A hi-fi philistine once asked me why old guys buy great sound systems when their hearing has inevitably been impaired by the ravages of time. For once I came up with an answer without having to think for half an hour and explained that hearing loss was the main reason why you need a better […]


Getting a turntable is the beginning of a beautiful journey into sound but like any other precision machine a turntable and the vinyl it plays benefit from careful treatment. Vinyl is a fabulous but fragile medium, one of the reasons that CD was able to change the music industry is that ill treated vinyl and […]


What upgradable means in the context of a sound system is the option to improve sound quality by changing certain parts rather than replacing the whole thing, usually in a piecemeal fashion, eg one new component or cable at a time. You can upgrade a car by putting better tyres or a sporty suspension on […]


The power supply is the heart of any audio component, it pumps electrons rather than blood but without it amplification and processing can’t happen. One of the biggest differences between components is the quality of the power supply, certain companies make a very good living by offering power supply upgrades that bring sound quality benefits […]


At the Munich High End we grabbed PMC's head of design Ollie Thomas to find out a bit more about the first amplifier that the company has made.


Improving a streaming system depends on the nature of the system. The most basic and straightforward streaming system is a laptop and a DAC (digital to analogue converter). The audiophile approach is to use a dedicated audio server and streamer, sometimes built into the same box. Many take the convenient route of a smartphone/tablet and […]


Rega founder and designer Roy Gandy has often said that there are no other turntable designers who he can turn to do discuss the topic that is obviously close to his and our hearts. He feels that few if any of his peers fully understand what’s required of a turntable, which is essentially to measure […]


The biggest thing you can do to improve the sound of a music system is to make changes to the room. The sound produced by a pair of speakers bounces off the walls, floor and ceiling and the nature of those structures has a significant effect on what you hear. You can hear this if […]


It’s a nuisance that cables make so much difference and I can understand why some flatly refuse to accept that they do, it must make life a bit simpler. However, all it takes is a quick comparison in a reasonably revealing system and anyone can hear the inconvenient truth, a situation that is not limited […]


Contrary to the view that some people get, reviewing audio equipment is a ‘pastime’ that is fraught with dangers. For a start, the primary measuring ‘implement’ is a very personal, and individually flawed pair of ears. Secondly the environment varies not only with every reviewer on the planet, but also in terms of humidity, temperature, […]


A car’s suspension has a number of functions but one of them is to isolate the driver from bumps and irregularities in the road surface, to do this a suspension system consists of a spring and a damper (or shock absorber). The spring is selected on the basis of the weight it has to support […]


Computer Audio Design is a small London based company with a quest to get the best possible sound out of digital audio. Designer Scott Berry is a hair shirt sporting purist, a state of affairs made explicit by his 1543 MkII DAC which has only one input and one pair of outputs (USB and RCA […]