Notice the last few issues of Stereophile?

I haven't listened to any of the new stuff in the pages of Stereophile as of lately but have noticed some bold or generous ratings they have given. That new Halcro amp being the best EVER? The new PS Audio amp getting class A? I have noticed more coverage of budget minded gear which is a good thing since they have taken some flak from time to time in the letters. Is this a new direction for Stereophile?
Hardly. Look how they panned the Rogue M120 Magnum, and look back at how they tried to like the Hovland Sapphire, quirky as it was, given its price. This mag is still bought and sold.

What, no Musical Fidelity or Triangle reviews this issue? I'll cancel if they don't fix that!
Stereophile has little reference to what quality is. Their 'great' and 'not so great' float around to be caught by the need for promotion. This especially true for budget gear because they don't expect much from it in the first place. It can't all be a great for the price. "Not quite as good as the $7 TAS, but hey its six dollar less. I am buying two!"
While I do not agree with the PS Audio class A rating, unless they are attempting to make a "budget Class A rating" and so on (still), the mag is well written and some of the columns like those by Marks and the Atkinson are well reasoned and informative. At least, they are attempting to improve upon our fair hobby by publishing both measurements and a written review. In the future (hopefully) correlations between sound quality and measurement specification might be possible (let us hope), and so advancement can occur rather than the current stasis that prevails. I'll support them if only because measurements can not be bought (only excluded) and Atkinson panders to no one. Remember the big Cary 300b monos? Atkinson called them "silly"; or the MF CD/PRE/up converter that he called "disappointing"?
Happy Listing,
You guys believe reviewers? Back in high school my friends and I called Julian Risch "The whore.".
The magazine's ratings are worthless. Case in point:
If the Levinson ref series and the regular series are both class A, "the best there is regardless of price", why do they recommend the ref stuff? It's simply a matter of not wanting to put paying advertisers in class B.