Making good loudspeakers is difficult.

Discussion in 'Live Sound' started by DavidSpearritt, Jun 27, 2005.

  1. DavidSpearritt

    DavidSpearritt Well-Known Member

    Jan 9, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Home Page:
    Here's a great quote from Bruno Putzeys on ProAudio forum ....

    One possible reason why speakers are relatively neglected in audiophilia is
    because of an odd competence cascade that has crystallised in this
    particular segment of the industry. We all know that making something good
    in any product category requires a lot of knowledge and experience, but this
    is often not how it works out in consumer high-end audio:

    Those capable of making good converters and solid state electronics, do.
    Those not capable of making good sounding solid state power amps, make tube
    Those not capable of making tube amplifiers, make loudspeakers.
    Those not capable of making loudspeakers, make cables.
    Those not capable of making cables, sell rocks said to dramatically improve
  2. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Mar 8, 2004
    Fredericksburg, VA
    Those who cannot dig up rocks become hi-fi reviewers for Stereophile Magazine.
  3. JoeH

    JoeH Distinguished Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:

    Hehehe.....I have to say, it's nice to find kindred spirits, (FINALLY) after all these years of reading that stuff. I used to think it was MY deficient hearing or equipment at fault. I could never afford that stuff, and used to worry that I was "missing" something.

    When I used to quote & ask about some of that stuff (back in the 70's) to a friend "in the business" (pro audio). He used to laugh and tell me to get out more, into the "Real" world of pro audio, and often gave me equipment and technical info to back up the facts - not the "magic rock" stuff. It didn't take me long to figure out where reality was, and where the smoke, mirrors and snake oil started.

    Like all those spam emails promising millions to your bank account, a bigger johnson, and cheap viagra, those places prey on the gullible and insecure. Since they know they can't sell that crap to the REAL world, they make stuff up, usually out of the clear blue sky, and refer to it as "unproven/unexplained "NEW" Quantum physics-based innovations." (Ever see any of that stuff at AES? Didn't THINK so...) Sometimes I think they just sit around, getting high or drunk, and in a fit of hilarity, created the latest magic wooden knob, plastic cable lifters, or cystral rocks to put on top of your speakers. What a gig, eh?

    We need a name for these people and their "industry".....both the creators and those that buy into it all.....any ideas?
  4. DavidSpearritt

    DavidSpearritt Well-Known Member

    Jan 9, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Home Page:
    No, we need to Name them and their products up in lights to embarrass the crap out of them and put them out of business.

    I think Bruno's statement was implying that solid state stuff is the hardest to do correctly, which is interesting. He should know.
  5. John Stafford

    John Stafford Well-Known Member

    Oct 1, 2004
    Talking about snake oil...

    My brother is an electronics engineer and is into what you might call the esoteric end of things. Apparently, the Bybee tunnel used in the DAC-1 upgrade (I laughed the loudest!) is actually an established component used to get rid of mush that could affect sonar signals (although there is some mystery surrounding this). It uses a nearly super-conductive ceramic and has a sound basis in physics (apparently). Maybe it is an improvement, but the fact that you can claim it has credentials means people will buy them by the truck load.

    It's difficult to sort out the BS from cutting edge research. Not too long ago, cables were all considered to be the same. However, when you hear 30,000 worth of Nordost cables in a hi-fi, the difference is huge, but in my experience not always an improvement. Yes, you may hear things you couldn't hear before, but not necessarily in a way that I'd be particularly bothered to hear again. The fact of the matter is that most recordings were already tweaked on the basis of the way they sounded through the copper wires.

    The funniest ever was that thing you put on top of a CD player to permanently improve the next ten CDs you played. Joe, was it you who treated us to that little gem?

    Still, it's worthwhile remembering the cynical reception Ivor Tiefenbrun received when he created the Linn Sondek, and that was only thirty years ago. Before that, turntables couldn't possibly have any significant effect on the way the record sounded once it played at the right speed.

    Would anyone here agree that there's a little bit of BS in the current craze for all things vintage? As someone pointed out a while ago, the C12A was worth $200 not so long ago, and now it's approaching $3000. Did it not sound the same when it was worthless?

    Last year 414EBs were very cheap on ebay, now if you can find one with a brass surround on the capsule, you can pay big money. I'm sure it's a wonderful mic, but surely in a mic of that age, there are going to be so many variables that any single one will be all but irrelevant. What percentage of these would be suitable for Klaus Heyne to work his magic on?

    BTW vintage Neumann EQs are around 300 euro on ebay in Germany. Should I start a stockpile as a pension fund?

    I'm all ranted out for one day :wink:

  6. took-the-red-pill

    took-the-red-pill Active Member

    Jan 10, 2005
    Near Clagary
    Home Page:
    The rocks actually work, and have many uses:

    1-stuffed in your ears, they dramatically enhance attenuation at certain frequencies, making Kenny G, The Bee Gees, and other similar acts sound much better

    2-They can make you the best guitar player in the room. This is done by using the largest of the rocks to smash the fingers of the other guitar players in the room. Mission accomplished.

    3-CD collection enhancers. By tying your old 80's CD's to said rocks, and using a standard throwing motion in the vicinity of a large body of water, you can perform a 'cull' of your old CD's, thus elevating the entire quality level of your collection. This is almost Darwinesque, and has proven very effective.

    4-gullability testers. Place 3 rocks on top of your speakers. Tell anyone who asks that they are there to provide visual contrast to your pink paisley throw cushions. If they fall for it, use the technique described in #2.

    I have a whole book of these. Simply send $24.95 to the address below, along with a stamped, self addressed envolope...

    Thangya thangyaverymush :-?
  7. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Moderator

    Feb 23, 2005
    I call them "creaturds"...:)

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