Sunday, March 11, 2012

So Much Crazy, So Much Money, So Little Common Sense

I've kept the Mapleshade catalog in my junk mail pile for almost a year. I can't throw it away because it is such a perfect example of how nutty audiophiles can get. Statements like "Floor-mounting your amp on maple gives optimum performance. This approach sounds better than rack-mounting (even slightly better than on our SAMSON) because your amp won’t be sharing vibrations with other gear" are so full of insanity that it's hard to copy-and-paste it without throwing up a little in my mouth. 

You absolutely need to order this catalog to get the whole experience. Products like the maple-housed USB-to-S/PDIF connector are incomprehensible from an engineering perspective, but statements like "Our Amish woodworkers assemble a beautifully crafted (and ultra-low dielectric absorption) maple enclosure directly to the circuit board, thereby greatly stiffening the board while creating an ample sink for draining internal board vibrations. This maple enclosure avoids the sound-muddying effects of high dielectric absorption of the usual plastic enclosures-or, alternatively, the energy-robbing eddy currents that plague any metal enclosures (eddy currents are inevitably induced in any conductive wire or plate near signal circuitry)" explain it all. Really!

Now that I've bookmarked this nutty company in my blog, I can finally throw away the catalog. However, I will always miss the picture of a Mapleshade "recording session" in the back of the catalog. This photo will have to work as a substitute, because I can't stand looking at this book for one more minute.

Wirebender Audio Rants

Over the dozen years I taught audio engineering at Musictech College and McNally Smith College of Music, I accumulated a lot of material that might be useful to all sorts of budding audio techs and musicians. This site will include comments and questions about professional audio standards, practices, and equipment. I will add occasional product reviews with as many objective and irrational opinions as possible.