Is soundstage DEPTH a myth?

Ok, help me out fellas. Is it a myth or what?

I’m a good listener, I listen deep into the music, and I feel like I have good ears. But I can’t confirm that I can hear soundstage depth. I can hear 1 instrument is louder, but this doesn’t help me to tell if something is more forward or more behind. Even in real life and 2 people are talking, I can’t honestly say I know which one is in front.

The one behind will sound less loud, but is that all there is to soundstage depth? I think the answer I’m looking for has to do with something I read recently. Something about depth exist only in the center in most system, the good systems has depth all around the soundstage.


Talking about differences of amps, they jumped on me pretty hard too. Their king is anything from Purifi/Hypex. Last week I talked about how system synergy is important and I got absolutely destroyed. I'll never go back there again, it is not a place to voice a different opinion. There's a new generation of people that only rely on graph data + distortion measurements and they are VICIOUS.

Class D amplifiers have been greatly improved in the last few years and some are very competitive with class A and A/B.   As with anything audio, especially the high end, the design and its quality depends upon the designer. 

Some forums tend to focus on measurements, topography's, individual parts like the DAC chip and while the individual parts are important, their selection, combination, and the implementation of the sections of the device in total, are where the magic resides! There is a reason why many audio designers and their historical designs rightfully remain held in esteem and it ain’t because of the individual parts they choose, or point-to-point wiring, or the type and class of their product.  It is because of how they conceptualized and implemented their designs! 

Get away from any forum that favors a certain class of amplification over others, measurements vs listening, a certain DAC chip over others, solid state vs tubes, box speaker’s vs other types etc.  Everything in this hobby has their place.  Ruling out anything, especially out of hand, eliminates some marvelous equipment finds. 

For example, for audition, my son obtained a Sears Silvertone tube amp from a vintage console stereo.  The price was $300!  He bought it from a local vintage audio repairer and seller.  That $300 tube amp at 7-watts, is killer with my son's Klipsch heritage La Scala speakers.  Who would've thought -- not some forum member!! 

Don't eliminate, or gravitate to anything because some say this or that is good, or not.  As with anything in life that is truly rewarding, one must learn enough to make one’s own educated decisions. 

If when hearing a well sorted hifi system playing, for example, orchestral music, and you don't heard depth you should simply find something else to do. Engineers use panning and level to great effect in producing recordings with realistic sound staging including depth. It's there...

You don't need to spend a lot to get soundstage or depth. First time I heard it was with in the1980's Marantz 2035, Pioneer turntable/Shure cartridge and Advent speakers. Of course the more money you spend the better it is. My Harbeth 30.2 and Luxman integrated do way better.

Funny thing is, I recently listened to several songs on a well-known $12K DAC and $20K speakers and the imaging was very wide, but the height and depth was barely there. So money isn't everything.

i will put this here - given the topic being discussed it is worth a watch i believe, specifically for the comments in the second half around how the speakers need to be well into the room to get the proper depth of image

the rest of video is just ok, these two are not among my favorite folks on y-t, much of their content is pretty worthless, but in this particular case, i think their discussion around how speakers image is spot-on and very salient to this thread