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Friday, April 23rd, 2004

Sound Go Round

An update on my speaker shopping adventures: I’ve spent the last couple weeks researching what’s out there and what it costs, and had narrowed it down to some mid-range bookshelf speakers from three major Canadian manufacturers – the Paradigm Monitor 3s, the Energy C-3s or the PSB 2Bs. All around the $500-$600 mark.

Well yesterday I saw Kromer Radio’s weekly ad and noted they were selling Mordaunt-Short 914 floorstanders for $500 – half off the regular price. Internet searches didn’t yield too much information on these, so I had to go and take the unprecedented step of actually listening to the speakers instead of reading about them. Crazy, but it just might work. Turns out they didn’t really impress me at all. I was using Calexico’s Convict Pool and Sarah Harmer’s All Of Our Names as listening material (not audiophile-quality, but well-recorded and all I had on me), and I found them incredibly bassy and really fuzzy around the lower midrange and vocals had this unpleasant wooliness – all-around funky and not in a good way. Disappointment.

Since I was there, I also listened to some of the Paradigms I was looking at earlier and by switching back and forth between the various models, I was able to identify the models I liked best – the Paradigm Mini Monitors. However, I was also asking about some of the pricier options, and got a demo of the high-end Paradigm Reference Studio 20s. Now these were impressive speakers – very detailed and articulate with a very good low end for bookshelves. Of course, they also revealed just how poorly recorded (relatively speaking) a lot of the music I listen to is… I liked these speaks a lot and the guy was able to offer me a very persuasive price on them. A few bills more than I had initially intended to spend, but still affordable and when taken in the context of a long-term investment that I’ll be using pretty much every day, it seems reasonable (and justifiable). I’m mulling it over a little more, but I think I’ve made my decision – particularly since the little listening session yesterday trained my ears to notice the awful distortion I’m getting from my current speakers.

For the record, the surrounds on one of the woofers in my current speakers are disintegrating quite nicely – they’re old – and that’s the cause of the buzzing and flapping coming from the speaker. It needs to be repaired, but apparently the only guy who repairs speakers in this town doesn’t like to answer his phone – I’ve been calling for a couple days now to see how I can drop them off to get fixed (they’re old but still very good sounding speakers when working properly) to no avail. How some people stay in business is beyond me.

Tbonedotcom reports that the Franz Ferdinand show on June 14 has been moved from the Phoenix to the Kool Haus due to demand. Fuck that – if people wanted to go so badly, they shoulda bought tickets earlier. It’s called ‘you snooze, you lose’, people. For those of you not from T.O., not only does the Kool Haus have the worst name ever, it also usually sounds shit. Hence my rage.

Rachel Goswell’s solo album Waves Are Universal will be released in North America June 22. The lead-in EP The Sleep Shelter is out May 10 in the UK and while I haven’t heard anything about it coming out domestically on these shores, and any record store worth their ironic trucker caps will have it available on import.

Can’t wait for the new New Year album? Nonogirl Radio has a live show from 2002 to hold you over – sound quality is quite good though the last track cuts off prematurely. Me, I’ve already got a copy of The End Is Near coming to me thanks to eBay – regular folks will have to wait till May 18. But with my luck, it’ll be some nasty promo copy and I’ll still have to buy a new copy next month anyway. Thanks to Blog? No! for the link.

Welcome back to the blogosphere a redesigned Mystery & Misery. Leaner, meaner, Joe Greener.

A note to whoever runs The Daily Charlie – I don’t mind you getting links off me, that’s fine, but copying and pasting my writing almost verbatim and uncredited? In the words of Steve Dallas, “Hey – major uncool”. Knock it off.

np – Bedhead / Transaction De Novo

By : Frank Yang at 9:47 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Five Seventeen says:

    Weird about the Daily Charlie… Why anyone would want to pass themselves off as you is beyond me.

    And with those speakers, we are mixing the album at your house. (How’s the new website coming along btw?)

  2. mike says:

    It seems like Daily Charlie’s also ripping off Largehearted Boy’s blog style [ie ‘Daily Downloads’, even so far as to use the same links]…and again no credit…I think I’ll drop a comment at LHB’s blog

  3. david says:

    Aaarrgghh… I had this happen before when I was posting more reviews on my site. Another blogger was taking my posts verbatim and posting them as his own… a quick e-mail cleared things up.

  4. Frank says:

    Believe me, if Chuckie of the Day had an email address posted, he’d have gotten one from me. Does anyone know of any way to contact blogspot people, or are they completely anonymous?

  5. Gary Campbell says:

    Sorry Frank, I’ve been meaning to pipe in about your speaker shopping adventures, but what with work, life and everything in-between… I have a pair of Paradigm bookshelf speakers (tho I’m not sure of the model #) and they are outstanding. Indeed, when I set them up, my sound-engineer friend Inaam said he was very impressed with the sound fidelity out of what at first glace was a set of rather small speakers. Good bass response, and they sound clean at very high, and very low volumes (very important!). I’ll email you the model number tonight when I get home.

  6. janelle says:

    frank, i totally agree re: FF… i mean, isn’t that why they’re doing another tour in the first place? i still haven’t bought mine for nyc, but i did just see them in february [SO GOOD]. happily, they are playing two venues two nights.

  7. Sean says:

    That’s too bad, the Phoenix kicks the Kool Haus into Lake Ontario. You and the Frannies will always have the Horseshoe!

  8. Carla says:

    I agree the Kool Haus sucks donkey’s balls.

    In other news, Snow Patrol are returning in September. Judging by the awesomeness that was their show last night, I highly suggest catching them then.

  9. RSL says:

    hey frank, do you know the names of those bedhead songs on the new year set? i have no idea. i came late to the kadane army.

  10. Frank says:

    I’m not sure if there were any Bedhead songs in the New Year set – all the ones that sounded familiar were off Newness Ends. Maybe new ones? I’ll have to give it a second closer listen.