The Audio Geek!

New Music, Audirvana Plus and Audioquest Dragonfly

I downloaded some new HD Tracks albums (by Betty LaVette, Nina Simone, Hoff Ensemble) recently and in order to listen to them 'better', I thought a 15 day free trial of the hi-res Mac OS X music player, Audirvana Plus, would be in order on my new MBP-r laptop.

As for the music, I do like the emotion in Bettye LaVette's voice, the Nina Simone album is a 'classic' and I thought I would try The Hoff Ensemble, 'Quiet Winter Night' based on a review from the Audiostream webzine. I don't have a lot of church-recorded folk-influenced Nordic jazz in my collection, so if nothing else it filled a gap! In all seriousness, it is a very nice recording on the 2L label, very spacious with hauntingly sweet, delicate vocals.

Thankful N ThoughtfulI Put A Spell On YouQuiet Winter Night
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Plus I purchased an Audioquest DragonFly USB DAC for mid-fi listening while surfing the web, doing emails etc. The thing is tiny, but weighty with solid build quality and it is really cool how the dragonfly emblem on top changes colour depending on the bit rate of the song being played. Set up was a breeze on the MacBook Pro.

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My review of the Audirvana / DragonFly combo will come once the USB device has been fully run in, allegedly 200 hours according to reports on Head-Fi. Update: Still running in (slowly), only up to around 150 hours so far. I had a quick listen to ALAC tracks with the Alessandros and was quite impressed… More soon.

In the interim, the Audioquest DragonFly product page is here and a short review from 'What Hi Fi?' can be found here.