Premiere Design

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Scott Wilkinson  |  Jun 08, 2010  |  3 comments

Is the NL Reference from Florida-based <A href="http://www.edgeamp.com">Edge Electronics</A> just another high-power, high-priced monoblock power amp? I think not.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Mar 21, 2011  |  1 comments
Located in Memphis, TN, EgglestonWorks has long been known for exceptional speakers. Among the company's newest models is the Savoy, which is designed to meet the ultimate goal of music without compromise.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Nov 08, 2009  |  5 comments

I had not heard of Swedish speaker maker <A href="http://www.perfect8.com">Perfect8 Technologies</A> until reader Joe G. posted a comment in my blog about <A href="http://blog.ultimateavmag.com/ultimate-gear/glass_ear/">Hario's glass speakers</A>. Like Hario, Perfect8 uses glass as a primary building material, but not in the driver diaphragms as Hario does. Instead, the cabinets and some support structures are made of glass, creating elegant sculptures that are said to sound as good as they look.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Apr 22, 2010  |  3 comments

Ever since its founding in 1926, German speaker maker <A href="http://www.elac.com">Elac</A>&#151;short for Electroacustic&#151;has never been one to rest on its laurels. Its engineers continue to improve the company's already well-regarded speakers with refinements and innovations that push the performance envelope. Take, for example, the FS 609 CE, Elac's flagship tower speaker that packs a lot of advanced technology into a slender form factor.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Jun 05, 2009  |  6 comments

<A href="http://www.martinlogan.com">MartinLogan</A>, well-known purveyor of high-end electrostatic speakers since 1983, recently introduced a new flagship to its lineup&#151;the CLX. After reading the press release, I thought it might be fun to devise the ultimate ML home-theater system.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Aug 31, 2010  |  0 comments
In 771 C.E., a huge bronze bell was cast by King Hyegong of the Silla Empire in what is now South Korea to honor his grandfather, King Seongdeok. Called the Emillé Bell, its remarkable sound can be heard evenly in all directions, and its reverberations last for three minutes, longer than any other bell in the world. Some 1220 years later, Korean high-end audio maker Emillé Labs took its name and inspiration from the famous bell, handcrafting all of its tube-based electronics, including the new Rapture monoblock power amp featured here, to sound as incredible as the company's namesake.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Aug 17, 2010  |  0 comments
And now for something completely different—a subwoofer that looks like a fan and can reproduce frequencies down to 1Hz and below. Yep, you read that right—1Hz and below. Developed by Bruce Thigpen and available from Eminent Technology, the Thigpen Rotary Woofer Model 17 (TRW-17) breaks entirely new ground at the very bottom of the sonic spectrum.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Mar 19, 2010  |  1 comments

When Lars Engstr&#246;m built his first first amplifier at age 12 in his native Sweden, he could hardly have foreseen where it would take him. But his passion and talent for audio engineering eventually led him to found <A href="http://www.thelars.se">Engstr&#246;m & Engstr&#246;m</A> in 2009 with his nephew Timo, an industrial designer whose skills complement those of Lars perfectly.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Jun 30, 2011  |  1 comments
Who would have thought that Estonia, a tiny republic on the Baltic Sea in the far northeast corner of the European continent, is home to a high-end speaker maker? Estelon was founded in 2006 to bring the vision of designer Alfred Vassllkov to life. His first product—the Model XA—is still the company's flagship.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Jul 22, 2009  |  13 comments

When I first saw a photo of this speaker, it reminded me of a Mexican chiminea, a free-standing clay fireplace with a bulbous lower body and tall, thin smokestack. But the only heat generated by this bad boy is of the sonic variety. Born of a collaboration between Serbian ribbon-speaker specialist <A href="http://www.raalribbon.com">RAAL</A> and American pro-audio designer <A href="http://www.requisiteaudio.com">Requisite Audio</A>, the <A href="http://www.raal-requisite.com">RAAL Requisite Eternity</A> is the world's only speaker with a cast-bronze woofer enclosure.

Scott Wilkinson  |  Nov 23, 2010  |  0 comments
I wonder why so many unique speaker designs come from eastern Europe? Not long ago, I profiled some wild-looking speakers from Hungarian Art & Voice, shortly after which I found Everything But The Box based in Bulgaria.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Mar 16, 2010  |  9 comments

The human hearing system is exquisitely sensitive to directional cues that let us instantly determine where a sound is coming from. This was critical for our survival in prehistory when the snap of a twig or a low growl might be the only harbinger of impending doom in the jaws of a hungry predator.

Bob Ankosko  |  Aug 20, 2014  |  1 comments
Alfred Vassilkov’s latest sonic creation looks more like a sculpture than a speaker, which is why you can’t help but do a double take. But beyond its stunning looks are several unexpected—and highly practical—surprises. We asked Estelon partner Alissa Vassilkov, who also happens to be Alfred’s daughter, to tell us the story behind this unique, $239,000/pair speaker.
Scott Wilkinson  |  Apr 21, 2011  |  0 comments
These days, earbuds are as important as speakers for delivering music to consumers, but most are woefully lacking in the sound-quality department. Japan's Final Audio Design intends to correct this shortcoming with its Piano Forte X-VIII series.
Bob Ankosko  |  Apr 26, 2017  |  1 comments
HiFiMan founder Dr. Fang Bian has been crafting fine headphones for more than a decade, collecting numerous awards along the way. In the past two years alone, five of his designs have been designated Top Picks in these pages. Despite this incredible success, Bian wanted more. He had a lifelong dream to fulfill: To create the “world’s best-sounding headphone.” As he put it, “While HiFiMan has made many good headphones, and people certainly enjoy them, none has ever fully satisfied that dream.”

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