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seangoesbonk 2nd February 2002 12:39 AM

Boo!!!Crappy scams!!!
I just thought I'd light a fire here...
I'm kinda pissed at all the scams that are running in the audio biz.
A couple of examples:
1) The Tri-phazer: a passive signal processor that makes the signal sound more like it did when it was recorded(without a reference!!!) And they're only $1800usd!!! I'm going to ride my talking dragon down to the magic store and pick up a couple of these!!!
Here's an article on them
2) Mains cables that improve the sonics, depth, clarity and imaging of your amplifier!!! Only $2500usd for 8ft. Even though you have thousands and thousands of feet of crappy wire carrying power from the substation to your house, using this special 8ft wire can clean up your sound. DRAMATICALLY!!!
Here's a funny(not on purpose) article about "Gutwire" cables.
I'm in the Electronics Engineering field and these products puzzle me. Maybe I should get into the "audiophile" accessory biz. Let's make a list:

1)tonnes of cash!!!

1) not being able to sleep at night
2) going to hell

maybe i'll stick to honesty...

Anyway, my point of this post was to stimulate some discussion about audio scams. The more we know, the less we'll get screwed.

PTL60 2nd February 2002 01:17 AM

I agree,there are lots of audio or audiophile scams,and the bottom line is; MONEY. I'm not saying making money is a bad thing,it's misleading people and making false claims that is bad.

Like the thread I started about Regulated Power Supplies with Headphone Amps. Yes, a good regulated supply is important,but does it need to cost hundreds of dollars for an amp that only puts out a maximum of 500ma?

A lot of these audiophile designs are very good or even great,but they are without a doubt in my opinion way way overpriced and marketed towards people that have lots of MONEY to spend and will spend it and "beleive" since it costs more it must be better or the best.

Even with headphones. You can buy a "great" pair of headphones for less than $200,so why would you buy a pair that costs $4000, such as SONY's R10. Is that sick??

PTL60 2nd February 2002 01:26 AM

Have fun with this link:

Geoff 2nd February 2002 01:33 AM


At the risk of making myself unpopular yet again, I must interject. I kept out of PTL60's other thread on headphone amps, but please remember that this forum is about DIY audio, not knocking commercialism or 'lighting fires'. If you want to participate in this sort of debate there are other forums which are more appropriate, such as the Asylum.


griff 2nd February 2002 01:53 AM

god geoff, way to spoil the party man.

R. McAnally 2nd February 2002 02:03 AM


Originally posted by PTL60
Have fun with this link:

I like how the $4000 headphones are 40 ohms, and the $600 amp they recommend is rated for no less than 200 ohms. Go figure...

I look at these scams as a contribution to the "invisible hand" theory. The people who buy these toys are the same ones who buy $250,000 watches -- these types of things and people are needed to help spread the wealth out :)

dice45 2nd February 2002 02:25 AM

Where is the sand, blanket, water, fire extinguisher, ...
..., baseball bat, sleeping aerosol, electro-paralyzer...


I fully agree.


if you enjoy lighting flames, complaining about cruel and injust world of commercial audio, bathe in stories how one got ripped by a shop or manufacturer, dwell in generalisms, then I suggest you look for company at those forums where you will barely read something else.

You will feel comfortable there and at home ...

just, ....

will there be any audience except other flamers?

seangoesbonk 2nd February 2002 09:40 AM

Apologies to all
sorry about this whole flaming deal...

I didn't start this thread to bash products or complain about being screwed. I can thankfully say that I've never been screwed, so it's not some personal resentment I'm harbouring. And I certainly didn't want to hear any stories about how someone's cousin bought speakers from two guys in a van.

I just wanted to stimulate discussion about audio fact vs. fiction(or grey areas), about how certain products work. Because I build all my amps, etc. I am interested in how things work. For example, if the whole "triphazer" thing actually worked, I would sure want integrate them into my designs. Also, if the mains cable had such a dramatic effect on the sound, I would design my power supplies with that in mind.

I guess I (stupidly) picked two obviously baloney examples which are consumer products. I suppose I am really more interested in components(and designs). Are semiconductors living up to their specs? Do the more expensive, "high quality" capacitors work better? Can a well-designed class B amp be audibley distinguished from most class A amps? Regulated or non-regulated supplies? Should I build my pre-amp with a pot or a stepped attenuator?

The point was that there is so much gimmick and hype in the audio biz, that it's sometimes hard to know what's good design and quality, and what's marketing. I want my diy stuff to be high fidelity AND quality.

I just spent 3.5 months researching for the construction of a headphone amp which cost me $100can($65usd) to build. I'm a Electrical Engineering student and I really don't have much extra cash. I've put almost all my free cash into this project because I really love this stuff. I wish I could try a whole bunch of different designs, but I can't afford to. So, lots of talk and not much walk.
The point being that I really have to weigh the Performance vs. All-mighty dollar. I don't want to waste money on something which doesn't really benefit my project.

So anyway, I didn't mean to upset anyone. I just re-read my post and I'll admit that It was not at all what I wanted to say. It was written in haste and was quite misleading. Geoff and dice45, I see why you called me on that. Apologies to all.

griff 2nd February 2002 09:51 AM

its a shame that people get upset over ONE little thread, which as far as im concerned, lightens the mood a bit, we dont need to be forever hearing about aleph's, biasing and inductor values. Its good to share experiences on and off the DIYing table, just too see what is happening with other people heading down a similar path to yourself, you make it sound like a highly focused cult, speaking only of all things DIY, let a couple interesting threads go, if youve got nothing positive to say then dont say anything at all.

GRollins 2nd February 2002 11:20 AM

The gripe about pricing is a perpetual one. But prices are the way they are. In a purely market-driven sense, they will correct themselves in time, although it often seems to take forever. Whining about it isn't going to change it, and it gets exceedingly wearisome for those who've heard it all before. I can think of at least three or four threads here in the last couple of months where people got themselves in a lather about prices.
Deal with it.
Whether any given trick in audio works or not is another perpetual debate. Just because something doesn't seem to make sense at first glance doesn't mean that the people selling the whatsit are crooks, liars, or charlatans. Sometimes they are, granted, but sometimes they've got a point. Jeering and pointing and saying that the whatsit doesn't work may just come back on you later. A word of advice to those who might have to eat their words later on...they don't taste as good the second time around. Been there, done that. It wasn't fun.
If emoting over things you have no intention of buying or trying to understand is your idea of fun, I guess that's cool. But as Geoff said, there are better places for it.


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