If someone were to ask you, "What is required to create the Ultimate Home Theater?" what would you tell them?
Is it the type of display (or projector), or perhaps something about the speakers or amplifiers; should it be about the interior room design or the comfort of the recliners, some of which cost more than a good looking display or even a whole Home Theater. Given how much has been said and written about Home Theater design over the last 40 years (starting with magazines like Stereo Review, High Fidelity, Video Review, and even Popular Mechanics), and along with the internet being so filled with everyone's facts (?!?), opinions, and reviews (even by well established names), how is an ordinary person (much less a professional expert) supposed to know what pieces of information are really important or even true (and how much is purely words for advertising's sake)?
If the goal is a Home Theater (or dedicated listening room) that sets the benchmark at or near the top of this field, which we now know of as Home Theater, how can one be certain not to be misled even by the most trustworthy of individuals, friends, and even well established experts?
This is why I have started this blog -- to demystify an extremely complex subject and to present my personal journey (beginning at the tender age of 4 - thanks to my parents and their parents). Over the coming months (and years), I will carefully elucidate many scientific and artistic principles that govern great and even sensational picture and sound quality, regardless of the time and monetary expense incurred or required. For example, it is well known that not every pair of speakers sounds the same even when manufactured using the same materials and methodologies, and heard under identical conditions. In fact, a great many terrific and musical sounding speaker designs can be found for a fraction of the cost of a new speaker utilizing the very same design (and materials), if only one knows what and where to look for it.
Here is a simple but key example:
All too often in this world, compromises are made based on assumptions (rather than valid testing: both empirical and subjective), and these have led many otherwise amazing and brilliant individuals to go down the wrong path at a critical juncture in the history of technology, particularly in terms of sound and picture reproduction. Does anyone remember when Thomas A. Edison was in the process of inventing the Lightbulb, way back in 1885? And his scientific conclusion was that Direct Current (DC - as from batteries) was THE WAY to transmit power across a distance! Well his employee at the time, Nikola Tesla, apparently knew a little better that Alternating Current = (AC Power) was a much more efficient choice when applied to transmitting power across great distances. Because they disagreed so vehemently (and in no small way because Edison was not willing to approve a much deserved raise), Tesla quit working for Edison. And later begin work for his competition, George Westinghouse Jr. Together, Tesla and Westinghouse pioneered and went on to prove the use of AC power to be a better, less costly, more efficient method of getting current to those lightbulbs, particularly at the World's Fair - World's Columbian Exhibition (1893) - the first pavilion to be lit entirely by light bulbs.
If Edison (a genius) couldn't see the future of AC power (and fought against its consideration in all kinds of political and social ways - many rather embarrassing), then who is to say which elements of audio and video have been compromised (or forgotten altogether) at some point in their journey? These are issues we will be covering in close detail as this blog unfolds.
Feel free to comment or ask any questions you may have. But be forewarned: I will delete anything that is of an argumentative or intolerant tone --- there is far too much of that, which can be found in droves on all the other blogs and forums on this particular topic, and who needs anymore of THAT kind of negativity, anyway!
Kipnis Studio Standard