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You think these reviews are useless, go to audiogon.com and read the reviews how one 3 foot long power cable valued at $6,000 blows away another brand of 3 foot long power cable valued at $9,000, when hooked up to your $12,000 CD transport that doesn\'t even come with a power cable.
I used to have a friend whose job was doing location recording of jazz performers and symphony orchestras. He was one of the first folks I knew who did digital location recording, using a system that captured converted analog audio to digital and then recorded the audio data on video cassettes - cutting edge stuff in those days.
He knew his audio inside out, and he knew sound really well.
I always think of him telling a story about an audiophile product that he swore up and down was real back in those days (more than a few years ago), called \"Wonder Solder.\" Apparently the schtick of this audiophile product was that you would first go out and buy the highest-end gear you could afford at stratospheric prices. But this wasn\'t good enough because, according to the Wonder Solder people, the sound could have been much better if the manufacturers of these best of the best products had only used better solder. So... one was to desolder the components of the miraculously good state of the art gear and resolder them using Wonder Solder... for an astounding improvement in clarity, dynamic contrast, an expansion of the sound stage, better frequency response, and other wondrous improvements that those who needed the best could not possibly forego. By the time he got to this point in telling the story he was invariably laughing so hard that he could barely talk and was in danger of falling over...
Meanwhile, there was usually a symphony orchestra playing on the stage at which he told these stories... and no matter how good your audiophile system is, it can never equal the sound of an actual symphony orchestra.
true audio is filled with more snake oil than pretty much any other tech field
that said, the anti-snake oil, nothing beyond a $20 CD player or AMP makes any difference and crowd which has become equally loud these days, is becoming almost as silly these days IMO (well maybe not almost, nobody can really come close to $3000 per foot DIGITAL audio interconnects that use quantum tunneled prime electrons in ultra spin states to tighten the bass and reveal more treble clarity gotta love how a cable can do that to digital bits regardles of what format they are sent in that is some magically signal processing that cable does ).