Tag Archives: Audio Equipment

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.

The answer to this is no. Expensive audio equipment often sounds pretty bad to me. , but high end audio has turned into bling for the wealthy and if the economy bursts, watch out..

Does expensive equipment always sound better?

Today’s fact or fiction question is a little like the old chestnut: does throwing money at a problem always work? The answer’s as old as the question: of course not (but it usually helps).

I struggle with this basic inquiry because it’s a question in search of a pat answer when none are available (the catchword is “always”). We cannot honestly answer this often asked question because of its “always” qualifier.

That said, I would have to put forth a general answer of yes. In general, the higher priced equipment sounds better than lower priced products. Our own PS Audio Stellar vs. BHK are good examples and I am certain there are many others.

There is a caveat here and it’s one we should all think about for the continuing health of our industry. There’s a danger in blindly proliferating this generalized wisdom because it’s just too easy to take advantage of it: over-the-top expensive chassis, unnecessary audio connection jewelry, exotic materials that don’t really matter, name brand parts in places that don’t improve performance.

There’s no doubt that with a big enough budget and the right intent on the part of designers, more expensive equals better equipment.

I would just hope that honor and ethics in our industry will always trump the opposite.

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.

Fact or fiction?

I thought it might be fun to start a mini-series called Fact or Fiction: dispelling or accepting audiophile beliefs. Not to get political, but when it has somehow become acceptable to separate facts into categories of believably I thought it’s time to put some of these concepts to the test.

What I will attempt to do is offer up the audiophile belief and then follow that with what facts we know and how they may or may not relate to real life.

Here’s the list we’ll tackle and, if you have others to suggest, certainly feel welcome to offer your suggestions in the comments section.

  1. Performance above 20kHz matters
  2. Expensive audio equipment always sounds better
  3. Vinyl is more musical than digital
  4. Amplifier headroom matters
  5. Power supplies are equal in importance to amplifier circuits
  6. Sub-woofers are an unnecessary luxury
  7. Parts quality affects performance
  8. Single driver speakers are better than multi-driver designs
  9. Speaker size should match the room
  10. Cables matter
  11. Vibration isolation products are snake oil

That’s quite a list and we start with item number one in tomorrow’s post.

Stay tuned.