Should I be happy or sad? (long)

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Mike Wladyka, Nov 19, 2003.

  1. Mike Wladyka

    Mike Wladyka Supporting Actor

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    So i have been listening to a bunch of speakers lately from differents brands and different models from each brand. Now, i can tell differences from brand to brand, telling differences within some brands is much harder for me. I will use paradigm as an example. I listened to the 7's and was amazed, then i listened the studio 60's a couple months later and was again amazed, then just this past week, i finally got to listen to mini's, 20's, atoms, 60's, 7's (since i am finally getting serious about buying)...the store had the atoms, minis, and 20's, setup for easy push button switching...i thought this is great for me to compare and hear the differences in each...with a some CD's i knew and others i did not...i listened. I was amazed that i could not really tell much differences between speakers! after a little bit of listening, i could tell apart the mini's and the atoms. I clearly liked the mini's better, now onto the comparsion between the mini's and 20's...i could not tell the difference...both seemed really good. This came as a complete shock since i have read here that the 20's are much better speakers...I think that i would be fooling myself saying i could tell a difference between the two or saying the 20's are much better or even better...Now i am not an audiophile, but shouldn't i be able to tell a difference? i thought i would be able to tell differences in imaging, detail, etc, but i could not. Does anyone else suffer from this problem? or am i just an anomaly?

    I think i should be happy right? since i can pay much less for speakers...but on the other hand, i feel sort of sad not knowing how great some speakers actually are...
     
  2. RichardH

    RichardH Supporting Actor

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    Don't feel bad! You should be glad that you can be happy w/ a less expensive speaker!! Here's the thing, my guess is that if you got the right source material, e.g. acoustic Jazz trio, and really sat down w/ someone who can tell you the differences you're supposed to be looking for, then you'd start to hear them. But, who cares?? Or, if you played music loud enough, you would start to hear the limits of some of the speakers.

    You may also receive recommendations to compare speakers using CDs you're "very familiar with." What does that mean? It means you've listened to that particular CD on one (or more) arbitrary systems that each play it back w/ differing degrees of accuracy. IMO, I never understood that bit of advice for auditioning speakers. Are you supposed to then prefer speakers that play your "familiar" CD like the systems you became familiar with it on???

    I also imagine some people pick arbitrary designations as to whether one speaker is better than another. I know I've seen it in many a review. "The cymbal crashes are slightly brighter and with more sheen on speaker X." Huh??? Why does that make it better (or worse)?? How are you supposed to know what the mix engineer (and to a lesser degree, the mastering engineer) wanted the cymbals to sound like? And even if you did, you're not playing it back on studio monitors at a sound-treated studio!

    This goes on and on, and is primarily the reason I stopped being an audiophile a few years ago. Hope it helps you some. Remember, it's all about enjoyment (or it should be).
     
  3. BrianAe

    BrianAe Second Unit

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    I agree, be happy. Myself, I can tell the difference between many speakers but not electronics (as long as there is sufficient clean power driving the speakers) and I don't always prefer the more expensive speaker.

    I also feel that while many people speak about diminishing returns, I feel that the differences in the range of speakers you are comparing is often smaller then many people lead on. If you listen to some ultra high end speakers like Revels you WILL hear the difference. However, to be honest, what you may hear is that it brings out the flaws in the recordings you are listening to.

    In the end, let your ears be the judge, have fun, and be happy.
     

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