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  1. #1
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    Went to AXPONA, it was cool. However it puts a greater spotlight on reviews for me.

    So, I had an open day last Friday and had a chance to go to Axpona. Pretty cool. I have a ton of thoughts on it, but one that I keep thinking about.

    Lots of pretty good speakers out there, however have you ever heard a speaker, had an open mind and REALLY wanted to hear it based on a few reviews. Then, when you listen to it you question anyone that reviewed it remotely positively and wonder why on earth anyone would buy them.

    I don't want to rip the brand, but I know they were really trying to showcase their speakers. Listened to three songs and wondered how on earth anyone could buy the speakers and how anyone could review them positively. Just really, really makes me question anyone that reviews them positively and the motivation for the review. I understand reviewer can't just rip things, but usually they can leave a few hints and maybe, just maybe something as low as a 3.5 star rating.

    Even tougher in these days of internet direct sales and people relying on reviews. I kicked around this brand a few years back, and my lord... horrid.

    That said, I'd encourage anyone who has a chance to go to a show like that. You really get a chance to hear a lot of speakers fast. BUT bring your own tunes. If I hear another jazz track or female vocalist in the next month I may scream.

  2. #2
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    AV shows can be a real eye-opener when it comes to audio demos, in particular.

    My first show was CEDIA 2012. I was very excited to be there and had big expectations for the "demo rooms". They fell far short of that expectation.

    It's nearly impossible, or mostly impractical, to set up a true in-room experience at a trade show. I know at CEDIA, there was a lot of ambient noise from the other booth demos and from the participants at the show itself. I found myself wanting that at home type of experience, but that wasn't going to happen there. You have to go on what you can hear, and a bit of faith, to get a more complete picture in this situation.

    Reviewers get to break in the speakers and then review them in a proper home theater environment. They may spend a month or more with them in their personal home theater to get a true sense of how the speaker really sounds. It's truly a night and day difference. I guarantee you that the difference in the room makes a huge difference in how any speaker performs. So, I fully understand your reaction.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy Rainwater View Post
    AV shows can be a real eye-opener when it comes to audio demos, in particular.

    My first show was CEDIA 2012. I was very excited to be there and had big expectations for the "demo rooms". They fell far short of that expectation.

    It's nearly impossible, or mostly impractical, to set up a true in-room experience at a trade show. I know at CEDIA, there was a lot of ambient noise from the other booth demos and from the participants at the show itself. I found myself wanting that at home type of experience, but that wasn't going to happen there. You have to go on what you can hear, and a bit of faith, to get a more complete picture in this situation.

    Reviewers get to break in the speakers and then review them in a proper home theater environment. They may spend a month or more with them in their personal home theater to get a true sense of how the speaker really sounds. It's truly a night and day difference. I guarantee you that the difference in the room makes a huge difference in how any speaker performs. So, I fully understand your reaction.
    Oh, it was clear these guys took the time to set their stuff up properly, something they really emphasize on their website. I agree with the room thing, but I heard at least 25 speakers there and these were the only ones I said, man those things suck.

    some I didn't like, but saw redeeming qualities.

    A ton of snake oil salesmen at the shows also!

  4. #4
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    Tracy: to some degree, I agree with you. However I was going to CEDIA since at least 2005. I've gone to CES since the mid '80's.

    What I would say about this is, the best setups weren't at the Shows, rather in reserved Hotel rooms or suites in the nearby Hotels. That is where you will see & hear the higher end setups. Much more impressive with more attention to detail, and the owner's & employees are very helpful & hands on and they will gladly answer any questions you ask.

    Back in the mid '80's in the hotel suites you found true Hi Fi systems. Mind bending.

  5. #5
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Yes, the hotel room demos are the better option. There is much less noise there, and the smaller size of the room makes sound treating the space much more manageable.

    The Harmon/JBL trailer was the best treated space at that particular (2010) show. However, how many companies are going to go all out on a completely tricked out 53 foot trailer?

    The good many of the video demos, were the most disappointing. I mean really, how hard is it to properly calibrate your projector? I just don't get the preference the overly blue color preference.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy Rainwater View Post
    I just don't get the preference the overly blue color preference.
    Maybe its psychological, the cool blue hue calms ravenous audiophiles and sedates them.
    Infinity Composition Prelude P-FR L/R, Infinity Overture 1 center, Front hgts, and side surrounds, Infinity FPS-1000 Rear surround and rear hgt, Acoustic Elegance P1152 subs (x2) SVS 16-46 (x2), (x2) B&K Reference 200.7 power amp, Denon AVR X4300H, Yamaha MX-830, Behringer NU4-6000, 8 core HTPC W/Blu-ray W/Jriver nVidia 1060gtx 6gb,Hybrid tube DAC W/Burson Vivid, Silicondust HDHR3 Prime, TCL 4K 55 inch LCD, Vivitek HK2288 4K Projector

  7. #7
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prerich View Post
    Maybe its psychological, the cool blue hue calms ravenous audiophiles and sedates them.
    Could be.

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