The stunning Leben CS-600 integrated tube amp from Japan / Tone Imports is HERE!  mmmmmm new amp smell !!!  So I've spent the last few days listening to the Leben.  The first day with the 6L6 tubes and then I switched them out with some EL-34.  I have some C logo EL-34 coming which John Halpern of Tone Imports recommended. This amp can take loads of different tubes and is SELF BIASING!  Fit and Finish is impeccable.  Built like a tank but "smoove like butta..." If you want to buy a really great integrated and NEVER want or need to upgrade, come by.  I've had great success pairing it with DeVore speakers and the Rega R5.  


Mr Hyodo



The new $2850 Well Tempered Amadeus is really well thought out and unlike ANYTHING I've seen or heard before. The golf ball bathing in a cup of silicone gel acts somewhat like a uni pivot and works really well.  It's quite difficult to explain, but the crane like thing-a-ma-jig holds a thin fish line string which is adjustable. Being a Rega freak, I was a bit scared of turning into a complete "tweak geek",  Rega is so user friendly which I like, but the set up is quite easy and intuitive on the Amadeus.  I'm looking forward to seeing threads with OCD buyers testing out Titleist vs. Wilson balls on the table.  Listening to golf balls is more pathetic than listening to multi thousand dollar cables! Remember, it's all about the tunage!  If you're looking for a table that is exotic, tweak free and sounds like it should be three times as much, bring some records by and give it a spin!  For a limited time I have, on loan, the Dynavector DRT XV-1S!!!!!   If you've never heard a $4500 cartridge, now is your chance! 


LORICRAFT PRC-3!!! Now Cleaning Vinyl!!!

I finally bit the bullet and ordered up the best record cleaning machine available!  Have some records that need cleaning?  Bring them by!  $2 per LP will include a new poly / paper inner sleeve and poly outer sleeve. The cool thing about this machine is that it DEEP cleans. Once it's been "Loricleaned", you'll probably never have to clean it again.  Even new records benefit as the stampers leave residue (think Pam, the cooking spray) on them to prevent the vinyl from sticking to the press.lori-top-oblique.jpg

Oh My!!! The Osmonds?

My Dad got all his slides converted to disc and I've taken on the task of organizing them. Here's a pic of my Sisters, Me and Mom at my first concert.... Mormon SuperGroup, The Osmonds in Buffalo, NY!  Then we all saw Helen (I am woman, hear me roar) Reddy in Vegas a few years later!  Yes!  Rockin', I know!  Later, my sister Denise scored Commodores tix for the Natural High Tour.  A Taste of Honey opened. In 7th grade, I went to see Yes (where we all got mugged and our cool concert jerseys stolen). Barry Manilow with a friend and his parents (jeez!).  Foreigner 4 Tour w/ Billy Squier opening. John Denver with the parentals.  Supertramp with my sister Denise again. Queen on their last US Tour in '82 with my friends. Freshman in High School, The Rolling Stones with my friend and his MOM! I thought she was going to drop us off! She wanted to leave at intermission because there were people smoking POT next to us. Psychedelic Furs w/ The Dream Syndicate opening with my sister Brenda. I've seen hundreds of shows since, but The Osmonds started it all! 123455-r1-e118.jpg123455-r1-e115.jpg 

FOX NEWS 7 On Your Side


The News team came and interviewed me.  Here's the copy from the airing April 9th 


AUSTIN  --  Call it back to the future.  Record sales -- yes, record sales -- are hot again.  But what if you want to turn that perfect LP into an MP3?  


"They're almost like little time capsules from a different place," said Brian DiFrank of Whetstone Audio in Austin.


A different place and a different time.


"So you can put on a record from 1963, and it's almost like being in 1963," he said.


From Stevie Ray Vaughan, to soul gospel, to Austin music legend Roky Erickson, DiFrank loves vinyl.


"They just sound better," he said.


So DiFrank was the guy to ask, How do you transfer all those great records onto your computer?  DiFrank recommends a small device called an "iMic."  One end connects to your turntable or amplifier, the other to your computer's sound card jack.


"So you can see the sound waves already going through the computer right now," he said as he showed us how it works.


iMic comes with software to record your tunes.  A quick search of the internet can find you plenty of other free programs to do the same thing.


"Pretty simple process really," said DiFrank.


So what will it cost you to transfer your record collection?  You have to have a record player.  The adapter will run you around 35 dollars, and remember, you have to be patient while your record transfers over.


DiFrank recommended a high-quality turntable for decent audio quality.


"You're going to spend at least three or four hundred dollars for a decent turntable," he warned.


Some less-expensive models come with their own USB cables to connect directly to your computer, but DiFrank says their audio quality is iffy.


"Usually the ones with the built in USB aren't that great," he said.   "I don't want to be an audio snob, but they're just not."


Other experts also say an amplifier is a must.  Otherwise, the audio may be too faint on your computer.


So whether it's jazz, rock-and-roll, or just a slow jam to take you back to another time...


"It is kind of theraputic to be able to walk over and pull out a record and put it on a turntable," said DiFrank.


Now you can enjoy those tunes on the go, without taking the turntable along.


Kelly & Bruce played a benefit for Lee Elementary where our kids go to school.  Kelly said, "I wanted to prove to you I wash my hair and wear make-up".  I told her later, "I wanted to prove I don't wear my Pajamas and slippers all day".  Whetstone supplied iGrado headphones for the silent auction..   dscn6528.jpg                                 Check out the March issue of TRIBEZA.  There is a great article called "Vinyl Revival" with pics of the shop.  The writer, Dick Holland, loved the Rega P3 / DV 10x5 so much he bought one.   Here's a link to the text www.tribeza.com/?q=pd/articledetail&nid=2453


snapshot-2008-02-03-09-33-33_2.jpg    * A client of mine was featured in the March issue of Dwell magazine and they took a pic of the system I sold him (Naim, Rega P3, Neat Elites).  I almost made it a few months ago, but the Rega P3 / DV 10x5 was out of the shot (El Cosmico in Marfa, Tx)


Please see the trade-in / used page for the list. Time to blow out last years goods and bring in some fresh.
bel canto is here!

I got the CD-2, DAC3, e.One S300iUSB integrated and e.One Ref100 mono block amps. The cool thing about this line besides the fact that is sounds great, is the flexability. The CD player, DAC have volume controls. So, no need for a pre amp. You can start with the CD and S300 2 channel amp. The S300iUSB integrated is 150 watts and sports a USB / DAC input. Hook up your iTunes (use lossless for best sound quailty) and that's it! A nice one box solution. Come check it out!

Austin Chronicle Critic’s Pick Award!

After years of preaching the virtues of good, sensible sound systems I got an award!
"Never mind the big-box stores with 1,000 multipiece systems all from the same mold. If you love the sound of music when it comes across warm, clear and true, there's a system at Whetstone with your name on it. Isoblue! Rega! Cyrus! Music to audiophile's ears - but without the snooty snottiness. A treat for the eyes too as each tower is an architectural feat of art and machine. Can't decide what to play? Proprietor Brian stocks an impressive collection of vinyl worthy for such towers. The local brainpowerthat's geeked out to the tunes of well-honed gear here cannot be measured in decibels. What can be measured is the trust, knowledge, reliability and customer service that has kept this shop of audio dreams in business and a local favorite for 13 years."

Train nearly collides with shop!

Yesterday I was talking with someone at the shop and when we walked outside we saw this! The weird thing is that we didn't hear it. The first engine went over a loose track and it popped up piercing the gas tank of the second engine, derailing them both. Luckily, no one was hurt, but it took 45 minutes for the Firemen and Cops to show up!


Just unveiled this past weekend at Heathrow. I hope to have some in by Late Fall. Around $10K
GOLDMEMBER! Rega RB1000 24K plated. BLING BLING!!

More Rega Bling! The "Union Jack" R9