Food and coffee and rock n roll
- Jul 23, 2019
- HiFi Trade?
An interesting thread, and I'm glad to see wammers using their ears and comparing what they are hearing with "reality" as Rabski puts it, i.e. live acoustic instruments and voices. I'm a trained and performing musician like Dom and others here, and I can't stress enough how important the tonality of acoustic instruments is to practising musicians who use their instruments every day in orchestras and groups as well as at home.
Take a look and listen to concert pianist Tiffany Chan choosing a Type B Steinway from the Steinway showroom. She spends the whole day choosing the model she is most comfortable with. The video lasts 17 minutes and it gives you a very good idea of the tiny nuances of tone that make or break your relationship with an instrument. Which Steinway is good for Chopin, which is good for playing a concerto and so forth?
So while others get their kicks on Route 66, I get my kicks from equipment that sounds just like real acoustic instruments. The reediness of a clarinet, the shimmer of a Zildjian cymbal, the "ding" of a vibraphone, the unique steely tonality of a Steinway as distinct from a Bechstein or a Bosendorfer. I've played music live for most of my life in everything from symphony orchestras to jazz clubs and the tonalities of acoustic instruments are indelibly imprinted on my brain.
Speaking of Purify amps, I heard one in my system directly compared with my 2a3 amp. It was spooky - it sounded like a fairly persuasive artificial reproduction of music. But it just wasn't real. Extended listening showed a lack of nuance in the tonality of instruments and the decay of notes and voices kind of just "died" as opposed to lingering in the air with the 2a3. It was as if it was trying really hard to sound like the real thing, but there was a glass wall between it and the real thing that it just could never get through at the end of the day. I've tried again and again to set up SMPS power supplies and always failed, and I'm not the only one - they just don't sound like linear power supplies. I have yet to hear anything with the tonality of triode valves and in particular DHTs. But I'm always open and I'm going to build a Pass F7 and play with it, driven with my 10Y line stage. We'll see how that goes when it's built.
I had seen that video and it’s so true that an instrument either speaks to you or it doesn’t both in tone and also in feel.
I watched a video a few years ago about Steinway pianos and the guy who assesses or tunes them, I can’t remember quite who he was, but even from the same model piano he knew the differences between each one.
When I went to buy my bass guitar I assumed that I would buy a Fender Jazz as many of my heros played that bass. But even as a beginner the Musicman spoke to me more. It had a tone that spoke to me more. But hang on I was just a beginner and so what did I know? Well instruments either talk to you or they don’t. I said right order me an Musicman and the guy in the shop said no it might not sound the same buy that specific one. If you like that one buy that one. I find the same with hifi.