Thread: The Audiophile Thread

  1. #1526
    Member Firth's Avatar
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    [They] agreed that it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything.

  2. #1527
    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    Not the same model, but interesting review:

    http://www.stereophile.com/floorloud...0ZRRDRLDvG1.97
    An old and out of date model. Still, thanks as I'd not seen this.
    John Kelman
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  3. #1528
    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    Like I've said, Ron's a huge Tetra advocate. And even on my smaller 333 stack, his sound...been listening to some of Mobile Fidelity's Miles Davis SACD hybrids from 1963-1969, and wow.

    Just wow. It's no surprise he loves his Tetras! His bass sounds (having seen him live many times) absolutely true.
    John Kelman
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  4. #1529
    Quote Originally Posted by rottersclub View Post
    ^^^Bring a lunch.
    And, perhaps, a bed.
    John Kelman
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  5. #1530
    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    Not meaning to give you a hard time, but based on your statements about your room's acoustics, I believe these are good speakers. Additionally, after I examined the drivers more closely, I see time alignment supported for the mid and high frequencies. I don't trust the ears of musicians. The interesting thing about theory is that computer based simulations can emulate the complexity of speaker-room interaction, and that is what has driven time alignment and other configurations. The Martin-Logan company talks a lot about interaction and the radiation pattern of the electrostats has a null on the sides, and the tall aperture keeps the pattern from bouncing off the ceiling and floor.

    I'm really interested in auditioning the Tretas
    Glad to hear it, though I'd say your distrust of musicians' ears is a little unfair as a generality. Yes, there are some whose ears may be suspect (sad example, Peter Hammill, based on his solo & VdGG remasters!), I know many others whose ears are impeccable. Sorry, just had to point that out.

    Meanwhile, as someone whose technical understanding of acoustics and speaker design is pretty minimal, I only have my ears upon which to rely. And, at 61, theyre still doing surprisingly well in terms of frequency loss and general shape. Because I live in Ottawa I was able to go to Tetra designer/president Adrian Butts' home and test out the 333s and drool over the 606s, which would be overkill for my home. I played everything from classic ECM and high res XTC, Crimson and Yes to an album that I turned Rottersclub onto (Sylvian Luc's Young and Fine, with his Trio Sud - one of the best produced non-ECM jazz albums of the new millennium) and some classical stuff. It just didn't matter what I played...it all sounded jaw-droppingly wonderful.

    And yes, please visit if you're ever heading this way. Just gimme a couple days' notice...
    John Kelman
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  6. #1531
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    The Audiophile Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by jkelman View Post
    Glad to hear it, though I'd say your distrust of musicians' ears is a little unfair as a generality. Yes, there are some whose ears may be suspect (sad example, Peter Hammill, based on his solo & VdGG remasters!), I know many others whose ears are impeccable. Sorry, just had to point that out.

    Meanwhile, as someone whose technical understanding of acoustics and speaker design is pretty minimal, I only have my ears upon which to rely. And, at 61, theyre still doing surprisingly well in terms of frequency loss and general shape. Because I live in Ottawa I was able to go to Tetra designer/president Adrian Butts' home and test out the 333s and drool over the 606s, which would be overkill for my home. I played everything from classic ECM and high res XTC, Crimson and Yes to an album that I turned Rottersclub onto (Sylvian Luc's Young and Fine, with his Trio Sud - one of the best produced non-ECM jazz albums of the new millennium) and some classical stuff. It just didn't matter what I played...it all sounded jaw-droppingly wonderful.

    And yes, please visit if you're ever heading this way. Just gimme a couple days' notice...
    Don't disagree that there can be musicians with good hearing, I'm just not basing a decision on musician's hearing. It's a risk based decision, while the majority could have good hearing, the cost to me is too high, therefore the risk assessment requires more info and a personal listening. In fact I'm not sure I trust anybody's hearing because I keep going to ROSfest and I am surprised at how people don't appear to appreciate it when sound quality is good, or are unhappy when it is bad.
    [They] agreed that it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything.

  7. #1532
    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    Don't disagree that there can be musicians with good hearing, I'm just not basing a decision on musician's hearing. It's a risk based decision, while the majority could have good hearing, the cost to me is too high, therefore the risk assessment requires more info and a personal listening. In fact I'm not sure I trust anybody's hearing because I keep going to ROSfest and I am surprised at how people don't appear to appreciate it when sound quality is good, or are unhappy when it is bad.
    Well, I'd agree with you if one or two musicians, even one or two with good ears but just jazz musicians, say, were endorsing. But when Tetra has Ron Carter, Dave Holland, David Torn (who uses them to mix), Keith Richards, Herbie Hancock and Peter Erskine (two multidisciplinary musicians who do more than jazz) and engineer/producer Rob Fraboni, to name but a few - and there are classical musicians and others as well. In other words: they are all endorsing first, without getting free product; second, with a broad enough cross-section that, while I agree trusting one or two musicians might be suspect, just that list alone was enough to get my attention. And they're not all...just the bigger names that folks here would be likely to recognize.

    So, I'm not in disagreement, in principle; but in this case, I think Tetra has a broad cross-section of musicians (and music writers, too, like yours truly) singing their praise...all without free product or being paid, which is how most companies get their endorsements. Tetra is, indeed, a musicians' speaker because most of them don't give a hoot about speaker design or even necessarily room acoustics; they just care how they sound. And the number is enough of a sampling to have, i think, validity.

    Just my opinion, of course; but come to Ottawa. Let's see if you agree, because at the end of the day, of course, it's whether or not you like how they sound that will matter most. But having the unpaid/un-freebied endorsement of these people was certainly a compelling thing that, at the very least, piqued my interest.
    John Kelman
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  8. #1533
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkelman View Post
    Well, I'd agree with you if one or two musicians, even one or two with good ears but just jazz musicians, say, were endorsing. But when Tetra has Ron Carter, Dave Holland, David Torn (who uses them to mix), Keith Richards, Herbie Hancock and Peter Erskine (two multidisciplinary musicians who do more than jazz) and engineer/producer Rob Fraboni, to name but a few - and there are classical musicians and others as well. In other words: they are all endorsing first, without getting free product; second, with a broad enough cross-section that, while I agree trusting one or two musicians might be suspect, just that list alone was enough to get my attention. And they're not all...just the bigger names that folks here would be likely to recognize.

    So, I'm not in disagreement, in principle; but in this case, I think Tetra has a broad cross-section of musicians (and music writers, too, like yours truly) singing their praise...all without free product or being paid, which is how most companies get their endorsements. Tetra is, indeed, a musicians' speaker because most of them don't give a hoot about speaker design or even necessarily room acoustics; they just care how they sound. And the number is enough of a sampling to have, i think, validity.

    Just my opinion, of course; but come to Ottawa. Let's see if you agree, because at the end of the day, of course, it's whether or not you like how they sound that will matter most. But having the unpaid/un-freebied endorsement of these people was certainly a compelling thing that, at the very least, piqued my interest.
    I'm ready to visit up there, but it will like be in a few years when I retire.
    [They] agreed that it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything.

  9. #1534
    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    I'm ready to visit up there, but it will like be in a few years when I retire.
    I'm not going anywhere
    John Kelman
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  10. #1535
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    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  11. #1536
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    Nice NPR discussion on vinyl, CDs, and audio quality in general

    http://www.npr.org/2012/02/10/146697...than-cd-or-not
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  12. #1537
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkelman View Post
    'll once again weigh in with my absolute love of my Tetra 333 stack.
    Speaking of Tetra speakers. I went to an estate sale 2 weeks ago and there were two set sets of Tetras for sale. A pair of 506's and a pair of 305's. There was also an original Oracle MK I turntable as well as bunch of stuff out of my price range. I did manage to pick up about a dozen monster cables for $5 a pair and snagged another Squeezebox Duet because you always need spares. The most amazing thing about the sale was the atrocious taste in music this guy had. So middle of the road. Corey Hart, Bryan Adams etc. There was 5 boxes of vinyl and a wall of CDs and I cound not find anything that even remotely interested me. Probably could have gotten the 305's for a good price, but really happy with my Totem Hawks so no need.

  13. #1538
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markinottawa View Post
    The most amazing thing about the sale was the atrocious taste in music this guy had. So middle of the road. Corey Hart, Bryan Adams etc. There was 5 boxes of vinyl and a wall of CDs and I cound not find anything that even remotely interested me.
    Sadly, this is not uncommon among audiophiles. Because it's not about the music.

    It's about the SOUND.

  14. #1539
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerjo View Post
    Nice NPR discussion on vinyl, CDs, and audio quality in general

    http://www.npr.org/2012/02/10/146697...than-cd-or-not
    Good discussion. Remarkable lack of bullshit.

  15. #1540
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    I just bought this active loudspeakers for my PC: Micromega MySpeaker BT, they sound great !

    http://www.theabsolutesound.com/arti...-myamp-inside/

    Review of the non-active version (at half the price) http://www.qobuz.com/be-nl/info/hi-f...ker-warm176856

  16. #1541
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerjo View Post
    Nice NPR discussion on vinyl, CDs, and audio quality in general

    http://www.npr.org/2012/02/10/146697...than-cd-or-not
    Thanks for the link.

    I was one of the audio guinea pigs in Sean Olive's original project at the National Research Council here in Ottawa. Months of lunch-time testing in a black room. Which one sounds better? Now which one sounds better? Still like Ry Cooder despite hearing him over and over. Sean's Athena Project ( I believe that was the name) directly resulted in creating a loudspeaker industry in Canada.

  17. #1542
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    Sadly, this is not uncommon among audiophiles. Because it's not about the music.

    It's about the SOUND.
    no matter how good the system Dan Hill will never sound good..

    btw atrocious was probably too harsh. Makes one sound like a wee bit of a snob. So I'll say "surprising" instead.

  18. #1543
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    Good discussion. Remarkable lack of bullshit.
    Agreed. Once again the myth of the superior sound of vinyl bites the dust no matter how I wish it to be true. As has always been the case it's all about the recording and mastering. Of course make sure you're using $40,000 Siltech Emperor Crown audio cables or it I'll all sound like shit anyway.
    The combined fortunes of the world's 26 richest individuals reached $1.4 trillion last year the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people.

  19. #1544
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    Quote Originally Posted by markinottawa View Post
    btw atrocious was probably too harsh. Makes one sound like a wee bit of a snob. So I'll say "surprising" instead.
    "There is no arguing about taste" as the saying goes, but let's face it, some music really *is* atrocious.

  20. #1545
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    Sadly, this is not uncommon among audiophiles. Because it's not about the music.

    It's about the SOUND.
    It's true that sound is important to the audiophile, the music does matter too. There seems to be an anti-good sound in modern pop and rock. This became especially true when punk came along, as to say f@@k you Alan Parsons.

    The discussion of vinyl versus digital ignored that fact that most people didn't have systems that candle truely handle the dynamic range of digital. To put HDR on vinyl, there is a natural compression. That compression is far less irritating than digital limiting or BJT transistor compression. I have a Stereophile test CD with a track that demonstrates the difference between tube distortion and transistor distortion, same percentage. Tube distortion is musical.

    A lot of this vinyl though is limited digitally before cutting to vinyl.
    [They] agreed that it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything.

  21. #1546
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    It always amuses me that when I sift through the music forum on Hoffman for every dozen members with well-developed palates across several genres there's gonna be some utter idiots with garbage tastes. A $50K if you're spinning Helen Reddy or KC & the Sunshine Band.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  22. #1547
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    It's always about the music, but unfortunately good music isn't always recorded and mastered well. As an audiophile it's natural to tend toward better recordings to play at home. That's fine, but don't forget the music that you love that is over-compressed or flat. You can always listen to that in the car and still play the air drums while you're driving.
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  23. #1548
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobM View Post
    It's always about the music, but unfortunately good music isn't always recorded and mastered well. As an audiophile it's natural to tend toward better recordings to play at home.
    This is unfortunately flat out wrong.

    Let's make a distinction between "audiophiles" and "music lovers." The latter often will seek out high fidelity reproduction, and the musicality of their systems is paramount. You find some high priced components, but not the crazy shit.

    Audiophiles on the other hand are into one-upmanship, competitive spending, if a $500 cable is good then a $5000 one must be better. For them the end result isn't even that important (many of these -- okay SOME of these megabuck systems I've heard sound like utter crap) and they CERTAINLY don't know or care anything about music. They'd play white noise if they thought it impressed somebody.

    They don't collect gear to listen to music. They collect gear for the status of it.

    Now you're probably a music lover, and your purpose is to get closer to the actual sound produced in the studio. But some of the wackjobs on the Hoffman forum wouldn't know Camper Van Beethoven from Ludwig.
    Quote Originally Posted by markinottawa
    The most amazing thing about the sale was the atrocious taste in music this guy had. So middle of the road. Corey Hart, Bryan Adams etc. There was 5 boxes of vinyl and a wall of CDs and I cound not find anything that even remotely interested me.
    "Middle of the road" is not atrocious. The guy may not have been very adventurous or worldly in his musical tastes, but he cared enough about his pedestrian music to play it over a fine system.

    What gets me are the audiophiles who play bagpipe music or Taiko drums because they are hard to reproduce (and yes, I own recordings of bagpipes and Taiko drums!)
    Last edited by rcarlberg; 04-24-2017 at 01:31 AM.

  24. #1549
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    The discussion of vinyl versus digital ignored that fact that most people didn't have systems that can truely handle the dynamic range of digital. To put HDR on vinyl, there is a natural compression. That compression is far less irritating than digital limiting or BJT transistor compression.
    No compression is "natural."

    Digital limiting (modern) is far less abrasive than overmodulation distortion from the old analog days. This is why many old analog recordings are "punched up" to 0 dB for remastering, making them sound louder and by all accounts "improved." While it is true that digital has ten times the dynamic range of analog, in practice nobody prefers this much dynamic range; in fact the trend over the lifespan of digital recording has been to DECREASE the amount of dynamic range in recordings, due to the new capacity to ride 0 dB without distortion.

    A separate but related issue which you seem to be conflating is "tube distortion" versus "transistor distortion." Tubes distort with even harmonics, which is why Jimi Hendrix liked to turn his amp all the way up and stand right next to it. The edge of feedback was somewhat musical.

    Transistors distort with odd harmonics (and originally all kinds of ugly square waves) which sounds anything but musical. Modern digital limiters do not clip the tops of the waveforms to make square waves anymore. Don't mix up the warmth of overdriven tubes (with lots of octaves and fifths mixed in) with modern production techniques.
    Last edited by rcarlberg; 04-24-2017 at 01:23 AM.

  25. #1550
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    No compression is "natural."

    Digital limiting (modern) is far less abrasive than overmodulation distortion from the old analog days. This is why many old analog recordings are "punched up" to 0 dB for remastering, making them sound louder and by all accounts "improved." While it is true that digital has ten times the dynamic range of analog, in practice nobody prefers this much dynamic range; in fact the trend over the lifespan of digital recording has been to DECREASE the amount of dynamic range in recordings, due to the new capacity to ride 0 dB without distortion.

    A separate but related issue which you seem to be conflating is "tube distortion" versus "transistor distortion." Tubes distort with even harmonics, which is why Jimi Hendrix liked to turn his amp all the way up and stand right next to it. The edge of feedback was somewhat musical.

    Transistors distort with odd harmonics (and originally all kinds of ugly square waves) which sounds anything but musical. Modern digital limiters do not clip the tops of the waveforms to make square waves anymore. Don't mix up the warmth of overdriven tubes (with lots of octaves and fifths mixed in) with modern production techniques.
    Unfortunately you have a binary opinion. Things are either one way or another. Are you religious [emoji6]
    [They] agreed that it was neither possible nor necessary to educate people who never questioned anything.

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