2003: A disappointing (for AA) verdict on the new expensive products.

In their test of the Maestro New CD player (Dec 02), "What Hi-fi" praises the usual "excellent build quality" but gives it a meagre three-stars for its so-so sound quality.
This is despite AA betrayed the spirit that Santo Prattico and myself tried to put into the company from the start: excellent build quality and looks and excellent sound quality at a retail price accessible to most.
What happened to all the awards, "best buys" and rave reviews AA used to get from all over the world until 1999? Is their revised "policy" paying off or is the company just losing credit and sinking into the mainstream? We are all able to fill units with costly esoteric components and charge high prices for them but, in my view, the real challenge is to offer audiophile-class products to as many people as possible, maybe even managing to create new audiophiles!
Democratic audiophilia, to be more precise (thanks IKEA)...

The "What Hi-fi" (December 2002) Maestro CD player test

Lurking in a newsgroup (only Italian, sorry!)
extract from it.hobby.hi-fi, December 2002

(seen on an Italian adv, year 2002)
What do this CD player and amplifier remind you of? (2)

(seen on an Italian adv, year 2002)
What do this CD player remind you of? (1)

2002: Funny things happens; is this Paganini black or white panel?

2002: See how people resolved the heath problem of the Puccini REMOTE
(For info about this problem see here)

Las Vegas (U.S.A.): WCES 2001

"Paganini is dead, long live Paganini!"
Seen in Las Vegas WCES, the new Philips/Paganini Cd player
From being a completely original design in all areas, now it follows the usual "garage-design concept", i.e. bought-in pick-up mechanism/control and decode electronics/microprocessor/display and only in-house DAC/power supply... one small step for the AA designer, one giant step (backwards) for Audio Analogue!
(even the Maestro CD player has changed in the same direction)

BTW, rumor has it that the two new designers are now one! Rampino is alone in Northstar, and Manunta has been employed in a local hi-fi shop, where the owner is a partner in the Audio Analogue company.

No more info about the announced Stargate production (see TNT factory tour).

    Back to the home page

Milan (Italy): Top-Audio 2000

Rumour has it that the Donizetti power amplifier has been modified.
The 100W new declared power let me suppose that even in this case the WHOLE power stage (again it was with the NE5534 and the floating power supply) has been eradicated and substituted with discrete components ones.

The "Maestro" integrated amplfier, introduced last year (1999) as a "prototype", is still a prototype.

    Back to the home page

Milan (Italy): Top-Audio 1999

Rumour has it that there will be a revision of the Puccini integrated amplifier.

They'll call it "remote", 'cause has been added a Remote Control.

Very nice. However, is not it all.

I've seen a prototype where the WHOLE power stage of the Puccini (the ones with the NE5534 and the floating supply) has been eradicated and substituted with discrete components ones.

I don't know if the new power stage will "sound" as the old; or maybe better; or worse.

I know it will be different, and probably (I would say surely!) it will play in a different way.

So please: refer ALL the positive comments you've read on the Puccini until now to the OLD and ORIGINAL Puccini, the one WITHOUT the Remote Control.

You can easily recognize the two models (the old and the new) because there are LEDs near the input selector knob in the latest version.