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Audiophile Reference Music

Audiophile Master Series

Built in Boulder

The Audiophile’s Guide Reference Music disc is a must-have for anyone setting up, tuning, tweaking, or just making sure their stereo system is running perfectly. This is the ultimate setup disc, a perfect companion for Paul McGowan’s book, The Audiophile’s Guide, a comprehensive 210-page instruction manual unlocking the secrets to great sound. On the Audiophile’s Reference Music disc you’ll find everything you need for perfectly dialing in your system, from channel and polarity checks, depth adjustment tracks, center imaging perfection, soundstaging, setting up the system’s bottom end, a burn-in track, adjusting for small, medium and large groups of musicians, to one of the most spectacular drum recordings imaginable. From subtle to fireworks, it’s all here in the one remarkable Audiophile Master. Couple this disc with Paul’s book and together you’ll upgrade your system to new sonic heights you never thought possible.

Recorded in Pure DSD on the Sonoma system, this will be your ultimate reference disc. Comes complete with a 40-page booklet, SACD playable on any CD or DVD player, and a data disc with all the master files.


Available separately or bundled with the book

Audiophile Reference Music

Product Description

Paul McGowan has poured his 45 years of high-end audio experience into his landmark book, The Audiophile’s Reference Guide. This companion disc, The Audiophile’s Reference Music, is the must-have component that together work their magic. Follow along with easy step-by-step instructions on setting up your listening position, speaker placement, or simply tuning up an already great system. Each musical track was meticulously recorded for the purposes explained in the included 40-page booklet, or the more in-depth explanation and instructions in The Audiophile’s Guide book. Between this reference disc and Paul’s book, you can make magic with only a few hours of tweaking invested on a Saturday afternoon. The specially designed burn-in track can be used every time you get a new piece of equipment. And the last three tracks on the Reference Music Disc are alone worth the price of the disc. Whether you want to challenge your system, make certain it’s working properly, spend a few hours tweaking it to perfection, The Audiophile’s Reference Music Disc is a must-have component.

This is one direct-to-master recording you don’t want to miss out on. Each music track is a sonic treasure available as a direct-to-master exclusively from Octave Records.

(disc also includes channel checks that are not included on this sampling)

Phase Check In
Phase Check Out
Room Bass Response
Purity Test
Center Channel Adjustment
Center Channel Soundstage
Depth Check 1
Depth Check 2
Depth Check 3
Small Ensemble
Simple and Detailed
Medium Ensemble
Big Synth
Drum Solo
Burn-In Track

Recorded over four months, The Audiophile’s Reference Music laid down tracks in Octave’s Boulder studio, PS Audio’s main warehouse (for BIG sound), and Lyons Colorado’s Animal Lane Studio. Every effort was made to maintain not only the purity of recordings, but the accuracy of miking, distance, and purpose. The three depth tracks were recorded in PS Audio’s warehouse with centimeter-precision so that when you listen at the three intervals: 3 feet, 6 feet, and 9 feet, you can be certain what you are hearing is precise. Using The Audiophile’s Guide Reference book and this Reference disc, it’s easy to follow the step-by-step instructions to obtain near-perfect depth, imaging, tonal balance and 3 dimensional sound where your speakers disappear and the musicians seem in the room with you.

  • One pressing Austrian gold pressed dual-layer SACD
  • Pure DSD + PROMastered CD layers
  • Separate DVD data disc with all masters
  • 40-page book
  • Pure DSD mastered by Gus Skinas on the Sonoma mastering system
  • DSD64, DSDDirect Mastered 192kHz 24 bit, 96kHz 24 bit, 44.1kHz 16 bit PCM download
  • No compression in the mastering process
  • CD layer of SACD playable on any CD player
  • Mastering monitored through the PS Audio DirectStream DAC
  • All tracks hand curated on the Infinity IRSV in PS Audio’s Music Room Two
  • Limited edition one-pressing physical media

Honoring the Music and Those Who Make It

Our mission at Octave Records™ is simple – respect musicians by paying them fairly, and respect their music by bringing it to life in the highest-quality possible.

Too often, musicians have to absorb the costs of production, leaving them little or any earnings – or even putting them in debt. And the quality of their recordings end up in last place. We at PS Audio and Octave Records are dedicated to correcting these inequities.

To support musicians, Octave™ covers 100% of all studio, mixing, mastering, production, distribution, and marketing expenses so that artists may directly share in retail sales revenues – while retaining ownership of their music.

Octave Records is dedicated to offering the highest-quality recordings in high-resolution formats including pure DSD on SACD , as well as 192kHz PCM. Located in Boulder, Colorado, Octave utilizes the world’s finest studio equipment, based around the acclaimed Sonoma™ DSD recording, mixing, and mastering system. Gus Skinas, our world-renowned mastering engineer, has hundreds of album credits and helped design the Sonoma system.

Holy crap!

Tom Rollins

Paul sent me a pre-release copy of Michelle's drum solo. Wow. Never heard anything like that. Turn this up and see if your system is up to the task of reproducing this amazing recording.

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My system never sounded like this

D. Lange, Chicago

Simply put, with one afternoon of following the book's step by step instructions my stereo is transformed. Never have my speakers vanished until now. Highly recommended.

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