ON 26 JULY we noted that the electronics and hi-fi company Denon is charging nearly $500 for a 1.5-metre length of network cable. Now a reader who wants to be known as Adam points us
to Pear Audio, which is charging $2750 for a pair of 3-foot Anjou speaker cables, $5250 for a 8-foot pair and $7250 for a 12-foot pair.
The fact that companies expect people to pay this sort of money for bits of wire may make you think that some strange neurological disorder has swept the hi-fi industry. Then again, you may think that Denon and Pear Audio are models of sanity compared with www.machinadynamica.com
a site reported to us by John Noble.
Here are three of Machina Dynamica's hi-fi fixes. The $199 Clever Little Clock is a "small, battery-powered travel alarm clock that has been extensively modified using a number of highly
specialized techniques". It "has a pronounced affect on the sound heard by listeners in the room.
In addition, any video systems in the house will be improved".
For some reason, most of the customer testimonials on the Machina Dynamica site are credited with dates rather than names, so we have "May 2007" declaring: "The sound is more open, liquid and organic."
That sounds pretty impressive, if unlikely, but what about Brilliant Pebbles, yours for $159?
These come in a "clear thin plastic bag containing minerals & stones of various types" and once
again "a number of highly-specialized, proprietary techniques are used for preparation/assembly".
The stones are "a unique comprehensive system for tuning the room and audio system" that are
"capable of dramatically lowering audio noise and distortion".
"Brilliant Pebbles have made a bigger improvement in sound quality than the last $1000.00
interconnect cables I purchased. Thanks!" says "January 2008".
If you don't want stones or clocks around your room, the Teleportation Tweak ($60) might be a
better bet. It's "an advanced telecommunications technique... for upgrading audio systems remotely".
The tweak is done via a phone call and sounds to the listener like a series of mechanical pulses.
It takes only about 20 seconds and "has a profound effect on the sound - clearer, more information,
greater frequency extension and more realistic-sounding". We are told that it routinely works "for
distances of 1000-4000 miles".
"The Teleportation Tweak is a thing of indescribable beauty," gushes "September 2007".
The Machina Dynamic site now sports illustrations in the form of visuals from old science fiction
comics, making us wonder if the site itself is a work of fiction. We hope it is - but given the
excesses rife in the hi-fi world, we fear the worst.