How come there is no thread on the RealityCheck?


In my opinion this one the greatest improvements in audio in 40 years. AA is full of discussions about it, but there has been nothing here. Maybe that a $575 tweak is beyond Audiogoners?
tbg
What is it?
I like what Reality Check does too. It doesn' work equally well an all CDs however. Have you experienced that?

I now burn a Reality Check CD, rip it to my external hard disk while converting it to lossless FLAC format, then stream it to my system via the Squeezebox. It Sounds darn good, but most of all it is a lot of fun to listen to my whole CD collection without getting up off my couch.
probably. :)
I am still waiting to see how things shake out for the people already using this device. Will they still feel like using it 6 months after purchase, that sort of thing. One kind soul has offered to make me a couple of copies to evaluate. I look forward to hearing what this device has to offer.
I'm definitely interested. $65 is quite a lot of money to test one CD, however, so I'm waiting for more input from others.
I would also like to know what it is.
I found this:

http://positive-feedback.com/Issue16/RealityCheck.htm

It sounds like a promising idea.
I contacted George Louis and he responded today by e-mail. While he said he could make me a copy, he said that he really would rather not take the time away from filling confirmed orders. That's understandable, and he indicated he was very busy. But there is no return policy on the duplicator. Is anyone willing to make me a copy if I send you a check for a reasonable amount (maybe $25)? Thanks...$600 is a bit much for me, for something so new - and for something it is not possible to audition.
http://www.positive-feedback.com/Issue21/cjdiaries.htm

- a follow-up. George 2.0 is taking the world by storm! I've made 5 copies of my discs my way and have sent them to Mr. Louis. He is making copies of the same originals his way, then sending the whole shmear back to me. I should have all of it back next week.
I own the RealityCheck, and IMHO it's every bit as good as the press says it is. I've NEVER heard a tweak that makes this kind of positive difference to a CD--and, believe you me, I've tried more CD tweaks than any sane person would ever try. Of course, if the CD is poorly mastered to begin with, you'll probably hear more of that on the burned disc, though I haven't come across that situation yet. George's ClearDisc and ClearBit solutions, which you apply prior to burning, make a big difference, too.
Someone has responded, and kindly offered to make me a copy. Thanks!
I may be able to accomodate a few curious folks. I have one of his burners, and would be willing to do a few discs for a small fee.

--BUT--

I am right now in the middle of moving out of state, so I wouldn't be able to do anything until about the 15th of November. Contact me then if you are interested.

Mike
In Issue 16 (November/December 2004) of Positive Feedback, Clark Johnsen wrote about the RealityCheck system in "The Biggest News You May Ever Read". In one particular section of the article, Mr Johnsen writes about George's CD burning policy:

1) Send him your CDs to be done at $25 a pop. You get back the original and the copy postpaid. I say that’s too expensive, but maybe the price will come down.

The present $65/CD fee represents a 160% increase. In my opinion, this is outrageous. I don't care how damn good the new CD is supposed to sound, when the price of admission to test the results increases 160%, then I'll pass thank you. Furthermore, if one reads Mr. Johnsen's article, one will learn that it was possible to have a single RealityCheck CD made for $5. So, now we are talking about a 1200% increase in the price to have a sample RealityCheck CD burned.

No thanks.
Sounds interesting. I'll wait till the dust settles, but it did mention that you hear more tape hiss. From reading about it, it seems like you get better sonics along with the more flaws from the original recording.

If people were complaining about the $17 SACDs being too expensive, why would people spend $25 on a copy of a CD they already own?

Just playing devils advocate.
Sorry guys I went to the gym after posting this. It sounds like everyone found the PF review. If anything it is understated.

As I have told many people, the only real pain to this tweak is having to twice clean the original and the blank and then twice treating each with the second solution. I am tempted to hire someone to clean all of my blanks.
Maybe a 575 tweak will be the deal to be in when it makes the rounds.1 web is just the beginning,many paths to salvation in the digital realm...
For now, will just making a CDR copy of redbook, will that give some improvement?
The RealtyCheck duplicator is the real deal (IMO). I've compared 3 discs so far, and the RC discs have consistently sounded better than the originals. It's hard to imagine, but they sound like they reveal more information than the originals. I'm in the process of duplicating my most frequently played CDs in my collection and doing more detailed comparisons.

I also agree it's a pain to twice clean both the orginal and blank before duplicating them. And George suggests waiting 5 minutes between each cleaning.

That's not a bad idea to hire someone to do the cleaning and duplicating for you.
Matchstikman, I had two cds that were too scratched in one case to even play and in another to play without popping. I managed to copy both on my Mac computer and noted no change in the one that played. Later I copied both on the Reality Check. Both copies of copies were strikingly improved in dynamics and soundstaging. I have heard others say that a cdr copy sounded better than the original, but other than these cases I never tried this. I would say that you might get "some" improvement but nothing approaching the RealityCheck version.
"The Finyl" RealtyCheck is now there is a product that aids the sound of digital. However it takes more cleaning, and preparation time then the Analogue rigs most gave up not wanting all the maintenance required with "The Vinyl". One the greatest improvements in audio in 40 years... may have come Full Circle? A $575 tweak I don't think is not beyond Audiogoners monetary budgets, but budgeting the time involved with this tweak might be?
The Positive Feedback review cited above contains the following statement:

" Ladies and gentlemen, we're talking master tape-type quality from Redbook CDs."

Why do I have a hard time believing such hype?
Herman, like you I thought this must be a great exaggeration. I would not go so far as to say master-tape, but it is a drastic improvement. I can no longer listen to any originals and have not been able to listen to my three new sacds. Only vinyl has any attraction to me other than these copies. I must say that I know no one having heard these that either has bought the unit or soon will.

Robm321, I do not know how you came up with the $25/disc price. The blanks are $1 and the unit must have some limits, but I don't know how you would figure that.
Norm, the $25/disc price comes from the article in issue 16 of Positive Feedback to which I refer in my post above in which Clark Johnsen writes:
1) Send him your CDs to be done at $25 a pop. You get back the original and the copy postpaid. I say that’s too expensive, but maybe the price will come down.

Then, in issue 21 of Positive Feedback, Clark Johnsen writes:
Do you want in now? Entry comes at a price. Hold on to your hats. George will make you one of his own CD-Rs for—$65!

I have been dealing with George for about three months and did buy a unit from him. I have made copies for a few friends and everyone thinks the copies are much better than the original. This is the best 575 that I have spent in audio. This is the real deal and his service is world class.
There is no way that this device can extract information from the disc that isn't there. The data on the disc can be manipulated in various ways when it is re-recorded to change the sound when it is played back, but it is a distortion of the original data. For example, certain frequencies can be boosted or cut, phase relationships can be altered, harmonic structure can be changed, and that sound may be more pleasing to you just like adding an equalizer or some type of signal processor to your system may alter the sound in some way pleasing to you, but I'll stick with the original.
Perhaps with so many Audiogon members owning the RealityCheckCD units, one might be willing to copy members' CDs for a reasonable fee?

Tvad- have you upgraded or replaced the SMPS in the RealityCheck?
Kana813, I don't own a RealityCheckCD, hence my question above for those who do own one. Perhaps I wasn't clear.
I really like this idea; however, it just bugs me that in order to make it work you need special liquid and George's special CDRs and special.... You can't just buy the device and go, you are forever attached to George and his spcial CDRs and special liquid and whatever other special thing he will develop.
Matchstikman, you are under no obligation to use George's cleaners or discs. I have a friend who believes the AudioTop digital cleaner is better than George's Cleardisc and Clearbit. I disagree, however. I do know several people, me included, who have tried to find better blanks with no success.
sorry, question meant for Tbg.

So,Tbg have you upgraded or replaced the SMPS in the RealityCheck?
Kana813, you must know something that I don't. Please explain.
Tbg- according to George the unit is powered by a switch mode power supppy. The noise level on these supplies can increase jitter in digital equipment. Just like your CDP, upgrading this supply, switching to a linear power supply or battery power should reduce noise and improve performance. Have you looked at the power supply?
A review here too:
http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/viewpoint/1005/aachapter72.htm
Sounds like the real deal. I'll still wait for the dust and some extra hype "as good as master tapes" (lol) to settle.

So is it LP's, RealityCheck, SACD-DVD-A, redbook now just like that? Or is he boosting freq. etc to "help" the sound out? I mean his explaination on the review (Rx8man's link) seems legit.

If it's all it's hyped up to be $600 and yearly software upgrades, CD-Rs, and whatever else will be worth it.
Kana813, I have not looked into the power supply but will.
Dear music loving audiophiles,

At one time I offered to make and mail back the original disc and its RealityCheckCD™ counterpart for $5. I no longer have time to make sample RealityCheckCDs™ below their actual cost. To a company that's going to use RealityCheckCDs™ to demonstrate their high-end equipment the cost of the RealityCheckCDs™ is just another cost, such as a high-end power cord, of making their demonstrations the best they can be. If they get one new dealer or customer they've probably paid for several RealityCheckCDs™ and after that it's all profit. I don't hold a gun to heads of any high-end companies to force them to buy RealityCheckCDs™. They know that the best equipment and best CD players can only take flawed source material so far. Also if they're not satisfied they may keep their original disc and its RealityCheckCD™ counterpart and receive a refund of $70 with no questions asked. And so far, I've never had a refund request.

George S. Louis
Dear music loving audiophiles,

The cleaning and treatment instructions for ClearDisc™ and ClearBit™ have changed for the better, i.e. it's no longer neessary to wait 5 minutes after cleaning a disc with ClearDisc™ before treating it with ClearBit™ although it's still recommed that there be 5 minutes or more between two Clearbit™ treatments.

George S. Louis
A fellow Audiogon member was kind enough to offer to make RealityCheckCDs from a few of my redbook CDs. Last night, I listened to a RealityCheckCD copy of a friend's commercially produced progressive rock CD which is a nicely layered and sonically dense recording, although I've always considered it edgy and bright. The RealityCheckCD mitigated the digital edge and lent some naturalness to the music, however it also somehow affected the ambience and extension.

From a burned compilation CD I own of audiophile quality recordings, I compared Thomas Dolby's "I Scare Myself" to the RealityCheckCD version. The RealityCheckCD version defines the instruments and voice a bit more than the original burned CD, and the leading edge of the piano attack is softened a bit. I can see where this would be pleasing to some listeners. Overall, however, I find the RealityCheckCD, at least on this track, collapses the soundstage height and width and diminishes the layering somewhat. There is less ambience in the music, and micro details are reduced. For example, in the first 30 seconds of the track there is some brush work on a ride cymbal that is clearly defined on the standard burned CD. The RealityCheckCD version either pushes this cymbal work back in the mix or muddies it, I'm not sure which, but I suspect some tweaking in the frequency range where the attack of this sound originates, and I think this goes hand-in-hand with the loss of ambience in the recording. There is certainly a difference in the two recordings, but I'm not sure the effects of the RealityCheckCD process would be beneficial in all cases. I prefer the original version of this track, and it's a song I've been using for quite some time to evaluate equipment.

I noticed this also while listening to "Walking on the Moon" by the Yuri Honing Trio from the same compilation CD. The saxophone sounds more natural in the RealityCheckCD version, and much closer to what I remember my vinyl sounding many years ago. However, the music sounds like it's being performed in a closed, cloth-walled room without any circulating air.

So, the RealityCheckCD can make the music less digital and more natural, but to my ears, it also tweaks with a recording's extension and ambience to a degree that I find unsettling.
Tvad,all that I can say with regard to the your finding of the lack of ambience and high frequency extension is that I find the RC give an edge to brass and a shean to high hat that I find very realistic. I also find a great sense of decay to the notes and more of a sense of real depth and location. Overall, I find the sound much more like the recording venue.

I have no clue why our results might differ, but I find I can no longer listen to other digital.
Different strokes for different folks, Tbg.

Vive la difference.

I don't own a single recording of a performance that I have also heard
live in the venue itself. In fact, most of the music I like has been
recorded in a studio rather than a concert hall, so I can't begin to
imagine what it sounded like in the venue. I understand the point you're
making, though.

I'm happy it works for you and has enhanced your listening experience.
Is this similiar to the doppler radar preamplifier, liquid cerarmic cables, and $8000 isolation bases that we've read so much about? What or who is the common thread among them?
Tbg- did you look at the PSU?
Stanhifi, your posts would be so much more interesting if you offered
something informative and germain to the topic based on actual
experience with the product, rather than issuing personal attacks levied
against participants in the thread.

What gives with you?
Kana813, I did ask several people who know more about power supplies. I expect that a linear supply would not be a step forward, but only trying it would answer this definitively. Frankly, I do not have the wherewithal to do this.
Tvad I'm simply protecting unknowing folks from shills pushing bogus and marginal products. Consider it a service from a concerned ombudsman. Thank you.
Stanhifi - have you even heard the unit in question on this thread? it is certainly a product open for debate for what it is/does...but not so far fetched as to be compared against $8000 isolation devices. its actually a reasonably priced product when compared against most of the other items debated in these threads. i'm leary of most "tweeks" myself but i try and keep an open mind and the process have been surprised a few times...this being one of them.

Stanhifi has a valid point. It's apparent there are people who have posted here that are happy with the product and see value in it. That is fine as this forum is a way to share their experiences with others like myself who are curious and read the forum to learn. However, I can appreciate Stanhifi's comments, especially after seeing other products with a lot of promise turn out not to be what they appear, fail to deliver on their promise, or are just plain snake oil. As with anything buyers should beware and do their due diligence before purchasing. That is what I am reading from Stanhifi's comments.
In Scandinavia where the ombudsman originates, he or she is a salaried elected official for interfacing between the public and governmental agencies. Does any of this fit the piss-ant?
With all due respect to his distractors, Stanhifi's skepticsm is not unjustified. Tbg has started a number of threads stating that quite a few products have made "major" improvements to his system and now he's touting "one the greatest improvements in audio in 40 years". It could all be true, but that's an awfully bold statement!