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indianajo 5th July 2010 03:22 AM

Is that fireworks or electronics?
You learn the most from failed experiments, I maintain. After watching the National Orchestra, the Marine Corps Drum & Bugle Corps and an Army band blast out the USA classics on the National Mall on my feeble HDTV, I was ready for some reality. After 10 minutes with an "Everybody's Favorite Series" piano arrangement of Washington Post March that I haven't touched in 48 years, I proved to myself I wasn't twelve anymore. Well, so much for reality, let's try some manly electornics. It's Fourth of July, the industrial park across the street is closed and the neighbors are gone, everybody is blowing off fireworks in their backyards and parking lots. Anything goes soundwise today. So I tried to put the new SP2 600 watt rated speakers on the front porch and play 1812 orchestra as loud as the 800 watt amp would drive. I'm not that manly, I can't get the speakers down off their 6' stands without help. So, I skidded one across the floor and turned it out the front door, put on Herbert von Karajan "1812 Overture" (Angel) and cranked it up. First problem, if I'm serious about this I'm going to have to move the turntable somewhere besides between the two speakers, or get a CD version of the piece. There was a loud subsonic vibration building up, which responded to the "low cut" filter on the Herald disco mixer, but the volume still had to be limited to stop the shaking. I set it going and walked around the house to the front yard. It wasn't loud enough, even on axis to the speaker, to really equal the Louisville Orchestra that I heard live last night in the Jeff Riverfront band shell. Nor was it loud enough to turn the head of the neighbor's kid orbiting around on his Chinese motorbike. This was supposed to a commanding performance. When they got to the cannon shots, those actually sounded pretty good, but the rest was just okay. If I do this again, I really need to set up a crane to move the speakers down, and put them on the back of the 6x30 covered porch as a bandshell. Then, I need to excite with a CD or put the record player into a soundproof bunker. The volume of the speaker left indoors has done something to the wiring of the carthidge in the headshell, now it makes scratchy noises when I walk across the floor. Oh, well, at least the cannon didn't explode and kill the inventor.

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