Thin Line Between Critique and Courtrooms: A Dialogue on the Recent Audiophile Drama

Hey Audiogonians,

In the vast, vibrant universe of audio reviews, where the line between subjective opinion and objective analysis often blurs, a new saga unfolds. It involves a Youtuber, well-known within our community for their take on speaker designs – designs that, while innovative, haven't shied away from criticism. The plot thickens with another Youtuber's revelation: the speaker's designer and manufacturer has filed a lawsuit against a reviewer over their less-than-glowing feedback.

The core of the debate? Whether it's acceptable to push back against reviewers when their findings diverge from what manufacturers desire. It's not a new drama; history is littered with tales of reviewers facing legal threats for daring to express their truth. Yet, each story brings a fresh perspective on the delicate dance between free speech and brand reputation.

This particular episode raises several intriguing questions:
- Where do we draw the line between constructive criticism and damaging feedback?
- Is the courtroom really the arena for settling disputes over reviews, or should dialogue prevail?
- And crucially, what does this mean for the future of honest, independent audio reviews?

This isn't just about the nitty-gritty of legal battles, many of which remain cloaked in confidentiality and technical jargon. It's about the principle: the right to voice one's opinion in a space that thrives on diversity of thought.

So, fellow audiophiles, what's your take? Have you ever felt swayed by a review, only to discover a different truth upon listening? Have you faced the ire of those who didn't appreciate your candid feedback?

📢Let's make this a discussion to remember – not just for the controversy, but for the unity and respect we can foster, even in disagreement.



I didn't watch Erin's review because that particular model of Tekton speaker held no interest for me. But overall, any review that Erin does is objective measurement based first, then he listens to the speaker BEFORE looking at the data to make a subjective opinion about what he is hearing, THEN looks to the data to see if what he is hearing makes sense.  Not a bad way to do things. 

Sadly, there aren't very many American speaker companies in existence, but if Tekton can't properly work with a good reviewer (Erin is NOT a hack) then they are off my list to ever consider.  I was considering their Double Impact, but not anymore. 

I mean, as the YouTube video linked above shows, there are damned few objective reviewers out there and we already have too many subjective ones that at the end of the day, are pretty much meaningless to how any product will sound in our own rooms. They only tell us 1. Yeah, the speaker makes noise, 2. It didn't blow up my amp, and 3. I kind of either like it or found it bright. 

Then because of the threat of "sue, sue, sue" these days many reviewers simply will NEVER publish a negative review. That skews things to the point of useless absurdity.  The only reason to watch videos is to get an idea of what a product looks like and that's about it. 

One thing I do want to correct the Audioholics guy on is that my understanding is on Tekton speakers only the center tweeter in any array acts as a real tweeter. The rest are acting as low distortion midrange drivers thus comb filtering isn't an issue. 

One general problem with YouTube and most (but not all) of the reviewers is how some new product comes out, nearly everyone reviews it within about a 3-month period, offering glowing reviews.  Only later say after a year or more does it come out that, "Well, maybe it isn't all that".  I've seen this happen time and time again from speakers, to streamers, to DACs, to cheap Chi-Fi amps.  It seems like an endless cycle.  In fact, I've almost given up on watching YouTubers at all other than for catching a decent album recommendation or just the entertainment value. 

An issue for anyone selling direct to consumers is that if the consumer has never heard the product, how will they know if it is sounding correctly or if there is an "issue" with it?  Ah for the days of brick and mortar stores...

 Confirmation to me if you want advice on how components sound/perform listen to what multiple sources say on these forums.  Reviewers add what the product is, how it works how its features compare to others, where to buy.  Leave the how it sounds to the audiophiles.  If no feedback exists move on. Measurements are nice to see but I prefer listening with ears.

No walking back those emails from Eric, and I found Erin’s responses to be perfectly reasonable and respectful. That’s just nasty behavior from Eric, and IMO he deserves all the business and reviews he loses because of it especially because he has a history of doing this with other reviewers. He should be ashamed of such behavior although I highly doubt it.

Astonishing that he has been able to dig a big enough hole for himself and his huge speakers….despicable behavior that deserves the blowback.  Erin and all the others he has gone after deserve the last word.