Labor Day -- must mean it's the end of summer. I just spent a couple of very interesting months with the Digital Amp Co's Cherry Jr power amp. Oodles of power, no shortage of finesse and bass power that never runs out. $2k worth of Class D that is a good as I've heard near the price, makes one wonder just how good their top of the range amps might be. The full review will be in Sept 2010's Affordable Audio [and check the review archive on this page where all reviews eventually are added]. Kudos to DAC for engaging with us - you'd be surprised how many companies decline our invitation yet complain about difficulty obtaining decent reviews. DAC stepped up quickly when I offered the opening. Good products, good people.
Next up is an Eastern Electric DAC, which is a bit of a step for me (not sure if that's back or forward) since I gave up on DACs a few years back (still have that Parasound DAC 2000) before they came back into fashion with the move to computer audio. Bill O'Connell also sent a wonderful (and I mean that literally) Japanese product that 'treats' your CDs with magical light which it is claimed improves sonics. So far I've been making people listen to CDs before and after without telling them what is happening, asking them what they hear. It can be hilarious. More in due course.
The whole CD player future is intriguing. I wonder if anyone other than Oppo are selling many SACD players these days given the firesale prices I see on other lines. Sony might sell a few of their well-regarded XA5400ES model if they actually made some! It's hard for me to think about spending much on any digital front end at the moment, but Sony's thinking on this model is difficult to follow. PS Audio's PerfectWave combo seems to be a genuine attempt to develop a futureproof audiophile solution but even with the current discount, you need to lay out $4k, so I don't think we'll be getting any in for review, unfortunately. If you have one, feel free to drop me a line.