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Zu Audio - What is Going On?

Keith_W

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#21
Exactly. If you own a mechanical watch or grandfather clock, which are orders of magnitude less accurate than even the cheapest quartz watch, despite costing orders of magnitude more, you have no business being smug about luxury audio measuring poorly.

For the record, I have also heard a few Zu systems. I don't get it either. But if it makes their owners happy ... who am I to argue.
 

FrantzM

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#22
Exactly. If you own a mechanical watch or grandfather clock, which are orders of magnitude less accurate than even the cheapest quartz watch, despite costing orders of magnitude more, you have no business being smug about luxury audio measuring poorly.

For the record, I have also heard a few Zu systems. I don't get it either. But if it makes their owners happy ... who am I to argue.
Well the thing is: I know my watches are for vanity sake. I would like to think my audio is not for the same purposes.. Or is it ? :p
 

watchnerd

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#25
Exactly. If you own a mechanical watch or grandfather clock, which are orders of magnitude less accurate than even the cheapest quartz watch, despite costing orders of magnitude more, you have no business being smug about luxury audio measuring poorly.
I own several mechanical watches, but I think there is a big difference because:

1. I don't pretend that my mechanical watches are more accurate time keepers than a cheap Casio G-shock or my cell phone

2. Many of the watches I own are vintage. It represents something that was, at that time, a SOTA piece of tech but no longer is.

If Zu said "our mission is to recreate speaker systems from the 1960s", I would cut them more slack because they would be an historical homage.
 

watchnerd

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#26
Zu is about full range, and sensitivity, and power handling.
Well so is a PA speaker, and you don't like those.

BTW, the main Zu driver is a modified PA driver...

Also, if by full range you mean 20-20khz coverage, they do a pretty poor job of that.
 

watchnerd

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#27
And that is why people like you will never get it.
What is there to get?

A loudspeaker's job is to reproduce sound, not to create its own version.

Admittedly, it's an ideal that is hard to meet, but at least most speaker designers draw their voicing line at blatant and audible cone break-up, which is just bad engineering.

If you want a noise making device that color things the way you like, okay, sure, spend your money how you want. But I would argue that's closer to a musical instrument in philosophy than a loudspeaker.
 

watchnerd

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#28
what the real studio experience sounded like and that is why it seemed so different. Then, the previously silent other listener spoke up. He said that he was at those recording sessions, listened live as well as to the monitors in the control booth and that it sounded nothing like what we just heard from the Zu. Microphone drop!
That was incredibly stupid of the presenter -- even absent the listener who was there, studios don't use Zu speakers as monitors (at least none I've ever heard of), so it's just nonsensical on the face of it.
 

Thomas savage

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#30
I guess, in that context, you're not looking for neutrality, but for spicing that suits your palate?
I was just joking, ideal speakers contribute as little as possible in terms of a 'sound' of their own.. In fact I'd say everything should aspire to do this within your hifi.
 

dallasjustice

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#31
I've heard them at RMAF a few times. I even heard them in a large room where they at least had a chance to sound very good. I've never heard them sound good. I have heard them sound awful.

I think those who are accustomed to accurate reproduction will not like them.
 

watchnerd

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#32
I was just joking, ideal speakers contribute as little as possible in terms of a 'sound' of their own.. In fact I'd say everything should aspire to do this within your hifi.
You're never going to have a career as an audio reviewer with that attitude!

(As an aside, a cable maker on Head Fi approached me to send me their free product and review it....)
 

Thomas savage

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#33
You're never going to have a career as an audio reviewer with that attitude!

(As an aside, a cable maker on Head Fi approached me to send me their free product and review it....)
You just took a giant shit on my dreams..
 

Sal1950

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#37
Good thread but it raises the question
What's worse, snake oil marketing of tone controled, distortion inducing products such as the Zu's.
Or the on going craziness of the worthless products marketed and trumped on sites like WBF and CA. They as a rule have no effect on SQ either for the good or bad but get into delusional believer audiophiles pockets none the less.

There is much good news too.
Well designed, reasonably priced speakers in both passive and active versions from companies like Elac, JBL, HSU, Emotiva, many more. Same goes for electronics and sources. In today's market you can put together incredible sounding systems for the cost of a decent TV and NOT a fricken house.
The sad part is that there is not a media or marketing arm for the above gear or philosophy. The vast majority of whats out there will give occasional lip service to affordable gear but in the main are just more reflections of Stereophiles BS Recommended Components list. I put my discarded copies in the small free library of my community and wonder what some may think when they pick them up and purse the gear listed in the pages.

Fugeddaboudit
 

watchnerd

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#40
The worst has to be products that cost a fortune but do nothing but stoke the imagination.
Sure, I'll give credit to actually making a "working" product, even if it is like putting racing stripes on a Yugo.

Of course they also sell cables, too...
 
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