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In the Forum: Audio News
In the Thread: Focal-Jmlab – the Utopia of the Utopias
Post Subject: The ‘magic tape measure’ optionPosted by Romy the Cat on: 10/13/2008

Robert, actually in case of Grand Utopia you was remarkably close mentining the ‘magic tape measure’ option. You see, they demoed Utopia in looks like a large room and they band the Utopia’s axis’s only for demonstration purposes. In this configuration it is immensely difficult to make the speaker to sound right, but if they do it then it is possible in insultingly small space (I was not kilning what I told about a fraction of inch). Even if we presume that Grand Utopia is capable for any more civilized sound under best condition then at the audio show a few thighs was working against it.

1)    Amplification. It looks like that Grand Utopia was driver by Boulder amplifiers. I know those amps very well and heard them with many speakers. They are not juts bad amps but they are the ultimate nightmare of amplification.

2)    Personal. I do not know who presented the speakers at the show – manufactures or resellers. Even if there were manufactures then they were hardly intelligent people but rather some kind of marketing pimps. So, those sales people have notoriously horrible ability to understand how to set up playback and how to get sound out of audio. In addition most of the vendors hate shows, hate the visiting people, indifferent to “better sound” and do not give a damn how the room sounds. So, going from room to room we, the visitors, experience the result of expressed hate and misery multiplied by disability to deter then juts “as is”.

3)    Experience of listeners. Your, and anybody ease luck of ability to detect the “OK sound” in the Utopia derived from the fact that you did not know HOW to listen them. You need to have absolutely clear room (with not chairs). Then you need to stand at the further side of the room and begin VERY slowly move toward to the speaker. The speaker shall play the right music (with some experience you might use a pink noise) and you need to know what to listen. At a very specific distance the sound will focus, it will be very very very small spot – very easy to miss it. You need to put a dentist chair right there and fixate you head with precession of a few mm. outside of this “sweat spot” the speaker shell sound like shit. I do not say that inside of the “sweat spot” Grand Utopia sounds wonderful – it will sound as it will but any conversation about Utopia sound shell be ONLY if the listener is inside the insultingly narrow “sweat spot”. BTW, with certain curvature of the Utopia’s bending the “sweat spot” not even available.

Anyhow, it is shame that GM Lab sell this engendering idiocy for 150K. The speaker has “1458 possible adjustment combinations” (!!!)


I wish to the new Grand Utopia owner good luck…

The Cat

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