oversampling filters and hi/lo LED brightness. For the Bridge II, the output sample rate limit can now be set to 48, 96 or 192kHz. Upsampling is either integer or zero. DSD support has been dropped. Such files should now be resampled to PCM in player software

Something for nothing? – With back-to-back Apple Music and Amazon Music announcements, nearly so. At $9.99/month, Apple Music subscribers now have an in-app menu option to select lossless streaming quality across what is promised to eventually be the entire catalogue of 75 millions songs in ALAC aka Apple lossless audio code. Responding in kind, Amazon Music opened up their HD service at no extra cost to current Unlimited subscribers in early markets like Germany, the UK, France, Italy, Spain, the US and Canada. Both Apple and Amazon now offer CD-quality streaming plus a smattering of better-than-Redbook content up to 24/192. The cloud of music, at our fingertips like rain upon demand, just got a lot bigger. Yet the cost to the consumer is negligible. It's a bright new age for listeners, a dark new age for the musicians providing this content for very little pay indeed. If that sits wrong with you, sites like Bandcamp also allow us to buy our favorite music whilst insuring that the artists get the lion's share of our money.

'B' for 'bodacious'? Nearly. Riviera Audio Labs' AIC10 headphone/speaker amplifier just converted one of its three line-level inputs to active balanced to add XLR versatility. Otherwise it remains a 10wpc class A no-feedback hybrid circuit with triode inputs and BJT/Mosfet gain stages plus XLR4 and 6.3mm headphone outputs on the front.

16.5.21 – It's the day when Audirvãna Studio became available for a €69.99/yr subscription fee. Compatible with the latest Windows and MacOS platforms, this rebuilt French player software with free remote control apps now offers tighter integration between local and cloud-based files from Qobuz, Tidal and HiResAudio, adds Internet radio stations, new R8 Brain and SoundExchange upsampling algorithms, file analyzers for onboard HD certification, better serial plug-in integration and "the most transparent playback path for Windows 10 in Kernel streaming mode." Who is it for? People who want the very best sound and user experience when playing back music from a computer. Current users of Audirvãna receive preferential pricing when upgrading to Studio.

The name has changed with a straight-line macron above the second 'a'. That's incompatible with Google's web fonts. It indicates a minor accent when pronouncing Audirvahna. The ã with the wavy tilde is incorrect but we used it in lieu of the macron which Internet browsers rendered as ?. Why not use a fully integrated à/á instead? Many people already mispronounced the name as Audiovana. Now they'll misspell it as Audirv?na. But then nobody asked us. Désolé. That aside, our publisher is a very happy Audirvana 3.5 user. Studio should be better still. Who cares about spelling now? Not us. Audio nirvana? Listen, then decide!

Reference in-ear – Welcome Sennheiser's IE 900 [€1'299] as a new contender. Fitted inside an anodized aluminium-machined housing is a 7mm 16Ω driver covering 5Hz-48kHz at just 0.05% THD/94dB. There are three internal absorption chambers plus an acoustic vortex machined into the output funnel to optimize the driver's performance. Cable termination via MMCX plugs allows free plug'n'play with aftermarket leashes and the included cables with para-aramid reinforment end in 3.5mm, 2.5mm balanced and 4.4mm balanced. Also included are silicon and memory-foam ear tips in three sizes each and a zippered case.

Don't split the atom, unite it – Kinda. Naim's Uniti Atom Headphone Edition [$3'290] takes away the original speaker amp then replaces it with a dedicated headphone amp with XLR4, 4.4mm Pentacon balanced and 6.3mm standard jacks. Everything else remains unchanged. It's still a 32/384 USB DAC with RCA/XLR pre-out, integral streaming from Qobuz, Tidal, Spotify, Internet radio, AirPlay 2, Chromecast and Roon Ready plus one analog RCA input, 2 x Toslink and 1 x coax. Then there's the best volume knob in the business. Headphones, ask what's in a Naim. Then unite yer atoms.

Cut a fitter figure – Chord Electronics' Gofigure app for their Poly and 2go portable streamer-servers has been updated to include improved radio station and playlist support with faster access over WiFi through caching, a playlist generator for the Quick Play function plus enhanced status messaging and stability. The new playlist generator feature allows Gofigure to scan any SD card/s for music and create playlists for every stored album, giving a quick and easy way to play all stored albums without the need for either a WiFi connection or another app. The new Gofigure version can be downloaded from the Google Play or Apple App stores. Android 10 owners use the link above.

A dot of light – ADOT abbreviates Audiophile Digital Optical Technology. That translates to fibre-optic upgrade kits from a new company linked to Melco Syncrets of Japan. Their stated aim is to improve the sonics of copper-based Ethernet links. Their kits are placed between residential routers and hifi systems. "The fibre design parameters must match the adapters so the supplied Duplex fibre pairs with the SFP adapters. Connectivity is critical so the terminations are factory-made in clean-room conditions and 1.5m lengths mean that the devices can tuck out of the way. The fibre is less than 3mm in diameter and ideally suited for making the connection even in the largest homes. ADOT can supply standard lengths of optical fibre up to 50m or custom lengths up to 200m." The kits are priced from £349 – £750.

Ul times two – That's the new Reference Ultime Two from Stenheim of Switzerland [$150'000/pr]. It's a 5-driver 3-way in a d'Appolito configuration with biwire terminals. The 12-inch woofers vent through rear-facing "laminar flow" reflex ports. Then come 6.5" sealed midranges and in the center of the array a 25mm sealed tweeter. Each 154 x 37 x 50cm cabinet is built from thick aluminium panels to weigh 231kg. Half-space sensitivity is a claimed 95dB, bandwidth 25Hz – 35kHz. This is a slightly smaller version of the company's flagship so does away with the motorized center array, super tweeter and active option.

Kyte not tyke – That's Rega's new €599 compact speaker measuring just 33cm tall. Its enclosure is cast from phenolic resin then reinforced by internal struts and ceramic damping plates. The mid/woofer uses a 4-layer voice coil and the tweeter gets an unusual wave guide. The rear-ported Kyte mini claims 89dB sensitivity and 6Ω nominal impedance. It weighs just 3.7kg and comes only in black.

Silver Technology – That's Siltech for short with their new 3-tier Classic Legend cable series. Across its 380, 680 and 880 tiers, there's the shared G9 conductor as the company's latest silver-gold alloy which has been shock-treated with high voltage. There's triple-layer dielectric of Teflon and Peek; dual-core coaxial then twisted geometries; and substantial shielding. What changes with tiers is conductor mass. That doubles from 380 to 680 then scales again x 1.5 together with more substantial insulation and shielding. Each tier includes analog RCA or XLR cables, spade or banana speaker cables plus power cords. To be mixed across the three ranges are a 75Ω digital coax with RCA/BNC, a 110Ω AES/EBU digital cable, a 90Ω USB cable, a 100Ω LAN cable and a Zero Ohm cable to ground cartridges or other gear. According to Siltech, the Classic Legend models are their finest value cables ever.

Flemming not lemming – Previously fronting Gryphon Audio Design, Flemming Erik Rasmussen and his industrial designs have never followed the crowd. Now he has joined Audio Group Denmark, the umbrella company for the brands Aavik, Ansuz and Børresen. "We are very proud to welcome one of the greatest talents in the hifi industry as a new member of our design and development team. This move will strengthen Audio Group Denmark and further advance our innovative design and development work."

Welcome back, Flemming!

Knob envy – Violelectric's new PPA V790 phono stage [€3'990 when available in Q3 2021] could inspire it. There are 3/ea. XLR/RCA inputs assignable to MM or MC. All other load/capacitance adjustments plus 6/12dB boost are also conveniently selectable from the front panel and written to memory for each input. The DC-coupled input stage of cascoded bipolar transistors claims to offer 143dB of S/NR at 66dB of gain. Aside from standard RIAA compensation, a button press can select NAB or Columbia curves. Either way, the company promises 0.1dB linearity. A sub 20Hz rumble filter applies a 2nd-order slope, a clipping LED shows signal overload.

Luxo Lux – Luxman's new 595A Special Edition [€12'595] celebrates 95 years in business with a class A integrated limited to 600 units, half assigned to Japan's domestic market, the rest for the world. There's 60wpc into 8Ω—substantial for pure class A!—a volume control borrowed from the C-70f preamp so a microprocessor-controlled analog solution with 88 precision resistors which is matched by an equivalent balance control. There are two tone controls, a loudness switch and a subsonic rumble filter. There's also a 6.3mm headfi port. Connectivity on the back includes phono with ground post, 4 x RCA in, 2 x XLR in and a pre-out/main-in loop on RCA. Dual pairs of binding posts and a power IEC round out the connections. This then is a pure analog vintage machine without any digital.

One, two, studio – Audience bow their new Studio One and Two cables to replace the previous Au24SE and Conductor SE ranges. The newcomers include RCA and XLR interconnects and speakers cables. The One range also includes phono and headphone models plus a power cord. Conductors are high-purity OFC copper in a cross-linked polyethylene dielectric. The One models undergo an extreme high-voltage process to condition their crystalline structure. The Two range duplicates the general makeup but foregoes the EHVP process and uses different connectors.

Keeping better time – That's what Burson's new Timekeeper 3i [$2'499] is about. "Until recently our Max Current Power Supply was restricted to about 10wpc of output.  While that's great for headphone amps, it wasn't enough for loudspeakers. Now that's changed." First seen in the 45wpc Burson Funk, the new 3-in-1 scales up the SMPS recipe to 100wpc of class AB push/pull power with two gain settings; and 2wpc of class A for headphones with two gain settings. There's also a twin ESS9038 DAC with discrete output stage, an XMOS 32/768 PCM/DSD512 USB-C input, aptX-HD and Sony 96kHz LDAC, an analog input, coax and Toslink plus a subwoofer out and fixed/variable line outputs. As shown, the Timekeeper 3i can be set up sideways or upright and its display auto rotates accordingly. There's an FMJ remote and the discrete socketed opamps can be rolled.

Geez, too – Hello Altair G2.1, Auralic's new streaming pre/pro [$5'498] which bundles many digital inputs with phono plus line-level analog inputs which bypass all internal digital circuitry to head straight for the resistor-ladder analog volume control and class A output stage. Of course the deck also has the firm's Lightning app and supports Roon, Qobuz, Tidal and Spotify Connect. First shipments are expected this month.

Paws on – You can be with Vertere Acoustics' Iso-paws [€129/3] originally developed for their DG-1 turntable and Phono-1 headamp. But the British maker also recommend them under lightweight other gear like DACs, headfi amps and preamps. Because the incorporated Sorbothane spheres are weight-rated, the limit for each footer is 2.5kg. They're available in 3 and 4-packs.

Happy Ethernet camper – This AirStream [$495] has no wheels but four Wifi antennae instead. It's Keetakawee Punpeng's heavily modified wireless network switch to "create an audiophile WiFi access point for 2.4/5GHz. Add WiFi name and password, no further configuration required".

New beGrimmings in subwoofage – Hello SB1 [€11'200/pr], Grimm Audio's most current thinking on a motion-feedback 20Hz compact subwoofer with 30dB less distortion. Sized to go between the legs of their active LS1/LS1be monitors, the new model also has a bypass switch to work with off-brand speaker systems that use an active filter. The modified woofer is powered by 700 watts of internal class D. "The AD / DSP / DA is real time and fast enough for the whole feedback loop to be effective up to 500Hz. The latency is accordingly small hence negligible. No physical offset is required as long as these subs are placed at equal distance to the listener compared to the speakers."

With great realism comes great Ruark – If you're the new R5 Signature [$2'499] with its "stereo+ enhanced sound". This table-top radio packs a multi-format CD player, APtX HD Bluetooth, DAB/FM, auxiliary digital, analog and RIAA inputs, an Ethernet port, class AB power and an Oled display with large clock. Finish is piano black with rose gold trim and the natty remote is round and uses a rotary volume controller.

Rotel triplets – At $3'199, 2'099 and 1'599 respectively, three new Rotel integrateds come in black or silver. The RA-1592MkII range topper outputs 200wpc into 8Ω, includes a 32/384 Texas Instruments DAC, aptX/AAC Bluetooth, MQA, MM phono, balanced XLR inputs and a front-panel USB slot for iOS devices. All three models share RJ45/RS232 ports for control systems, tone-control bypass and A/B-pair speaker terminals.

Co & Buzz – French cloud-based music provider Qobuz expand their subscription services into Australia, New Zealand and all four Scandinavian countries. €14.99/month gains you access to 70'000'000 tunes at CD quality or better. No need to accept MP3 if you can swing the price of one CD per month.

Odin goes + 2 – A one-eyed god in a threesome? In Valhalla perhaps but on earth, it's Nordost's new Odin 2 Tonearm Cable + to demand a suitably celestial $13K for the participation of 125cm. "The tonearm cable is the most critical sensitive cable in any vinyl setup, especially revealing reference systems." Their new flagship phono cable consists of "4 x silver-plated solid core OFC conductors in dual mono-filament suspension to reduce insulation contact by 85%. The conductors are individually shielded for 100% coverage and protection from RF/EMI and cross talk. There's a fully isolated bond ground throughout. When needed, this connects the turntable and phonostage chassis. A second method uses two detachable silver-plated ground whips. When needed, those connect to the shielding of the tonearm cable." In this way, the '+' promises to eliminate all noise contamination of the fragile phono signal. Odin's bachelor pad is open for groovy business. "Come at 20:15 and bring your sister."

Electrified UK? – Not if you ask Brexit's impact on British exports. Still, the English Electric 16Switch [€1'250] cheerily proposes hifi action with two banks of 8/ea. RJ45 ports for a total of 16. That should provide plenty of spares for even super-busy domestic Ethernet switching. Inside a 0.1ppm temperature-compensated crystal oscillator controls the clocking.