A true believer

I like to look at the pictures and descriptions of the various systems belonging to our fellow Audiogon members. Personally I admire the most humble system. But some times I see one that just leaves me shaking my head in amusement.

I was looking at the featured systems today and found one that consisted of three components that reproduced music. A cd player ($7700), a integrated amp. ($4000), a pair of speakers ($10,500). Total $22000. A very nice system. But, and I mean BUT, another $71,431 in cables, tweaks, stands. Things that sometimes in the tiniest increments help in the reproduction of music.

Just saying.
"The point is, no one could distinguish them. NO ONE can or HAS done it to this day. So lay off julian and stereo review. NO ONE can do it! Not even you. And this applies to wire also." (re: OTL tube amp, a Hi-End SS, and a $220.00 Jap receiver) Are you selling any of whatever you're smoking? It MUST be KILLER!
"I will allow you to restate this. I assume you spoke in haste. It seems as if you are saying musicians don't know how to listen to music. I played as an adult, not age 10. Maybe musicians just know what to listen for. One of the old mags had a feature where they featured systems owned by famous music artist. very, very interesting. No krell:)"

Indeed you are right, it was written in haste and I didn't edit it, tried to after it was sent but the edit option was off. What should have been said is that many play music but to me playing music and listening to music are different experiences. As an example I remember years ago Sterophile had a reviewer that happened to be a musician as if that might somehow give him an edge at hearing live music and what his choices might be in choosing equipment. In any event, he performed a review on I believe it was the B&K 800 speakers, their flagship at the time. What was so silly to me is that these speakers were set-up in a very small space relative to the size of the speaker. The review fell flat to me because unless a speaker this size is going to be realized to its full potential it MUST be evaluated in an appropriate space. What ran through my mind is that this guy sits in the middle back part of the orchestra and maybe how the speaker performed in his room might have indicated how he likes to hear reproduced music. Why Atkinson, the editor would allow this is beyond me. Of course the speaker got raves from him but over time I found the vast majority of his reviews pedantic and useless until I stopped reading anything he wrote. I am NOT saying musicians don't know how to listen to music, they most certainly do, but they don't all necessarily listen for the same things as many audiophiles. Then again there are musicians that ARE audiophiles and many contributing to this forum. When I am playing piano it sounds much different than when listening to a performance in an audience, skill level aside, so it is not my basis when listening to a performance as listener.

I’m going to give you a specific example of a highly regarded, very expensive ic that was forwarded to me to evaluate in my system. Actually I was given 3 pair of this i.c. When I say expensive I am speaking of insanely expensive, more than double the 2.5k retail of the wire I currently use. I started out, as I always do, connecting the source component to the pre-amplifier. There were two other listeners on hand when this evaluation was performed. When we first started listening it was IMMEDIATELY apparent to everyone that the sound was MUCH clearer, more forward, and more to the point, practically unlistenable, very etchy in the upper frequencies and unbalanced top to bottom. This compared to a more modestly priced cable I was currently using at the time. We listened for a full half hour then decided to add another ic from pre-amp to the Merlin BBAM (battery BAM I was using at the time) The effect we initially heard became more emphasized. We continued on running the last pair from the BAM to the amplifier, the issues compounded. You get the idea. What I am saying is this, I don’t know what the cause was, break-in of the cable, synergy issues with the speaker (most likely), interference with the amplifier which incorporates high frequency radio signals as a signal carrier, or poor design but I will say that it didn’t take golden ears to hear it. I am not saying this cable is bad or isn’t be all end all that was ascribed to it by others but IN MY SYSTEM, it was amusical. I have had similar negative experiences with other cables as well, some quite expensive and very nice results with moderately priced cable. Generally inexpensive cable, basically bulk wire doesn’t sound bad generally but doesn’t convey the nuances that my system can clearly resolve with better cables and is generally lacking a great deal at the frequency extremes. The real devil lies in the frequency extremes in my experience, light airy natural upper frequencies and controlled natural bass as you hear it live, not accentuated as some speakers and amps tend to do. Some like this, personally I don’t, again an issue of taste but driven by how I hear live music.
An example of a cable that can really tame a system that is out of balance is MIT, I owned a pair designed specifically for tube gear and they weren’t cheap. I really loved them at first but realized over time that they manipulate the sound with their network boxes. To me a cable should ideally pass the signal through without adding or subtracting anything but most importantly do no harm. Some do better than others. The one I choose for my system was the best at doing this to my ears by far over the countless others I tried. So my conclusions are based on real world experiences in a familiar system. I am not one to get in the middle of this argument but only to convey personal experiences. Hopefully it provides some value, if not that’s ok too, I don’t care one way or the other, this isn’t life or death, it’s audio. If you want to continue calling people out as somehow being deluded or tricked, have at it. If your hero is Julian Hirsh that’s ok too, my conclusions about him were formed 10 years before I discovered high end audio and later an audiophile and was not formulated by anyone or anything other than Hirsh himself. If a person has gone down the same path as I have and come to a different conclusion, I respect what they hear. There is plenty of white noise on the internet and this site isn’t immune. What I really value is learning from others their experiences and hopefully gain more knowledge and in return try to reciprocate. This is the true value of this forum to share and give informed opinions.
You are not going to get the answer you are looking for concerning wire, at least the real science of what we are hearing because that chapter hasn't been written yet. You remember the last thread where a cable manufacturer gave his theories as to what was causing what we hear with an emphasis on timing issues. Just because something cannot be measured or heard by some does not mean it doesn't exist or can't be heard by others. Amplifiers clearly sound different, so when you harken back to the days of old when many but certainly not all believed this so, it tells me that you haven't listened to many truly resolving systems or you wouldn't dare come onto a forum like this and say such things. It comes across as somewhat foolish, I'm sorry but this is true.
You seem to be a generally nice guy and I DO like your sense of humor but if you really want to get on board here, open up your mind and try to listen to some systems instead of spewing the same old nonsense. Maybe an audio show would be a great place to start; you will also meet some very cordial, knowledgeable folks.
To Bighead63:

Every one I have read on this site is more informed on high-end audio than I am. And they have the systems to prove it.
So who I am to save anyone or change any minds. But your post implies a desire for only like minded people to post on audiogon. Is that true?
Amps don't sound alike, but not necessarily $20,000 amp will sound better than $3,000.
Certainly $15,000 single CD-player(for dumb-philes) will sound different, but would it sound better than $400? Will the money be spent well worth the difference?
Only true believers can understand why nonsense makes sense.
To Rodman99999:

'Are you selling any of whatever you're smoking? It MUST be KILLER!'

I don't smoke, and please don't resort to twisting the facts. He said all properly designed solid state amps operating within their operating parameters. Not a very high bar at all.
BTW there is a guy offering 1 million dollars U.S. if YOU or anyone else can tell the difference between solid state amps or wire. Last I heard it was still on the table. Better hurry!!