New Exposure D Series Amplifiers now shipping

Exposure-3010S2D-integrated-with-CD-player-lifestyle-2

Exposure has updated their two top model integrated amplifiers, both the new 2010S2 D and 3010S2 D are now in their fourth incarnation of these highly regarded integrated amps.

Like its predecessor, the new 3010S2-D comes with six line level inputs. However, one of these is now a direct AV input to enable integration within a surround sound system. Thanks to the all new preamplifier stage there is now also the possibility to fit an optional MM or MC phonostage, or a plug-in DAC board. The latter is capable of up to 192/24 bit PCM and DSD 64, and comes with two inputs: USB and BNC, with auto-switching between them. A preamp output allows for tagging-on of a separate power amplifier, in case you want to bi-amp your system. Speaker terminals are doubled to allow bi-wiring.

Special high-quality capacitors are used in the signal path, and the circuit topology has been mapped with a view to keeping signal and power supply paths short. Cascode circuitry is used for improved power supply immunity. The new power supply adds extra stages of regulation for improved performance.

The preamplifier now sports a brand new circuit board with all discrete components rather than integrated circuits, while the power amp features a fast bipolar transistor output stage for dynamic and vivid performance. A new power supply adds extra stages of regulation for improved performance.

Both the front and back panels are graced with clear ergonomics and simplicity in features, with a well laid-out and comprehensive remote control completing the package.

The 2010S2 D also features a new preamplifier stage with a direct AV input to enable integration within a surround sound system. The chassis has been upgraded with improved all-aluminium casework and extruded front panel to control resonance and stray electro-magnetic fields.

For more information and pricing hit up the links below:

Exposure 3010S2 D Integrated Amplifier

Exposure 2010S2 D Integrated Amplifier

 

Stereotype Top Albums of 2014

IMG_3368-2Another year has gone past and yet again it has produced many fantastic albums, of which we have only listened to minority of what was released in 2014, but here’s our favourites that we kept coming back to time and time again. Happy New Year!

10. First Aid Kit – Stay Gold

14589-stay-goldFirst Aid Kit’s debut albums The Lion’s Roar picked up top honours in 2012. Stay Gold continues where the Swedish sisters left off with a set of delightfully easy to listen to pop/folk tunes. Favourite tracks are opener My Silver Lining (Live on Letterman), title track Stay Gold and the Summery Waitress Song (Live). Recommended, but if First Aid Kit are new to you, I suggest you also pick up The Lion’s Roar.

9. Steve Gunn – Way Out Weather

Steve-Gunn-Way-Out-Weather-608x608Title track off Steve Gunn’s Way Out Weather would be a contender for song of the year for me, I absolutely love everything about it, and as the YouTube comments say it is an absolute crime that this has only had 30K views, come on people!! Do yourself a favour and click the link above now, everything in the world will seem right for a few minutes. The rest of the album doesn’t disappoint with stand-out tracks like Milly’s Garden and Drifter upping the tempo a bit, and the laid back Atmosphere all rewarding the listener with sonic goodness.

8. The Black Keys – Turn Blue

turn-blueIt took me a while to listen to Turn Blue because I really couldn’t get into the single Fever which was being thrashed on Hauraki. Once I did pick up the album and give it some time I was loving the fact the rest of the album is quite different from Fever… Stand-out tracks for me are title track Turn Blue (Live at BBC), Waiting on Words and In Our Prime. The Black Keys prove yet again they are one of THE bands of this decade and keep delivering solid albums by making our Top 10 lists in 2009 with Keep it Hid (Dan Auebach’s solo release), 2010 with Brothers and in 2012 with El Camino. Had I started this blog in 2008 Attack & Release probably would have made my Top album list for that year too!

7. Damien Jurado – Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son

Damien-Jurado-Brothers-And-Sisters-Of-The-Eternal-Son-608x608A friend of mine posted the track Silver Timothy on Facebook and from that I check out the rest of the album which was my first experience of Damien Jurado. What an album! Some of the songs take a few listens to grow on you, and others hit you right away. Stand-out tracks for me are Metallic Cloud (Live acoustic on Jools Holland), Silver Malcolm and Silver Joy. Yes lots of the song titles start with Silver! Go get this, it will become one of your favourite albums that you’ll listen to for years to come.

6. Conor Oberst – Upside Down Mountain

conor-oberst-1400163701Conor Oberst is best known for his work with Bright Eyes, and also features on First Aid Kit’s King of the World. Oberst is a fantastic songwriter and Upside Down Mountain has many great poetic examples, such as:

I want to walk in that howling wind ’til it scatters all my thoughts, Sit alone on that riverbank ’til I Forget that I can talk, Just listen.

Stand-out tracks for me are Time Forgot, Zigzagging Toward the Light, Enola Gay and Double Life. You can listen to the whole album here, enjoy.

5. Angus and Julia Stone (Self Titled)

Angus-Julia-StoneI’m a huge fan of Angus and Julia Stone, the Aussie brother and sister duo have served up a great range of tunes over the years and in 2014 they teamed up with Rick Rubin to create their 3rd full length studio album together. Angus’ solo album made my 2009 top album list and Julia’s solo album made my 2012 list. Stand-out tracks for me aside from single Heart Beats Slow which you’ve probably heard on the radio are: Little Whiskey, Please You and Get Home. And as always with these two, a fantastic recording too.

4. Ryan Adams (Self Titled)

ryan-adams-d138c563Ryan Adams is likely the most played artist in my home, both my wife and I really enjoy his work and many of his songs have been the soundtrack to special times in our lives. This album kicks off with Tom Petty style guitar riffs with Gimme Something Good (Check out this Letterman performance) and ends in true Adams style with a quieter yet stunning number Let Go. Everything in between is great too, this is a solid album from beginning to end, with Kim (Live on Jimmy Fallon, spot the drummer missing his first note) and Tired of Giving Up being other stand-outs.

3. Beck – Morning Phase

12275-morning-phaseBeck’s Sea Change (2002) is somewhat of an audiophile darling when it comes to recordings, I think Morning Phase can be best described as side two of Sea Change. Both in terms of outstanding recording quality and overall tone, sentiment and beautiful song writing. There’s never a dull moment on here, but if you want to show off your system try Morning, Unforgiven, and Don’t Let it Go. Oldschool Beck fans might complain that its all too grown up and beg for another Mellow Gold/Odelay/Midnight Vultures-esque record, but I don’t mind at all if Beck keeps going on this path.

2. Elbow – The Take Off and Landing of Everything

elbowElbow’s sixth studio album really hit a cord with me from the first listen. Their 2011 album Build a Rocket Boys! made 3rd place on my Top 10 list and I’ve enjoyed this record even more so it deserves to jump a position and make it to #2. Hearing Elbow live for a second time this year was a concert highlight for me, especially when they played Scattered Black and Whites which they hadn’t played live for years. Stand-out tracks are plentiful but Charge, Fly Boy Blue/Lunette (it’s so good when Lunette kicks in at 3:11) and Colour Fields would be my picks if I had to pick. Check this record out, and if you haven’t heard much of Elbow go back through the catalogue and you won’t disappointed. This is seriously good music that gets missed in a world of mass produced forgettable pop.

1. The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream

41f440f9#1 on many top album of 2014 lists, and for good reason. The War on Drugs have produced an album that appeals to so many, and in doing to have firmly put themselves on the musical map. With an 80’s rock flavour, this collection of ambient yet melodic rock songs is one that you never tire of, it can be played over and over, and at the end of each time, you’re glad its starting again. The opening 3 tracks are killer, but my favourites also include Eyes to the Wind (Live) and In Reverse (Live Acoustic), but the second track Red Eyes (Live on Letterman) would get my vote for song of the year. I can’t say it better than Pitchfork, so here’s what they wrote:

The album is loaded with songs whose greatness is revealed slowly, where the simplest, most understated chord change can blow a track wide open and elevate it from simply pretty to absolutely devastating.

You can listen to the full album here, I recommend you do so right now.

Bring on 2015, we can’t wait to see what new music comes out, especially when a new Radiohead album is being worked on…

Top gift ideas for the hard to buy for

I’m regularly reminded by my Wife how hard I am to buy for, and likewise I find it really hard to buy for my Dad. So here’s a list of ideas that might make that hard to buy for person in your life happy, I know I’d be stoked with any of these amazing gifts! And, a number of these are on special until Christmas.

An outdoor speaker for the Summer BBQ’s

The all-weather Melody wireless speaker from Soundcast, is your mobile DJ companion. Take Melody anywhere and have all the control from your phone or tablet. Don’t let Melody’s petite size or elegant looks fool you, it has the power to rock any beach, house, backyard or indoor/outdoor gathering you care to host.

Find out more

Some powered speakers for the office or games room

Audioengine put powered speakers on the map with their A5 and A2 speakers. Now in their second edition’s and even with plenty of competitor options they’re still the best. Powered speakers offer a versatile all-in-one system that doesn’t sacrifice sound. Some models such as the A2+ even feature onboard DAC’s for digital direct connection to your computer.

Find out more

A turntable for your hipster kid, or someone getting back into their old vinyl collection

Vinyl playback doesn’t have to complicated, Music Hall offers the USB TT ($499) which has its own built in phono preamplifier so you can connect it to a regular stereo RCA input and features a USB input for recording straight to PC. Find out more

Of course if you’re looking to extract every bit of detail from your spinning discs, then check out the rest of our turntable & accessories range too.

For the gamer in the family

You may not want to encourage the amount of time they spend gaming, but at least you’ll know they aren’t damaging their ears and are in complete comfort with either of the gaming specific headphones from Audio-Technica. The AG1 and ADG1 are the ultimate gaming headphones! The more popular open back designed  ADG1 allows you to hear sounds around you too, so you can hear the call for dinner.

Find out more

For the commuter

For the family and friends on the move, get them a replacement for the horrible earphones that come free with their phone! Starting at $49.95 the Audiofly AF33’s are a huge step up in audio quality and sound isolation making those noisy bus/train/plane rides a thing of the past.

For the frequent flyers the Audiofly AF78 RRP $219.95 include a storage tin and airline adaptors.  Or for the ultimate in sound isolation the noise-cancelling Audio-technica ANC33’s will make you feel like you are in your own world of audio bliss.

For the vinyl aficionado we have a great range of accessories

Now here’s something a vinyl collector might not buy for themselves but will love, the Milty Zerostat Antistatic-gun ($149.95), you literally zap the dust off your precious vinyl making it sound better and protecting it from damaging dust.

We’ve got other brushes and mats too, check out the range.

For the gadget guy, control your music from your smartphone!

There’s no audio component that has changed my music listening more than being able to control my library from my phone. We have a wide range of wireless accessories that allow to stream music from your phone/computer/NAS to your hifi giving you armchair control over your entire library.

With high quality streaming solutions from QED, Audioengine and Soundcast we have just thing to control your digital music wirelessly.

Find out more

If you have any questions about any of these products, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.