Thread: Audiophiles as a social phenomenon; a study

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Post by Chris May 1, 2011 (81 of 110)
rammiepie said:



As Kal so rightfully pointed out, almost ALL recordings today are products of computer manipulations with pro tools, etc., becoming the norm.

And for roughly $10K (US) and with the addition of a Mac Ipad (used as a very ultra~sophisticated remote control), this is hardly a toy for the fainthearted and I defy anyone on this site to come up with a similar RBCD device at anywhere near this price to compete with the SooLoos.

Talk, Talk, talk all you want but if one of these devices were offered to any of you, you'd jump at the chance and marvel at its pedigree.

And downloading 96/24 into the SooLoos brings this device to an entirely different level certainly rivaling any SACD playback unit out there.

Hell, the Meridian 800 DVD~A/RBCD player ALREADY proved that in SPADES!

No offence rammiepie,I too know it sounds fine ,but why buy yet another expensive "PLAYER" when all one needs is really a decent computer a good dac and hardrive space to store ones music on.
I also know that one can get the same results for much less than the cost of any of the dedicated players from Meridian or Linn or whoever else has started to build things that are not really needed for high res playback!
Why waste money on things that can be put together much cheaper.
IMHO people buying those things are being ripped off.
They are paying a lot of money for what is basically just very very expensive hardrive space with a built in dac.
A computer that doesn´t work for anything else than playing music.
I am sure most people here already have a decent computer.

I spend my money on good music instead.

A 2tb hardrive with either usb2or3 or firewire 800 costs about 100.
A laptop like say a Macbook air can be bought for about 1000. And a mac mini or similar pc which is all you really need, costs much less.

There are several good DACs that can handle 24/96 from 300-400 to about 1000.

In other words for a total of say 2000-3000 you get the same quality that obviously Meridian and Linn charge you about 10000 for.

What do you really get for the additional 7000-8000?

All the best Chris

Post by rammiepie May 1, 2011 (82 of 110)
Chris, I understand your concerns but this is more than a duplicating device as it introduces the "guts" of the already heralded Meridian 808.3 REFERENCE PLAYER and it's much more sophisticated than the ordinary computer in reproducing the music. If you saw how it works and its rather large storage capacity it's way too cool for words.

And I suppose one has to spring for the new Meridian 861 V.6 because they are a synergistic combo so I don't suppose this device will interest too many prospective customers.

To be quite honest, it was NOT on my must~have list but was offered to me along with the 861 v.6 at a very attractive price and Meridian even offered to burn 1000 RBCDs for FREE (usually $1.50 each) so I suppose it was an offer I could not refuse.

Having lived with it for 6 months I am glad I took the plunge because it is also extremely versatile and reproduces RBCD with a clarity rivaling some hi~def material.

And with the Ipad acting as a remote, that's where the real fun begins as you can "swim" from track to track with the greatest of ease and it's a great way to hear all those obscure tracks in highest fidelity that were once buried in boxes in my basement.

Post by rammiepie May 1, 2011 (83 of 110)
audioholik said:

Finally some truth in an audio magazine??

They should also add that going with higher sampling speeds (PCM) buys you more distortion :)
http://www.soundstage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=126:96khz-vs-192khz&catid=57:reader-feedback&Itemid=24

So that's why Meridian doesn't "recognize" 192khz........because it's really overkill and does introduce some digital nasties. Really, IMO, 96/24 is sufficient in the PCM realm.

Is DSD 128 also overkill or a credible upgrade? I am NO expert on that and would welcome discussion.

Post by audioholik May 1, 2011 (84 of 110)
rammiepie said:

So that's why Meridian doesn't "recognize" 192khz........because it's really overkill and does introduce some digital nasties. Really, IMO, 96/24 is sufficient in the PCM realm.

Is DSD 128 also overkill or a credible upgrade? I am NO expert on that and would welcome discussion.

In Delta Sigma Digital sky is the limit, we can go up to 512fs I believe. Maybe Gus Skinas could share his thoughts on this topic....

Post by big sur May 1, 2011 (85 of 110)
No matter how much audio technology advances nothing beats live, especially orchestral, voice, and small ensemble. Of course 365/24/7 "in the privacy of ones home" is what rules. The increase in social isolation wrought by the internet and other technologies is being feverishly studied by doctoral candidates as I write this. Wonder who will profit most from the technology backlash to come? I hope it's writers, musicians, and artists.

Post by rammiepie May 1, 2011 (86 of 110)
big sur said:

No matter how much audio technology advances nothing beats live, especially orchestral, voice, and small ensemble. Of course 365/24/7 "in the privacy of ones home" is what rules. The increase in social isolation wrought by the internet and other technologies is being feverishly studied by doctoral candidates as I write this. Wonder who will profit most from the technology backlash to come? I hope it's writers, musicians, and artists.

No argument there. This idea of being wired 24/7/365 has created a very impersonal society......akin to years ago we had the front porch and would interact with our neighbors and now we have the deck in the back yard, fenced in and seemingly, isolation has become the norm.

But the decline in listening to live music and going to a movie theater has been threatened since the existence of the phonograph and Television so the home theater has now replaced that experience, as well.

But the flip side is that we almost have an unlimited free choice to choose what we want to hear and what we want to watch and with ticket prices for live music/concerts and cinema escalating, it's sometimes cheaper to stay home.

No, there is NO substitute to listening to live music but even that reality has become an extravagance, albeit, one still worth seeking out!

Post by Nagraboy May 1, 2011 (87 of 110)
big sur said:

No matter how much audio technology advances nothing beats live, especially orchestral, voice, and small ensemble. Of course 365/24/7 "in the privacy of ones home" is what rules. The increase in social isolation wrought by the internet and other technologies is being feverishly studied by doctoral candidates as I write this. Wonder who will profit most from the technology backlash to come? I hope it's writers, musicians, and artists.

We're very fortunate to live in an era where we can sit in comfort at home and listen to performances of the greatest (or not!) music ever written.

Not so long ago, even the richest and most powerful in society didn't have this choice. If Herr Bach came round to play his latest composition, that's what they got. If Mozart was your court composer, you'd have to listen to him.

I'm not saying our systems are as good as live music in the home, but they are pretty damned impressive and the choices we have now are amazing, if you think about it.

As usual though, too much of a good thing...

Post by Ernani71 May 1, 2011 (88 of 110)
big sur said:

No matter how much audio technology advances nothing beats live, especially orchestral, voice, and small ensemble. Of course 365/24/7 "in the privacy of ones home" is what rules. The increase in social isolation wrought by the internet and other technologies is being feverishly studied by doctoral candidates as I write this. Wonder who will profit most from the technology backlash to come? I hope it's writers, musicians, and artists.

Sure, "nothing beats live," especially opera, and particularly since I tend to distract the prima donna. I've had more than one of them sing directly to me. There's nothing like being sung to directly by a great soprano. Sometimes the distraction goes the other way. For instance, Renee Fleming got out on stage, took one look at me, and proceeded to sing the entire concert to the side of the hall opposite to where I sat (and I mean the entire concert). That was very awkward. She didn't even glance toward my side of the hall. However, as she walked off stage, she looked over her shoulder and smiled at me. Another time Sylvie Valayre did a sublime job singing the last act of Manon Lescaut. She had noticed me in the audience immediately and kept singing AT me. What can I say, this kept me coming back to watch her. Anyhow, on the third and last performance, she rushed out on stage for cutain call and looked directly at me, obviously expecting me to be on my feet shouting "Brava!" (She deserved it that night.) However, it was a Sunday afternoon performance and it seemed on that particular afternoon that all the senior citizens in Miami just happened to be in attendance, many of them in wheel chairs. I noticed they weren't getting up to give her a standing ovation, so I followed their lead and stayed seated. What followed was one of the most awkward moments you can imagine. When I felt her stare, I immediately stood up and shouted, "Brava!" But it was too late. My voice cracked as I shouted, and I'll never forget the way she visibly winced, as if she had heard the most terrible sound in the universe. The male lead noticed the entire thing and had to look away, as he was stuggling to not laugh. Anyhow, this was too much for me, and I stopped attending live performances. I think it was my age that attracted so much attention, and the fact that I liked sitting near the stage (until I discovered the glories of sitting 3/4 of the way back). I find it much more relaxing listening at home. Moreover, the Florida Grand Opera is so unimaginative in their programming. Every season my reaction is, "Carmen . . . again. Figaro . . . again. La Boheme . . . again. Aida . . . again." I think the only Wagner they've done throughout their entire history is The Flying Dutchman, a few decades ago.

Post by Nagraboy May 1, 2011 (89 of 110)
rammiepie said:

Very wise advice, Nagraboy, and one that I'll tattoo on my arm.........

But I do have a somewhat warm, fuzzy feeling that SACD and vinyl will be around longer than 2014!

And since you are one of the few posters on this website who is open enough to try new things try to get your hands on Walker Audio's Talisman......A bit pricey it will MORE than pay for itself as it demagnetizes 5" optical discs and speaker cables and interconnects and is awesome (and I mean AWESOME) when you pass it over your speakers twice. You cannot believe how great this little gizmo is............and it works on ALL my speakers including Martin Logan Electrostatics...........It also works on vinyl, as well.

It is not, repeat NOT, a placebo effect device but a rational upgrade which will leave you smiling big time!

(See if you can borrow one from a local audio dealer). As you are a sprightly 31 year old, you will definitely hear the difference.

And it's certainly sexier than a Faberge Egg!

First off, I have no idea whether DB has a collection of Faberge eggs, it was just a funny image I thought up!

Secondly, I have no doubt LP and SACD will still be around after 2014. Vinyl sales are slowly picking up (although still microscopically tiny overall) with all generations of listeners, so there's money to be made there. SACD must have a future at least for a good while yet - it better had with that Esoteric player on my horizon this year! Besides there are so many catalogue titles I still neeed to aquire from Amazon etc. so I don't worry too much about SACD. One day there will be no commercial releases of SACDs anymore, but I'm hoping my (hypothetical) Esoteric will still be spinning when I'm 51!

The Walker Audio Talisman, eh? I think you've mentioned it before. I'll have to look into it. If it's anything like the Peter Belt stuff our own DB mentioned, it will certainly raise an eye-brow here, in British Roger Moore style...

And yes I am still sprightly having not yet developed the customary Audiophile Gut yet! Mind you, these new Harbeth speakers are causing DBT, I fear!

Post by rammiepie May 1, 2011 (90 of 110)
Nagraboy, take the plunge with the Talisman........it works, period......on everything.

And if it does, indeed, raise eyebrows, who cares. Better to be an individual than a follow the leader blout!

It's scary good......and that's a guarantee!

SCREW PSEUDO SCIENCE!

We Still don't know why we're here!

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