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Day 174 - Nov 13 -

Success is built with constant pressure in a chosen direction. When the mind set toward achieving the desired outcome is never given the option of doubt all that remains is embracing the time frame needed to accomplish the goal. In my life, that has been the recipe I use to create the things I consider successes. I write it here as much to share it with you as to bring myself some clarity in the tangled web of interwoven adventures, sometime in harmony and sometimes in conflict. Sometimes the task at hand can never be completed so working in a positive direction becomes the definition of success. Speaking of that, check this out:

If you are not familiar with Surf Rider Foundation and you have a moment, take a look

The Surfrider's are fighting an endless battle a small gift to them is another step in the process of fulfilling our end of the eBay auction.

**** Sound Nerd Speak - Home Edition ****

In my constant quest for the holy grail of audio perfection, I leave no stone unturned. In the professional edition of Sound Nerd Speak which I have presented up till now, I have shared many of my theories and methods I follow or create to present audio at rock shows. Since I am at home, today we will take a step sideways and take a look at the other side of the coin.

There are many types of home listeners and we can drop them into a few useful categories:

The Utilitarian - Music is the goal and purpose, speakers are just a tool to listen, equally at home with a ghetto blaster or any set of speakers laying around, the utilitarian does not let the hardware interfere with the purpose, to listen and enjoy.

The Decorator - Similar to the Utilitarian, the Decorator adds in the visual aspect and speakers are chosen on aesthetics first. Heard and not seen is the motto and if seen, it better look good.

The Thrill Seeker - Size does matter and so does loud. The Thrill Seeker basks in the adrenaline rush achieved from incredibly loud heart pounding sound and usually has a favorite song that they play for every visitor to blast their socks off. The Thrill Seeker is not the favorite neighbor on the block.

The Show Off - Typically the Show Off does not really know much about sound reproduction itself as they are too busy remembering the useless details about how the tubes were made of hand blown glass and the liquid titanium poured speaker cones. More often than not, these details sound quite impressive when described and sound not so good when the music travels through them.

The Vintage - Like coin collectors and other humans that have chosen to live their lives in reverse by clinging to the past, the Vintage attempts grab a snapshot of some historical era and present it as superior rather than the relic that it is. Half the time they are right and the other half is just silly nostalgia.

The Professional - After scanning all available options, the Professional has come up with an interesting concept."If the record the CD using studio monitors, why don't I get studio monitors for my house?" Brilliant idea and definitely interesting yet one thing to consider though one perspective is that studio monitors are often designed to highlight the audio flaws and home Hi-Fi speakers are built to cover them up.

The Audiophile - Unlike the other categories, the Audiophile actually comes in two versions: Confused and not Confused.

The Confused Audiophile is basically for all practical purposes an idiot. Ouch, a bit harsh, please let me re-phrase. The Confused Audiophile is so passionate about finding sonic perfection that he/she (usually a he) has become totally and completely blind to common sense and logic. These are often seemingly normal humans that can be persuaded to believe just about anything when it comes to sound if you charge enough money for it and use un provable flowery sonic descriptions to describe the products.

For example this company sells something that you can buy the parts at Radio Shack for costing about 2 dollars and there is no measurement device known to man that could prove any of their claims-

of course if you are going to buy that you definitely need two of these:

because just like fancy lug nuts will make your car faster, wood knobs must sound better. And to plug in your gear, buying audiophile ac outlets for $ 75 of course make sense rather than the $ 3 version that comes with the house.

Hmmm, even if it was not a complete scam, I wonder if the entire rest of the wires leading to my house and the 30 miles of power cable is audiophile as well?

Not to mention people selling unidirectional wire as electricity travels both ways, true unidirectional would be terrible. Sadly and pathetically there are hundreds and hundreds web sites, store and thousands of products forming an entire industry that prey's upon the Confused Audiophile.

The Not Confused Audiophile - This is a rough place to be. Here you have a person that truly seeks great sound but has to navigate the minefield of deception and scammers that plague their path. Often products will be a mixture of false magic and technical quality leaving the Not confused Audiophile in a compromising position.

Next up "Which type of home listener is Dave Rat?" stay tuned...

**** Sound Nerd Speak - Home Edition ****

The angry at people that take advantage of the naive,

Dave Rat


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Daniel Higgott on :

Hey Dave, I hear the latest gold tinted, oxygen free IEC cable design adds a whole new level of clarity to your audio experience. Personally I feel its worth the extra £50... Anyway, I hear your coming to my home town of London in about a week. If you fancy popping by my own show (Blue Man Group), you have my email I believe, I will gladly show you round. Danny

Joe on :

So.... what do you recommend for home listening??? What do you use for home listening?? Or do you listen to enough music on the road...

Sama on :

Hi Dave. I just found that I'm The Thrill Seeker. But with headphones! =) I'm going deaf soon. Cheers!

Dave Rat on :

Danny LOL, funny stuff!! I have heard that too from people selling it and people who justify having bought into it. The question is; "Can they actually hear the diference in a blind listening test?" but not really because that does not matter anyway because we all know everyone buys pretty wires cause they look cool. Everything else is just fluff. I admit, I like pretty wires too! Joe, I recommend a stereo that makes you happy. One that you like the way it sounds. Forget trying to beat out some other knucklehead competing for sonic nirvana. Unless you have an unlimited budget and don't mind looking like a fool. Buy something that looks cool, sounds good to you and gets to the volume levels that you desire. And then spend your time enjoying it. I personally like simple. I want to turn on the stereo and have music come out. Buy a stereo the same way you would buy a painting. Sama, I like the headphone rock as well and for critical listening that is my preference.

Joshua Dunlop on :

HAHA, Wow you would have to be pretty damn stupid to spend $500 on some wood. I've heard of £250 kettle leads, but this is just ridiculous!

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