Astell & Kern, Blue Note’s 75th and the new Beyer T5p

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This Tuesday’s Los Angeles event was full of fun surprises. Hosted by Astell and Kern and celebrating the 75th anniversary of Blue Note Record, the private gathering was completely at home in the iconic Capital Records building on Vine. MC’d by AK’s Owen Kwon, both Don Was President of Blue Note and CEO of iRiver Henry Park graced the small stage wedged in between a pair of sweet-sounding PMC towers.

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The demonstration rig was powered by PMC amplification and an AK240 as a source. The AK240 was topped off with the new balanced line out adapter with speciality wire by Crystal Cable.

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Both speakers Don Was and Barak Moffitt elaborated on their deep love of music and preserving its integrity through high fidelity transfers. The company is partnering with Astell & Kern for a 75th anniversary limited edition box set featuring 75 of Blue Note’s top albums remastered to 24/192. The package includes each album loaded onto a microSD card with full album artwork.

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From my vantage point near the center of the room the PMC towers sounded absolutely spectacular and the group listening session included an pretty defining A/B comparison from high resolution to CD and streaming quality. Heightened dimensionality and depth were easily identifiable from the comparisons, and the long-play samples showcased impressive realism with a high quality timbre.

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Don Was of Blue Note Records

 

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Barak Moffitt of UMG.

 

Perhaps the most noteworthy surprise of the night for personal audio fans was a revealing of a new AK branded Beyerdynamic T5P voiced specifically for the Astell & Kern players.

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To further solidify the hardware partnership, an upcoming software update will even include a dedicated equalizer setting for the headphone.

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Check out the full BLUENOTE Package details here: http://www.astellnkern.com/eng/htm/ak240/ak240_bluenote.asp

 

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