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RMAF 2010 Show Report

No, silly, this isn’t the report. The show isn’t for another month yet… :-)

The show report is going to be a little different this year. Yes, one reason is that we have not got a new server for Spintricity yet and so the report is going to be here on the blog. But a larger reason is that the report itself is going to be quite a bit different.

When we started out, we were the first to write long show reports and then the first to include several hundred then 1000s of photos. Now Audiogon, Stereophile, Positive Feedback, Stereotimes, Stereomojo, sometimes sixmoons, and last year AVSForum and Audio Circle post upwards of 1000 photos in their show reports.

That is quite a few reports now, and, although only Audiogon, like us, tries to cover every single room, there are quite a lot of photos now for people to kind of see kinda sorta what was there at the show.

What they do not do is talk about the sound. Whether they are incapable, afraid [of their advertisers], shills, or just ideologically opposed to it [see Steve Roclin’s perennial comments on Enjoy the Music] by and large [a phrase I added to make this nicer sounding] what comes out of these show reports is either sound bites for advertising copy or drivel.

So in this show report for RMAF 2010, you can ‘expect the same level of disdain for superficial media analysis and unfettered devotion to exploring’ the details of the sound and impact it has on the music being played - as always.

But more so.

[I plagiarized the quoted section from a small sports blog. Seems like they got quite a bit of poop to cut through as well].

Without all those photos, and the 140 - 200 hours of post processing they consumed, there will be time to write a few detailed comments. The show report will focus on the ‘high-end’ rooms, which is where Audio Federation’s interests are and where the reporting community makes their most egregious mistakes. [Oh, I am being so much more polite than I might otherwise be. I just came here after reading Romy’s ‘critique’ of yet another idiot review of the Lamm ML3. I differ from Romy in that I do not despise the people involved, but I do indeed despise the shallow level of discourse that passes for detailed analysis of the sound of high-end audio equipment these days. And I am oh so tempted to use some of the same flowery language :-) ].

So…. it is my expectation that in several years we will NOT see 9 clones of THIS style of show report.

For one, some of these people get several months to listen to and analyze then describe a particular sound - and they have a lot of trouble with even that [for reasons that may involve anemic work ethics and just not really giving a damn to all sorts of other nefarious and dastardly nasty interpretations of the world which do not really belong in politics, much less our little happy hobby].

For two, talking about the sound is risky. Manufacturers and distributors are not any smarter, on average, than anyone else, and perhaps [very much seem to] have more than their fair share of paranoid schizophrenics. Very few know how to set up a room, or understand what they are selling well enough to know what it works well with, or really care about the sound in their room [so they think WE should not care either. Sorry. We do]. So once in a blue moon they get pissed. But on average, it is really the owners of similar systems that get pissed. And this is just sad. The junk systems people are sold these days by unscrupulous dealers… shows should make this a lot harder to get away with as people get to hear systems that don’t… actually… suck. [or ‘Suck Less’ anyway, if for you the glass is not ‘half empty’, but completely bone dry and has been sitting in the Sahara desert for several hundred years].

The greatest risk is that other reports start doing this, and make up shit in ever larger volumes - and that they have someone who knows HOW to write, albeit not WHAT to write [nor how to listen]. There is one very famous reviewer [not at any of the pubs above] who just makes up stuff. It sounds real but if you heard the system he is writing about you would realize that what he wrote has nothing to do with the sound in that room [I mean, every room has positives and negatives, right? and someone who can hear and who wants to lie would naturally want to focus on the system’s strengths and ignore the often severe weaknesses. That way they could lie and more or less get away with it by saying those weaknesses were not aspects of the sound that they personally care about, or that they were not as egregious as I, say, make them out to be.]

Well, we’ll see. Hope there is something at the show actually worth spending some time listening to. Hmmmmm….

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