Making sense out of all of the claims and counter claims about cables is a waste of time. The believers will continue to believe and the skeptics will continue to challenge them. The recent YouTube video was just the tip of the iceberg as far as I’m concerned. I doubt whether AQ or the rest of us will ever learn how the audio track was “fudged” resulting in “unbelievable” differences. Thus far, I haven’t heard back from the folks at AudioQuest. I sent them the link to the original video so that they could confirm what I reported back in January. But I have been in email contact with a few other players in this arena over the past couple of weeks.
First, I would like to thank those who have written comments or private notes to me in support of my reporting. As you can imagine, it’s rather unpleasant to be the target of attacks by professionals and journalists in the audiophile industry. You really discover who your friends are when circumstances like this come along (Thanks Kal!). I admit that I made some assumptions (which I believe were reasonable) with regards to AQ’s involvement with the YouTube video. Perhaps I should have contacted them for additional information…but I didn’t. The open letter that William Low, the CEO of AudioQuest, posted on the Stereophile website was a very positive step forward. And I can confirm that I’m satisfied with the emails that we’ve exchanged since then.
But why have none of the usual audiophile sites reported on this incident?
However, I was dismayed when he wrote to roughly 90 audio industry colleagues following my post of the 22nd:
– The cables are digital. To our awareness, it’s impossible for a cable to affect spectral content — though differences in the integrity of the data do very clearly affect the ultimate emotional response to the sound, and therefor to the subjective impression of amplitude.
– Yes, regardless of any questions as to the professionalism of Mark’s muckraking process, and his apparent fabrication of a quote referencing an email debate with an AudioQuest employee about the definition of High-Resolution, the only pertinent issue is that I currently believe that Mark has exposed the truth about a falsified video.
I don’t make stuff up. Although, I am guilty of having strong positions on issues relating to audio and music. But I don’t lie. Recently, I received this from Michael Lavorgna of Audiostream.com:
“I’m looking into this matter and I can tell what I have found out so far; your quote ‘the truth is bad for commerce’ which you claim is from an email exchange with an AudioQuest employee does not exist. You made that up to support your demonetization of the company.”
Claiming I fabricated the exchange or that the email from Steve Silberman (AQ employee) doesn’t exist runs contrary to the truth. Steve and I were both members of the CEA Audio Board a year ago. What began as a conversation on the monthly phone call spilled over into a series of back and forth arguments concerning high-resolution audio. Steve’s believes that “16/44.1 is high resolution (We should rethink that as part of the CEA message).”
His definition is at odds with the DEG, NARAS, CEA/CTA, and the major labels…and is way below what my own definition requires. Here’s the relevant part of our very real email exchange last January:
On 1/21/15 12:32 PM, “Steve Silberman” wrote:
you’re kidding me? Right? In terms of defining high-resolution it could also go like this:
CEA defines high-resolution audio as any format, in an uncompressed state, at a rate of 1411Kbps and above.
This would have allowed customers to realize that it would be easy to at least get back to a baseline.
Can we be done now? I’m not really interested in arguing with you any longer. Most people outside of the board disagree with the current stance on CD quality being left out. It’s bad for enterprise.
On 1/21/15, 1:16 PM, “Mark Waldrep” wrote:
How are definitions arbitrary? In my world they mean something. In the video world they mean something.
When did I say the CDs weren’t serious? I believe that CDs can do an amazing job at reproducing high-end audio. But they haven’t got the same fidelity potential as high-resolution audio recordings.
I don’t want consumers to be fooled by marketers and spinmeisters that CDs are all of a sudden the next big thing…just because they’ve been digitized. The fidelity is the same as its always been.
I apologize for remembering “commerce” rather than “enterprise”, but in my lexicon they’re synonymous.
The quote does exist.