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).

YouTube music link of Aliosha Generala's Orkestra Tangra Folk; link to Mohamad Aly's cover of 'Nehaya Wada'; link to the Rouh Trio's 'Mahla Alfusha'; link to Indialucia's 'Nagpur'; link to Pitingo's 'A puro dolor';
link to Rahat Fateh Ali Khan & Amjad Sabri; link to Vicente Amigo; link to Florin Nicolesu & Stochelo Rosenberg; link to New York All Stars 'Balkan Bollywood'; link to Juan Carmona's 'Perla de Oriente'; link to Borko's 'Bomba'; link to Nedim Nalbantoglu's 'Malaguena'; link to Lila Downs, Niña Pastori & Soledad; link to Taksim Trio's 'Lotus Feet'; link to Diego El Cigala's tango; link to Neshko Neshev's 'Ali Baba'; link to Rahat Fateh Ali Khan; link for Salif Keita & Cesaria Evora; link to El Lebrijano; and a link to Joscho's Stefan's 'After you've gone'. Enjoy!

May 2017 - Dock it - Questyle just bowed a remote-controlled dock for their QP1R/2R portable player models. This adds a full-size coaxial S/PDIF output, USB charging power, RCA analog outputs and a multi-pin Q-Link port.
May 2017 - Esprit - Celebrating 20 years in business, Richard Cesari of this French cable house wants Munich show attendees to earmark room A4.2 F205 for a visit.
May 2017 - HifiMan - Called the spiritual successor to the notoriously inefficient HE6, the new Susvara headphones [$6'000] with EF1000 amplifier are the firm's new statement on planarmagnetic excellence. The dedicated amp runs 6 x 6922 and 6 x transistors in parallel to get the most from the headphone's 83dB rating. Other Susvara specs are 6Hz - 75kHz response, 60-ohm impedance and 450g of weight.
May 2017 - Wired - "Marking a decade of producing audio products, Wyred4Sound announce the 10th Anniversary Limited Edition DAC2v2SE [$4'499]. Based on the newly released flagship DAC2v2SE, the limited edition offers exclusive features like upgraded handmatched parts, commemorative casework, a redesigned digital board and the latest ESS Sabre 9038PRO DAC chip. A more comprehensive feature list includes coaxial, Toslink, AES/EBU and I²S inputs, galvanically isolated asynchronous USB, up to 384kHz PCM and DSD 256 file support, handmatched custom Vishay ZFoil resistors, ultra low-noise discrete regulators, ultra-fast recovery Schottkey diodes, premium inductors, upgraded fuse, champagne silver chassis and commemorative graphics, red display and lathed aluminum footers."
May 2017 - AURALiC - With NextGen so last century, AURALiC hits hard with a quad of G2 models: revamps of the Aries streamer and Vega DAC; and newcomers Leo and Sirius, an outboard master clock and upsampler respectively. Over the original Aries, G2 introduces "original engineering focused on isolation, separation and protection against interference". The firm's Lightning streaming tech uses "existing WiFi to deliver up to DSD512/PCM32/384 with gapless playback, memory caching, bit-perfect multi-room and upsampling. There's also a browser interface for configuration and universal access from any smart phone, tablet or computer. There's AirPlay compatibility and Roon Ready endpoint." The HDMI ports are configured as "low-jitter bi-directional 18Gbps couplers different from other HDMI-based I²S connections and with the Lightning OS, carry system control data like volume control and processor setup to appear in a single unified interface." The internal Tesla G2 engine is 50% faster than its predecessor with twice the memory (2GB) and data storage (8GB).

Vega G2 gets new 72fs clocks "with extremely low -169dBc/Hz phase noise and 100Hz offset noise level of only -118dBc/Hz thanks in part to its low-noise 3µV dedicated power supply. A configurable buffer can be set from from 0.1s to 1s." A new passive volume control is executed with eight coil-latch relays driving an R2R resistor ladder which draws no current once set, hence creates zero noise. The class A Orfeo output stage with 600Ω drive potential remains but the original low-noise linear power supply has been doubled up whereby the first power supply now drives the processor, display and network interface, the second the DAC, clock and output stage. Galvanic isolation separates both supplies from each other. New selectable filter modes "use a combination of objective data models and subjective testing, with each mode assembling a unique array of filters. Precise Mode maximizes in-band ripple and out-band attenuation while Smooth Mode eliminates pre-ringing. Dynamic and Balance Modes round out the available options.
May 2017 - The anti MDI rebellion continues - New French brand Electron Research promise defeat of 'micro discharge interference' distortion, a phenomenon first measured by a French researcher and subsequently incorporated by the late Bernard Salabert of PHY. Today his work is continued in the cables, electronics and speakers of Ocellia. One key concern of the anti MDI design philosophy is avoidance of synthetic dielectrics aka plastics. Now Electron Research's first proof of the ongoing MDI resistance is the AI70 integrated.
May 2017 - Identical triplets - SOtM's Munich baby bump will pop out seemingly identical triplets called the sMS-200ultra, tX -USBultra and sPS-500. In sequence, these are a mini server, a USB reclocker/rebalancer and a linear power supply, the latter presumably for both stablemates to replace their stock SMPS wall warts.
May 2017 - Carbon is the new aluminium - With the M6 [$172'000/pr], Magico go to an edge-less six-sided 0.5" thick monocoque carbon-fibre enclosure. "This increases structural strength-to-weight ratio by a factor of 60, reduces overall weight by 50% and yields outer dimensions 30% smaller without compromising internal volume." Aluminium remains part of the recipe for the inner baffle, tension rods and 3-point plinth. The midrange driver loads into a sealed 'reverse horn' shaped carbon-fibre chamber. Transducer compliment is 28mm diamond-coated beryllium tweeter, 6" graphene mid and three 10.5" carbon/nanographene woofers. Specs are 22Hz - 50kHz bandwidth, 91dB sensitivity, 177kg weight and dimensions of 143 x 66 x 51cm HxDxW.
May 2017 - Italifi - The 10wpc Riviera Audio AIC-10 from Silvio Delfino is "100% made in Italy with the absolutely best materials and craftmanship. For example, the front and back panel are machined from 6.5cm solid aluminum. More importantly, this represents the first evolution in analog amplifiers since the last 40 years. This is also the first commercial amplifier mixing a hybrid topology of triode, BJT and Mosfet with pure class operation of all stages and zero feedback." Strong words. This model features 3 x RCA and 2 x XLR inputs.
May 2017 - Revised Apertura flagship - The Engima two-way has become the Enigma MkII 2.5-way with "modified drivers based on our work on the Adamante; with completely new filters with new high-end capacitors; and new hybrid bass loading of acoustic line and reflex port to lower the tuning frequency for even better bass extension." The 94dB sensitivity remains.
May 2017 - Avaton - Manolis Proestakis of Tune Audio launched the Avaton named after the ancient Greek word άβατον as a place for which entrance is allowed only to believers. This fully hornloaded speaker is a passive 3-way with 18" woofer, 5" custom midrange and 1" compression tweeter for 105dB sensitivity. "This is the realisation of a five-year long R&D project aiming at delivering a no-compromise hornspeaker for large listening rooms. Long work was required to create a layout pleasing to both the ear and eye. Avaton features our unique virtual mouth technology for bass horn loading, which delivers flat response down to 32Hz. The bass driver is a super-linear 18-inch woofer weighing a massive 27kg. The mid/bass horn has a mouth of 10'000cm² featuring a triple-layer construction with damping materials and finally the throat and beginning of the horn are coated with a epoxy/CNT compound for high rigidity. The high horn is a further development of the cast compound used in our Anima and the horn is mounted to an upgraded compression driver. 1st order filters connect all 3 ways and the internal cabling is waxed cotton insulated pure copper. The footers are graphite coated and as with all our models, we offer custom colours or natural wood veneer in virtually any choice and combination."
May 2017 - Metrum go semi-precious - The new Amethyst [€1'070 ex VAT] "is a follow up of our Musette DAC.  We improved the data flow over the board and implemented an I²S breakout point for future options. Next we used the new Dac Two modules like in the Adagio to ll run 384kHz sampling rates. Further we implemented a headphone amplifier which can drive 16Ω possible only with our strong power supply of 30VA transformer and two 22'000µF capacitors. By using the converter's output only, noise floor and hum are extremely low. When connecting a headphone, the outputs on the back mute automatically and the volume knob will adjust headphone gain only. The output on the back panel has a fixed Redbook standard level."
May 2017 - Vega the Second - AURALiC will unveil two next-gen components in Munich, a new Vega DAC and a new companion Altair. Specifics remains for the show reveal but this teaser photo shows a new look with a central display and stylish flat controls...
May 2017 - Auris news — Serbia's valve audio house Auris Audio are introducing the Fortissimo KT120 stereo amplifier which in future iterations will become available also with EL34, 6550 and KT88; and the Headonia headfi SET powerful enough to drive two headphones at once.
May 2017 - MusiKraft - Something is making noise in Canada's Cold White North - Guy Pelletier's MusiKraft customizable phono cartridge and online boutique. "The MusiKraft shells specifically designed for the Denon DL-103 and DL-103R phono cartridges are available in three different metals along with a selection of twenty-four different wood species [pricing from $229). To adapt the shell, a modification to the original cartridge is required as the shell system replaces the standard plastic casing." Features include precise machining to ± 0.001" tolerance, straightforward quick installation, lightweight magnesium shell model, three fine-tuning micro screws for voicing, five different geometric positions for overhang adjustment, simplified front and lateral reference alignment, reusable and interchangeable shell."
May 2017 - Goldmund's NextGen - The famous Swiss hifi house from Geneva had recently tasked themselves with updating their most powerful amplifier ever: the hulking limited-edition 651lbs 1-metre Telos 5000. As the press release explains, the resultant Telos 5500 exceeded their own expectations. Now the decision was made to migrate the same tech over to their best-selling other models both in their preamp and power amp portfolios. Thus the Telos 1000 power amplifier became the Telos 1000 NextGen, the Telos 2500 shown and Mimesis 22 the equivalent NextGen models featuring new power supplies, new motherboards and improved mechanical grounding. There's even a new NextGen integrated, the 210/280wpc into 8/4-ohm Telos 590 with five analog inputs on RCA, 32/384 USB with DSD, coax and Toslink digital, analog volume and remote control. [A preview of the Telos 590 NextGen is live already.]
May 2017 - M.A. on vinyl - M.A. Recordings are premiering their high-quality vinyl collection at the Munich HighEnd teaming up with Acoustical Systems in Hall 3 booth M11. After a long search, label owner Todd Garfinkle identified the ultimate pressing plant in Holland to produce pristine vinyl that finally matched the quality of the music on his recordings. The new vinyl series is stamped to 180-gram virgin vinyl and most issues are cut at 45rpm. To match the high sonic standards, the artwork too got full attention.
May 2017 - Dansk-fi - The new Densen B-250CAST reference preamp [£3'990, class A 6-watt zero NFB output stage, dual mono] sports "an extremely low-noise PSU" which allows the component "to provide the best working conditions for Google's Cast software to perform". The upgraded volume control uses Vishay metal-film resistors for 0.5dB accuracy. There's support for NAS storage via BubbleUPnP or similar software. Socketry is 4 x line inputs, 1 x tape loop and 2 x preouts for biamping. Finish options are black with gold/chrome buttons or "albino silver" as shown.  
May 2017 - Q's core - Not the Q of 007 but Nordost, with their new QKore ground stations in three models offering a "parallel grounding device for an artificial clean earth using both an electrical and mechanical approach. This combines Nordost's patented mono-filament technology with purpose-built low-voltage attractor plates constructed with a proprietary metal alloy and a passive electronic circuit to draw stray high-frequency noise and voltage-generated magnetic fields to a manufactured earth point, leaving a clean reference behind. This passive system is contained in a mechanically tuned housing and outfitted with gold-plated WBT binding posts. The QKore 1 [$2'500] serves as a parallel ground for Nordost's own QBase power distributor. The QKore 3 [$3'500] can ground three components whilst the QKore6 [$5'000] expands the approach to six. Connecting wire (RCA to banana) is €360 with $150 per additional metre.
April 2017 - New Wilson - Benesch that is. The British firm bows their 30Hz - 30kHz Resolution floorstander in the Geometry Series [£35'0007pr], setting its drive units into a "high-tech enclosure formed from a carbon fibre composite monocoque and precision machined metal-alloy components modeled using advanced Dassault 3D CAD/CAM systems." The tweeter is a silk-carbon 'Semisphere' unit, the twin midranges bracketing it are isotactic polypropylene versions. Four matching Tactic-II woofers in a clamshell isobaric arrangement handle the bass. Specs are 90dB sensitivity, load is 3-ohm min./6-ohm nominal, dimensions are 159x52x54.7cm HxWxD, weight is 90kg.
April 2017 - A microphone in reverse... - ... is a Macrophone according to Metaxas. Their new scaleable monitor with optional bass module can be stacked as shown; or even be inverted upon itself to become the centre of a tall tower.

Also new from Metaxas is the Siren. It's "CNC carved from a block of solid aluminium or titanium. Using ideas borrowed from Neumann TLM 50 and M150 microphones, it embeds its Accuton drivers into spheres mounted onto an organic "time-aligned" sculpture." Premiere in Munich next month.
April 2017 - Wave in the air - Chris Sommovigo's new Airwave cable happened when he broke down a core ingredient of his forthcoming Indigo super cable, scaled it down, simplified it and turned it into a high-performance budget cable. As the name implies, a clever way of suspending the central conductor in its outer sleeve creates minimal contact with the Teflon dielectric to remain primary surrounded in pure air. The introductory price is $249/1m/pr + $65/0.5m/pr for incremental length additions. After the first run is sold out, the price will increase to $299.95 + $75. Available with RCA or XLR. Speaker cable and power cord in the same range are likely to come.

 

April 2017 - Openly baffled Greeks - Aristoteles Sdravopoulos of Rois Acoustics announces their new Minoas [starting at €8'900/pr], an 8-inch TangBang widebander mated open-backed to two 15" woofers via pure 1st-order filters. "We use extra stiff Russian birch ply with special viscoelastic glue to damp vibrations. The full-range driver mounts on its own baffle which sits atop the woofer baffle with elastic sorbothane feet for maximum mechanical isolation. The cabinet can be ordered in a limitless variety of colours and finishes, ranging from low-grain matte finish to high-gloss piano laquer and even metallic car paints."
April 2017 - Done and undusted - Though old news I just discovered, Living Voice from the UK collaborated with Kron Audio of the Czech Republic last year to release a specially branded 300B. Its R&D used as the starting point original Western Electric samples from Living Voice's personal stash. After 10 years of experiments with different vendors, "we finally have a 300B we prefer over the WE."
April 2017 - Diablo 120 - Gryphon's smaller devil is a dual-mono integrated with 46-step microprocessor-controlled relay volume and 120/240/440wpc @ 8/4/2Ω power with 0.1Hz-250kHz bandwidth from 2 pairs of Sanken transistors, 0.03Ω output impedance, 2 x 60'000µF of power supply capacitance and a 1'200VA Holmgren transformer. Aside from the stock analog i/o, the option module based on the Kalliope DAC can add USB, BNC, AES/EBU and Toslink digital inputs for 32/384PCM and DSD512 (Windows). Like the Diablo 300, there is remote control and a green-on-black display.
April 2017 - iOS nobility - "Priced at just £60, Noble Audio’s new Lightning-to-2-pin IEM cable of 1.2m length allows consumers to instantly connect any Noble product ever produced, to the latest iOS devices. The dedicated cable was designed to optimise sound quality from the latest Lightning iOS devices when used with Noble’s IEMs. Its industry-standard two-pin configuration enables a wide range of other compatible two-pin IEMs, too."
April 2017 - Traforack - More news from Trafomatic explore the display and resonance suppression of hifi gear with a new range of racks to be shown for the first time at next month's Munich show.
April 2017 - Get (two) toned - Trafomatic Audio's line revamp includes a new look for the Experience range as shown here with the Experience One Mk2 300B power amp in two-tone finish.
April 2017 - Get ribbed - not in the gym but in front of the new Alsyvox ribbon speakers from designer Daniele Coen. "They are available in 4 models of different size all with the same technology, top quality components and stylish Italian design: Tintoretto, 144cm high; Botticelli, 177cm high, Caravaggio, double panel 203cm high and Michelangelo, triple panel 203cm high." [Website not live yet at time of publication.]
April 2017 - New cj - Celebrating their 40th anniversary this year, conrad-johnson bow the ART150 [$18'500] and ART300 [$36'000/pr] amplifiers which replace the ARTSA and ART models. "These amplifiers employ the recently developed KT150 of which a single pair produces 150wpc in the stereo ART150 while two pairs produce 300 watts in the ART300 mono. In addition, both feature new input and inverter stages using 6922 for voltage gain, main power supply reservoirs boasting a more than ten-fold increase in total capacitance and a new regulator circuit for the input stage power supply."
April 2017 - New EU central for XLO - Polpak Poland, parent company of the brand Taga Harmony, has acquired the exclusive master distributorship for XLO in all of Europe. "The new agreement expands XLO’s reach across Europe by delivering to its existing and new partners the best products and services with local inventory of XLO’s full product portfolio so partners can enjoy considerably faster deliveries."
April 2017 - YBA amps - From Yves-Bernard André come the new 95lbs $33'000/pr Signature monos with 200 watts into 8Ω and so-called αlpha Class-A operation which translates to a 1000VA UI-core transformer per amp. The 200wpc $19'900 stereo version, via XLR, can be bridged to go 600-watt mono.
April 2017 - U Can, forEver - Venice-based CanEVER follow up their ZeroUno DAC with the Plus version to add linestage functionality with remote control over volume, balance, mute, input and phase. Aside from the digital coax, Toslink, AES/EBU and USB inputs, there are now also two pairs of RCA analog inputs. Outputs are on RCA/XLR. Conversion is via ES9018S, voltage gain by interstage stepup transformers. Volume control is via CS3308 chip which is followed by a CV181 dual-triode tube buffer with 110dB S/NR.
April 2017 - Ref X for Gen X - To be called Reference X, Gallo Acoustics' long awaited Ref 3.5 replacement is rumoured to be... well, imminent. From this mockup, we see that the old plinth is replaced by outriggers and that the colour scheme has gone all black. One presumes that the dual voice-coil woofer might have become a higher-impedance single coil unit but that—and the rest of it—remains pure speculation until first production hits. Cheers to that happening sooner than later.
April 2017 - Voxativ Z-Bass - The Berlin firm's latest model is a compact active subwoofer [€3'630] based on their own high-efficiency AC-Z driver. Dimensions are 33 x 30 x 32.5cm, weight is 16kg, finish is Voxativ's typical piano gloss black lacquer. The Z-Bass is intended to match their Hagen and Zeth models as well as augment any competing speaker.

 

April 2017 - txUSBUltra - SOtM continue their small/big alphabet soup with their latest, an externally powered USB hub/reclocker with master-clock input on BNC. The unit's improvements of timing and noise filtering can treat two USB ports at 480Mbps at the same time.

April 2017 - New Weiss - Daniel Weiss of Swiss firm Weiss Engineering introduces his new D/A converters called DAC 501 and DAC 502 which include exploded functionality like room equalizer, creative equalizer, de-essing, constant volume, vinyl emulation, out-of-head location algorithm, with Roon, MQA and Airplay still under consideration. File format acceptance goes to 384kHz PCM and DSD128. Both models have a touch-screen colour LCD display and include a 6.3mm headphone output. The remote controls inputs, outputs, volume, mute, absolute polarity, power and DSP presets. A web browser interface allows control over volume, balance, input, output, DSP algorithms and DSP snapshot configuration. The internal power supplies are linear, not switching. Output devices are Weiss' proprietary discrete opamps.
April 2017 - Go McIntosh on the desktop - McIntosh introduce the 50wpc MXA80 Integrated Audio System [$6'000], the next generation of the MXA70 with the same compact footprint and functionality while adding support for DSD and DXD thanks to a new DAC. "A dedicated headphone amplifier takes advantage of unique McIntosh technologies. Headphone Crossfeed Director (HXD®) brings added dimension to the music while Power Guard® prevents clipping. A 5-step bass boost allows for further customization.The amplifier is housed in a polished stainless steel chassis that compliments the classic glass front panel, knobs and brushed aluminium end caps; the speakers come with a luxurious, high gloss piano black finish."
April 2017 - More AB-1266 - Joe Skubinski of JPS Labs announces that "we have news concerning the Abyss AB-1266 headphone. In working toward creating the world's thinnest boutique headphone Diana, new high-tech magnetics were created which also allowed us to renew the AB-1266 transducer. We are now producing new planar drivers for it, with the updated model named the AB-1266 Phi for much improved transparency to the source, crazy low frequency impact and resolution, scary vocals, a clear window to the source."