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Should the White House have a 'made in the USA' hi-fi?

With the election out of the way, the Audiophiliac would love to see the White House get an all-American hi-fi system.

Steve Guttenberg
Ex-movie theater projectionist Steve Guttenberg has also worked as a high-end audio salesman, and as a record producer. Steve currently reviews audio products for CNET and works as a freelance writer for Stereophile.
Steve Guttenberg
2 min read
The Magico Q7 speakers Magico

America may not design world-class cars anymore. We don't build TVs, phones, tablets, cameras, or all that much consumer technology, but we're still at the top of the heap in high-end audio! That's why the White House should have an American engineered and built hi-fi system for use by the president and his invited guests.

I'll volunteer my services to coordinate and help assemble such a system (presumably donated by the manufacturers). On a leap of faith, I'm assuming the president still plays LPs, so I'd recommend the Spiral Groove turntable and tonearm from Berkeley, Calif., set up with a Soundsmith Hyperion phono cartridge, handcrafted by Peter Ledermann in Peekskill, N.Y.

Audio Research electronics will power the system, with a Reference 5 SE preamplifier, Reference Phono 2 SE, and Reference 250 power amplifiers. Audio Research has been making some of the world's greatest gear since 1970 in Minnesota.

I'm not sure the majestic Magico Technology Q7 speakers would fit in the Oval Office, but if they don't, I'll find something smaller. The Q7 is a 5 foot tall, 750 pound floorstanding loudspeaker and even by high-end audio standards, it's unique. The machined stainless steel, aluminum, and copper cabinet is made from 101 pieces of metal that form an internal matrix to create a rigid, inert structure to reduce enclosure vibration. Magico speakers are built in Berkeley and San Jose, Calif.

The Spiral Groove turntable Spiral Groove

As for headphones, I'd recommend the Audeze LCD 3 from Fountain Valley, Calif., plugged into a Ray Samuels Audio Dark Star headphone amplifier, handcrafted in Skokie, IL, and digital decoding for the entire system will be handled by the exquisite MSB Technology Diamond DAC IV plus digital-to-analog converter, made in Aptos, CA.

The American high-end audio industry may be small, but it is a source of jobs. Just say the word Mr. President and I'll get it done.