Fake Audio Reviews

The subjective reviews of high end audio equipment have reached new lows.
A couple of years ago an e-mail tumbled in from an online review site.The feature story was a floor standing speaker 36 inches tall, rather skinny with a 5 inch woofer and 1 inch dome tweeter. The usual ham nʼ eggs sort of review, silky highs, authoritative lows, crisp midrange etc. The dimensions were given as well as a $2200 a pair price tag. Something was conspicuous in its absence.

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Rings On Her Fingers

“With Rings On Her Fingers And Bells On Her Toes, She Shall Have Music Wherever She Goes...

....and thatʼs problem. She canʼt escape it! We are swamped with sound in restaurants, elevators, and shopping malls and now on our phones. The continual din has numbed the senses. Cast your mind back to 1790. In the days of Haydn and Mozart the loudest sounds would be the rattle of cart wheels. Contrasting that with the sound of a symphony would be delightful. The dynamic swings would be glorious indeed. The compressed recordings of to-day have none of the quiet passages to contrast with the loud ones. The sparrows are now as loud as the cannons.

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Ye Spotted Snakes

Believe it or not you can buy speaker cables for the same amount as a brand new automobile.  How about 2 brand new cars?  Not enough?  OK.  You can spend enough on speaker cables to purchase 3 brand new vehicles. *
Indeed, you can purchase a lovely 10 foot pair of speaker cables for the princely sum of $46,000.  (US)
The Sultan of Brunei would gag.

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On Chat Rooms

A friend of mine belongs to a scuba diving club.  The lads ply the depths of the lakes in southern Ontario around sunken wrecks and other submerged items.  As you can imagine this hobby can be very dangerous.  Club members report any info via their diving site.  All reports must be objective with as much detail as possible and are signed by the persons real name and phone number for clarification.  Lives are at stake here.

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Size Matters

If you've ever wondered about the authenticity of "modern" symphonic performances, here is a clue as to what has gone wrong. The earlier composer's have not been served well. They often performed in much smaller spaces after rounding up the requisite number of players in the local taverns. With modern venues such as Carnegie Hall there is no way to cover the costs other than filling the place with huge works.

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Musicality

Canadian music lovers fondly remember Bob Kerr's afternoon radio show Off The Record on CBC. He provided us with a vast array of titles and running commentary including an almost weekly tirade on the liner notes of CD's. "How the hell can anyone possibly read such tiny print with blue type on a black background!"

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On Coherence

I get a chuckle out of audiophiles. They pick up all the buzz words from each other and those words and phrases get etched in the audiophile jargon. Pace, rhythm and timing (I'm not making this up) is a biggie. It is purported that a particular piece of equipment possesses an ability to: "have good P.R.A.T."

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Depth and Image

The terms depth, image, soundstage etc. are bandied about in describing a systems ability (or inability) to recreate a reasonable facsimile of musicians playing their instruments in your listening room. Another way of describing this illusion is to say that the speakers "disappear" sonically. In order to recreate this illusion there are a few simple rules.

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