If a " system " cannot do this, I move on........

I have been advocating on here for some time, that horn speakers ( properly designed, tweeked, executed and set up ) are the only speakers that my brain and ears find acceptable, for the enjoyment of music listening. My listening standard has been live, unamplified music, for now over 50 years. I have also stated on many occasions, that as an audiophile ( as well as being a music listener ), that we are hindered by the recordings themselves, minimizing what we actually are hearing. There has been much talk lately about engineers using " auto tune " ( specifically with vocalists ). Adele ( I am a fan ), with her new hit " Easy On Me ", does not use auto tune, and I am thrilled. Besides being a great singer, she sounds " natural ", less processed. Most recordings in the past 20 years, have used this other electronic " equalization " if you will, that we find embedded in out prescious recordings. The strive for perfection, that " audio nirvana ", we all seek, with the purchase of a new speaker, amplifier, cables, etc., gets us only so far. So yes, dynamics and details are very important to me. Tone, coherence and spatiality are also very important. But the reality is, our recordings, by the time we receive / hear them ( whatever format ), have been severly altered from being close to the real thing. Yet, audiophiles continue to spend big bucks on their gear, their rooms ( their systems ), to get to that place of enjoyment. The title of this thread, " If a system cannot do this, I move on ", has a specific meaning. What I listen for, most of all, with every recording I listen to, is an engagenment between me, and the performers. Following the individual rhythms and musical lines, by the artists, is the number one factor I strive to hear. My system allows for this. My question is : how many of you actually listen for this, or even know what I am speaking of. My personal experience listening to so many high priced systems, has been very disappointing in using this criteria. I am not anticipating this thread to develop into a very large or popular one, but I have not participated in Agon for a while, and I just wanted to shine a light on a subject that is crucial to us and our time listening to music, which some of us spend much time doing. Enjoy, and be well. Always, MrD.


After reading some of the comments about the engineering and mixing of songs,  I would like to input my 2 cents.  "There is a lot of elegance in simplicity" - Mark Ayers    That said, check out Peggy Lee's  "Black Coffee" album.  recorded way back and done well in my opinion.  On a good system it will bring tears to your eyes, and on a bad system it will still sound great.  IMHO

I wonder how many out there are actually running stock, unmodified Klipsch horns? I think there’s an unwritten rule among Klipsch users requiring them to make DIY mods, or have someone else do it😉

I have a pair of unmodified Klipschorns. To be honest, I did bypass their crossovers at one point in time and ran them active, achieving only a different but not obviously better sound. They are at my mother’s house now and the active setup is too complicated for her to use. She loves them stock! I enjoy them too. If and when I get them back at my place I’ll probably be tempted to try to "improve" them again.

On the main topic of this thread, I like horns too. I’m not exactly sure why.  I’m not necessarily looking to connect with the performers when listening to recordings. Glen Gould had an interesting take on recording in the studio vs live performance.


+1 wspohn

Good sound is good sound, regardless of design philosophy.

Horn, backloaded horn, widebander, omni-directional, ribbon, magnetic planar, open baffle, electrostatic... there are excellent examples of all these and more in abundance. Just like many of you, I have tried most all of them. Ultimately, we all have our preferences, prejudices and predispositions. My unscientific experience has been... if a speaker sounds good to You, awesome, buy it, put a recording on and enjoy (usually best with company).

I have always had an affinity/preference for electrostatic speakers. Can't explain it, tried to figure it out (in the last 45 or so years) and have recently decided to just "go with what I feel sounds best to me". So, I benched the Martin Logans (which had good bass) after tracking down a mint, unmodified, stored (25-30 years) pair of QUAD ESL 63. These always sounded Right to me, though I had never owned a pair.

Enjoying the Heck out of my slightly bass shy, natural sounding (to me) system. I truly wish you all the same Audio Serenity I have been blessed with... finally I think I am at Peace with it all.

The moderators @tammyholt

Need to be made aware of this "bug" >>> the overlap of @acstim ’s post (the Glenn Gould copied / linked content) that obscures / overlaps the one posted immediately after by @ticat