D3 DAC-plus-Headphone-Amp – guest review by Dale Thorn
Company: Audioengine
Price: $189


Sources and gear: Dell PC with Win7-64 and Foobar2000; MacBook Pro Retina with OSX v10.8.5 and iTunes; Shure SRH-1540, B&W P7, and B&O H6 headphones; various music tracks in 96k/24-bit WAV format.

When the Audioengine D3 DAC arrived, I ran it for a few hours just to keep it honest, although I didn’t expect a significant change with a burn-in period. When I finally got around to listening later that evening, I thought the sound was as good as anything I’ve ever heard. In fact, having spent a great deal of time with the HRT Microstreamer and v-moda Verza recently, the first thing that I became aware of was an impression of analog-like sound.

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Shure Digital Recording Equipment
Company: Shure
Price: PG27 $178.00, PG42USB $298.00, X2u $154.00

In recent years, there has been a shift from the old media paradigm of broadcast television, radio and their huge studios and budgets towards citizen or personal media production. More and more individuals with something to say are wading into the ever more crowded waters of podcasting, video-casting, or a combination of these two forms of new media.

With the advent of these new forms of media production, the need for new digital technologies which would allow these would be media moguls to turn their personal computers into recording studios on the cheap, has risen from the unyielding ashes of those old media sources whose lack of vision cost them dearly.

With such products as the PG27, PG42USB, and the X2u, Shure has brought its legendary reputation to this burgeoning market. How will these products perform and what type of value will they provide Joe podcaster who is working on a very limited budget?

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Shure SE 110 Sound Isolating Earphones – Review

On October 22, 2007, in Earphones, Review, by Artie Alinikoff

Company: SHURE INC.

PRICE: $119.99 MSRP

The business of sound reproduction never sleeps. R&D departments are working overtime for your attention, and your money. With the advent and proliferation of so many portable music players, music listening has taken on a life of its own. On any given day one can see people listening while: walking, running, skateboarding, in-line skating, ice skating, skiing, bicycling, weight lifting, relaxing, riding the bus, and on and on. There is almost no activity left which cannot be supplemented with your “fave raves” (music).

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Shure SE420 Sound Isolating Earphones

On October 17, 2007, in Earphones, Review, by John Nemerovski

SE420 Sound Isolating Earphones
Company: Shure

Price: $400 US

Shure is throwing another hat into the over-$250-super-premium-earphone arena. Summer 2006 brought us their ultra-expensive “500 series” with a price to match, reviewed here at MyMac.com. We had a few gripes in addition to the hoorays in our evaluation of this product, which has been rebranded SE530 to fill the top spot in the company’s newly-introduced budget-to-pricey comprehensive SE lineup.

Artie recently reviewed SE210 and SE310 here. These models received a high rating. He is currently listening to the brand new SE110. His review will probably be posted soon after this one you are reading.

Modular components are the highlights of Shure’s entire SE family. MyMac.com applauds the several different ways you can configure SE420 and its siblings. Audio delivery improves both objectively and subjectively as SE-series prices ascend. Knowing that fact, SE420 should sound r-e-a-l-l-y splendid.

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Shure I Series Integrated Sound Isolating Earphones + Mobile Headset
Company: Shure

Price: $319

You are happily listening to your tunes on your iPod when your cell phone rings. Of course, that means removing your earphones, and either putting in a new one for the phone call, or holding your phone up to your ear, which you can’t do if you leave the ear phones in your ear. When the call is over, it is time to switch back, meaning scrambling for the right wire, replacing the earphones, only to have the phone ring again a few minutes later, to do this dance once again. If your hands free headset has a wire, it is not long before it and your iPod earphones’ wires are a tangled mess.

I do not own an iPod (see my entry for more on that) but there are times when I do want to listen to music, especially on the train ride home or long plane rides, and for that, I use my Treo 650. This device incorporates many devices into one, including a cell phone, video player, MP-3 player, Palm handheld functions, a navigator, plus many more things. But here too there has always been a problem of listening to music and then getting a phone call, because the Treo, for some reason, handles phone calls separately from device audio (such as music), and the same earphones you use for music do not work for the phone call, acting almost like you had two separate devices.

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E500PTH Sound Isolating Earphones

On August 23, 2006, in Earphones, Review, by John Nemerovski

E500PTH Sound Isolating Earphones with Push-To-Hear Control
Company: Shure

Price: $500

First time I listened to songs on my iPod using Shure’s super-premium in-ear earphones, I thought it was the most immediate, exciting audio playback experience of my longish life as a musician and music lover. And the most uncomfortable. I had no interest in becoming accustomed to idiotic compressed foam tips inserted into my precious ear canals. With some enthusiasm (meaning not much), I told Shure’s product manager I could hardly wait for a personal evaluation leading to a favorable review in MyMac.com. That was January, 2005, in an exceptionally noisy Moscone Center exhibition area of San Francisco’s Macworld Expo a year and a half ago, accompanied by colleague Owen Rubin.

One year later, same people and location, updated products, same reaction to the foam tips. Shure introduced E500PTH at Macworld 2006, with better audio drivers plus a clever in-line on/off microphone, so earphone listeners can communicate with the real world without having to remove aforementioned tips from ears. Owen and I were impressed. Artie Alinikoff visited the Shure booth later that day, writing his own report.

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