Is this ludicrous or not?

Did any of you GON members happen to read Six Moon's review,written by Six Moon's creator and resident audiophile guru Srajan Ebaen,regarding Red Rock Audio's Renaissance monoblock amps that sell for $38,750.00/pr? Ebaen,stopped his formal review when he couldn't elminate in his words,"a very belligerent ground loop". However even before this stated problem, he described the sound of these amps as,"berefit of tension,energy,color,communicativeness,or any true sense of music". Ebaen, also stated that a,"$999.00 Onix/Melody SP3 amp was superior". Now here's the fun part.By applying Walker's Extreme SST to all the tube pins the "veil" was removed and the energy emerged and unfolded.Walker is quoted as saying by using his Extreme SST that,"the amps went from being mediocre to bonafide super-amp magic".Now,I want to be totally fair,I use this product my self and find it to be quite good at adding that final resolution to my system. I also accept that a world class amp can be tweaked out to its ultimate performance with power cords and isolation devices.But would you spend $38,750.00 for a pair of amps that first sound inferior to an amp that costs less than $1000.00, and only after you use this tweak they become world class contenders! What does this say about the over all design flaws that are still there.I found this to be one of the most ludicrous reviews I have ever read. Notice I'm not attacking the statement that the amps improved after the tweak,but the ridiculous notion that anyone,in their right mind ,would spend close to 40 grand for a pair of amps and than be dependent on a $200.00 tweak to make them sound right! Thank goodness for that,"very belligerent ground loop",otherwise Srajan might have completed his review and loved these amps.It would be great if you GON members would share your opinions on this review,maybe I'm the crazy one.
I'm cynical by nature and spend precious little time reading reviews, especially those where there is likely an axe available for the grinding.

In the 'professional' reviews I have taken time to peruse, it often seems there is a game of one-uppmanship in play where the comparisons to other gear gets increasing multiples of monetary consideration; "blows away XXX costing (insert multiple here, 2, 5, 10, 100!) times the price." I've seen a few reviews where the gear in question was only able to reach it's 'potential' when coupled with certain other ancillary tweaks and baubles.

In order to extract the most sales potential from a written review, the law of diminishing returns dictates that the content become more and more outlandish and 'over-the-top' than previous reviews. Otherwise, how do you convince readers that they should go out and drop dime on the new stuff? With each step, they seem to further stretch the limits of credibility.

It's a sales pitch and I resent how the honest written evaluation has been bastardized for the sake of a buck.

By the way, this is ludicrous to the extreme, in my cynical opinion... sorry for the rant.
Breath in, Breath out, relax-- smell some roses. Personally I think Six Moon's creator and resident audiophile guru Srajan Ebaen has been ingesting too many Peyote buttons in the Sonoran Desert. For an even better read, I suggest some of the
works of Carlos Castaneda.
It's possible that there was a bad connection at one tube and that pulling it out and reinserting it fixed it. It may have nothing to do with the Walker SST.

But you are right that there is a lot of bullshit in high-end audio. There's a lot of bullshit in high end anything (cars, watches, houses) because it is a scientifically proven fact that bullshit sells.

So you know already you are not crazy. Without getting distracted by all the obvious stuff that you mentioned in your post ($40K amps, removing the "veil", etc.), the reviewer, in this case, is acting like a dope ... with a capital "D" plain and simple. Expecting someone willing to spend $40K on an amp to then have to tweak the amp to get it to sound its best, is sheer and utter stupidity. The reviewer either was having a bad day or he is totally caught up in the insanity of this hobby.

Renaissance should not be left off the hook either. At $20K a pop, the monoblocks should have a world class design and operate perfectly ... and perhaps make and serve breakfast

'Nuff said.

Regards, Rich

I read audio reviews for entertainment. In this sense, it is a blast! I only trust my ears for the rest. Arthur
Sounds like Walker's Extreme SST is strong medicine. Just a sniff, or a few sips, and any amp sounds great!

Me...I would have tried the $200.00 tweak on the $999.00 amp. Maybe it would have outplayed the monoblocks.
Is there anyone left that takes these reviewers seriously?

You know, it all makes sense to me. Because without that .75 cent cuppa jo in the morning, I too am "bereft of tension, energy, color, communicativeness, or any true sense of music."
LOL, Boa2!

You should try the $6 Starbucks tweak. Greater perkiness, more alertness, the BLACKS are BLACKER! It is as if a few linen-based sheets have been lifted from your wallet. Not to mention you will impress your friends with that carboard collar and the mermaid-like icon.
Teajay - Just like sometimes the answer sought is not for the question asked. Maybe the feature product of the review wasn't the amp but the reviewer's pet tweak.

Otherwise you are righton in your comments. But I've never been convinced that just because a product costs so much more that it simply must sound better.
Don't take reviews seriously (unless for serious entertainment). They're all CRAP!!! I have only been involved in this hobby for a relatively short period of time, but I learned this very early.
The idea of spending $37,500 on any amplifier is insane. There are quite a few manufacturers producing great amplifiers and other components at a small fraction of this price, and there is no reason to spend more in the vast majority of cases. Good stereo equipment has become more expensive over the past decade because the market for it has become much smaller and more specialized. The audio press has also had a considerable impact by consistently showcasing exotic products that have a very poor cost-to-performance ratio and extremely limited availability. The inexpensive gems can still be had, but now it takes much more effort to find them!
the idea that people who love music need this product(even if they can afford it) and the idea that it needed to be reviewed for someone to actually consider purchasing it are both supremely opposed to the average ludicrous notions{read myths)that many of us swear by. at least the voodoo at the crazy price points doesn't victimize thousands of eager working class stiffs who are hobbyists looking for some satisfaction. it is the very nature of the hi end industry to promise happiness while praying for discontent.
Well said all around, Mr. Douglas.

"Over the last 10 years"??? I remember when the Levinson digital stuff first came out;its price was so high compared to most other similar devices--- And that was 15 years ago. I'll take the tweek and 75 cent Winchells.
I lost faith in reviews back in the mid 90s when I started reading Stereophile. It was in the small digest format with the best "letters to the editor" section I've ever seen (another subject). Anyway the issue had a speaker shoot out review with in-depth follow ups. The reviewer found a pair of Ariel speakers (don't recall model) so bad they were unlistenable until he changed speaker wires. After the change the speakers were near the best of the bunch. I laughed outloud. I'm not saying cables don't make a difference but give me a break.
I still enjoy reading reviews but don't rely on them for much more than entertainment.
The Amp also sounds better if you use a cheater plug.
Amps should also be facing south for best performance.
Want to read some good reviews, input, etc? No problem c'mon over here to Audiogon. if only the editors would lighten up a bit and allow us out own rant section.....
Timrhu, I strangely had a similar experience when I purchased a used pair of speakers, a $6500 pair no less. But in my case, it was with a set of IC's. My wife called me at a friend's house to say that she thought the speakers sounded lousy (mids/highs recessed and muddy), and I agreed, having listened to them for an hour or so earlier in the day. We did not want to keep the speakers. The seller agreed to take them back (I'd picked them up only hours earlier), until I tried something out just for grins.

We had volunteered for a beta testing run on IC's, whereby one set would be sheathed with two layers of carbon, and another identical set would be left stock. We had two identical sets of IC's (same model, same manufacturer). I was at the time running the set with the carbon sheathing on them. When I switched over to the 'untreated' pair of IC's, all of the frequencies fell into balance. The muddiness was gone, and we kept the speakers. I still think this is one of the reasons that Audience AU24's (and Speltz anti-cables) are so popular, because all of that extra layering (which the Audience and Speltz DON'T have) can potentially veil the sound. This is why I am convinced that cables can make such a big difference, because I've experienced it first hand.

Does this mean I put stock into a Stereophile review? Heck no!
Believe it or not, the geographic orientation of a tube amp might make a difference, good or bad, who knows. On my job, I was very surprised to discover that certain test measurements of a missile guidance system were affected by its orientation. We tend to forget that we live in the earth's magnetic field, and magnetic fields deflect beams of electrons.
And I thought I was crazy, Eldartford, when the dealer pushed play on the Mephisto CDP, and the unit self-rotated towards...well, Audio Mecca, naturally.
I think all of us are experienced enough to realize that magazine reviews are just for entertainment and nothing takes the place of our own set of ears...each of us is so unique in our tastes and hearing abilities that relying on a mag review is a sure fire guarantee to waste your dough...I get the biggest kick out of "Sam Tellig" who I wouldn't trust as far as I could throw...I stopped reading Stereophile years ago when I "woke up."
Pretty funny Boa2--- Anybody doubting the direction theory should take an older tv and place it on different walls.----This you could see. I'm not sure but I think they have done something to new tvs; to allow a tv to be placed on any wall. Most any tweek that works on a tv,also works on your audio,as well. Having gone thru a bunch of expensive power conditioners.---The best of my "bunch" improved both audio and video.
In a word, it is ludicrous, but lets not throw the baby out with the bathwater. We moved seamlessly from saying one review was crass, to the conclusion that all professional reviewers are dum/corrupt/lazy.
The point is, where does anybody start in looking for a new anything, be it car, condom, or CD player(please don't muddle up which of these items is which, by the way), your local Hi-Fi retailer, Pl..ease. You will probably get a 17 year old, who would'nt know a tube amp from a peanut butter sandwich. We all have to start somewhere and the magazines are as good a place as any. To be fair, most say, don't use our reviews as buying guides, but audition guides and that seems sensible. We might all say, use Audiogon as a guide, but a newbie has to stumble across it and that takes time. It took me 3 years, alright, I'm not very bright.
Interestingly, some of the Mags periodically fulminate about the user sites like Audio Asylum, Audiogon. That they are manipulated for commercial reasons and are populated by flat earth crazies(They may have a point there) Roy Gregory of Hi-Fi Plus recently had a little go and was most offended by the adverse comments from readers who enjoy the various sites. Who are we, humble readers, to seek advise from other sources.
There is nothing wrong with professional reviews, if you take them as audition guides, based on one persons point of view. All information sources have there drawbacks, you just need to understand that.
Perhaps the reviewer's follow-up article (likely prompted by this thread) might shed some light on the matter: YMMV.

Mghcanuck,I don't believe that Ebaen's article addressed the point of my post. I mentioned that I use Mr. Walker's Extreme SST and think its great stuff that brings a final resolution to an already great piece of gear or an overall system. My point was it should not have to be a necessity in order to get a pair of almost 40 grand pair of amps to function properly! So his explanation of the how and why the silver treatment works is ok,but begs the question of it being a necessity for these bad sounding amps to sound good at all.
A few final thoughts about Ebaen's article concerning the Walker Extreme SST. When someone purchases a world class tube amp,for example something like the great sounding LAMM ML1.1's,they don't have to tweak them to sound like a world class reference. They already are. Now,to add the Walker Extreme SST to give them that last bit of resolution makes perfact sense. So,all Ebaen did in his article was try to "cover his butt" with a rationalization about tube amps in general in comparsion to solid state amps. I like the way he tried to "spin it" that this GON post somehow casted aspersions regarding the Walker Extreme SST tweak. Mr. Ebaen,to use his own words,put this very fine and relatively in expensive tweak on the level of "hyperbole,mysticism,and plain old B.S.",by including it in his totally ludicrous reveiw of some over priced(almost 40 grand) bad sounding tube amps. You put your foot in your mouth,Srajan,you did not need any help from us on Audiogon.
I have not read the review ,but I have this stuff thats claimed to be better then the Walker,and YES IT REALLY DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE.Its called Xtreme Quick Silver Audio &
Video Contact Enhancer,and no I don't sell the stuff.I applied it to all the pins in my tube preamp,tube power amp,cartridge pins,tonearm male din plug at base of arm,and literally everywhere else I could think of and my ARC VT-60
is singing and my old CJ PV-5 has this bass slamm and these
highs that extend out forever,and the biggest improvement
was at the other end of the signal listening to this stuff through my Martin Logan Quest Z speakers already noted for its midband reproduction.I hear real musicians playing in my living room,the system sounds like your in the actual venue while the recording session is taking place.Well this is the best $70.00 tweak I ever bumped into,so go try this stuff and really enjoy your system.