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.

I’ve heard the Polk speakers and the Carver Sonic Hologram and while interesting at first listen, there are other things a lot more important in re-producing music realistically and enjoyably. Still very cool.

Interaural crosstalk

It’s amazing that stereo speakers work at all. Two different sound sources spaced apart by a few feet attempting to maintain separation. One has left channel-only information while the other produces right channel-only info. Problem is, as soon as they make sound in the room the channels are no longer separated. Your left ear hears a slightly delayed version of what’s on the right speaker and vice versa.

When you wear headphones this problem does not exist, which is one of the reasons headphone listening is so different than that of speakers.

The issue has a name: Interaural Crosstalk. If you’re an Audio Engineering Society member, or willing to shell out a few bucks, you can read all about it here. The paper will explain all the issues, like massive comb filtering along with frequency and amplitude issues that are anything but trivial.

Mathew Polk tried to fix some of the problems of interaural crosstalk with the introduction of the Polk SRS speakers. In this clever design, an extra set of drivers on each channel were used to deliver an out of phase signal from the opposite channel. That out of phase signal canceled some of the effects of the problem and the result was a much more realistic soundstage. In later years, Bob Carver did the same thing electronically with his Sonic Hologram generator.

And here’s the thing. Despite the problems of interaural crosstalk, our stereo speaker systems still image. Set up properly, they image great!

Just another example of how far we have to go in perfecting the art of home music reproduction.

 

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.

If I was there, I would have been pissed, as this was obnoxious to me and I’ll bet the artist liked it, not one bit. !!

Up front and personal

When it comes to music, one of the greatest pleasures is a chance to be upfront and personal with it. And, there’s no better way for that to happen than live.

Recently, Terri and I had the chance to get about as close and personal as possible with world-renowned cellist, Zuill Bailey. Zuill is nothing short of extraordinary and we were lucky enough to get front row seats—not at a hall, but at a person’s home here in Boulder. The cellist was so close that when he spoke between songs Terri and I had to duck from his gesticulating bow.

I, ever the nerd, whipped out my trusty phone and recorded one of his Bach pieces, raising his eyebrows at me (as you’ll see) and then giving me a gentle lecture after the piece about the value of being in the moment and off my phone.