Tag Archives: video 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.

Audible cues

Over years of evaluating differences in audio equipment, one accumulates an audible library of sonic cues from which to judge differences. Cues such as harmonic overtones, extended decay, room modes in the recording, placement, soundstage dimensions. The list is actually quite long.

For those of us with big libraries in our heads, it may not be easy to remember how overwhelming it can be for newcomers evaluating differences in audio or video equipment. I can certainly recall hearing so many differences that singling out one from the many felt impossible—like picking a single face out of a crowd of thousands.

When asked for advice on how to get comfortable with the evaluation process, my go-to answer is to keep it simple and easily identifiable, like a singer and acoustic guitar, two easily recognizable instruments.

Often, the mistake newcomers make is to jump feet first into the big and complex pieces of music, hoping the expected improvements will wash over them like a tsunami. This often leads to disappointment.

Better to keep it simple.

 

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.

Focusing on one at the expense of another

AC power is a complicated subject if quality is to be considered. The number of problems needing attention includes regulation, removal of noise, guarding against surges and spikes, lowering of impedance, isolation, restoring missing energy, attaining the correct level, uncontaminated grounds, ensuring there is enough current (both dynamic and steady state) for the job.

What possible difference can perfect power make when our equipment’s dangling at the end of miles of who cares utility company wiring?

Our audio and video equipment is not at the end of a long wire between the power station and our home. Instead, it is in the middle of a circular loop—a loop shared by our neighbors and their power hungry equipment.

All power products handle some specific aspects well: isolation transformers isolate, power conditioners clean, surge protectors save equipment from damage, regenerators do most of the list but not all.

In the complex area of power delivery, it’s difficult to know which device provides the greatest degree of benefit. If your home is next door to the city power plant you don’t need anything but surge protection. But how far away are you? How many neighbors share power with you? What kind of polluting equipment do they have? Do you need the full benefits of regeneration or the partial and specific benefits of isolation, cleansing, or simple protection?

We’d no doubt like to have it all. You can get close, but there’s no such thing as perfect.

I suppose where I am going with this is a reminder of just how important power purity and plentifulness is.

If you can’t get it out of the wall in pure, unrestricted, undistorted form, uncompromised music can’t reach your speakers.

It all matters.