We should reject hard-to-drive speakers more often

Sorry I know this is a bit of a rant, but come on people!!

Too many audiophiles find speakers which are hard to drive and... stick with them!

We need to reject hard-to-drive speakers as being Hi-Fi. Too many of us want our speakers to be as demanding as we are with a glass of wine. "Oh, this speaker sounds great with any amplifier, but this one needs amps that weigh more than my car, so these speakers MUST sound better..."

Speakers which may be discerning of amplifier current delivery are not necessarily any good at all at playing actual music. 

That is all.


When in 1974 I read Ivor Tiefenbrun’s philosophy of the hierarchy of a hi-fi system being that the first component in the chain is the most important, the second is the second most important, etc. etc. etc., I knew he was full of sh*t. OF COURSE the second can only reproduce the signal it receives from the first (garbage in/garbage out), but there’s more to it than that simplistic, obvious fact. One astute UK reviewer (Ken Kessler?) mockingly proposed a system composed of a Linn table/arm/cartridge, Naim pre-amp and power amp, and a string leading to a pair of tin cans for speakers. Get it? ;-)

Pickups/cartridges and loudspeakers---being transducers---are FAR more variable in sound than are, for instance, pre-amps. And loudspeakers sound RADICALLY different from one another. Power amps? Not nearly as much. Choosing your loudspeaker first, and then finding a good power amp to drive them, is obviously the correct (okay, best) way to assemble a system. To do the opposite is just ridiculous. IMO, of course. ;-)

Recording engineers choose their microphones for each mic’s particular sound characteristics. And what is a microphone? Why it’s a transducer, of course (mics operates in exactly the opposite way as do pickups/cartridges). If you think the engineer’s mixing console (electronics) is more responsible for the sound of his recordings than are his microphones, may I respectfully suggest that you don’t know sh*t?  No offense intended.

@nevada_matt   Absolutely, and I'm mostly there. *G* 👍  Some tyding up to do, but...

Born and vaguely bred in S/W grater LA, Long Breach. *L*  Backed into audio by way of shortwave/amateur radio, because it always sounded Better in the other room....;)  
Long strange trip later, Here.  My excuse, stuck with it in allways.

Speakers 1st, my vote.  Why & How?  It's complicated....*G*

@erik_squires     No-one's 'idolising' speakers that are hard to drive.  It's just that many of the best-sounding full-range speakers are hard to drive.  Unfortunate fact.  Something to do with the difficulty of finding free lunches?

No-one’s ’idolising’ speakers that are hard to drive.

I think the real answer is between everyone and no one. The implicit situation set up is "well, it’s a demanding speaker, and it’s my fault for not having an amp up to it."

It’s like an implication there is something wrong with the audiophile if he doesn’t have mega amps. Why don't we instead say "there's something wrong with the designer of this speaker if they rate these 2 ohm speakers at 4 Ohms and expect us to fix their bad design?"