When our eyes are assaulted with a bright flash of glare we put our hands up to shield ourselves.
It’s not a whole lot different with audio. A biting dose of glare makes me cringe and reach for the volume control.
Glare is that overly bright sound that rides atop the music. It has any number of causes.
Glare can be found in electronics, especially in lower-end consumer goods. It can be caused by an overly aggressive tweeter or the bite of an overloaded midrange dome.
Whatever its cause, glare is perhaps one of the most undesirable traits our systems can sometimes be plagued with.
We can tolerate all sorts of imperfections: wooly bass, deficient depth, recessed midrange, even a bright or aggressive top end.
But add a bit of glare and we’re running for the hills.
If your system bites with a helping of glare, it’s not that hard to narrow down where it’s coming from.
If it changes with level it’s likely coming from the speakers or power amplifier. To narrow down between the two it’s often not that difficult to borrow another amp and see if the problem persists.
You can switch sources to see if it’s specific to one type of media.
Cables too can have an impact, but more often than not we’re mistakenly using cables to ameliorate the problem in the first place.
It’s worth your time and effort to narrow down the cause (or causes) of this debilitating sonic no-no.
Time spent well if you can eliminate it.
Paul McGowan / PS AUDIO