The truth about high end speakers MUST READ


We audiophiles are a fussy discerning bunch who demand very specific requirements when it comes to what we hear.
The problem is that these requirements are seldom met no matter how much you spend on speakers. 

Forums like this indicate that audiophiles are trapped in a cycle of neverending upgrades and dissatisfaction no matter how much is spent.

We have been deceived into believing that a "one size fits all" speaker that has been designed by an "expert" who knows better than we do about our requirements, will be ok. This is obviously not the case since every audiophile has a different hearing response curve and different preference. 

If you choose a speaker that has a rising response with frequency, and you prefer a darker sound then its not going to matter whether it uses diamond or berylium, or mdf or aluminium cabinets, or a 4th order or 1st order crossover.

Its not going to matter if the designer has a phd in physics or decades of experience in speaker design because its YOUR hearing that needs to be satisfied not THEIRS.

We are being duped folks. The best you can expect out of all these high end speakers is substandard satisfaction for a few years before you get fed up and decide to UPGRADE!

In conclusion, the notion of a high end speaker is in fact a myth. No such thing exists. Buying a high end speaker is a complete gamble and most audiophiles end up losing not winning. The only winners are the speaker manufactures because as long as they continue to sell, they continue to profit. 

Its also impossible to compare all the different speakers out there in the comfort of our homes so the dealers obviously dont make it any easier for us audiophiles. Its pointless going to a store demo since thats not where youre going to be listening once you buy the speaker. We are getting a raw deal. 

Thankyou for reading. 






kenjit
The truth I discover for myself in this journey in audio is that we can have an extasy with a relatively low cost audio system... Modulo cleaning the electrical grid of the house, of the room and of the source, treating the room is mandatory, cleaning the vibrations-resonance(even in headphone not only on speakers or room or piece of gear)...Plus tweaks that are low cost: I have many Helmholtz bottles and 4 cheap Schuman Generator tweakes by me...

After that you will listen to a TOTL for peanuts...

Proof: This week I treat against vibrations my cheap Fostex TH7-B headphone, after that I treat the cable my own way, after that I add 5 Herkimer diamonds at the interior of the pad around the driver... I piece of shungite on the exterior cups...

Result: So schokingly good that it is the best experience in audio in my life, these Fostex crush ALL my previous headphones even the best on count of imaging and speaker like experience...It is unbelievable that an under 100 bucks headphone were better than all my other experience including even speakers... ( i already own 2 Stax,AKG 340 and AKG 701, Hifiman 400, Beyerdynamic 990 , T150..)

(I remind you that I dont complaint about my others headphones nor speakers...I say that to remind the beginners that not only the price and the particular design of a speaker or headphone count but most and foremost the treatment, cleaning, modification that you can make to them for a miracle...tweaks are the first and last important thing for an audio fulfilling experience for me, not money (I dont have that)...


I suggest to the beginners to read and dreams comes true, reading experience and other experiments will inspire you... 


P.S. I agree with some poster that if you want to  quit the search for speakers, buy magneplanar, even cheap one and call that the end...It is not the best speakers there are, hell no! But for the price Hell yes...
+1 Listening99, well stated and I totally agree.  
kenjit
"The end goal is maximum enjoyment of your music. Thats my assumption. "
So how are you personally going to get there since no manufacturer can satisfy your requirements , and hence have no system?



Many audiophiles refuse to take the time to really understand how what they buy works thus they are easy to fool with brand names fancy finish forum posts. Many are just going to buy a name brand that's approved by the audiophile press. Face it the press does not know how it will sound in your system or room or how well it will last.  It's the audiophile's own fault for not educating themselves enough to understand the basics. I can look at a speaker and tell what its made from and what will drive it I can tell if the overall design is flawed without a listen. The gear tornados easy to get off just buy a good pair of horns and get back to buying music not cables etc.

Hi @kenjit,

The problem is, speaker designers tried to go as close as possible to live music sound before mid 60x. After that they started to create virtual sound that should impress audiophiles and push them to by their product.
There are a number of factor that started influenced from mid 60x:
1. Rock music popularity. Since The Beatles, rock music sound is 100% artificial, full of effects and sound transformations created by balance engineers and producers.
2. Transistor amplifiers become popular and affordable. This leaded to popularity of small low sensitivity speakers with nasty dynamic compression.

Last 4 decades POP electronic music became more and more popular. 20 years ago majority of audiophiles listened mostly jazz and classical music. Today a big part of audiophiles listen POP music (sadly they could’t understand that this music recorded for boom-boxes).
As results speaker producers have to adjust to the market.
There are typical characteristic of modern main stream Hi-End speakers:
1. Not natural tone. Producers don’t care about it at all!
2. Low sensitivity with nasty dynamic compression. Small boxes and small and heavy-cone bass drivers.
3. Emphasized high frequencies. Scratchy sounding tweeters made from modern ultra hard and light material . This kind of sound doesn’t exist in live music.
4. Ultra deep bass with a lot of compression and bad definition. Bass slam that doesn’t exist in live music.
5. Flat, boring, synthetic mid-range without real resolution, miro-dynamics and dynamic. No good mid-range - no music.

Yes. There are a lot of speakers producers today and there are a few exceptions from this rules. But most of companies (are pushed by marketing, audio dealers and reviewers) confess this modern Hi-End mainstream sound.

I changed 4 pair of speakers from 1998 to 2001. The last speakers were Spendor 2/3 - a really musical speakers great for classical music. But in 2005 I bought a vintage pair of Altec 604E made in 60x. Since that time I haven’t changed my speakers.
Maybe I’m not I typical audiophile. But it is fact of my audiophile experience.

Regards,
Alex.