AXPONA (Jacksonville) 2012 Coverage

March 12, 2012

 
Channel D, Hegel, and Joseph Audio

Jeff Joseph wins two awards: first, for having the the oddest shaped room and second, and perhaps not in-coincidentally, having the best sounding stand-mounted loudspeakers speakers at the show – the Joseph Audio Pulsars ($7500/pair), assisted by  a Hegel H20 power amplifier ($5800).  Jeff assumed his usual position behind a huge 27″ iMac using iTunes and Channel D’s Pure Music playback software ($129), and alternated between the Apogee Duet 2 ($600) and Lynx Hilo ($2500) Firewire DACs.   I have Channel D’s Pure Music software in-house for review and will be posting my impressions in the coming weeks.

The more interesting aspect of the demonstration was the use of Channel D software and hardware products to play back vinyl.  The way this was accomplished was to take the output of an SA-1 Artemis turntable ($7800) and Graham Phantom II Supreme tonearm ($5750), fitted with both Ortofon A90 ($4600) and Haniwa HCTR 01 ($5000) moving coil cartridges, feed it to the input of the Channel D Seta preamplifier and then on to the balanced analog inputs of an Apogee Duet DAC (not shown).

The analog output of the DAC was then sent to a prototype Channel D Seta BUF-1 “Transimpedance Amplifier” ($TBA) which, through a series of DIP switches allows you to pad the output of the DAC, so that the digital volume control of the Apogee Duet could be used within a narrow 10bd or so range to preserve bits.

Channel D also demonstrated the traditional use of its Pure Vinyl software for vinyl playback using both MacPro and Mac Mini computers operated in headless mode with a MacBook Air and an iPad.

All of which seems like a complicated way to play vinyl until you realize the benefits – being able to apply RIAA equalization in software and to record your LP collection to hard disk.
 

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