192kHz/24-bit ALAC/FLAC, CKD 462 (supplied by www.linnrecords.com)

This first instalment in a new Sibelius cycle with the BBC’s Welsh Orchestra has prompted a mixed response. Criticism of the sound from Cardiff’s Hoddinott hall strikes me as spectacularly wrong (Gramophone) as – at 192kHz/24-bit at least – this is an extremely fine, natural orchestral presentation. OK, perhaps levels are slightly raised at the very end of Symphony No 2… In the Seventh, Thomas Søndergård seems to take his cues from the purity and abstraction of No 6 (due shortly from Linn with No 1) – it’s a restrained view, with much inner detail and the big ‘question mark’ in the final bars finely resolved. The Andante of No 2 has rarely sounded so troubled and again (as one player’s online blog suggests, the orchestra was worked hard over balances) the music’s inner detail is compellingly resolved. CB

Sound Quality: 80%

Hi-Fi News Lab Report

With the orchestra in full flight (Allegro, Sym. 2) its harmonic reach extends out to ~60kHz, utilising much of this 192kHz cycle’s ~90kHz bandwidth. But quieter interludes reveal a notch filter and spurious tone at 20kHz [green trace]. PM