The Much Anticipated OPPO PM-1 and HA-1 Are Getting Closer!

Posted 3 days ago Tags OPPO Headphones, OPPO HA-1, OPPO PM-1, OPPO PM-2, OPPO Headphone Amp, Highend Headphones,

Hi Guys,

I have to say a big thanks to OPPO UK who have just popped in with both the new OPPO PM-1 headphones and HA-1 headphone amp so that I could spend the afternoon playing with both as I couldn’t make the launch last Friday as I was setting up for our PMC/Bryston event.

It really isn’t everyday that a new brand enters the headphone arena, we all know that OPPO have proved their worth with their stunning Blu-Ray players over the last few years but the headphone market is a very competitive place at the moment, particularly at the highend so as a big fan of what OPPO have achieved with their disc spinners I have been looking forward to both these products for some time now.

Obviously they come with the fantastic OPPO packaging that OPPO are renowned for, as for the headphones they are extremely light, beautifully made and one of the most comfortable headphones I have tried. They use  Planar Magnetic drivers but they really are very easy to drive, I tried them on the Astell&Kern AK240 and that was a brilliant combination with plenty of volume, I have yet to compare with other headphones at the same price point but knowing the lengths OPPO went to for the development of the PM-1 I’m very confident that they will take the fight to the establishment, they are priced at £1099.

As for the headphone amp, well I have been really excited by this since talking to the guys from OPPO when they paid me a visit a few months back, it really is extremely well built and caters for all inputs, has low and high gain setting, balanced and single ended inputs and outputs, runs in Pure Class A and is based around the ESS 9018 Sabre32 Reference DAC which will decode everything including the latest DSD codecs, best of all though it has VU meters or a Spectrum analyser which you can choose between :-) The first thing I did was set it to high gain and grab the notoriously hard to drive HiFiMan HE-‘6’s which to be fair most headamps can’t drive but the OPPO HA-1 really didn’t have any problems which is a great start. I’m still waiting for the price to be confirmed 100% but hopefully it will be a similar price to the PM-1’s, which to be fair will be an absolute bargain, oh yeah, and you get full remote control which is quite rare with headamps.

In other OPPO headphone news, OPPO announced last week the PM-2 Headphones, which won’t come with all the goodies of the PM-1 but uses very similar drivers, looks the same and will cost £699, that should be an extremely successful headphone for OPPO.

Anyway here are a few pics, I will have both the headphones and amp here hopefully towards the end of the month on permanent demo, both are available to order now with delivery due later this month all being well.

How Exciting

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Classic OPPO Packaging

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Beautiful Dark Cherry Presentation Box

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Time to Un-Box the amp

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Certainly a winning combination

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Thanks,

Paul.


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A Huge Thank You!

Posted 6 days ago Tags pmc speakers, PMC Twenty.26, PMC Twenty Range, PMC Twenty Speakers, Bryston,

Hi All,

Both Wendy and myself just wanted to say a huge thanks to everyone who came along yesterdays to the 2nd annual PMC and Bryston Open day, we had an amazing turnout with guys and gals coming from all over the country which I find quite astonishing, we really do appreciate everyone’s efforts as the whole point of these events are to have fun and almost make it like a big HiFi social club and this just wouldn’t be possible without everyones support, so again, a big thank you :-)

Another huge thank you must go to Tom Barron and also Pete Thomas from PMC who both stayed all day and really helped the day go off so smoothly and helped make it a lot of fun, these guys are just a pleasure to be around, also to Rachel and Keith at PMC for organising the Goodie bags that went down a real treat :-) Really both Wendy and myself would like to say a big thanks to PMC in general for all their efforts and support since we launched as it really has made a big difference.

I guess the stars of the day though were certainly the new Twenty.26’s, I have been blown away by these speakers since I first heard them so it was great for others to get a chance to listen and needless to say they got nothing but fantastic feedback from absolutely everyone, PMC make amazing speakers, we all know that, but these new Twenty.26’s really are something quite special and are quite impossible to fault, after Tom giving them a good workout yesterday they are most certainly well run in now so if anyone would like to come in for a listen at anytime please feel free.

So thanks to everyone again and roll on the 3rd Annual PMC and Bryston Open Day, I wonder what new goodies PMC or Bryston will have for us for that one :-)

Cheers,

Paul & Wendy.


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Busy setting up for tomorrow’s PMC & Bryston Open Day!

Posted 1 week ago Tags PMC Speakers, PMC Twenty.26, PMC Twenty Range, PMC Twenty Speakers,

Hi All,

Just thought I’d take a quick break from setting up for tomorrow’s PMC and Bryston open day to blog a quick update.

We are expecting things to kick off around 10’ish although I will be here from 8am onwards so feel free to come in anytime, Tom Barron is getting here early and Peter Thomas will be arriving during the morning. So in the downstairs demo room we will be running the Twenty.24’s powered by a Bryston B135 SST2 integrated amp. For the main event upstairs we will be running the brand new Twenty.26’s driven by Bryston 7B SST2 Mono Blocks with their Media player all going through the Bryston SP3 processor, please feel free to bring any music along that you’d like to try.

We have been running the Twenty.26’s since we got them last week and they are now starting to free up nicely, I had been running them on our new Devialet 240 for the last week which sounded brilliant but yesterday I started running them on the Bryston rig, I didn’t think that they could sound any better to be honest but with Bryston behind them they really do come into their own.

After listening to the Twenty.26’s now for a week or so I really can’t sing their praises high enough, I know I am a bit of a PMC fan, unashamedly, but these are a very special speaker, the thing that strikes you with the 26’s is the overall balance, they just create a picture where nothing overpowers or dominates with great detail, stunning mid and a powerful but controlled bottom end, in my opinion they are a clear upgrade from the OB1i, even the PB1i, I really don’t know how PMC do it.

Anyway really looking forward to tomorrow so I can spend all day listening to them :-)

PMC have very kindly laid on some Goodie Bags, so why not come over in the morning to join us for a coffee and and a croissant, more food will be available around lunchtime, I think Ocado laid on a special van for us yesterday with the amount of food that turned up, Wendy has only got 6 loafs of bread to butter and fill, so plenty to go round :-)

Finally don’t forget that we will be offering 10% off tomorrow on any PMC or Bryston products bought on the day, that is £575 off a pair of Twenty.26’s, certainly not to be sniffed at.

Anyway back to setting up and carrying on running in those twenty.26’s, its a tough job.

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Hope to see you tomorrow,

Cheers,

Paul.


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T+A HV Series Now On Demo!

Posted 1 week ago Tags T+A HV-Series, T+A PA 3000 HV, T+A MP 3000 HV,

Hi Everyone, 

Just a quick message to say that we now have 2 components from the Multi award winning T+A HV Series now on demo, these were first launched just over a year ago to much praise at CES 2013 and just recently the range was expanded to 5 products.

We have both the PA 3000 HV integrated amp and the MP 3000 HV media player on demo. I have been really keen to spend some time with these since being totally blown away by the V Series range that we had at HFL around a year ago, the V10 mono blocks really did make the PMC MB2i’s sing like never before.

The HV Series, which stands for High Voltage is a totally different way of designing the amplifier architecture meaning that it runs at a much higher voltage than your normal amplifiers resulting in extremely low distortion levels and a very neutral and clean presentation. As for the media Player, there really isn’t anything it can’t do, other than vinyl of course, as it will read of a NAS, play cd’s, play internet radio, you can plug in a USB hard drive or thumb drive, all controlled by a very intuitive iPad app.

Upon first sight of the HV series you can’t fail to be impressed by the quality of the units from their size, weight to overall build quality, especially the casework and back panel connectors which just screams ‘Highend’. 

I had a good listen yesterday and what you get is an extremely clean, detailed and natural presentation but thanks to the amps Class A design they really do get hold of the speakers and give great drive and insight to any recording unlike any Integrated amp you’d have heard before.

Obviously it goes without saying that if you’d like to come in for a listen please get in touch, anyway rather than me rambling on please find more information on our website and here are a few pics that really don’t do these units justice -

http://hifilounge.co.uk/hv-Series


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PMC Twenty.26 Speakers are in the Building :-)

Posted 2 weeks ago Tags pmc speakers, PMC Twenty.26, PMC Twenty Speakers, PMC Twenty Range,

Hi All,

It was 6pm last night and I was about to leave for the the day when Brian, the PMC driver, turned up with a very nice surprise, a pair of brand spanking new Twenty.26’s, obviously the thoughts of an early finish disappeared as I stayed long into the evening to get them unboxed and to give them a good listen.

Well they certainly feel like a Twenty speaker on steroids from the size of box, to the plinth, the cabinet, even the grills are thicker to accommodate the protruding mid range, and they weigh a fair bit also, I listened to them last night for an hour or so, driven by the Devialet 170 and they seem to be everything I’d hoped for, fantastic Twenty clarity with real bass presence and a very natural sounding mid, obviously they are a bit tight at the moment so I’ll move them upstairs later and run them for a few days and get some Bryston power running through their veins, that should free them up nicely in readiness for our PMC and Bryston open day on April 12th, details below - 

http://hifilounge.tumblr.com/post/79352653089/pmc-and-bryston-owners-club-april-12th-10-off-any

It just dawned on my that my next weeks work is listening to the Twenty.26’s at volume to get them run in ready for the event, it’s a tough life :-) Got Daft Punk’s ‘Random Access Memories’ playing at the moment and they really do sound fantastic.

Here are a few pics, not the best quality admittedly,

Hope to see you on the 12th April.

Cheers,
Paul.


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Arcam AV950 Processor Now On Permanent Demo!

Posted 2 weeks ago Tags Arcam, Arcam AV950,

Hi All,

Just a quick post to let everyone know that that Arcam have now released the AV950 processor and we now have one of the first models on permanent demonstration, we have also now got the Arcam P777 to demo it with for the full Arcam experience, although that is due to be replaced much later in the year with a new 7 channel power amp based on the amps in the soon to be released P49 amplifier.

The AV950/P777 combo were the stars at a Home Cinema Open Day that we did back in February so if you’d like to come in and experience a high end cinema processor that is equally at home with 2 channel please get in touch to arrange a demo, being a former AV888 owner personally the AV950 is certainly one piece of kit that will be finding itself in my home setup very shortly :-)

Here are a couple of links to a couple of other blogs I wrote regarding the AV950 - 

http://hifilounge.tumblr.com/post/72857097013/arcam-announce-the-fmj-av950-processor-a49-integrated

http://hifilounge.tumblr.com/post/75361743548/a-big-thanks-to-everyone-who-attended-our-cinema-day

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Thanks,

Paul.


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Devialet Land At HiFi Lounge!

Posted 3 weeks ago Tags Devialet, Devialet 110, Devialet 170, Devialet 240, Devialet 500,

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Hi All,

I am really pleased to announce that we have now got our Devialet demo models at HiFi Lounge, this is a brand that I have been following with some interest for some time now, it is very rare for a new company to launch in hifi and to make such a splash with nothing but positive comments across the board, even from the most respected journalists who have heard it all before, such as the comment below -

Devialet’s amplifier is the most extraordinary product I have reviewed for Stereophile. Superb sound quality, future-proof design, everything you need in one box - it is the epitome of what a high-end audio product should be. Wow! - John Atkinson in Stereophile Magazine

Devialet are a French company formed in 2007 with its first product the D-Premier launched to amazing critical acclaim in 2009, the range was then expanded to 4 products in 2013. I think it is fair to say that there is nothing like a Devialet, for one it looks stunning, but more importantly it has the performance to back those looks up. At its heart it is a hybrid amplifier section, the first of its kind mixing Class A to give that musical sound but driven by Class D known for power and a compact size. The range also have phono stages built in, a streamer, a top class DAC that converts all sources to 24/192, even vinyl, all configured online and saved to an SD card. Every model sounds exactly the same it is just a matter of choosing the spec for you and matching the power to your speakers. Is the Devialet the ‘Future Of HiFi?’ as described by many, why not pop into HFL to find out for yourself.

As ever please find a few pictures below, now I’m off to figure out how it actually all works and more importantly how it sounds. If you’d like to explore the Devialet range in more detail please feel free to come in for a listen, we have the 110, 170 and 240 on demo, please follow the link to the listings on our website for more info -

http://hifilounge.co.uk/devialet

We will also be having a Devialet Day, hopefully in May so please check our events page for more info once a date has been arranged.

Its an exciting day as all 3 Devialet models arrive!

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Obviously the first one to unbox is the top of the range 240!

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The ultimate portable system, comes with its own bag, nice!

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Has there ever been a prettier piece of HiFi?

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The back panel slides off for easy access to all the connections!

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2 very different worlds collide, Devialet and Primaluna! 

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All 3 Devialet models together!

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Thanks,

Paul.


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PMC and Bryston Owners Club April 12th + 10% Off any PMC or Bryston Products Bought On The Day!

Posted 1 month ago Tags PMC Speakers, Bryston, PMC Twenty.26, PMC Twenty Range, Bryston 4B SSt2, Bryston SP3, Bryston BDP-2,

Hi Everyone,

I can’t believe it was a year ago that we held the first PMC & Bryston owners club here at HiFi Lounge which turned out to be a very successful day and great fun so I am pleased to announce that we are going to do it all again this year on April 12th in conjunction with PMC.

What will make this event very special will be that we will be showcasing the brand new PMC Twenty.26 speaker which will now sit at the top of the very successful PMC Twenty range. If you didn’t make the trip to Bristol for the HiFi show in February where they were launched, which unfortunately I didn’t, then this will be the perfect opportunity to hear the new Twenty.26 which I have heard extremely positive things about from anyone who did hear them at Bristol, in fact the feedback has been so good that I ordered a pair for myself for home, without even hearing them, something I never thought I’d do, but PMC have never let me down yet :-)

Along with Tom Barron, who many of you will know, Peter Thomas, the co-founder and chief designer at PMC, will be coming along as he did last year to chat and answer any questions you may have regarding all things PMC and Bryston, for those of you who met him last year will know Pete is an extremely easy going guy who is happy to answer any questions.

As we did last year, as a special one day only promotion, we will be offering 10% off any PMC or Bryston products bought on the day, including on the new Twenty.26 so certainly an offer not to miss.

So the plan is to have the Twenty.26’s running in our upstairs demo room driven by either the Bryston 4B SST2 or the 7B SST2 mono block power amps, using the Bryston BDP-2 media player and BDA-2 DAC combo as the source playing a selection of 16bit and 24bit music, running through the Bryston SP3 processor and if anyone wants to hear any vinyl we can use our Michell Orbe. Downstairs will be a smaller system comprising of the PMC Twenty.23’s with a Bryston B135 SST2 integrated amp and not to forget that in our headphone room we will have the reference Bryston BHA-1 headphone amp, paired with the BDA-1 DAC and BCD-1 Cd player with a selection of the best headphones available today, so plenty of PMC and Bryston fun to be had for all the family :-)

We will also have food and drink available throughout the day so there is no reason to go anywhere else other than to come to HiFi Lounge on April 12th, don’t worry if you are not a PMC or Bryston owner please feel free to come along anyway, as long as you are a music lover you are more than welcome. 

If you’ve got any questions regarding the day please feel free to get in touch.

Hope to see as many fellow PMC and Bryston enthusiasts as possible on April 12th to help make the 2nd PMC/Bryston Owners Club get together as memorable at the first meeting last year.

Please see a selection of Pictures what we will be showcasing on April 12th -

Hear the Stunning New PMC Twenty.26 Speakers.

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Come and Meet Mr PMC, Pete Thomas,

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Powered By Bryston Power.

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Through the Bryston SP3 Processor.

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Using the Bryston BDP-2/BDA-2 Combo as the source.

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See you on April 12th,

Cheers,

Paul.


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A Big Thanks From HFL to Everyone Who Came To Our Led Zeppelin Day!

Posted 1 month ago

Hi Everyone,

Both Wendy and myself just wanted to say a quick thank you to everyone who came along to our Led Zeppelin day yesterday and what a day it was with a fantastic turnout, who would have thought that Led Zeppelin were so popular :-)

From 9am till 8pm we pretty much rammed to capacity with most of the time standing room only available in the main demo room upstairs where we were playing a variety of vinyl, cd and some extremely rare video footage, at one point I thought we were going to have to lock the doors but I think we just about got away with it and everyone seemed to have a great time.

I’d like to thank Dave Lewis for helping promote it and run the day and also for making it so much fun, there really isn’t nothing he doesn’t know about Led Zeppelin, a real fountain of knowledge and a top bloke, so thanks again Dave.

Have I been converted to all things Led Zeppelin? well after around 12 hours of being blasted constantly with a variety of their music I have to admit to being a bit Led Zepped out at the moment, but there is some of their music that I really liked and even ended up with a favourite Led Zeppelin song, which wasn’t Stairway to Heaven, which it previously had been, that song being ‘Trampled Under Foot’ a really great song and as I understand all the albums are due to be remastered and re-relased this year, so that will make a good time to explore Led Zeppelin further.

So thanks again to everyone who came along for helping make it so much fun and hope to see you at our next Open Day, the PMC and Bryston Annual Owners Club on April 12th.

Cheers,

Paul & Wendy.


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Devialet Are Coming To HiFi Lounge!

Posted 1 month ago Tags Devialet, Devialet 110, Devialet 170, Devialet 240, Devialet 500,

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Hi All,

We are definitely not going to be bringing on as many brands this year as last year but there are a couple more I’d love to add to our portfolio to offer our customers, whatever we do bring on has got to add something new and unique to our line up so I have to admit I’m really excited to announce that yesterday we signed up to be Premier Devialet dealers.

Devialet may be a relatively new name in hifi but in a short space of time they have become a serious force to be reckoned with, this reputation was enforced last year at the Munich High End show when the price of entry to Devialet was dropped significantly by the 110, costing £4490 compared to the D-Premier which was nearer to £12,000.

Munich was my first taste of Devialet, I spent quite a lot of time listening to the 170, which I understand is the biggest selling Devialet, and came away nothing but impressed by the quality of the sound, I love a detailed sound and that is what you get with Devialet, neutral, detailed, clean but still retaining all the musicality you could want, never becoming fatiguing.

The sound quality is fantastic but equally it is the look of the Devialet range that sets them apart from traditional HiFi components, they really are a top lifestyle product but most importantly doesn’t compromise on the audio quality, then there is that remote, a real thing of beauty, I really can’t wait to get my hands on that :-)

The Devialet range is a powered by a combination of a class A and class D amplifier working together with everything operating in the digital domain, even vinyl is converted to digital before the Devialet process’s it, all very clever, you also use their online config tool to set the Develiat up, like cartridge loadings, amount of power to use from the amp, labelling inputs then save that to a SD card and the re-boot the devialet for the new setting to take effect, it also has a built in streamer, it really is amazing what is crammed into the sleek case.

We will have the 110,170 and 240 on demo shortly, with a Devialet day hopefully planned for sometime in May, please check back as once the demo models are with us I will test with a variety of speakers, can’t wait to try the 240 on the Fact 12’s :-)

Please read the stunning HiFi News review to see what all the fuss is about -

http://www.absolutesounds.com/pdf/main/press/2013_09_HFN_D-170.pdf

John Atkinson from the respected Stereophile Magazine also wrote - 

"Devialet’s D-Premier amplifier is the most extraordinary product I have reviewed for Stereophile. Superb sound quality, future-proof design, everything you need in one box - it is the epitome of what a high-end audio product should be. Wow!"

Please find a link to Devialet’s website and here are a few very stylish shots - http://en.devialet.com/home-en-us/

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Need more power? then go for the 500 with 500 watts per channel.

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You can even wall mount it.

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Cheers,

Paul.


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