Richard Stevenson

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Richard Stevenson  |  Aug 18, 2012  |  0 comments

I am always amused when people tell me that their ears and eyes would not be good enough to do my job as a reviewer. They are convinced that they wouldn’t hear the difference between two pairs of speakers, or see the variation in picture quality from one HD screen to another. While I am the first to highlight my 24-carat golden ears and eagle-eyed vision to anyone requiring AV equipment testing, the reality is a little different. My physical sensory faculties are really no better than most other normal healthy people, although in terms of reviewing hours they have been round the block a bit.

Richard Stevenson  |  Jul 21, 2012  |  0 comments

Great. I have spent the last 20 years building and writing about state-of-the-art home cinema and we get a renaissance in black-and-white silent movies!

Richard Stevenson  |  Jul 18, 2012  |  0 comments

Fresh from scooping the industry equivalent of an Oscar for technical innovation at this year’s CES, Lexicon’s DD-8 power amplifier comes to the test bench flaunting the looks of a size-zero super-model – wistfully thin, lithe and lightweight, and sexily wrapped in cat-walk style designer clothes. Unlike most supermodels there is more than airspace between its rack-mountable ears, too. Using some clever proprietary amplifier technology, Lexicon’s DD-8 packs eight channels of 125W into that slimline chassis.

Richard Stevenson  |  Jun 26, 2012  |  0 comments

I was propping up a bar after a conference earlier this month and found myself speaking to a man who referred to himself as ‘a banker’. We live a public space that makes bankers about as popular as Die Hard’s John McClane wearing that sandwich-board sign on the streets of Harlem, so fair play to his admission. However, on enquiring about my line of work he noted that I must be worried because ‘that niche end of the electronics market is a dinosaur dying on its arse’.

Richard Stevenson  |  Jun 15, 2012  |  0 comments
If I was able to trade body parts for AV goodies I would already be the Black Knight from Monty Python’s Holy Grail. But whilst I rolled around limbless on the floor I wouldn’t think twice about proffering a major organ for Bryston’s SP3 processor. Not only is it really rather special but, at ten grand, it’s the only way I am ever likely to afford one…
Richard Stevenson  |  May 30, 2012  |  0 comments

If you own either of Denon’s flagship A1HD products, the AVR or the standalone processor, you might be feeling a little left out these days. While these high-end devices still pack a performance punch, their v1.3 HDMI jacks and lack of height/width processing has kept them very much a 2D product in a 3D world. Enter Denon’s 3D Edition Upgrade.

Richard Stevenson  |  May 29, 2012  |  0 comments

My home cinema system is just not looking good enough these days. Despite deploying the very latest hardware, mostly by not answering the phone when makers want their review samples back, its image is less impressive than it was some 10 years ago.

Richard Stevenson  |  May 18, 2012  |  0 comments

Here’s the plot: Take one of the finest off-the-shelf BD players available (Oppo’s BDP-93), re-engineer it with custom power supplies, upgraded DACs, dedicated high-end analogue output stages for music playback and then add a much prettier user interface.Take said components, wrap them up in a high-end chassis with stunning build quality and drop dead gorgeous cosmetics.

Richard Stevenson  |  Apr 25, 2012  |  0 comments

Mmmm, I do love a bit of high-class German booty. In fact, I reckon the look and feel of the T+A K8 Blu-ray receiver justifies its not insubstantial price tag alone. The promise of T+A sound quality and German engineering is a very appealing prospect, too – for those looking for a simple AV solution with proper high-end performance, the K8 is pretty much in a class of its own.

Richard Stevenson  |  Apr 24, 2012  |  0 comments

I have been pondering the high-end of AV recently, mostly why I can’t afford it, of course. But events have made me wonder at precisely what price reality ends and opulent lunacy begins. I have a horrible feeling it is about a tenner.

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