TOP Best Products Of Season 5 Awards, Plus A Visit To Van Halen’s 5150 Studios

The Occasional Podcast: Now on iTunes!

The final episode of our audio-focused podcast in season 5 features both our picks for the best hifi products of the past six months AND a peek behind the curtain at the legendary 5150 Studios where Van Halen recorded every album from 1984 on. PTA Editor-In-Chief Marc Phillips joins the show again to help with the season 5 nominations, you can also check out his color commentary in our Two-Ways and Integrateds & What is British HiFi? shows from earlier this year.

Kicking off the season finale is our picks for the best hi-fi products of the past six months. The recent pandemic hasn’t managed to slow the PTA staff much, reviews are continuing to churn out on a weekly basis. What was the best of the best? For starters you can take a gander at the recently updated 2021 Summer Buyer’s Guide, but Marc and Brian throw down their final picks for favorites of the season straight to tape.

Also featured on the back half of the show is co-host Bryan Beasley’s recap of his trip to Van Halen’s 5150 Studios in Los Angeles, CA. Eddie’s son Wolfgang is currently promoting an upcoming album where Wolfgang plays every instrument on the record under the name Mammoth WVH.

The Occasional Podcast is closing the doors on Season 5 with this week’s best of awards, but don’t miss our conversation from last week’s What Is British HiFi? or our revisited interview with the late legendary recording engineer Al Schmitt, and the interview with digital audio designer Mike Moffat from the season opener. Also available for download is last season’s interviews with Heinz Lichtenegger, president of Pro-Ject. You can also check out Budgeting – From Entry Level To High EndGetting Started With Vinyl Playback, The Occasional Beginner’s Guide To Digital Audio and our take on the “Loudness Wars” which has been a highlight for the season. Season three had interviews with such audio legends as Jeff JosephBill Dudleston, Nelson Pass and even Rob Watts.

We had an amazing response from our show with engineer Dave McNair exploring all things Mastering, and if you haven’t checked out our beginners guide to reel-to-reel playback, it’s definitely worth a listen.

You can stream the newest episode direct from the embed below or subscribe to The Occasional Podcast on your favorite podcast platform including iTunesAndroidGoogle, Deezer, SpotifyiHeartRadio and more.

S5E10 Sponsors:

NAIMAUDIOdotCOM– British Hi-Fi Specialist

QOBUZdotCOM – Authentic Music Experience

SCHIITdotCOM – Audio Components Designed & Built in California, Starting At $49


About Brian Hunter 128 Articles
Brian Hunter is the host of The Occasional Podcast by Part-Time Audiophile and the founder of