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General speaker questions for audio and home theater.

RE: Methodology problem imo

I agree with what you're saying but what I see is a guy working for a company and he is there to sell speakers for the brand he works for. He called the ML a "bad design" without specifically calling the brand name out we all know what it is. Of course any speaker that is designed for a room interaction will measure poorly when not measured appropriately.

I understand what you are saying with panels needing extra special attention but the same review outfits doing measurements always measure panels that look horrible on the plots and then say "but they sound great so ignore the horrific measured results" in other words the measurements suck but give me the benefit of the doubt and trust my ears. Well no you can't have it both ways. But they pick and choose which speakers to make excuses for. Then go out of your way and measure a panel properly. Get the appropriate measuring tools.

Then all these great measuring speakers in the same magazines that tout "this is great measured performance" and the reviewers who auditioned and perhaps reviewed those very suped up white papered speakers proceed to buy a speaker like the DeVore, Audio Note, a panel or a Horn that virtually run to the opposite side of the great measuring spectrum.

I can read the Harman papers - watch the video and then I go out to one of the places that professionally set these kinds of speakers up. I spend the time actually listening hard to these speakers. Revel Ultima Salon 2, top of the line Harman made current JBLs, Paradigm S8, PSB Imagine. Scratch my head and think - where did the lifeblood of the music go?

Then I listen to some butt ugly looking enormous monstrosity of a horn system run by those bad measuring tube amps and it's so on another level it's ridiculous. It's why a long time back I was interested in your very own Prisma horns - horns have a tactile lifelike scale to them. Perfect maybe not but not everything comes down to frequency plots and resonances - HE jumps out of the box usually anyway and escapes the box sound - which is why my KEF LS-50 sounds far more boxy shut in and resonancy than my AN E.

And here's the thing - perhaps it's a United States thing that I don't quite get - and JA probably understands because of his Chinese wall references between advertising and the editor. But if a company that SELLS stereo equipment hires an engineer who gets paid from said company conducts a test - produces a paper and then gee whiz - all our speakers under this test indicate that our $1000 speaker is better than the rest selling at $10,000 - however possibly true that might be - those premises and results are a conflict of interest. The guy selling you the widget is the guy conducting the science and the guy telling you his is best (or implies it real real hard). Chinese Wall?

I understand that in the United States - science is now fake news and that Philip Morris claiming that cigarettes are perfectly safe (and now apparently lead and asbestos are just fine too) - Big Tobacco have real bought and paid for scientists with degrees and white papers too that absolutely indicate that cigarettes are perfectly safe. They ran this counter science create doubt machine for 5 decades. They are doing it again with a similar issue that will kill people, but let's not go there. That doubt machine has been going since Carl Sagan.

As you noted yourself - the MLs were not given a fair chance due to their type of design. Now a company selling $1500 standmounts and their own $20k speakers hardly want to go above and beyond the call to be "fair" to a competing product like Martin Logan now do they? Of course not - they want the OTHER speaker to look bad and fail the test miserably. See they suck and we're superior.

The entire premise is faulty - people want the best sound - that is total crap. Bose sells more speakers than the top 5 audiophile approved speaker makers COMBINED. And these speakers often measure and even sound abysmal and they continue to sell above and beyond everyone else! So Toole claiming people will be mad if their speaker doesn't measure flat is absolutely ridiculous. Right out of marketing advert 101 but because he seems like your favorite grandpa everyone just accepts the premise.

Ask dealers - I know several and they tell me that more than 90% of everyone who walks in knows what they want before listening. They often don't trust the dealers so don't listen to any suggestions. And that's high end dealers.

When someone goes to a big box chain in Canada to buy Toole approved Paradigm and PSB speakers - there is no place to properly audition any of this stuff - sound quality is not on the agenda AT ALL in those places.

So the dealer probably trots out reviews and the white papers. See most people in our test choose this speaker because of this graph - see the pretty graph - looks neat don't it. 98% of them have no clue what they are actually looking at and don't know a watt from WhatsApp, but it is "scientific" and since you can't hear them properly anyway - well it's probably good - the review was nice. Here's my CC.

Anyway - conflict of interest is very very clear here. I tip my hat though because big companies do this snow better than Santa.


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