Is digital catching up with analog or are we seeing a merge?

12/10/2014 Paul Helvin

As our new NAD masters series demo arrived, I was full of curiosity and intrigue as I unpacked these 2 pieces of audio jewelry (at least in my eyes).

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I knew that these pieces were all “Digital” and any analog input would be converted to digital giving the M12 preamp the ability to offer room correction with phase control, stereo & mono, crossover points all on the fly, which is usually not an option in a 2 channel preamp.

Now I remember a time when photographers would only use “Film” where a developer would take the roll and turn it into a paper image. It was unheard of to use a digital camera as the film version always prevailed as the better image. But now in 2014 we have the SLR digital camera that has resolutions up to the human eye! You can take as many pics as you want and download them right onto the computer to Photoshop and… Viola instant gratification!

If you take one of these photos and compare it to the film version, you can clearly see that the digital picture is practically life like. This is also true of the new TV 4k technology. No longer are we stuck with 2 million pixels of resolution but 8 million. You can stare at the screen an inch away and not see one pixel grid or any indication that this is not real and that you are actually looking through a real window!

So when will our ears be fooled into thinking that digital can sound as good as analog? The answer may be today!

The M12 has fooled my ears into thinking that my Turntable actually sounds more “Analog” and downright better going through its DAC than passing through an actual outboard analog Phono stage! Scary for the purist (like me) I know.

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So has digital audio finally caught up with digital video? Come in and hear for yourself if like the photographers of the past, we can put our digital prejudices aside and let our senses decide for themselves if we are closer to achieving the “Absolute Sound”.

See you in Jan!

Paul Helvin

Audio/Video Specialist