The Occasional Podcast

The Occasional Podcast

Join us in an audio-centric exploration of high fidelity listening. Gear talk, recommendations, interviews and plenty of interesting insights into high-end and personal audio, manufacturing and the people that make up the pastime.

Episodes

August 10, 2022 54 min

Marc Phillips joins the show to give his impressions of all the audio gear that was on display at Pacific Audio Fest 2022 in Seattle. This episode covers all the highlights in high fidelity and Marc's overall vibe from the debut of the West Coast's newest audio event.  Best of show, standout gear and new product releases. 

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A tribute to the 300b amplifier tube with Gary Dews of Border Patrol Audio Electronics. Why is the 300b so common in audiophile tube amplifier designs? What about the 300b makes it unique amoung the many options available to amp makers? In this episode, we explore everything you would ever want to know about this direct heated triode, including usage, benefits, drawbacks and the current state of pricing and supply.

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An interview with the legendary voice of analog hifi, Michael Fremer. Michael joins the show to chat about his long, tenured history reviewing audio products. Along with his 40+ years of expierence with turntables, Michael has worked as a writer in Hollywood, a DJ for radio, a stand up comedian and YouTube personality. You can follow his newest projects starting soon at www.trackingangle.com

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Interview with Jon Derda Of Mofi Electronics. In this week's episode we expore the current state of Class D amplification. Historically, the amplifier topology has had a rocky past with the audiophile mainstream, but have current technological advances changed the way we look at this catagory? Jon joins us to help explain the current state of things, new technologies like Gallium Nitride (GaN) and what the future might hold for...

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Marc Phillips joins the show to give his impressions of all the audio gear that was on display at High End Munich 2022. We cover all the highlights from one of the world's biggest high fidelity audio shows held in Germany. Best of show, standout gear and new product releases. 

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Interview with Romain Vet, VP Marketing Focal Naim America and Bes Nievera, Brand Ambessedor from Music Direct. This episode is a bit of a double header. We follow up with Naim-Focal to see what is going on in the big corperate world of high fidelity audio. The France-based multi-brand has taken some new leaps into fresh product catagories as of late. We also check in with Bes Nievera, an industry vetran with more than 40 years of ...

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May 10, 2022 41 min

Andrew Jones (speaker designer, Pioneer/KEF/TAD) joins the podcast again to talk about the "why" of his recent move from ELAC to MoFi Electronics. Recorded live from AXPONA 2022 in Chicago, Andrew elaborates on his journey to upcoming developments with the currently speakerless MoFi brand and why he thinks the partnership will make for a solid pairing with his next designs. 

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Greg Neville And Marc Phillips join the show to give their impressions of all the audio gear that was on display at Chicago's AXPONA 2022. Recorded live April 22-24 from the audio show, we cover all the highlights from the hifi listening rooms and Ear Gear Expo hall. Best of show, standout gear and new product releases. 

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Interview with Mark Schneider of LTA. Mark joins the show this week to disuss his unique brand of tube amplifiers based around the designs of David Berning. Also, new product roundup for the upcoming AXPONA audio show in Chicago, IL. 

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Interview with Damon Von Schweikert Of VSA. The CEO of one of high-end's most prolific speaker brands sits down with us to discuss a lifelong experience in audio. His hifi resume starts with his father's early legacy and provides an unique look at the community at large. Damon shares his tips, tricks and observations of an evolving landscape from the perspective of an audiophile speaker manufacturer whose product lines have...

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A discussion about the current state of the world's tube supply. Is there going to be a major issue getting replacement tubes for hifi amplifiers and production gear? Brian Hunter and Marc Phillips from PTA Productions put together a few talking points with the help of Jason Stoddard from Schiit Audio and EveAnna Manley from Manely Labs. Also an interview with audio showrunner Liz Miller Smith and Mark Freed.

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Amplifier designer Jason Stoddard takes us through the signal path of an amplifer. Jason talks us across all the elements and parts of amplifier design, starting with the analog signal and ending with speaker or headphone output. He provides tips on what to look for in good parts, as well as what topogies work best in any given situation. It's a great epsiode chock full of interesting information and antecdotes for anyone who e...

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An interview with Steve Sells, Technical Director, Electronics at Naim Audio. As part 3 of our exploration into British HiFi (What is British Hifi?, History Of The LS3/5a) we sit down with Steve from Naim Audio to discuss the legendary British audio brand that has helped shape the high fidelity landscape over the years. A longstanding Brit-Fi icon, Naim is known for its classic amplifiers and cutting edge streaming devices (along w...

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Our favorite products from Season 6. The Occasional Podcast end of the year awards the best audio/hifi products we have heard. With the help of the PartTimeAudiophile writing staff, we wrap up 2021 in style with gear recommendations, music and great sound. Special thanks to Marc Phillips, Mohammed Samji and Grover Neville for help with the nominations.

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Everything you ever wanted to know about the BBC's LS3/5a loudspeaker. As a follow up to our podcast "What Is British HiFi?" Marc and Brian interview Jerry Bloomfield of Falcon Acoustics. Jerry has a vast history with the LS3/5a including its implementation, research, construction and original design goals dating back to its inception back in 1975. Licensed by the BBC to manufacturers, the LS3/5a has stood the test of t...

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November 9, 2021 54 min

A beginner's guide to wireless audio - tips, tricks and high fidelity options. Audio with little-to-no wires is a growing category, even among audiophiles. While some connections like bluetooth are lossy, there are an increasingly large amount of applications where wireless technologies make the pleasure of listening to music just that much more convenient. In this episode, we sit down with Nick Brown and Smith Freeman from SVS...

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Interview with Axel Grell - the designer of legendary headphones from Sennheiser, including the HD 600/650, HD 800 and Orpheus headphone system. Axel sits down with us to chat about all things headphones, including the direction they are going, his experience designing the sound for some of personal audio's biggest audiophile headphones, and the founding of his new headphone company Grell.

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How vinyl records are mastered and produced. Vinyl pressings are a complicated thing to create. It is a much more intricate process compared the simplicity of the digital copy that has come to dominate the market (although digital resolution and streaming have their own unique set of variables as well). In this episode mastering engineer Dave McNair helps us decode the steps from the source tape (or digital master) to the final pre...

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September 29, 2021 39 min

Tube amplifiers, tube topologies explained! This episode is our guide to tube amplifiers, and features deep dive interviews with Gary Dews of Border Patrol Audio Electronics and Mark Schneider of Linear Tube Audio. SET, Pentode, OTL, Push-Pull? The designs of tube amplifiers in hifi is a rich as their love for three letter acronyms. Join us for a thorough exploration of all the different ways to derive power from a glass tube. 

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How are meta materials being used in audio? Plus, we talk about if/how expensive cables can make a difference in audio systems. Dan Clark of Dan Clark Audio joins us to discuss and explain meta materials use in hifi. Dan recently launched a new headphone called the DCA Stealth that is the first to incorporate the rising technology in a personal audio setting. The PTA staff comes together to chat about the ever evolving discussion a...

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