July, 2019





An epic struggle

First things first, I owe you an apology. This is July’s Newsletter and I am emailing it to you in August. Yes, it’s all true and it is my fault. We weren’t quite ready to launch the video I want you to see so we waited.

See the smiling face above? That’s PS Audio’s senior analog engineer, Darren Myers. And why’s he smiling? Because after months of hair-pulling design agony he’s finally able to share the fruits of his labor.

Designing new and innovative approaches to classic equipment is hard enough, but then throw in an obsession with perfection and you have a tall mountain to climb. Darren set out to craft a 100% discrete FET low noise phono preamplifier that would challenge all comers. To do that he had to explore approaches that have never before found their way into phono preamplifier designs—and then make all that affordable.

A tall order, especially considering just how good phono preamps are today. 

Watch the video of what Darren was hoping to achieve and what he went through to get there while designing Stellar Phono.

Watch the video



The sound of components

“Every component in a circuit has a sound to it. Altogether, the hundreds (or thousands) of parts that make our HiFi systems work contribute a mash of sonic qualities that we end of listening through.

It’s rather a dose of hubris to think we can ever get perfection out of all the various flavors and colorations each component adds.

Of course, an easy way to not get flummoxed by all these problems is to ignore them altogether. There’s plenty of engineers who honestly believe one resistor sounds the same as any other. It’s how we wind up with mindless and heartless designs some people are unknowingly subjected to.”

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Essential elements

When our friends at audiophile label Stockfisch Records in Germany wanted to up their game in the recording arts, where did they turn? To a Power Plant, of course. Check out the picture above. Note that buried in the back of all that fancy recording equipment is a tiny looking P20 Power Plant at the heart of their studio.

Of course, when sound quality matters, most audiophiles understand the importance of regulating and perfecting the AC power, but how many recording studios get it? Not too many and the reasons are simple. In the Pro World, there’s very little in the way of recognition of what we as audiophiles consider important.

Most studios are more concerned with pleasing record producers than the people who will eventually be consuming their work. But, a few labels have us as their audience, and that’s where we can really make a difference with the best equipment.



Copper Magazine

“Back about 1972 I encountered the brand Quintessence, at J.C. Gordon Company in St. Louis. His store was the first place where I heard an ARC/Tympani system—and I wasn’t really sure what to make of it.

Hearing “You’re So Vain” on a big boy multi-amped ARC/ Tympani system, I said, “I think it’s kind of a jukeboxey sound.” What I meant was that it was big and tubey and spacious, and I didn’t know how to describe it then. Shaw immediately said, “oh, I think it’s a GREAT sound”—and it was, really. It just wasn’t at all what I was used to.”

Read the whole story of Quintessence.

Copper is cost-free, ad-free, and committed to great articles without an attitude.

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Mr. Good Boy

New ideas and ways of getting music into the hands of people is always interesting and I am continually surprised by how innovative people can be.

Take for example the Mr. Good Boy Record cart pictured above. Imagine you’re part of a forward-thinking company and management decides to treat the team to something different, like a portable record cart for the day. They wheel this thing in and your team members are encouraged to join in and play vinyl. If you like what you hear, there’s likely a way to purchase the vinyl.

Here’s from their blurb:

“The MR. GOOD BOY record cart is the first all-in-one special events music platform and mobile record store that can operate anywhere. Invented by our team to give people an exciting and convenient way to experience, discover, and enjoy music.”

Like I said, the ways in which people innovate are a continual joyous delight and surprise.

Check it out



It arrived!

Last month’s newsletter was written by my son, Scott, who posted this great picture of reader Barry Emmerton who picked up a signed copy of my book, 99% True and sent us this great shot.

If you’d like a signed copy, go here to order one and I’ll be happy to scrawl my sloppy penmanship in the hardback for you.

There’s plenty of tell-all of the industry, PS Audio’s founding, and wild tales from across the sea to enjoy.

Order yours today