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What is Real Music?

CES Show Report by Dick Olsher

"One of my goals this year was to search for and locate audio systems whose tonal balance approximates that of live music. There has been a long-standing rift between the priorities of music lovers and audiophiles, which has been clearly reflected in current speaker designs. Audiophiles seem to prefer a super-etched, super-fi, presentation with more detail than live music has to offer. A rising frequency response in the upper midrange and lower treble is pretty common. Couple that with a weak lower midrange and upper bass and you end up with a balance no music lover would enjoy.
I'm sad to report that audiophile-based designs are dominating the scene. Having covered about 80% of the high-end CES exhibits at the Alexis Park Hotel and much of T.H.E. Show, I can only point to a total of nine rooms that passed my test. Too bad; I hope to make it past ten next year."

Here's my short list of "Best of Show" finalists, where music was king.

"The Bluebird Music room proved to be a delight."