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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The Ugly Duckling - a new Class A integrated amp




For my home audio system... it will be ready, soon... 










A Class A 20W Hiraga-clone integrated amp...  or better: an hand-made power-amp with the add of an Alps RK-40 pot, actually.

Aesthetics will be improved, of course - i.e. here shown only the unfinished chassis...

... to get its final swan status.








Humble luxury




Beauty...













Thanking my lovely wife for the portraits...







Monday, April 17, 2017

Shinrin-yoku





Low-battery, folks?

Just reach nearest wood or forest, leave the car and walk: breathe, touch, even hug trees, look at the details around: leaves, flowers, listen to the natural sounds, reaching your ears in waves... discern difference in amplitude, tone, color: insects, birds, wind, water...

Walk, smell, listen, think or just empty your mind...





Re-charge your inner battery.








Live.

Simply.

Enjoy.








Saturday, April 15, 2017

Ralph Towner's most sought after disk? Mazzacurati's "Un'Altra Vita" OST (CAM COS 011 - 1992)




Again about Ralph?

Yes... forever!

This very disk, the soundtrack for "Un'altra Vita",  a Carlo Mazzacurati's movie starring Silvio Orlando on CAM Records, masterfully engineered by Andrea Ridolfi and containing the first recording of among most beautiful Ralph's themes - i.e. Alia's and Saverio's, then also re-recorded on ECM.




This disk is such a gem, folks... a must-have for every Towner's lover and scholar and a masterpiece recording, truly a 2die4 one!

Go, find it and enjoy!







Wednesday, April 12, 2017

... ça va sans dire!







No piece of gears will never equal an handsome cellist!





Indeed.



Sunday, April 9, 2017

Pink Floyd - The Missing Piano




A cool interesting short film about a piano hidden in the mix of Pink Floyd's "Wish you were here" classic album...




Nice shots of classic studio gears and Floyds' during the mix... and an interview with the man behind the above Mono Lake iconic shot and many Floyd's cover-art.


Saturday, April 1, 2017

Disc of the Month - Stravinsky conducts Stravinsky on Columbia Masterworks




Has been a long day, folks... too tired to try a witty, humble review of such a monster, superb disc!

I'll limit my efforts sincerely thanking my pal Enrico for suggesting this gem!



... and the Discogs' seller who kept it in pristine conditions also if I risked to get a vinyl-puzzle: the disc arrived in a plain large bubble envelope, not in a pizza-style carton!!!

Gambling and collecting... wow!

Cannot resist to add that many musicians, like - for example - Tom Waits from "Swordfishtrombone" onward should pays kudos to this disc and music and composer... just listen to side 2 first take - i.e. " Tango"!

Impressive!

Much more impressive and appropriate, Trump-wise (I feel some shivers to only write such a paradox, if you get it...): this music sounds so American... better: so, European and American, which listening to the whole disc I just had the soundtrack to my strong belief: United States of America and Americans are... just we all!

This music written by an expat;-) is as American as a Polish, Syrian, Italian, etc. etc. immigrant is a true American, Mayflower or not... Trump or not!!!

Music teaches this (and much more...) so well!


... forgetting'... must point it out clearly: BUY THIS DISC, pals!!!


Foundation Designer premium speaker-stand and Tandberg System 11



Same old story: I wasn't prepared!

My recent exposure to the Tandberg System 11 mini-monitors made me a believer... I'm so in love for these unassuming seldom heard speakers I felt comfortable investing something for an UK-made original - not MkII made in Canada replicas - Foundation Designer speakers stand pair.

I found these vintage nicely handmade beauties in the hands of a gentleman in his seventies who was down-sizing his great gears collection: he bought'em brand new about 25 years ago and they costed literally an arm and a leg back then!

The logic part of my mind was saying "Wrong! Don't buy them!"... they cost several times more than you spent for the Tandbergs'... so, no good!

My adventurous side just was shouting: "Yeah, try'em! You cannot go wrong with these!"

... yes, no... yes...YES!

I today drove about 100 km back and forth to pick up the stands... the previous owner kept them in mint conditions, with original carton-boxes with old labels, spikes and all the sealing stickers in place.

I was back to my studio in half an hour hurrying up as I cannot stand in my shoes to try the Foundations' in my smaller system.





So what?

Well, I previously, temporarily listened to the Tandbergs' simply placed on top of the Cabasses', shame on me;-) so, you'll guess, something easy to improve.

... yet the sound was - nonetheless and already - surprisingly, embarrassingly, incredibly good!

... now, after lowering the height and improving the... heck, YES, the speakers foundation... the combo simply disappears in the room, with very quick, well defined and beautiful low end and silky upper frequencies.

The overall result is well exceeding the sum of the parts!

I listened to some classic Paniagua's Harmonia Mundi and I almost fell from my lounge chair: dynamics and decay so greatly improved to my sincere surprise... a superb result, indeed!

I already see my pals Franco and Daniele's faces!!!







They who both already appreciated the Tandbergs' ... like me, they'll swear something magical going on!



Something so musical and supremely unrelated to lesser "facts" like money, for example!

I love my braveheart-side;-) as it's very seldom wrong... let's call it audio-instinct!


P.S. - the actual, ugly pictures of my very own studio and Foundation/Tandberg combo are here presented... proudly showing the (grunge) Rogers' alternative from Norway;-)

Stunning!