Asheville, Walnut Cove, Biltmore Forrest and Western North Carolina’s Audio and Home Theater specialists present Cane Creek AV and Paul McGowan – PS Audio, Intl.

Devils and details

Part of the challenge in audio engineering is to know when to use certain processes or devices and when to use others. For example, a tube in the input stage works well, but not so much in the output. Or, a capacitor used as a DC blocker might sound better than the complexity of a servo, or, vice versa.

Analog integrated circuits, like op amps, can typically be bettered by their discrete counterparts in some cases, but not all. For example, if component matching is a critical aspect to your design then there’s likely no better process than integrating everything on a single piece of silicone. Each component tracks the temperature variations of the other for near-perfect matching.

Yet, in the same way separates can outperform integrated amplifiers, there are disadvantages to IC solutions too. The limitations of single silicone, including low power requirements and a lack of isolation between components, can hinder performance levels in highly resolving systems like the kind you and I might want at home.

It’s always a good idea to keep sweeping proclamations of better and worse at a minimum.

Like just about everything else in life, it’s the details that flush out the devil.

Asheville, Walnut Cove, Biltmore Forrest and Western North Carolina’s Audio and Home Theater specialists present Cane Creek AV and Paul McGowan – PS Audio, Intl.

Magic

Magicians practice the art of misdirection. Stereo systems perform three-dimensional miracles; make your speakers disappear; float voices in space; create depth, height, and width from two boxes.

It seems like nothing short of a miracle when you step back to marvel at what a great high-end audio system brings into your home. Into your life. Into the world.

No other device I can think of has the power of illusion to craft a fleeting moment in space. Bring a concert back to life. Recreate a soundstage. Enjoy a performance from years past.

Our audio systems are magic if for a brief moment we can close our eyes and ignore all the technical contrivances needed to bring life to music.

Today I am not going to think about stereo equipment. Only the magic they bring at a touch of a button.