Home > Podcast > AVRant #4: You paid HOW MUCH for those rocks?!?

AVRant #4: You paid HOW MUCH for those rocks?!?

May 31st, 2007

That’s right, it’s tweak time. Time to introduce Dina to the wonderful world of hi-end audio. We dive right in the deep end with magic rocks, magic cables, and a bunch of other magic stuff. You KNOW she had something to say about that. We also discuss universal remotes and HTPCs (one of Tom’s favorite subjects). Not to mention that Dina gets her first undercover assignment! Happy thirtieth birthday Star Wars. Han shot first.

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  1. May 31st, 2007 at 21:37 | #1

    I have to admit… part of me hates these stupid tweaks… and part of me says “Why didn’t I think of grabbing a bunch of rocks out of my back yard and selling them to stupid rich people?!?!”

  2. May 31st, 2007 at 22:56 | #2

    hey clint, it’s not too late!!!

    ; )

  3. lea
    June 4th, 2007 at 14:01 | #3

    i know that a bowlful of rocks (if they were diamonds) would improve my listening enjoyment to any very expensive speaker system that my husband put into our house.

  4. June 4th, 2007 at 16:58 | #4

    Lea?! You escaped! I thought I felt a disturbance in the force…

  5. lea
    June 4th, 2007 at 19:01 | #5

    yes, i am back home (i was at a role playing convention… well, sort of, i was pretending to be a mature adult and a chaperone on my daughter’s choir tour, is that the same as a d&d convention?). glad to be home and to be able to listen to the podcast and call in and give you more dirt on dina. i have a whole garden full of it…

  6. Kurt
    June 6th, 2007 at 02:08 | #6

    Guys like DrWho who want endless technical detail written by guys with solid engineering backgrounds should check out http://www.theaudiocritic.com. It was an excellent magazine that sadly went out of print a few years ago but .pdf versions of the last 15 issues are available online. Unless the The Audio Critic somehow gets resurrected, Audioholics will one of the few places where the mighty dollar of expensive cable manufacturers doesn’t reign supreme and the policy of ‘if it doesn’t honestly improve sound quality, don’t buy it’ holds sway.

    Tech-loaded podcasts can be enjoyable, but I see AVRant as a podcast for men (and maybe a few women) who have managed to keep their audioholic insanity from turning them into such freaks that they could never possibly find a wife or father children. I admit, part of me fantasizes about being a single guy who can hole up in a dark room for days with a $150,000-dollar stereo system, but the reality of my life is having speakers knocked over by a wild three year-old and finding my DVD player jammed with Thomas-the-train trading cards.

    This show makes me smile and in the end, I think that’s what will attract listeners. Keep up the good work. The show rocks (I’m not referring to THOSE rocks in the jar…)

  7. DrWho
    June 6th, 2007 at 11:02 | #7

    “Guys like DrWho who want endless technical detail”

    Er…no. Endless technical detail does not interest me. Well, ok, it might interest me more than no technical detail but that’s not the point. I’d at least like to find out something about some equipment or get some ideas about how stuff works together or…

    Hey! I know! Take a look at the About AVRant page. That pretty much mirrors the ‘cast I was trying to describe the last time I wrote in (Look, I found the Concept Meeting notes!). That’s one I could really get into. And you know what? I think it’s where Tom and dina might be headed. Or I hope so. #4 was certainly a step in the right direction.

    But, Kurt, if you don’t think that, as a listener who only reaches probably the upper consumer level, I don’t represent some percentage of Audioholics fans you might ask yourself why more “audioholics” don’t post here (yet). I truly want this to work. Home theater is one of my last big hobbies so I am quite sincere and diligent in trying to make comments that might be helpful. Audioholics can’t continue to suck up their resources for ten friends who could just as easily email each other.

    I’ll give them a few more starts (like the Angels are with Ervin Santana) to straighten it out and see what direction they take. My hope is that they can reach their own stated goals (About AVRant) because it seems a little embarrassing to take a slap at other podcasts if yours doesn’t even reach their level.

    Ouch. Sorry. Didn’t mean that last bit to sound so harsh but the first paragraph of About AVRant did make me smile at the irony.

  8. June 6th, 2007 at 17:21 | #8

    A couple of things – the “about AVRant” page was written before we even decided on Dina so I’m not sure how realistic it is (I’m going to read it again tonight and perhaps modify it some). As this podcast is very new, you’re going to see adjustments and changes made as Dina and I figure out what we are comfortable with, what works for us, and what resonates with our audience. We take all of these suggestions very seriously and thank all those that take the time to comment here and call us. We don’t expect you to agree with each other or with us. This is a RANT page after all 🙂 , it’s all about opinions. And everybody’s got one…

  9. DrWho
    June 7th, 2007 at 22:19 | #9

    Aw, c’mon Tom. You don’t have to go all Animal Farm on us. The goal, as written, fits dina (and the podcast) very well and I see nothing there that would exclude her. In fact, it has been evolving beautifully for her to serve as “straight man” to Tom’s vast array of knowledge, asking the questions many of us would like to know the answers to concerning home theater. This trend, which began in earnest in #4, has continued through the first few minutes of Episode V, The Podcast Strikes Back, and I can’t wait to hear the entire podcast as I only see it improving. So far it sounds like another quantum leap forward!

    No need to paint new goals on the side of the barn (although the sheep would never notice). What’s wrong with lofty ideals?

  10. June 8th, 2007 at 14:27 | #10

    As a former Best Buy employee (I was in college, had to eat), I can tell you that any guy will get the same bad info and unadulterated upsale as Dina will. Best Buy, and the like, make the vast majority of their profits off accessories and warrenty plans (which I’m sure you know).

    Even being knowledgable won’t help. I was recently in a Bestbuy, just looking. When a salesperson came up to help, he wasn’t taking “no” for an answer. So I went to work.

    Even when corrected, he insisted that a Monster Cable HDMI would perform better than the AR cable (which are both equal to the monoprice cable). He also assured me that Plasma and DLP produced the best picture right now, far better than CRT could ever aspire to. When I commented on CRT’s superior blacks, he pointed to the 2500:1 contrast ratio on the DLP tag.

    Note to sales people: if you’re going to be aggressive, at least know what you’re selling.

    For the record, I was not a BB saleperson, I worked in the stock room. They wouldn’t let me on the floor, but you’d better believe that I dished out advice to customers every chance I got. Many a Monster Cable was placed on a random shelf on the way to the checkout line, and many a bose speaker collected dust.

    The Real HT Info Podcast

  11. June 8th, 2007 at 19:05 | #11

    excellent post, Marshall. You need to keep these stories coming. Hey Tom and Dina, maybe a guest spot for Marshall?!

  12. June 8th, 2007 at 20:28 | #12

    Best Buy sure didn’t have me sign anything on the way out, so I have plenty of dirt to spill.

    I will say in defense of the blue shirts, they aren’t paid specialist dollars. They aren’t even paid familiarist dollars, and I think uppermanagement keeps them in the dark purposefully. They could train and educate their employees, but they wouldn’t sell as many Monster Cables that way.

    I just want to put the blame where it belongs, on the management. But that dude was just too eager and stubborn…don’t argue with a customer, especially one who seems to know what he’s talking about.

  13. Papajin
    June 22nd, 2007 at 13:55 | #13

    I know this is an old rant, but I felt I couldn’t let this one slide… You have to give Machina Dynamica credit… They’re truly pushing the envelope of stupidity!


  14. June 22nd, 2007 at 17:37 | #14

    That has GOT to take the cake. That one actually makes me want to punch them in the face. For the most part I believe anyone has the right to sell just about anything to anybody, but that one needs to be addressed with a swift kick to the groin.

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