Archive for January, 2011
It was just one of those days where everything seemed to click.
At 8AM yesterday, a 3-car caravan descended on West Valley College in Saratoga. We were met by a smiling Gerard Carter of the Music department, and we started unloading the gear and setting up. We had the gear assembled, room redecorated (chairs and tables moved), and music playing by 9AM.
We spent an hour dialing in speaker positions and the like. Alex Paychev of APL Hi-fi liked what he was hearing – a good sign. So did Doug Olsen, who had graciously contributed some of the gear. Just after 10AM, Bob Attiyeh of Yarlung Records landed at SJC, and was picked up by member Andrej Sali.
In fact, just about the only thing that went wrong was a formatting error on one of my hard drives. The drive wasn’t needed anyway. Oh, and the founder of a famous audio webzine couldn’t find the place.
And then came the music. And things got even better. About 50 BAAS members listened for hours to great music, carefully recorded and produced, and rendered beautifully by the APL DAC-S and accompanying amps and speakers. And just when we thought things couldn’t go any batter, we were treated to some tracked on the über alles $30K+ APL NWO Universal Player/USB DAC. Nice. Very.
Along the way, we learned some very interesting things about Bob’s recording techniques, Alex’s design philosophy, and the effects of sampling rate on fidelity.
Special thanks to Bob Attiyeh and Alex Peychev – great stuff!
I just wrote a lengthy post about digital crossovers and EQ over on the Computer Audiophile forums (click here to read it).
Bottom line, while not for everybody, DSP technology can revolutionize the way you interact with your system.
I also make some specific product recommendations that I thought would be inappropriate for BAASnotes (being as how we’re Switzerland and all….
The NYtimes just published yet another article on the “death” of the music industry.
It would seem that iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, and the like were unable to guarantee the continued health of the commercial structures (labels, studios, PR firms, “record deals,” and the like) that were built around the LP and 8-track tape. And the artificial scarcity of the era.
And the villain of the story? Internet piracy, of course.
Well, the RIAA and its cohorts got it wrong again IMO. I think that the internet has merely exposed the obvious: that good music and good musicians are everywhere. They are not that scarce. And now the means to record and distribute it aren’t scarce either. Nor are the means to learn about it.
The gatekeepers are being denuded. Welcome to the new millennium.
What the internet hasn’t changed in music, it will. Just like everything else.
And the winners will be the specialists. We’ll meet one later this week.
[These opinions are my own, and do not represent the position of BAAS our its members.]
Click here for videos and more.
Great intro to the mysteries of classical music.
Delicious – and good karmic offset to tomorrow’s NFL action.
Check out this article in IEEE Spectrum regarding why tubes sound better.
It’s a bit long, but its arguments are lucid and well-presented. Be sure to read the sidebars too!
Amazingly (for an IEEE pub), bothe the objective and subjective sides of the story are covered.
Also, note how many Bay Area people are on center-stage.
The money quote:
In spite of the bad press, high-end audio was estimated in a Wall Street Journal article in December 1991 to sell as much as $1 billion per year worldwide, enjoying a 20 percent annual growth rate. Japan, alone, consumes $200 million per year in high-end components.
Some of you may remember Jeroen Tielkes, who was quite active in BAAS for a while then moved to China.
Well, Jeroen has decided to build an audio group in Shanghai, and it lanches Saturday (click here).
We wish him luck. If you’re in China, look him up! He can be reached at the email address on the link.
Bay Area audiophiles have an exciting new event coming up on March 12th. This will be a room and loudspeaker measurement techniques class taught by Manny LaCarrubba.
The class will be limited to 6 participants, will be held at Manny’s facility, Sausalito Audio in Novato and will cost $150.00. Class will start at 10am and will end around 3pm with a break for lunch.
Manny, a longtime BAAS member, is a respected recording and mastering engineer, speaker designer and acoustic expert. Among his many accomplishments is the design of the award-winning Beogram loudspeakers.
If you wish to sign up for the class or if you have any questions, please email:
Everybody I talked to loved CAS 2010 in Emeryville – a moderate-sized show with a big heart!
Well, the followup has been scheduled for mid-summer – July 15-17 — in a nicer hotel and accessible by BART.
So go to the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Burlingame and see/hear reference sound at its best. It’ll only cost $10 for all three days. (Sorry, no BAAS discount this time.)
Also, organizers are looking for volunteers to help! Please support this cause. You’ll also get free admission and lunch. Look for the show thread on our forums for details (it’s under “Other Audio Events”).
More details on the event here.
I can’t wait….
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