Keep It Simple

The best sounding systems to my ears are always the simplest ones.  Simple systems that forego complicated electronic circuit boards, DSP processing, bass/treble control circuits, and overly complex passive crossovers always sound more natural to me.  More like the live event would sound.  I think the reason for this is because the signal is not ‘harmed’ as it passes from source to preamplifier, to amplifier, to speaker.  The purity of the signal is better-maintained when there are fewer components for it to travel through.

I guess I’m old-school because I really like things like point-to-point wiring inside an amplifier, cables made with copper wire, and speakers with simple passive crossover networks.

I know that Digital Signal Processing can be a very powerful tool that can fix or enhance many aspects of a home stereo system.  But do we really know what is happening to our pure signal coming from our turntable when it goes into the input of the DSP?  I’m sure someone out there knows, but for the rest of us, these DSP’s are ‘mystery boxes’!  For all I know, my pure analogue signal from my turntable is going through a ten-cent part on a circuit board somewhere in there.  My ears tell me that whatever is going on inside these mystery boxes, the purity of the signal coming out is not the same as going in.

I think people who like DSP are looking to be impressed by their stereo system.  And that’s fine if that’s what floats your boat.  But for me, I want to be impressed by the music and completely forget about the system.  DSP doesn’t work for me.