Electrostatic speakers just don’t do cannons very well.!!
Reader John Vookles sent me this note:
“Years ago I was selling a pair of Acoustat 3s so I ran an ad in the paper (this was pre-internet). A gentleman called and wanted to come listen and I recommended that he bring along a favorite recording. He came with a recording of artillery weapons being fired. My electrostat’s flunked the test. I asked the guy if that was really what he liked to listen to. He got pissed and left. So, that lack of dynamic transients cost me the sale. Oh well..”
I truly understand the cannon guy who likely wanted to know if the reputation electrostat’s have for a lack of dynamics was correct or not, but I think he missed a valuable opportunity.
The electrostat’s can’t reproduce cannon shots but what can they do? Wouldn’t the listener have been better off starting in with his favorite recording to discover the underlying benefits of an electrostat? By taking the opposite approach and testing the system’s limitations first forever tainted any chance at discovering what magic may be waiting.
The approach that works best for me is to start with easy and work up to hard. That way, we uncover all the delicate nuances and benefits before challenging it with what might be beyond its limitations.
I suppose this is the classic half full argument.