Synergestic Research: SCAM

Well, I just sat down to a demo of several Synergistic Research products including the Black Box room bass resonators, their new line conditioner, their active Tranquility Base, little treble resonators and the Atmosphere room acoustics tuner.

Total scam. Never once did they just play a track while moving things around. It was always a few seconds of a track followed by a 30 seconds of so of moving stuff, etc, then another maybe 30 seconds of sound. They'd start a track and then stop it right as some instruments came in, do the change, and then continue playing where it left off. The guy doing the demo was asked twice if he could do a live a/b and he'd give an excuse about how it takes a little time for system to charge or some bs like that and the transition process would mask the differences. Absolute con BS they are DEAD to me.

Also? I could hear JACK SQUAT changes in the demo. A few people around me would comment on the changes but I could hear nothing -- at least as best I could manage with the small clips and pauses in between changes. I really tried, but I could hear nothing.

Here, I took a video of a part of the demo. I'll post it when I have a chance.

Pretty harsh post to put out there just because your ears could not hear an improvement.  I took a look at you other posts that you have started here on Audiogon, and found that they were all just as negative. You also recently posted a similar piece about Anticables, calling them a "scam" as well. Are you just trying to hurt these businesses because you don't care for their products? They are both reputable companies, and neither have done anything wrong to consumers.
You know you're in trouble when the complainant can't spell the name of the company he's complaining about. 😬
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I heard a SR demo at an audio show some years ago and they kept the music playing while fiddling with the cables right in front of me. These were active cables and things were added as the music played. Changes were obvious and immediate.  I couldn't say it was all for the better as it was done on the fly, in a large open room with people talking, but the one thing that was patently obvious was the detail and clarity that improved with each and every measure taken. I believe I was wearing headphones as well which aided in my evaluation.

All the best,
So you couldn't hear a difference, that says more about you than a company that has thousands of satisfied customers. Spend your money on music and keep your unfounded opinions to yourself. 
I've noticed often that when someone says that they hear no differences in sound they invariably make the assumption that listeners who "do" hear differences are some how suckers, foolish or gullible.  This is a faulty conclusion. 

It's definitely possible for a variety of good reasons why some will hear what others do not. Two people  could be seated side by side listening to a demonstration and legitimately have quite different impressions of what was heard. 
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Ha your four posts so far:

Synergistic Scam
Anti-Cables Scam
Rega and Proac Bad
Class D Trash

Troll much madavido?
Last year at the show in Irvine, SR gave their demo in the largest room at the show. They had all of their goodies hooked up when the demo started. What I heard was a wall to wall Imax type of Cinerama sound.

When the SR demo pieces were removed from the room, the entire sound stage collapsed. Night and day. When Ted Denny hooked everything back up again. that enormous sound stage returned just like before.

The guy sitting next to me asked me if I had heard a difference. I said: "Of course, it was like night and day." He just shook his head and gave me a little sneer of a smile and said: "Well,  I didn't hear a damned thing." He walked out.

Go figure. 

Could it be that folks like the guy at the show, and the OP haven't trained themselves on what to listen for? 

Don’t worry the video is coming. You guys will see it for yourselves. The lame excuse as to why the Atmosphere room resonance controller can’t be live a/b tested. The leading question "you prefer the first one right?" Why can’t the active Tranquility base be live a/b tested? Why can’t he move the Black Boxes in and out of the room with the music playing? Why couldn’t he let us listen to the whole track? Why does he cut it off just as new instruments come in? And then resume after change where he left off? Who is that clown in the back wearing the dealer badge constantly stating how amazing the room is and how great the demo sounds?

Because it’s a scam, a con, a flim-flam.
I've noticed often that when someone says that they hear no differences in sound they invariably make the assumption that listeners who "do" hear differences are some how suckers, foolish or gullible.  This is a faulty conclusion.

I agree. 
Also, you never hear owners of high-end cables deprecating those who do not believe they have an impact on sound...even though (more often than not) these bitter critics have never experienced these cables.

Everyone needs to remember something about 'madavid0'.  In his 'Class D Trash' post, he lists the amps he was talking about.  The first two were $300.00 and $400.00.  If he really thinks that spending that much money on equipment is going to get him into the state of the art equipment category, he probably also believes what he's saying in this post.

I cannot comment on your findings, etc. but overall you don't explain what changes the other people heard.  Was is sound stage, details, micro or macro dynamics, air, positioning of instruments, backing vocals, backing instruments, etc.  How can one determine what you were hearing versus the others.  For example, I heard a guys system recently when comparing DACs.  His dac sounded OK to me but when we switched the sound stage grew wider and deeper, vocal and instrument placement changed and were very solid, tone was way improved, and details were much better.  To me and others a 100% improvement.  He heard all that but he felt the bass was better/deeper with the other DAC.  So what mattered to him was the bass over what I thought was a big improvement. 

Also? I could hear JACK SQUAT changes in the demo. A few people around me would comment on the changes but I could hear nothing -- at least as best I could manage with the small clips and pauses in between changes. I really tried, but I could hear nothing.

I understand your position though, I just don't know what the others heard.  And what really matters is what you think because it is your money to spend to improve your system.

Happy Listening.
Gosh, bigkidz, how could there be such a big difference between DACs? Don’t DACs just operate on 1s and 0s? And which DAC was so much better than his?

Enjoy the music

One audio board declares itself an AB testing free zone.  While I like healthy skepticism and comments on products that don't perform well, Pehaps audiogon should be a troll free zone. 

while I have no problem with the OP posting he heard no benefits to the product, declaring a company a scam is a serious allegation.  

Also as others have pointed out, discerning differences in audio gear is a skill that takes time and experience to learn.  I have turned my subs on and off for a friend who thought it was a minor difference, while to my ears it was huge.  
Sorry, I'm not here to go to bat for obvious scam artists. If it was a valid A/B test with live switching, allowing listens to hear a whole track without suggestive/guiding questions while openly abusing audio memory mechanics -- I may have just chalked it up to being stressed / in a poor seat / whatever.

The people doing the demo were asked TWICE while I was there to do a live switch, which they denied with silly excuses.
Well considering its a video shot on a cell phone and not the best quality I definitely heard some differences. Particularly with the Atmosphere and less so with the Tranquility Bases but it still did sound better. And the changeovers were very quick just a couple of seconds in each case. I'm not sure how the Atmosphere works exactly but taking a couple of seconds to take effect doesn't sound reasonable. Seemed like a pretty solid demo to me and people there seemed to be hearing changes.
Also how are they scam artists? They are doing a demo, it's up to you to decide if it's better or worse. You label everything a scam hence you have zero credibility.
You are absolutely full of it. You heard nothing. I was there, front row center right beside someone else (the European-sounding guy to the left). I didn't listen to it through a cell phone (which does NO justice to the actual quality of this system which was very impressive). I tried hard to keep the sound details in my head during transitions. I heard no changes. I even tried to hear the things some of the other listeners claimed they heard -- nothing.

Note the lame excuse as to why he can't do live switching. During a later part of the demo  in which I didn't record, he was asked AGAIN to do a live switch, and that time his explanation (paraphrasing): "Cells have to charge/discharge, I do it this way because I mean you to be able to hear the differences".

Another demo was the Black Box, that little box sitting on the floor I show near the start of the video. The idea is, it has a resonator inside that defeats bass frequency standing waves. How much energy is stored in a standing wave? A tiny fraction of a second or whatever?? Why couldn't he just MOVE the damn box WHILE the music was playing? They even brought in as second box to show the effects of more than one -- that box was at the rear of the room near the door...couldn't they have just moved the box in and out of the door while playing music live??

Just complete manipulative scam artist BS trash. Don't get suckered in by it.
Madavid0, you’ll pardon me for saying this but you don’t really understand standing waves, do you? Besides everybody and his brother knows sometimes people don’t hear certain tweaks. There are many perfectly good reasons why this so. One possible reason is you psyched yourself out.
At the start of the cartoon:
"Allow me to introduce myself; Wile E. Coyote, Super Genius."
At the end of the cartoon:"Allow me to introduce myself: my name is mud."

I couldn't resist, no harm intended.

All the best,
Any lawyers here? Has the OP libeled Synergistic? I have no relation to the company so it’s not like I have any stake in it, but it’s one thing to say someone didn’t hear a benefit from a product, and another to state that a company is out to defraud people.
Many years ago I heard Synergistic demo of active shielding and there was a clear benefit.

The original poster is obviously a pin head troll I also attended axpona and attended the sr demo twice some of the improvements were greater than others while I didn't question others in the room everyone seemed to enjoy what they heard. Again to the op your thoughts and opinions do not mean a thing. So go back to your parents basement and turn off your laptop. 
Is it your religion to be bamboozled?

I've heard differences between power cables and interconnects so obvious I didn't even need to A/B them back to back. Possibly the SR cables in the demo were fabulous and contributed to the wonderful sound of the room. I'm just commenting on the "tweak" demos. Some of the devices seemed more likely to work than others (the little metal resonators on the speakers), but try as I might I could hear nothing.

There is NO legitimate reason why they couldn't just turn the Atmosphere "room acoustics controller" on and off, or switch between settings on the fly. The excuse offered, as heard on the video, is that because it takes a "long time" for the change to be effected it will happen without you being able to tell the difference!!!! I didn't say that, THEY did.

When you test gear at home -- trying between different interconnects for example -- do you listen to 30 seconds of music, swap cables, talk about what you're doing during the swap, then continue listening to the track where you left off for another 30 seconds? Do you pick times just as new instruments come in to make the swap? And so on.

What's happening in that demo is that they are obviously abusing the audio memory effect to flim-flam listeners.
Madavid0, pretty sure I see your problem. There's no such thing as the audio memory effect. Whew! That was a close call.

As has been mentioned in other threads here on Audiogon, the word "scam" gets thrown around too freely.
I did not see or hear a scam, however, I agree that the demonstration could have been better orchestrated.


Yes I agree with you. Certain terms are used too often and IMO inappropriately.

"Great" when good is probably the better choice.

"Hate" when dislike is the better description.

Words do have meaning. Just my observation.


I listened to that video and do think I heard a difference- for the better.  I do not own any SR products, have never heard any, and was not expecting to hear any difference.  What I heard was a reduction in noise or distortion that is in the music itself; not in the background.  It sounded more natural, easier on the ears especially during the dynamic swings.  The echo sounded more real too. I would not call it a huge difference but if I had the money I would try it in the context of my own system.  As far as the demonstration itself, it seems like it could have been done differently and would have been very interesting to hear instantaneous A-B rather than the way it was done with the delay in between.
Let me guess, you think power cords are a scam too, and can't hear the difference between a basic upgraded power cord and a serious one, am I right?
Because your system does not have the resolution to hear the zones of improvement does not mean they don't make huge differences in another system that has better interconnects and speaker wires. Your money will be better spent upgrading the other wires and power cords.
Let me guess, you think power cords are a scam too, and can't hear the difference between a basic upgraded power cord and a serious one, am I right?
Because your system does not have the resolution to hear the zones of improvement does not mean they don't make huge differences in another system that has better interconnects and speaker wires. Your money will be better spent upgrading the other wires and power cords.

Sorry, incorrect. I've auditioned and compared various interconnects and power cables. Sometimes the difference is large, sometimes it's mild, and once I could tell no difference. Possibly SR cables are great, I've never compared them. I'm talking about their various tweak products and their line conditioner.

The SR was top dollar -- Magico + VAC and some high end source. If I could hear any difference with any system it should be that one.
Well, for one thing demos at the shows are a pig in a poke. in fact, most systems at shows sound very generic and unconvincing IMHO. There are many reasons for this. So there’s no reason to think any tweak demo would necessarily be convincing. It’s likie any test that is subject to the whims of the system and time limitations that shows present. If someone complain he didn’t hear tweak X it certainly doesn’t mean it’s a scam, anymore than ANY test. Follow? In fact, I’ve lobbied for a long time for static displays for the simple reason getting audio manufacturers to agree to break in their products prior to showtime is almost impossible. Everybody’s got to show off his brand new shiny little gadget. Fine, have a static display! Hel-loo!
I too question their ethics buying a whole loom of cables with interchanables 
Tones with their bullets it gets better , their active shield has a wall watt 
If my cables were not expensive enough  they sell an upgrade $400 each just better resistors on a circuit board and a few other $ 3.00 goodies. We took an older one a part ,what a scam  i had 12 connections  that would be a additional 
$4800 . For the price they charge this little nodded wall wsrt without question should come stock with them .Element cables , sold no more Synergistic 
Active cables no better then a well designed cable.
You're a complete idiot! I have a lot of the Synergistic Research products and the differences are amazing! You must have cotton in your ears if you hear nothing! I get so tired of people complaing that something is a scam! You obviously are just an obnoxious person who keeps trying to get attention! I have three friends who have all bought the Synergistic Research products after hearing my system. I must be scamming them into thinking there's a difference in what they heard! I say it again, you're a complete idiot!
I have been using their Black Quantum fuses and will surely buy again if they blew.

I don't care for the fact that the OP has been slamming SR in what is a very slanderous allegation, BUT, after watching the video, I must agree with him on the way the demo was performed. At the beginning while Stevie Ray Vaughn was being played, the rep stopped the music completely to turn the Tranquility bases off and on for comparison sake. Why?? These are not part of the audio chain(to my knowledge), so no risk of damage. Why not just turn them on and off while the music was playing for  a realistic A/B comparison. I think the demo was flawed, but not necessarily the products themselves. I have no SR products myself, but am curious what others that do think of the SR line. I'm not trying to hijack the thread, but it seems to be relevant to the conversation at hand. 

Nothing wrong with this demo.  I heard a small but spacial difference through my laptop.  His demo was good.  
Can anyone identify the music that was used in the demo?  I really liked it. Thanks.
I have a lot of SR products in my audio system.

Galileo UEF interconnects and speaker cables, SR level 3 power cables, USB and SE cables, 5 Tranquility bases, the SR Acoustic Art system room treatment (1 Vibratron and 2 Basic 5 packs) , FEQ and HFT, SR transporter, and two SR MK3 power cells.

I know that’s a lot of Synergistic Research gear, but it does give me a perspective in this discussion.

These devices are expensive and there may not be any provable science to support them – but they really do work. I’ve experimented by disconnected every SR device over and over again - one at a time and several together - to experience the difference in my room. It’s astounding.

How or why they work – it’s Voodoo!

Tin Pan Alley by Stevie Ray Vaughan
Riders in the Sky (Ghost) by Johnny Cash & Willie Nelson
Dead Already by Thomas Newman
The Tranquility bases are an outstanding product that one can clearly hear as a Positive SQ upgrade once in a system. The Back Fuse is also a great buy and can clearly he heard for the better. 

I think the OP is pretty funny with his over the top comments. The Troll that abides in the Deep!
I just came back from the high end show in Munich (Germany). One of the best sounding rooms was completely treated with all the SR gadgets. The sound was amazing. The equipment was also amazing and I can't say what was responsible for what of course (it was not an SR demo), but the end result was absolutely amazing.
No doubt we live in the voodoo/flat earth era of audio! All these magic tweaks are just that - MAGIC! No SCIENTIFIC validity! A piece of wire is like a condom - if it works everything is fine - if not ...               

Can you describe what was so amazing about the system and room at Munich? I have been to audio shows and have heard amazing systems and rooms without any SR products. 
I am amazed at the sound on my system and in my room. 
I do Not have any SR products including fuses. 
I do treat my room with diffusers and tube traps. My Pass amps have thermal magnetic breakers; no fuses needed.
At last years Axpona; The CAT / Marten room/system was amazing; No room treatment or SR products.
Every record played by Mr Van de Hul was 3D you are here palpable.Only Mr Valin posted a minor quibble in TAS. Was that room Best of Show?  What was the room/equipment? 
Please expand on what was amazing.

Thanks, I would appreciate your extra effort.