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Great Sound, the Way It Used to Be

The difference between analog and digital audio reproduction is simple: Digital represents the sound waves with a high-speed series of zeros and ones, whereas analog draws a picture that is analogous to the sound wave. OK, maybe it’s not that simple to explain, but there are clearly advantages and benefits to both.

When the compact disc first came to America in 1982, true audiophiles found it a mixed blessing. The original CDs-although sexy and full-featured-sounded pretty awful (with some notable audiophile label exceptions, such as DMP). That may sound strange to those who are in the “CD is the cat’s pajamas and that’s that” camp. But the truth is that for the great unwashed music listener, a CD’s sound is adequate. But for those born with a golden ear, it is filled with harsh high frequency output and obscured detail during low-level passages.

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