There is a (Christmas) Season (Turn, Turn, Turn)

project-beatles-turntable

Another post about a turntable? This one is exclusively at Best Buy. It’s a Pro-Ject Carbon Esprit SB, which is considered to be an excellent table. The list price is normally $600, but this one costs an extra fifty bucks because it’s a Beatles Edition.

A competitor of Pro-Ject, called Rega, had a Queen special limited edition turntable that originally went for the same price, but it was eventually offered at a discount. I’m not in the market for a new turntable myself, having just replaced the broken RCA plugs on my 30-year-old Thorens turntable, but I’ll be interested in seeing how well the Beatles table sells.

Denton Doctors

Wharfedale Denton 80th Anniversary Edition
Wharfedale Denton 80th Anniversary Edition

The finest sounding loudspeaker I have ever owned is now one of the best-ever audio bargains. Music Direct is offering the Wharfedale Denton 80th Anniversary Edition for only $400/pair, with free FedEx shipping. Order directly from Music Direct, or through Amazon.

Don’t be put off by the relatively small size of the cabinet and the 5-inch woofer. The cabinet is heavy and solid, with beautiful mahogany wood veneer — not cheap vinyl — on all sides, and bass response from the Kevlar woofer is excellent.

Rear panel with bi-amp option (jumpers included if not wanted)
Rear panel with bi-amp option. If you aren’t familiar with bi-amp, the usual idea is to use a powerful transistor amp to drive the woofer and a low-watt tube amp for the tweeter. Personally, I think it’s a bit excessive, but I might give it a try someday.

This is a warm, smooth and refined speaker, yet richly detailed and musically dynamic, in the best British mini-monitor tradition. The Denton is not ideal for a surround sound system, but for music it is magnificent, presenting an incredibly deep and wide sense of space. On 24-inch stands, not too close to walls, the low end is nicely well-articulated. Adding a subwoofer is not only unnecessary, it would be a mistake, in my opinion.

If you happen to read this in time, and you’re at all interested, take a look at online reviews, then take advantage of the deal before there are no more new Wharfedale Dentons to be had at this price, or at any price.

11/30 – Sorry, but the price has gone back up to $500. 🙁

A Little of Annie

Thanks to Annie Little’s Facebook page, I’ve been keeping tabs on her career ever since she appeared in the Amazon commercial for the second-generation Kindle. She was on last week’s episode of </scorpion>, playing a museum director and not, thankfully, a murder victim.

Thanks to YouTube, I haven’t had to do much video capturing and editing for a long time. But I needed to do it for this post, and I must say that the process sure is a heck of a lot easier and faster, with much better resulting quality, than it was ten years ago. One quirk, now that video can be embedded directly with HTML5, instead of relying upon a Flash plugin, is that each Web browser has its own style of player.

The return of an audio classic?

Amazon is listing the Technics SL1200MK5 turntable as being “temporarily out of stock.” But it was discontinued a long time ago and hasn’t been available, except used, for years. If Panasonic were going to start producing it again you’d expect the listing to be a pre-order.

01_technics

Well, the fact is that Technics did put the venerable SL1200 back into production this year, in a limited edition with Abbey Road Studios. It’s a 2-year licensing deal, and the thing costs $4000, but according to The Vinyl Factory in London there will also be a standard edition. If that’s what Amazon is offering, for less than $500, the actual model number will be SL1200G. But I have my doubts, as the standard edition is supposed to be priced about the same as the limited edition.