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Paul Ridden

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Pavilion wireless speaker mixes concrete with a copper twist

Unwelcome color, nasty distortion and unnatural reproduction. Those are the kind of annoying qualities that loudspeaker housing made from cheap materials can add to the listening experience. This has led some audio designers to look for a high density and weighty solution to the cabinet vibration problem. Concrete. Though that does perhaps produce images in the mind of boring and ugly monoliths dropping through the living room floor to the basement below, Germany's Concrete Audio and Italy's Digital Habit(s) would beg to differ. Now Los Angeles-based Hult Design is hoping to join the concrete party with a crowdfunding effort aimed at bringing its Pavilion speakers to market.Read More

Music

Dry Switch EQ debuts with RevStar guitars

Yamaha is coming up to its 50th anniversary in the guitar business, and has launched a new series of solid body electric guitars inspired by café racer style motorbikes of the 1960s to celebrate. Of the eight RevStar models, seven include Yamaha's new Dry Switch tone enhancement technology that essentially replaces coil split wiring found in some guitars with passive circuitry for single coil-like tone from humbucking pickups.Read More

3D Printing

Cheetah strikes an odd chord with 3D-printed dreadnought

Back in January, South Africa's Hans Fouche demonstrated the capabilities of his custom-made Cheetah 3D printer by creating a full-sized lawnmower. Last month saw the release of the Cheetah 2, which Fouche celebrated by printing a working car jack made from plastic and now an acoustic guitar. What makes this dreadnought stand apart from instruments printed by the likes of Olaf Diegel and Customuse is that the whole guitar (apart from steel strings and tuners) has been produced by the printer, not just the body.Read More

Music

Last minute stocking stuffers for the musician in your life

String-pickers, digital tunesmiths and bin bashers are not the easiest of folks to buy gifts for. Some are quite conservative and prefer tried and tested old tech while others are gearheads who like to gather in the latest, the novel and the bizarre just in case the need arises. And then there's the (often) eye-watering cost of instruments and accessories to consider. The holidays are almost upon us and a state of muso-related panic may now be setting in. Here are a few ideas that should hit the right note.Read More

Music

Braven gets in the mix with Fuse

It wasn't too long ago that DJs would need a good-sized van to haul around the equipment needed to get a party moving. Digital mixing stations like the DDJ-WeGO, and even all-in-one powerhouses like the Urban 500, helped lighten the load. But, with everyone carrying around music libraries in their pockets, portable DJ tools like the iRig MIX made anyone with an iPhone or iPad wired for sound. Rugged speaker maker Braven brings mixing on the move to the wireless generation with the release of the Fuse.Read More

Music

BluGuitar Amp1 System now complete, starts shipping

Europe's Strat King Thomas Blug brought his full-fat tone knowledge to market earlier this year in the shape of a 100 W boutique amp called the Amp1. The celebrated string picker has been busy adding to his BluGuitar platform ever since, and has now announced that, with the recent addition of two new guitar amp cabinets, the Amp1 System is now complete and available to buy.Read More

Music

Audeze EL-8 Titanium headphones shun iPhone audio jack for Lightning port

Whatever your mobile music poison, there's a good chance that your earphones or headphones are plugged into the tune-playing source hardware via the 3.5 mm audio jack. Earlier this year we reviewed some earphones from Hong Kong-based Zorloo that took a wholly different route, and one that served up a good slice of high resolution goodness in the process. The new EL-8 Titanium headphones come shipped with an audio cable which, like the Z:ero earphones, sports a built-in headphone amp and high resolution DAC in the cable. But this one ends in a Lightning connector.Read More

Computers

nOb offers precision control of virtually any onscreen element

The scroll wheel of a computer mouse can be a bit of an imprecise monster when it comes to making fine adjustments in media production software like video editing suites or digital audio workstations, leading to frustrating back and forth marathons or manual interventions to get onscreen elements to behave. The delightfully retro-looking nOb is kind of like a supercharged scroll wheel that's used for making ultra-fine adjustments of parameters, settings and screen elements.Read More

Music

Hifiman eyes high end mobile market with Edition X headphones

Earlier this year, Delaware-based high-end headphone maker Hifiman launched a new flagship planar magnetic open back headphone to much audiophile and pundit applause, with the nanometer-thick diaphragm and non-symmetrical planar driver design offering critic-silencing clarity and sonic detail. They were big. They were beautiful. And, at US$3,000, they were eye-wateringly expensive. Hifiman's president and founder Dr. Fang Bian says that he wanted to offer a model with similar features and performance, but one that was more portable and didn't need a large expensive amp to run it. This has been realized in the new Edition X.Read More

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