Tag Archives: Infinity speaker

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.

PS Audio has been working on a new speaker system that Arnie Nudell was helping Paul design.  Unfortunately, Arnie recently passed away, so Paul is now on his own, although he has an excellent team to support his efforts, so the future of the project seems bright. Here is what he is thinking.

Live music

Before Infinity Speaker founder Arnie Nudell’s unfortunate passing, he and I were working on a new concept in loudspeakers, one based on the idea that it just might be possible to get closer to live orchestral sound levels than we have in the past.

A full orchestra can hit peak levels as high as 120dB. That exceeds the point of hearing damage, which of course was never our intent. And it is not hearing damage we get when in row one of an orchestra because peaks of this magnitude are both brief and rare. Arnie and I had become convinced this was the one quality still missing in speakers.

A few horn-type speakers can manage these extremes but none I know of without colorations (maybe the giant Magicos with their multiple horns? and extremely high price). Might it be possible to achieve these peak extremes without distortion, coloration, mega-amplifiers and bankruptcy court?

That is our challenge. Before his passing, he had made some good progress in a prototype he referred to as the IRS Killer. And it was. What we lacked to complete the design was a midrange driver of a very special kind. And that is now being worked on. It may yet be possible to complete the dream.

If you want to see what Arnie’s last prototype speaker system looks like, you can watch this video here. The midrange driver in this amazing reference design is a Bohlender Graebener creation no longer available, but that’s ok because it was the prototype’s’ one shortcoming.

 

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.

Arnie Nudell of Infinity speaker fame. RIP.

Arnie Nudell

It is with a heavy heart I report to you that my dear friend, mentor, inspiration, and partner, Arnie Nudell, passed away last week from complications of pneumonia. He slipped away at peace and wasn’t in any pain.

In 1968 nuclear physicist Nudell, engineer John Ulrick, and cabinet maker Carrie Christie formed one of the most famous loudspeaker companies in the world, Infinity. I first met Arnie at the insistence of my friend (and another mentor) Harry Pearson. HP was concerned for me. The fact I was listening to speakers he did not approve of was too much for Harry and he made arrangements for Stan and me to meet Arnie Nudell of Infinity Loudspeaker fame. It proved to be a fateful moment that changed my life and that of my family. I will forever be in Arnie Nudell’s debt.

Arnie loved music but I suspect he loved the art of reproducing it most. He was obsessed with high-performance audio. Even in his last few days of life, he could not shake it. When PS engineer Darren Meyers visited Arnie in the hospital—and he had just come out of sedation—the only thing Arnie wanted to talk about was HiFi, his deteriorating physical condition seemed a distant second of conversation.

He wanted nothing more than to finish the work he had started with Darren, Bascom and I, to build his next generation of loudspeakers—a project we had been working on with him for more than the last year—a request we shall carry forward with in his memory.

Arnie’s passing was the end of an era that became audio’s golden age, where musical truth and the absolute sound was its guiding light.

Arnie Nudell will be missed.

Arnie’s son, David, has reserved the website domain www.arnienudell.com. There’s nothing there to see now, but over time we will help the family build a website where his friends and fans can post their thoughts about Arnie, Infinity, and what he brought to the world of music and its reproduction. We will endeavor to list all the speakers he had designed and perhaps form a small community of like-minded people who share updates, mods, schematics, ideas, and all things relevant to this man’s enormous body of work.

We all know we’re not going to make it out this world alive, yet deep down inside none of us actually believe it. I certainly never thought Arnie would slip away from us. He was the toughest son of a bitch I ever met. And the most generous too.

See you, man.

If you want to know more about Arnie from his own lips I had the good fortune of interviewing him a few months ago for a new podcast series I was planning on launching someday, called Ohm’s Law. While I haven’t had the time to put the series together yet I can certainly make available the interview which has never been made public.

You can hear the entire interview (about 20 minutes) by clicking the link.