THE AUDIO INSIDER: Genre based system

I am often asked if a particular system setup is appropriate for a genre of music. Or, put another way, would this or that amp or speaker be a good choice for Jazz? Or this one or that one for classical? Rock?

Of course, the obvious answer is we want a system that does it all, but that’s not always easy.

Definitely, there are some systems better suited to one genre or another in the same way some systems are vinyl-centric while still others digital-centric. A small bookshelf-based speaker arrangement that works great for small chamber ensembles but probably best if we don’t try for symphonic rendering.

And while all this is true I would still maintain that we can do better.

We can focus our efforts on equipment and setup choices for a broader range of music without sacrificing sonic qualities essential for a particular kind of music.

The trick to pulling this off is to build your system in stages.

As always, start with the speakers.  Go for midrange clarity and transparency first, sweetness and openness in the treble regions second, and bass last on the list (because we can always supplement lower frequencies with a sub).

If we can manage to afford the speakers we want we can over time build the balance of the system with an ear towards the broadest of rangest.

I think this is pretty sound advice (to make a pun).

Paul McGowan / PS AUDIO

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