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Positive Feedback ISSUE 61
may/june 2012


Our readers respond…we respond right back!

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I like PFO because I feel that it is the only straightforward audio journal left on the market. It is easy to read and understand. It covers a wide spectrum of topics and items in a wide price range to appeal to most audiophiles. Keep up the good work.


I just saw Teresa Goodwin's new review on Positive Feedback of the latest Soundkeeper Recordings release, "Americas" by Paul Beaudry & Pathways and I'm writing this evening to say Thank You for publishing it.  What a personal thrill for me to have a second story about Soundkeeper on Positive Feedback.

As I stated in my previous message after Teresa's last Soundkeeper review, I am thrilled that Positive Feedback readers (of which I'm one) who are not familiar with Soundkeeper will get to find out a bit about us and hopefully, check out the music and the sound.

Thank you again for the wonderful story and for your time and consideration.

Best regards,

Barry, Soundkeeper Recordings

Hi David,
I enjoyed your article on Reel to Reel and Greg Beron's of UHA.

I looked at the Opus 3 website and they are releasing RTR Master Tapes like crazy, I wish I was rich and could get into Master Tape copies. I heard one from the Tape Project at T.H.E. Show last year and was very impressed.

I wanted to let you know the Tape Project was not the first to offer Master Tape copies. In the mid-1980's there was a company named Sound Ideas MASTER TAPE which offered Real Time duplicated tapes in special presentation cases that also include a copy of the LP so you can hear the difference for yourself. Their recordings were available in five configurations: 15 IPS 2 Track, 15 IPS 4 Track, 7½ IPS 2 Track, 7½ IPS 4 Track and Metal Cassette. Sound Ideas used Scotch 226/227 mastering tape in their real time reel to reel duplication and Fuji Metal for their real time duplicated cassettes. All tapes including 4 Track reels and cassettes were recorded on only one side of the tape for improved freedom from noise and reverse channel crosstalk. 15 IPS tapes sold for $75, the 7½ IPS for $50 and the Metal Cassettes for $30.

Here is a complete discography I used to own the 4 Track 7½ IPS versions of THE DAVID GRISMAN QUINTET (SI-F-5) and THREE WORLDS Mel Graves (SI-S-1780) and they were the best sounding recordings I've ever had in my home.

Even earlier in the early 1970's there was real time duplicated reel to reels from Ambisonic which later changed there name to Sonar. They were $34.99 for 2 Track 15 IPS and $19.99 for 4 Track 7½ IPS also duplicated on Scotch 206 1.5 mill mastering tape. Unlike Sound Ideas they were recorded on both sides for the 4 Track version.

In addition there was Direct to Tape Recording Company which recorded Direct to Tape with no mixing. They offered their recordings on real time duplicated 4 Track 7½ IPS and cassette, they used AGFA tape.

Even some of the commercial tapes were quite good especially Barclay-Crocker, however they were what they call "slow-speed" duplicated (4:1) and used Dolby B unlike the audiophile tapes which use no noise reduction.

Nice to see reel to reel making a comeback, however they are too pricey for me.

All the best,

Teresa Goodwin

Hi David,
It was great fun spending time with you on Friday morning in your PF suite at the Hilton when Ray Lombardi and I stopped by to chat.

Your discourse on internet publishing vs. hard print publishing cannot be refuted. Continuing with general conversation as we three let our hair down was most enjoyable and I thank you for your cordiality.

This evening, I called up Positive Feedback, the internet version, finding myself returning as if to the writings of an old friend as I prepared to enjoy my evening. I was immediately stunned by news of Dave Glackin's passing. Your closing sentiments well express my own. There has passed a gentle and friendly heart as well as a brilliant mind—a genuine loss to many of us. Dave warmed the minds and hearts of many an audiophile, as well as others, with his person as well as his writing.

I then entered memory lane by turning to PF Issue 1 and once again savoring the enjoyment of Dave (and Stan Ricker) when reading the kind words which Dave penned about my Glass Amplifier Company audio endeavors at CES (T.H.E Show) for both 2001 and 2002. And, the picture of Stan Ricker with yours truly in my 2001 room with "Big Red" (300B PSE) brings back great memories of both Dave and Stan. We all had great fun!

And so, with a hurting heart, I again thank you for your hospitality. The camaraderie we three experienced this morning came, I believe, from a common desire to spare the BS and strive for the more noble road. Absolute sound indeed! Let's enjoy the recorded performance art form! Well said, David Robinson!

Lastly, we cannot forget that, as players in these reproduced recorded audio arts, whether manufacturers or scouts (your term), we are witting and/or unwitting luminaries as we sometimes wax eloquent to the audio world when describing what we respectively produce for general consumption. My take-away from our discussion is—to speak of what is greater, for that inures to the general and specific good or our profession/avocation, and to hold what is lesser in silence, as the lesser does not elevate that profession/avocation. Your insight here is much appreciated.

Best regards,

Michael Maduras
Glass Amplifier Company

The show induced blur may keep you from remembering, but you and your partners were hospitable to me and my wife on Friday afternoon. She sampled your bourbon, and I sampled your stories. I just wanted to drop this note of thanks for making the show more interesting, fun, and human so early in the weekend.

Keep on being a proud Portlander.

If you ever find yourself down around Lincoln City, feel free to give a holler. We'd be more than happy for the chance to return the hospitality.

Malachi Kenney

Thanks, Malachi! I do remember you and your wife...I don't see many folks from the Oregon coast at audio events!

You were very welcome at the PFO hospitality room at THE Show Newport Beach 2012. We all had a great time, and saw a lot of people show up in our room. Nothing like a bit of single malt, bourbon, or wine... heck, even water!... to shake the show blahs!

Hope you had a good time, and thanks for your kind email. We appreciate hearing from our readers!

All the best,


The Higher End

About the "expectation of privacy" and those emails to Positive Feedback Online

Ye Olde Editor

We do like hearing from you, our readers. It adds a great deal fun to what we do, encourages our editors and writers, provides information we may have missed, and correction that we may need. This is all to the good.

Your communication with us these days is almost always via the highly rational path of email. And we do read it, responding to the constructive correspondence—which is most of it, really—as quickly as possible. (The destructive stuff is routed directly to the bit bucket. Didn't yo' mama teach you better than that?!) Dave Clark and I are generally pretty rapid in getting back to you if a response is needed from us, or in re-directing inquiries to the appropriate person at PFO if it needs to go to an editor or writer.

By the way: please understand that the writers and editors at PFO are helpful folks, eager to assist their fellow audio/music lovers, or they wouldn't be doing what they're doing. Nevertheless, PFO is not an audio consulting service. Please do not clog the gears with complex requests for assistance with the sourcing of audio gear in your personal setting. Remember too that PFO is not, and has never been, an audio ombudsman. If you are having problems with a particular vendor, company, or dealer, please avail yourself of the normal channels for such resolution; no audio publication has the time or resources to take on such a responsibility for consumers. Enough said.

With an increasing flow of emails to Positive Feedback Online, and upon evidence of some recent confusion on the part of our email correspondents, it's become necessary to re-state the ground rules by which we operate here. So gather round the campfire, friends…

Any time an email, or an exchange of emails, is both constructive and of potential wider interest, we exercise the reserved right to publish it in "Reverberations," the letters section of PFO. This is, after all, a publication, a "journal for the audio arts." We are seeking to further educate and entertain our readership in our common love for fine audio, and contributions in the form of emails/letters from our readers are one way that we accomplish this goal. When you write to any of us… our essayists and reviewers included… we assume that you are aware of our nature as a publication, and that you write to us in the light of that knowledge.

This means that—unless you request confidentiality explicitly in your email or letter—there is no expectation of privacy here at Positive Feedback Online.

To put it another way: Any email or letter sent to this journal will be considered fair game for publication, unless you state in the document itself that the contents are private/confidential.

So… our default is PUBLISH.

The reverse is also true: the editors do reserve the right not to publish an email or letter. We are not obligated to publish your letter or comments simply because they are submitted. And hostile, negative, sarcastic, destructive emails or letters are never published.

So…sometimes we DON'T PUBLISH.

Finally, our subtitle for "Reverberations"—"Our readers respond—we respond right back!" is not a guarantee that we will always respond to an email or letter that is published. Often we do; sometimes we don't… usually when we don't, it's a case of res ipsa loquitur.

So finally… sometimes we PUBLISH WITHOUT RESPONSE.

I think that makes things clear. Having said all of this in the name of clarity, keep those cards and letters coming in!

All the best,

David W. Robinson