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Audiolics Anonymous
Article By Dr. Bill Gaw


  Welcome to the first meeting of the Audiolics Anonymous Society. I know, some of you are still in denial, and can't believe that you are hooked, but just think back. When was the last time you thought about a new car, or clothes, or possibly a girl, and I'll bet in between you've thought about your playback system, and some new tweak or improvement? Still not convinced?


Take The Test!
1. I have bought more than one piece of new stereo equipment to replace a perfectly adequate one in the past year.

2. I must try at least one new tweak a week.

3. I have tried at least three different types of interconnects or speaker cables in your system, and want to try a fourth, even though the cost is equivalent to the gross national product of Afghanistan.

4. I have cleaned my RCA's and Speaker plugs in the past month.

5. I receive at least two audio journals per month, and become fidgety and nervous when they don't arrive on time.

6. I spend part of my vacations and weekends rummaging through used record or CD sales, ands prefer doing this to going to the beach.

7. I bring a new piece of equipment into the house in a brown paper wrapper so the significant other won't spot it.

8. When the sig. other asks what the extra charges on the credit card are from, I obfuscate or tell them I went out with someone else, so she'll leave me alone with my system.

9. My system sounds great one night, and less so the next, so instead of just turning the thing off and waiting for the bugs to clear, I have to tear it apart and reconstruct it.

10. I prefer the sound of my system to live concerts.

If you answered in the affirmative to three or less, you are still not hooked, and withdrawal should be easy. Four to six and you are on the way to hell, seven or more, and you are at my level. But fear not, things could be worse. You could be thinking of other reasons you are an audiolic to add to the above list.

Just stand up, raise you right hand and recite after me: I AM AN AUDIOLIC. There is no cure, just a sense that I'll be able to keep the urges under control.

My own fall began when I first tasted the nectar of a home brew amp I built from a Lafayette kit back in 1964. From that point on, it was a slow descent to addiction. Every Christmas present a new piece of equipment, Every penny earned going for new recordings (unhappily Dynagroove RCA's, not the Mercs out there at that time) The extra summer job before college began, to pay for the big payment due to the Columbia and RCA Record clubs. In college, even part of the beer budget went to recordings, and I even carted my stereo system over to Europe during grad school so I wouldn't be without my equipment. But the final fall from grace began in 1982, when, after finally getting a job that paid real money, I made the mistake of entering that den of iniquity, the Listening Studio, in Boston, where guru Clark Johnsen, plied me with sounds I never knew could be produced, wooed me with offers of equipment I could not refuse, and seduced me with the thought of "The Absolute Sound." I was hooked and forever under the spell of THE HIGH END. I won't bore you further with my woes, except to say that I could have retired by now if I hadn't spent a king's ransom, and a third of a lifetime to reach that Holy Grail of the audiophile... So you can get an idea of the severity of my disease, I give you my list of equipment, any one of which would qualify me as needing help:

1. Turntable: Walker Proscenium- weighs 270 lbs. with air bearing platter and arm and Walker solid silver tonearm wire directly hooked up from

2. Crown Jewel Cartridge to

3. pair of one of a kind monoblock balanced preamp-phono stage-line stage 24 db electronic crossovers built to spec by Alan Wright of the Preamp and Cable Cookbook fame.

4. Self built Alan Wright silver foil balanced interconnect and speaker wire.

5. Self built 50 Hz six foot long straight horn 50-400 Hz. with double Electrovoice 12 L drivers per side driven by

6. pair of Plinius SA-50 stereo amplifiers

7. Edgar 400-20000khz tractrix round horns with TAD 4001 drivers 5 and 6 as main channels driven by

8. Electraprint VV-32 SET monoblock amps

7. Edgar 400-20000khz tractrix round horns with TAD 2002 drivers and self built 80-400 Hz straight horns for center and two surround channels, all driven by Electraprint VV-32 SET stereo amps.

8. Pair VMPS original subwoofers for 14-50 Hz for front channels driven by

9. Crown Macro-reference stereo amp.

10. HSU Research 7 foot tower subwoofers for rear channels driven by Distech mono-block amps.

11. EAD Theatermaster Signature Preamp for digital and video.

12. Pioneer Elite DV-09 DVD player for CD and DVD playback.

13. 6 Uninterruptible power supplies for electricity.

Enough of this ranting. The list goes on, and You'll probably hear about the rest of the system in my future articles. At least you get the idea of my level of addiction.

Basically I am an audiophile who at least now understands his disease, and will hopefully be able to control it. Part of my recovery will be to try to pass on to you things I have learned from several gurus, and self-experimentation, so that you will not fall into the traps I have finally escaped from. My next article, if I can pull myself away from trying some new tweak, will probably be about that gremlin that afflicts all stereo systems, large and small; ELECTRICITY. Thanks for the listen. Say, you wouldn't have an extra set of Shun Mook feet I could borrow for a quick fix? Would you? Huh? Huh?






































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