Roger Paul has passed away


I received an email today stating Roger Paul has passed away due to poor health.  Conferring with the person who relayed this information, understanding he did not want to initiate a thread here, and presuming its veracity, I bring the news to everyone.


My interactions with Roger Paul consisted of meeting him at least twice.  First, about a dozen years ago at our monthly audio club get together, hosted by one of our members who owned the preamplifier and power amplifier Roger had marketed under his HCAT brand.  Roger joined us for the day.  We spoke a while, as I wanted to discuss his technology, claims, sonics, etc.  The second time being this past year, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.  Coming out of a thread that featured a lot of back and forth between Roger and several Audiogon members around his claim to have come to the finish line with his technology, and now possessing what he considered the preeminent amplifier in existence.  I volunteered to visit Roger, and assess the claims for myself in the interest of all of us and the overall discussion.  Roger and his partner served as gracious hosts, and we enjoyed an afternoon of music, conversation, and a notably good iced tea.  From what I remember, I may have run into him another time or three, though in setting with much less deep interaction.

May he rest in peace,
Joe
trelja

I remember being surprised to find out that his business was only a couple of miles from where I lives on Blackwood Clementon road when I was still living in New Jersey.

Sorry to hear about his passing Trejla...but I have to ask...how did the amp sound?

@roxy54 you are right. You guys once lived a stone’s throw from each other.

Roger may have not have been as close to this hobby as required in order to find the success he envisioned. The old adage that we listen to systems more than components seemed appropriate that day. Most would not consider Roger’s system or environment representative of the high-end audio space. To provide some actual comparison, think of the solid state components from the heyday of Carver and NAD in the mid-80s to mid-90s, and a bit behind Bryston. I consider the benchmark solid state products from that those days Classe, Counterpoint, Krell, and Levinson, Jeff Rowland, etc., and they provided a fuller, more insightful and powerful sound.

During our afternoon together, I gave him my impression that he had a pretty tough path in front of him, and some work to do. Difficult, not impossible. But using past as prologue, I held little optimism the next 10 or 20 years would look better or different than the prior 10 or 20 years.  He did ask if I felt interested in taking a preamplifier and / or power amplifier for evaluation.  I demurred.

I think the manner he discussed his technology hurt him more than helped. Whatever he actually employed, and I have zero idea what he actually created, for whatever reason, he could not explain in an objective, forthcoming manner, or in a way that made sense, often refusing divulge "secret" information that would harm his business. Maybe he had something unique, special, and perhaps, better. But in order to get anywhere, instead of declaring it best without it standing up to questioning; it needs to pass the smell test. I’m reminded of a former boss who regularly said if we couldn’t explain something in 15 seconds, go back and think about it some more. That statement greatly helped my career.

I will say that along with the person who relayed the news to me, and the person in my audio group, Audiogoner tbg / Norm (who owned a lot of VERY serious gear over the course of decades) all had strong belief in Roger’s HCAT products, and seemingly true feelings in terms of how refined, advanced, and overall great the products were
I was in contact with Mr. Paul a month before he passed. We had shared some phone calls and texts. He seemed like a very nice man.

I still haven’t heard any of his works. If anyone is in the greater Los Angeles area and has some of his gear I’d love to hear it.
I purchased my phono preamp from someone who was a friend of his. He said that his equipment was "revolutionarily transparent", and was in the process of moving towards all of his equipment in his system. 

I'm sad to hear that a creative individual is gone, and that I won't get to hear music through what he's created. 
Being the guy who tormented the guy relentlessly for his sideways claims, I kinda wondered what happened to the guy. Still kinda curious to crack a case and see what the hell he was talking about. 
As I implied not much to consider, see, or hear...

Human nature shows people feel intrigued when someone shows up professing to have discovered or developed something innovative or even revolutionary. Especially, when such people declare it unquestionably superior to everything else. Lacking the ability to actually assess such claims only magnifies the excitement, and people put all the more stock in them. We hope something better out there exists, or someone will come to the rescue and make it. We want to believe.

Roger obviously didn’t know much about business, and those in this realm who do didn’t see reason to back the product or Roger. In 20 plus years, only a handful of people bought a new HCAT amplifier or preamplifier. Though I came to definite conclusions about the man, his product, and the technology he built upon after multiple face to face interactions, I’ve kept things on the respectful side due to the nature of this thread. Hopefully, people can read between the lines. If anyone wants more in terms of specifics, please feel free to contact me
I don't know who Paul is, and stop calling me Roger.
Joe get in touch with me.  Your old friend Doc Steven M