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Kaplan's Korner

January 26, 2017

Music Hall, Mazzolini and Morphine

Mark Sandman from Morphine, playing at Mississippi Nights in St. Louis, MO, April, 1997

KAPLAN’S KORNER

Happy New Year!

Hope you’re all enjoying 2017 so far. We had a season’s worth of rain this January. Rainy days working at home…I find it easy to put the Jimi Hendrix on and dream away…

Which is why this note is so brief…

THE SWISS ARMY KNIFE

Music Hall pa2.2 usb phono amp

Music Hall pa2.2 usb phono amp

Music Hall calls its $399 pa2.2 usb phono amp a Swiss Army Knife because it does everything. I call it a great sounding phono stage. Forget about the fact that you can use it as a preamp and an analog-to-digital converter and a headphone amp and it’s incredibly low price. It sounds great at any price and really stands out as a phono stage. I used it on a number of tone arms on a number of tables on a number of cartridges both MM and MC and everything I threw at it sounded great. Especially the Ortofon Mono Quintet (the frickin’ pa2.2 even has a mono switch) Scary good sound and not just for the money. As a mono phono stage the sound was as fun as phono stages costing lots more. This is a great time to be getting into two-channel audio and the Music Hall pa2.2 usb phono amp should be considered especially if you need a mm/mc phono inputs.

MAZZOLINI VI CLAMP VINYL RECORD CLAMP

Mazzolini Vi Clamp Vinyl Record Clamp

Mazzolini Vi Clamp Vinyl Record Clamp

Big and solid, the Vi Clamp from Mazzolini Record Clamp weighs in at .52 pounds and is 3.5 inches in diameter. Made from Aircraft Aluminum it fits standard .282” center spindles. I found it a bit to heavy for the old spring isolated AR THE TURNTABLE but just right for the vintage direct drive Luxman PD 441.

Having the record slightly clamped to the mat seems to reduce vibration enough to hear quite an audible improvement. And the Vi Clamp is built. It just feels like a quality piece of equipment in your hand. Yeah I
bought it.

morphine poster_kMORPHINE JOURNEY OF DREAMS A FILM BY MARK SHUMAN

I was lucky enough to see Morphine at the Whiskey (or was it the Troubadour?) back in the day and was blown away by what I heard. If you are hip to Morphine you need to see this documentary. If you are not hip to Morphine you need to see this documentary. I personally cannot get enough of Morphine and it’s founder Mark Sandman. Out on DVD from MVDvisual Producer and Director Mark Shuman made me fall a little bit more in love with this amazing band. Another must see doc from MVD.

 

 

 

 

 






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