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RE: Should we send a "representative" to Magnepan?

It's just a guess, but I suspect the reason single ended magnet assemblies work is that, since sound is logarithmic, the diaphragm is rarely undergoing large excursions. That would mean that the nonlinearity of the single-ended field would be apparently mostly at very high levels and during peaks, which does tend to correlate with what I remember of the push-pull 1-D tweeters -- that they didn't start to sound congested the way the MMG's tweeters do at high levels. But I could be hearing other effects as well, particularly the fact that the MMG's tweeter shares a diaphragm with the midwoofer so is subject to intermodulation effects -- a loud bass note will move the tweeter into the nonlinear range, and you can sometimes hear the bass muddying the treble.

Agree about marketing. We audiophiles tend to be pretty set in our ways. I think it's easy to understand how that comes about -- I often find myself drawing on listening experiences that are over 30 years old.

The year the CD was introduced, I started a big argument at an AES convention when I suggested that the bit depth and sampling rate were too low. :-) I think about half the audience ended up agreeing with me, the other half said hey, you have to be practical. In fact, the story as I've heard it has more to do with corporate shennanigans on the part of Philips than with technical limitations. Admittedly, this was from somebody at Sony. But 16 bits/96 dB was clearly not enough and there was plenty of data even then to tell us that. And not only was 44.1 kHz marginal, it was a difficult conversion from the already-established 48 kHz AES standard that was already being used in the studio. Today we can do it easily, but the early standards converters didn't sound very good. Fortunately, clever folk were able to ameliorate the 16 bit limit somewhat with noise shaping.

One advantage analog buffers have is that, if they are noisy, the noise is generally of a pretty benign, random sort. Just hiss. Whereas if you listen to a dithered low-level audio signal, it's very rough sounding. And if you eliminate the dither, you lose ambiance and spatial cues. So while, ideally, analog stages wouldn't raise the noise floor of the digital signal, I don't think analog noise is as offensive. Otherwise, we wouldn't be as tolerant of tape hiss as we are.


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  • RE: Should we send a "representative" to Magnepan? - josh358 17:39:47 10/19/11 (0)

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