Mike Mettler

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 20, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 20, 2024  |  1 comments

Rather than spending the past few days scouting out new mattresses under the umbrella of executive branch holiday-related discounting, we’ve instead been looking into more important things — as in, new turntables. Something that caught our eye comes from Clearaudio — namely, their new Concept Signature turntable, an update on the German manufacturer’s longstanding, best-selling Concept table. Read on to see more about Clearaudio’s latest and greatest entry-level upgrade. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 15, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 15, 2024  |  8 comments

Whenever the calendar turns, almost inevitably, new Steve Hackett music is on the horizon — and thus we have before us the British guitar maestro’s 30th solo album, The Circus and the Nightwhale, which is being released tomorrow, February 16, 2024, as a 180g 1LP set via InsideOut Music. In a recent Zoom interview across the Pond with AP editor Mike Mettler, Hackett discussed the genesis (pun intended) of Nightwhale music, the importance of deploying volume dynamics whenever possible, and why Genesis was in no way going to compromise the depth and the integrity of the song arrangements they came up with for the initial vinyl release of their groundbreaking 1972 LP, Foxtrot. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 13, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 13, 2024  |  15 comments

Origin Live knows turntables, so it’s no surprise that the British company has just announced the launch of their new Strata multilayer platter mat, a universal upgrade for all turntables. Read on to see the design philosophies behind the Strata and why it might be worth taking its rightful place on top of your own table. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 12, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 12, 2024  |  7 comments

We’re always on the hunt for young companies looking to make their mark in our analog-centric world, and today we put the spotlight on Kestrel Audio. A budding young British manufacturer, Kestrel Audio is now entering its second year of operation by offering up the KT-100 turntable, an upgrade on their entry-level KT-50. Read on to see what the feature set for the KT-100 entails. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 08, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 08, 2024  |  4 comments

Record Store Day just got a whole lot hipper — and that’s because The Tragically Hip, Canada’s favorite musical sons from Kingston, Ontario, a) have just been announced as the official Canadian Ambassadors for Record Store Day Canada 2024, b) will be releasing an exclusive standalone live album, Live at CBGB’s, on said Record Store Day on April 20, and c) it will be available in both the U.S. and Canada. Read on to find out what nine tracks are on the LP and how it all came together so fully, completely. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 07, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 07, 2024  |  2 comments

Table Toppers returns anew here in 2024! Recently, we asked the AP faithful to “show us your turntables!” for an all-new feature section titled Table Toppers — and now it’s time for the first series installment of the new year. Here in Take 3, we introduce you to the system of Vince, who lives in the Santa Cruz mountains in Northern California. Read on to see all the cool gear that constitutes Vince’s setup, what his favorite stereo shop to frequent is and why, how he resolved a noise issue with his table, and what his current favorite LPs to spin on it are. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 05, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 05, 2024  |  0 comments

British hi-fi stalwarts Goldring have just introduced a special edition of their vaunted Ethos moving coil (MC) cartridge, which is appropriately named the Goldring Ethos SE. Read on to find out all the upgrades, features, and specs that make the Ethos SE cart as special as its name says it is. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Feb 01, 2024  |  First Published: Feb 01, 2024  |  20 comments

Recently, we here at AP decided to resume reviewing record cleaning machines (RCMs) on a more consistent basis — but where to start? The new Record Doctor X vacuum record cleaning machine (a.k.a. the RDX VRCM) fit the bill perfectly. It’s an RD series update that offers new features like a bi-directional turning motor that alleviates the need to turn records by hand, and it also sports a vacuum swing arm that vacuums the top surface of an LP while the bottom gets vacuumed by way of a slot under a sweeper strip. Read on to see how well the RDX VRCM cleaned both old and new records alike, and if it’s worth the notable price of admission. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Jan 31, 2024  |  First Published: Jan 31, 2024  |  7 comments

Continuing with our mission this week to help audiophile newbies join us here in the analog-centric listening family without breaking the bank, we now turn our attention to looking at cartridge-upgrade options — and who better to do that with than Grado Labs? Read on to find out how the Brooklyn-based company’s Prestige Red3 cartridge is yet another good entry point for the budding analog-loving audiophile that also serves as a good option for the longstanding AP faithful to consider as well. . .

Mike Mettler  |  Jan 29, 2024  |  First Published: Jan 29, 2024  |  5 comments

We get a lot of queries from audiophile newbies asking us how they should start on their turntable journey, so we’re going to address that all-important Q today by focusing on the Fluance RT81+, a new entry-point ’table from the notable Canadian manufacturer. Read on to see all the features and specs for the RT81+ and find out why it’s a good way to bring budding new critical listeners into our vinyl-centric world. . .

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