CN Yee wrote:
The exotic amplifiers proponents claimed that the 'cheap' amplifiers are not adequate for 'true' music enjoyment. The skeptics (people like me) don't believe so. So the exercise is to establish whether the claim is true.
Sounds like someone here is having a serious bout of inferiority complex....
Just the point I want to get to. There is a thing called marketing, which is a beautified term for propaganda. The manufactures, the dealers and the reviewers works hand-in-hand to form a pervasive propaganda machine. The moment you pick up a hi-fi magazine, the moment you walk into a store, you are subjecting yourself under the propaganda.
Just walk to a hi-fi shop, and choose one of the higher end speakers, and tell the shop owner that you intend to pair it with whatever cheap amplifier you have. The reaction will invariably be: “not a good match”, “won’t drive it properly”, “sound stage won’t be right”, “the sound won’t opens up”, “flat”, “lifeless”, “even a deaf person can hear the difference”. You will be shown a list of equipments that you should be getting with the speakers.
Say you ended buying the speakers. But even before you get home you are already thinking of when you can afford to come back for a new amplifier, CDP, interconnect and whatnot. You got home and listen to your priced possession for a while, and you start to imagine what the new equipments could do to improve the sound, and maybe start hearing all sorts of defects in the sound. And all sorts of voodoos begin to appear in the home – silver interconnect, RM500 power cords, acoustics bells, acoustics CD marker - all the while ignoring the greatest enemy in sound reproduction – the room.
This was my actual experience. I almost wanted to buy a secondhand Proac some months back – until I was told that my Denon AVR won’t do the job. It was just as well, as I went for an audition of Harbeth a few days later and purchased a pair of C7 and a pair of P3 within the first hour of auditioning, and never looked back. But even after I purchased the Harbeth I spent a few more months shopping for a ‘proper’ amplifier, and accumulated a few pieces of AV equipments that I don't need at the mean time.