Contact us
Close contact box
Connect ID #
499 168 438 4
Connect ID #
499 168 438 4
Don't wait on hold. We'll call you back when it's your turn to talk with the next available .
Please enter your name  
Please enter your phone number  
Please enter a message  

Calls may be recorded for training and quality control purposes.

We are located in Virginia USA.

Thank you. We will be calling you .
We're sorry. We have encountered a problem.

Crutchfield: The Podcast Ep. 38

The "ported vs. sealed" sub game, our AXPONA recap, and an interview with Andrew Jones of MoFi

In this episode:

In this episode we have something very special — Jeff, our resident headphones pro, conducts an exclusive interview with speaker visionary, Andrew Jones. Andrew shares his philosophy behind speaker design, his reasons for joining the team at MoFi, and what's next for him.

But before that, enjoy this audio version of our live-streamed show, Crutchfield Live, which you can watch on YouTube and Facebook. J.R. plays the "ported vs. sealed" game with Matt, our mobile electronics catalog editor. They take music suggestions from Live viewers and compare notes on the best sub style for job. Then, Jeff walks J.R. through his visit to AXPONA, an audio electronics expo in Chicago. Intrested in finding out more about Jeff's AXPONA experience? Check out his photos and read the full story.

Explore more episodes

Read episode transcript

Hey everybody, it's jr back with another episode of Crutchfield, the podcast. I'm in my studio here in the basement of Crutchfield recording this without my co host eric because we actually already recorded most of this show, it was a Crutchfield live episode. Every other thursday we go live on facebook and Youtube, we've got viewers that watch and comment, We interact and it's basically like a fun hang with a bunch of crutchfield fans and if you are one and I think you are, since you're listening to this podcast, I read recommend you check out Crutchfield live. It's also it's a great way to win stuff. We've been really leaning hard into some sweepstakes here lately. We've given away some cool stuff like SVS, Subwoofers, Bose, bluetooth speakers. We are we are doing some more giveaways for Philips hue, lightbulbs, we might have some other really cool stuff. I can't announce yet that we're going to give away uh specifically to viewers of Crutchfield live. So what we're gonna do today is play a big chunk of a recent episode of Crutchfield Live. And in this episode we did some fun stuff we had Zach, one of our video producers. Uh come on to talk about how many new viewers we've got on our Youtube channel next we played a game called the ported or sealed game. You know, subwoofers come as either ported or sealed most of the time and there are, you know, strong opinions about what type of subwoofer is better for different types of music and different things you might listen to and we played a game, what would we recommend? A ported sub or a sealed sub for all these bunches of different types of music and genres and stuff. We had Jeff miller in the studio talking about ax poona, which is a sort of a high end consumer electronics home audio convention in Chicago where a bunch of high end audio companies get together, show off their newest stuff and celebrate everything it is about, you know, great sounding music on great sounding stereos. Jeff got to see some really cool stuff from some of our vendors and uh and uh we're also putting some of the pictures Jeff took from his visit to Jonah here in the show notes on this Crutchfield episode. You can see them all at crutchfield dot com slash podcast. We've even got an interview Jeff did in expo know that we did not include in the Crutchfield live. We kind of talked about it, but it was not featured in the live. This is a Crutchfield podcast exclusive. So, I'm glad you're here because you will get to hear a pretty cool interview coming up here towards the end of the show. So here we go, episode number 13 of Crutchfield Live. Repurposed for Crutchfield, the podcast. You're welcome. We started our Youtube channel uh 2009 ish, anybody. No, I can't remember but I remember when we had less than 10,000 subscribers and we were just starting out and kind of not making a ton of videos and, and everything and we were sent this shiny award, a major award, a major award for passing 100,000 subscribers. So thanks to many of you watching right now and we're actually up around 100 and 35 or so 1 33. I just look back before we went live. So that's where we're at now. We are well on our way to our next one, which comes in at how many, uh, one million million subscribers. So it's gonna take a few weeks, but we'll get there, we've, we've got, we've got work to do and we are going to keep doing it. Making new videos, keep going live and uh, you've got work to do as well. If you're into this, you should definitely tell your friends about what we're doing here at youtube dot com slash crutchfield. Hopefully the content you're finding it is, uh, is applicable to your life, you know, solutions for sound, audio, tv, video drones. I mean, we're doing videos on all sorts of stuff and we're gonna keep doing that. So we'll keep making the videos, you keep spreading the word and hopefully, yeah, maybe in a couple of weeks we're celebrating a million subscribers. I love it. Thank you, Zach, appreciate you joining me, my friend. I think we're ready to bring in matt and play a game, you ready to come on in matt, bring it buddy. We're gonna play ported or seal. That's the reason we have signs, as I mentioned earlier, we were hoping that people watching might want to throw out at us. And the sky's the limit here. Right. If it's something you can listen to on your stereo, you can use that. You can tell us the type of music you prefer. You can tell us your favorite band. You can ask us about a specific song. If we've heard of it, we probably have an opinion. Right? And we are going to tell you whether or not we would recommend a sealed or a ported enclosure. This is kind of like that thing in city slickers where the shallowest brothers are challenged to say which kind of ice cream would pair perfectly with any given Nice boy. That's only the freshest 30 year old pop culture references for us today. City slickers, huh? Okay. I like it. First off, we gotta establish some credibility. Why did we bring you in? Do you know anything about subs? I assume you do. What do you do here, Matt. I am the editor of our catalog. I edit all the car, audio, video related, uh, pages for our catalog. And I've been doing this. Well, the editing thing for about 10, 15 years, but I've been writing for Crutchfield for 22 now. So you're not just a, an english nerd, right? You don't just go correct, not only that, you are that, but you also knew a thing or two about car audio. I have installed my fair share of systems. I've had set stuff up. I've had crazy setups in my own vehicles. I've been around this block number two. What do you have? Do you have a subwoofer in your car? I do. I currently in my car have a, have an infinity reference 12 inch sub in a ported box. Indeed. Why'd you go ported ported mostly for the efficiency. Um, you know, put side by side given the same amount of power reported box is gonna play a little bit louder than a sealed box. Um, so I've got a, I've got a smaller sedan. I didn't want to tax the alternator too much with a large, high powered amp. So poor it seems the way to go to get the volume I was looking for, without putting the strain on the electrical system with what kind of car is this? Is the sub in the trunk, is that it's in the trunk of a 14 ford focus. Okay, nice. So he knows a thing or two. I know a thing or two about base opinions. You've got opinions. Uh, we, we did a poll and let's see what people think first And we'll see what people are asking us for opinions on. I only see one or two in there so far. Now is the time if you're watching this to throw out what you want us to recommend ported or sealed for. So music band. I mean, it could be anything if you can't come up with something. I got a list of things. So we got you covered either way. But here's the poll question from earlier. What style of subwoofer box do you prefer? We had 32 votes on this poll. The question the options were ported sealed other Or band pass. Uh did you, have you seen the results? What do you think? One? There was a clear winner if I had to guess I would guess. Yes, you are correct. Uh on YouTube over on Facebook also reported wins there as well. So on YouTube gets 53% on Facebook. Ported gets 47% sealed on Facebook gets 38%, on YouTube. Those are those are the two most popular most common. So other gets 9% in both places. And band pass looking at like three or 7%. So not a whole lot of people doing band used to be a bigger deal. Used to be a bigger deal. They just take up so much space for those who don't know. It's a combination of sealed and imported where you have ported box in the sub in it. But it also has an enclosed chamber. So it takes up about twice the spaces as your average subwoofer box and a lot of times it was more about how they looked than how they on the inside. They have like plexiglass front, you could see the wolf fur and light it up and all that and it was pretty awesome. Huh? Cool. So let's get into it. Uh and along the way, I've got some stuff and I've got a question from a, from a viewer on Youtube as well. So the first question, somebody Alejandro, Anthony's buddy says country, country, country, what I'm gonna say ready, ready, ready go both sealed and ported defending. You know, I do. So I would, the reason I say that is that it depends on the area you're listening to. I would say if you're listening to more of the modern stuff with you, no more electronic bass, they even bring in a lot of rock elements, some, some electronic music elements ported is good. It's gonna bring out that bass cut through, you know, or accentuate the high frequencies, but if you listen to the old school stuff, I think I'm going sealed where you're getting more of the acoustic guitars and the stand up bases and things like that where you want it to be nice and tight and focused I had on my list. I made, you know, you know, just in case nobody had any requests just in case I had on my list. Cowboy music, stadium, country and just plain old, just generic whatever country music is. Right? Yeah, there's different types and those cowboy cowboy songs, man, you don't need a ported box, you need that base to be nice and tight. You do because you don't want to overshadow the vocals, particularly johnny cash. I mean, he needs to sound big and bellamy but not clean, clean, clean, clean, very good. Uh, the, the Hoffman family, I think we all know who that is says, what do we recommend for dinosaur explosions pretty clearly? Uh, I mean, you just need maximum output, get that, it's easiest to get that with a ported box for sure. Sam online. Here's a good one. Classic rock in a 2013 Hyundai santa fe. So that's like a mid size suv. If I'm not, is that right? That's an suv. You know, classic rock, Classic rock disagreement Actually. No, I don't know how to use a sign. That's what I get for. Uh Sorry? Yeah, exactly. You want it to be tight, You want that kick drum to kick you in the chest, but you want it to be balanced with with the mids and the highs, especially when you got a lot of electric guitar, you've got bands with female vocals, you, you want it nice and balanced, Nice. Uh, I'm looking at here, we've got more quality quartz asks about dub step, dub step. Oh, come on for the bass drop. Yeah. You want that thing to echo. You want to be heard a couple blocks down the street. If not more. Yeah, bring support you ready for this one? This is one I haven't thought of to put on my list. How about ragtime ragtime? This is tempting. You know what? I'm sticking sealed here we go again anytime, anytime I've got something that's gonna have a stand up bass that's gonna have acoustic instruments. I I do want it to be nice and tight and clean. I want, I want everything to stay in good balance and not to have a certain range of frequencies over powering the rest. Yeah, no, it just needs to blend nicely. It needs to have that low end because contrary to popular belief, pretty much all music has some bass in it. There's even music you don't associate with. Oh you gotta have a subwoofer for that. But a subwoofer will absolutely make ragtime music sound better. We did an article a few years ago for our holiday catalog where we wrote an article about the fact that crew christmas music benefits from a subwoofer and gave examples that people might not have thought about including the nutcracker suite. Perfect. Exactly. I like it. And speaking of the nutcracker, nutcracker, nutcracker, nutcracker, nutcracker suite Tony on facebook says, how about classical music listening and mostly home theater? What type supported or seal boy, that's a conundrum right there because there's two things in one. If you got, I guess the idea here is one sub that's gonna be in one system that is going to be used for classical music listening and home theater because of the home theater. Yeah. And I think room size is going to make a difference if it's in a larger room some of that some of the reverberations are gonna be dissipated a little bit with the classical stuff but you're gonna get good efficiency. So it's gonna draw out the tympani and the yellows and especially a lot of like the pizzicato, cello kind of stuff or the lower end of the piano keyboard. So we were talking earlier before we went live about this and maybe now is the time to talk about it if you and one of the reasons we probably both went ported is because you can, depending on the ported sub, you can tighten it up a little bit. There's things you can do to get a more accurate, tight, punchy, very nuanced base and it's not all about output when people reported, certainly can be all about output, but it doesn't have to be. So you can get imported sub. When we talked earlier about how the SVS subs come with pork plugs, there can be setting on the subway for for different things that will eq them differently from music versus movies. So that's what I would recommend as a sub that has some settings but in, you know, at its base level, a ported sub that you can then tune it to a little bit tighter sound. Exactly. And in the car, car subwoofers when they reported each part will have what's called a tuning frequency and that frequency that it's basically performing at its absolute best and anything below that, you start to get a little extra resonance. A lot of car amplifiers have what's called a subsonic filter and they start at 40 Hertz and you can filter out anything below that level. So if you know your boxes poor tuning frequency, you can set the subsonic filter for that frequency and it drops all that stuff out and it really does sound pretty honestly, yeah. Uh MR Fox is back with another genre of music that we probably hadn't considered in our list, but I'm digging it electro swing now. Before we hold up our signs, have you heard of any electro swing? I think I have, I have actually, I'm not gonna be able to tell you the name, but there's there's one called called the charleston Swing that, you know, is fairly well within the last 10 15 playlist on Spotify. That was recommended to me by our friend eric who has been on on this show before. Um it's called A bar in Amsterdam. It's a podcast, it's a playlist and it is full of electro swing. Uh and it is a lot of fun music. So, Katzenjammer is one of the bands on that Diablo swing orchestra, The hillbilly moon explosion, right? That's what I'm thinking of. I hope that's what you meant. Mr Fox by electro swing, I'm listening to the some songs in my head right now, and I'm thinking of what sub I would want sealed, reported. You ready? Ready go disagree. I did get the sign correctly. I do mean to say sealed. Uh and this there's a lot of bass in this stuff, but I absolutely wouldn't want it to be loose, or Bumi or at all uncontrolled. I wanted to be tight, hard hitting, I wanted to punch me in the chest. Um but I wanted to do it accurately, so I think I want a sealed sub with a lot of power because they're not as efficient, right? They're going to take more power to get kind of base, but a good sealed sub with enough power, so that it has plenty of output. That's what I want, and that is hard to argue against. I am just thinking of the electro side of things, You're right, this is music that has a lot of bass in it, that is meant to be, it's meant to get you into the rhythm as much as it is into the melody. Um so I'm thinking ported because I I want that that rhythm to hit me, you know, throughout the entire song. So, and I'm here to say that you're wrong, and I'm right, that's fair, So, and also you're right, and I'm wrong, I'm a little bit right, Cat groove is a popular one. So, that's another band that falls into the electro swing, I will put that on Spotify on the way home after this is done. I see who's sitting over there. So I know who's behind this, but Sarah on facebook said steely dan, steely dan. That's a that's an easy one. Yeah. Again, highly produced. And I don't mean that in a bad way, engineered down to the degree you you want that recording to be in balance. You want to hear it the way those guys intended it to be. Yeah, for sure, know that is very music, very purposefully recorded. Uh and you don't want anything uncontrolled in your system. You want it to be as accurate as possible dan on facebook Porterfield piano, jazz with upright bass and jazz guitar, you know, scoop of chocolate. Yeah, no, we need we need to hear those fingers on the frets. I mean we need to hear every single subtlety of that bass guitar and the jazz, the upright bass. I mean all of that and I would argue a sealed sub with a lot of power behind it again, to get again, not, not only to get, you know, the nuances of the base, but to get you know, just the full range. Just make sure it's coming through loud and clear because there's just there's so much richness and texture. You want you want it to have that dimensionality and that That texture, you want to be able to feel like you could reach out and touch it. This is a good one. Mr Fox is back. He says it's his last one, Mr Fox Last one From Me cooking bacon, A. S. M. R. Mhm. I don't even know how to begin with this one, So I'm gonna say, pardon? I think you want as much output as possible, right? I mean, you're not you're not you're not looking for subtleties necessarily, you're looking cracking and popping and snapping about Greece, you wanna you wanna feel like it's popping onto your face and burning. In theory, you could put a freshly cooked piece of bacon in the ports and then the air would push the sent out towards you, so there you go, I like it exactly, I keep baking in the fridge, just for that reason. Uh matt wants to know what about metal? This is, this is a tricky one, alright, I'm doing it, I'm doing yeah, disagreement again. Yeah, so, I mean, I want a ton of output, I don't want there to ever be a chance that I don't have enough, I want to hear those double kicks, uh you know, with metal, it's all about banging the head, it's not necessarily about pristine audio, it's about is it kicking me in the face or not? And I think ported makes absolutely certain that's always gonna happen. That's true, I mean, boy, I think I'm going sealed because I'm trying to I'm thinking about the iterations of metal, that you could get into the sub genres, you've got the hair metal, you've got death metal, you got black metal, you got doom metal. Um, you know, you listen to the droning doom stuff, then, you know, I might be reported. Are you listening to more of the hair metal kind of stuff? I might go sealed. Where again, I'm getting that, that tightness and balance, you've kind of convinced me that I might be a little bit wrong, but I might be a little bit right to, we agree on that. Exactly, Chelsea says, and this one actually was on our list. Our producer anna came up with, it was the first thing on our list. I'm glad Chelsea asked that. So we didn't have to. What about podcasts, podcasts? I'm going sealed. I am too. Yeah, the my reasoning is that especially thinking about male voices on the lower end of the uh, of the spectrum. Um, If you have a ported sub, if you have a lot of extra resonance, it tends to start to get a little bit muddled when it's all just conversation. Um, so yeah, when you hear somebody, you want to hear everything they say clearly enunciated. And so you don't want to have the extra resonance that the court's gonna provide to uh, listen to a lot of podcasts. Uh and I have a sub, it's not exactly sealed reported. It's a, it's a sub, it's a, it's a 10" sub with a passive radiator. So technically you can't call it sealed reported kind of, um, but it's more more like imported than a sealed because there's a ton of output. Uh, and it's not the most accurate output, right? But it's, it's a very well rounded stuff. I listen to a lot of different stuff, but there's times when I listen to podcasts like 20,000 hertz or reply all, there's a disc golf podcast I listen to on the regular. They're always putting cool intro music in. It's different every time Sometimes I'm like, whoa, hold on, I just have too much bass for a podcast right now. Uh, and if it were a more controlled, more accurate sub, it might not, might not feel that way. Another, another thought of this sort of stop catching, listen to howard stern a lot as well. And his voice, he uses a ton of compression on his microphone and he does this on purpose. So he doesn't feel like, you know how my voice sounds right now. I don't use a ton of compression. And I sang my voice out at the show this weekend. We're lucky it's back today, but he doesn't want to do that because he's talking for five hours a day. So he uses compression as a result, his voice is super bumi in your face, bringing out a lot of low end and uh, you know, because he used to have a really nasal voice today. It's a lot deeper as he's gotten older. And he's used more compression and I've had to turn myself down because it was too much just with his voice in my car. I believe it. And you notice it in home theater systems to sometimes if you have, especially like smaller ported subs in, in say boxed systems that you can adjust very much. If they, if they've got the ports, you'll hear some of the dialogue sometimes get muddled and because you're getting that extra residence out of the court, you go, uh, it looks like we've slowed down. There's no more requests unless I've missed something. Uh, there are some questions though, Jeff asks, is direction a big issue in a car or suv like the direction, I guess which direction you're pointing, the subwoofer at direction always affects it. What's, what's the right direction? Obviously depends on the specific sub in the specific car. You want to elaborate? Yeah. So I mean as we always say, it comes down to what sounds best for you. Um, we actually did an experiment a few years ago in, in my car, which was a Taurus at the time. So larger sedan where um, I put an spl meter on the dash and I aimed the sub in different directions just to see what was getting. You know where I was getting the most sound pressure level from counterintuitively enough it was back up against the back seats and facing towards the back of the vehicle. Um, it was using the rest of the trunk as a chamber to amplify the sound of the base. Um so in a sedan and I will always recommend that you put it back against the back seats and aim it towards the back of the vehicle. Um in an Suv though you've got a lot more space to work with basically the entire vehicle serves as as the the chamber for the base. So this is why you'll see it often on on the side of the cargo area in an Suv. Um so in that case facing towards the back of the vehicle, an Suv probably would be fine but you can experiment with it on the side or the back just just just to hear what is going to sound best to you because that's that's the bottom line. You want to make sure that this sounds great that you're enjoying it and that it sounds the way you want it to sound. Yeah. And if you're going with a, you know, just a sort of a regular old, just a box with a speaker in it and you have the ability to move it around, try doing that and see what happens, flip it around facing forward, flip it around, face it backwards and and play the same song, drive around, listen to it from the driver's seat, listen to it from the back seat, you're gonna hear different amounts of bass when you move that thing around and that's just because of how those bass frequencies bounce around your car. Uh, we've got a couple more coming in. Uh, let's see, Tom says, uh, joke of the day, I don't know, I haven't read it yet. Should I keep reading? Let me read it before I read it out loud joke of the day, if you have crutch in the field, you'll have a leg up. Nice, well played Tony. Uh, and he also loves howard Stern, Jeff says, base George Michael with Queen and lisa Stansfield boom boom boom and asks about dual subs. Yeah, so, first off, let's answer your first question, George Michael with queen and lisa Stansfield sealed reported. I mean, he said, boom boom boom. All right, fair enough. Uh, and uh, and he also asked about dual subs. I mean, I think if you're going with dual subs, you're probably in the ported, you know, side of things anyway. Yeah, most likely. I actually, back in the day, um, about 10 years ago, ish, I had a dual 10 inch sub or a dual 10 inch sub box with boston acoustic subs, back when they were an aftermarket car audio thing. Um, and it was a sealed box and I loved it. I mean, I had a huge amp running it. I had to run one, not gauge to the, to the battery to make it all work. Um, but I loved it, but it did require a lot of power. So yeah, with the dual something, you probably are looking for volume. So yeah reported does seem to like it would make the most sense? Oh okay couple we're just gonna keep interacting with people. Uh and I hope we still have time to get to our the rest of our segments. We're all good. We're running okay. Got it. Alright. Alright well cool. Uh So first of from DJ one, I hope I got what you're putting down their D. J. What about a swiss army knife? Everything between classical to electro which this might fit into similar to what you put in your car. So yeah so I would I I would say ported but pay attention to the amp that you're getting, make sure it has a subsonic filter so you can dial it in and get it a little bit tighter but still get that big resident you know loud boom when you're playing the E. D. M. Kind of tracks and still get that nice balanced detail out of say classical or jazz. I would agree Ported gives you the output you want when you have to have it. Sometimes it might not be as accurate as a sealed box could be. But if you're looking for a swiss army knife, I mean a swiss army knife isn't the best knife for everything that you need a knife for, right? But it does it's always with you, it's always it's always sharp, it's always a knife. So I think ported is gonna be your probably the way to go uh potato. Is that a thing? Is that a type of music when you're listening to a potato? I like my potatoes sealed. So we can we can we can mash it with a sealed box Matthew by large. I don't know if I said that right, I apologize if I didn't. You guys have helped out with lots. So just wanted to thank you guys at Crutchfield. Right on D. J. He told me it's pronounced oc oc late or? Not sure what you're the english. What'd you say? I would say? Uh That makes sense. I was going with like I thought it had a sort of a spanish e thing happening there. Right. Uh That makes a lot more sense than uh yes we do. Tom says I have a vintage Buick Gs convertible. I would love to update the sound system and would love to get some quality bass but don't necessarily want the world to hear it need some help. So it's a convertible, it is a convertible. So most likely the sub I have to google it. What does the Buick Gs convertible look like? Well if it's vintage what I'm hoping is that it's got some space under a seat and this could be a great situation for one of the powered subs that we were talking or that J. R. Was talking about earlier something smaller a little bit more compact that you can fit under the seat. So it's you know firing up in your direction. It's near you. You can hear it you can feel it but it's not blasting out of the uh blasting out of the world. So that would be one of the first things I would consider. So I just googled it. We got the images up. This is the car we're talking about. Oh my gosh I want one. I want it right now. I want to go cruising in this car. Uh And I would also want base in it. But yeah you're not necessarily trying to attract attention with that right? You just want I just want your music to sound good. So what did you say? What did you say while I was Googling I was saying that this could be a good chance to have a compact powered sub under one of the seats. So it's firing near you. You can feel it you can hear it but you're not blasting it out at the world because if you put too small of a sub in that big trunk uh you're not gonna hear it. Uh And your trunk's gonna vibrate you need a lot of Dina mats to fix that. Uh And if you have a big sub in the trunk everybody will hear it. If you just put something under your seat you will feel it you will hear your music will sound better. I think that's the way to go. Very cool. This has been a ton of fun, man. Thank you for joining me on this? Uh we've got another guest who's just sitting there very impatiently looking very angry that we're not talking to him. You know, I hope he's I hope he comes in with a good attitude to he also he knows where I work. So exactly. Do you edit his stuff? I don't. Okay, good. So we're good on that front. Uh we're joking. Of course, Jeff Miller is coming in soon. Uh he's uh he's a he's a he's a he's a gem. So we're gonna talk about Acciona. Thanks again. Matt. Really appreciated. Thanks to everybody that sent us in requests that went probably better than we ever could have hoped it would go. So we're gonna keep these signs around. We'll probably play this game again someday. Uh because that was a ton of fun. Jeff Miller. How you doing, my friend? Good. I was intimidated to be here in the garage. I haven't been down here before. Yeah, we got a comment. People love our videos. I mean, these are real tools. We could really do some work in here. I'm not tough enough to be down here. We could build boxes. We could modify stuff. The only thing we can do is get a car in here, It's inside, it's in the basement. So uh so you are here. Did you, Were you on the last show? Did you come on and talk about expo expo No, I was actually live on location in expo live and that's the, I missed stuff. I missed that, man. How was that? First off for me and for anybody that wasn't watching last show, what is exposed? So it's called the so called expo audio expo North America. It's the largest audio focus show in north America. Um it's a, it's a it's just outside Chicago and Schomburg, a suburb of Chicago, the renaissance convention center, which is this huge, sprawling convention center. Um, but it takes over that with like it's five or six massive ballrooms and smaller ballrooms and mid sized ballrooms. So it takes over that building and the connected 16 floor hotels and just filled with audio gear. Anything you can think about with audio. Um an expo where you got like vinyl and records, uh, like a record shop basically like, you know, tons of record vendors, you digging through the, creates reel to reel tapes. Um, every vintage audio, I mean every audio company, we and every auto company with a lot of the audio companies we sell. Um beyond in the beyond the and, and the super high end stuff. It sounds like si es but with a much more narrow focus on just audio. Exactly. And not car stereo, right? It's not a car stereo thing at all. This is all home. Like Hi Fi yeah, they did have one vehicle in there and they were doing some kind of demos in there. But yeah, this is basically focused. Um, you came back with some highlights, some of your favorite things that you saw. I did. And actually, like, as we were starting the show here, we published my recap of the, of the show. We had so many, I took like over 1000 pictures, I wrote, 3000 words. My editor was going through it and got it, gotta fine tune right to the moment the show went up. So I think Alexis is gonna share the, um, we've got pictures of you there right now. Yes, that's the other thing. They had, uh, ear gear, headphone section, one of the ballrooms, which is nothing. But um, basically like its own headphone show. So that was cool. That makes sense to do that in the ballroom because everybody can be in one room listening to the, and they're not disturbing each other. Uh, yeah, I told in the last show, we had the event director Liz smith on and I, um, when I spoke to her before the show, I was like, hey, uh, tell me how to get through this. What's the, you know, I'm thinking about it almost like a movie where it's like the final scene is gonna be this climactic thing and she's like, no. Um, and describe it more as like an open world video game where you're kind of moving around and everywhere you turn a corner, boom, there's an audio legend, a guy who's designed named the speaker boom. There's like this um state of the art streamer that's integrated amp with like, you know, the four K screen? Is that the high five rows rows. Um, what we got in this picture here, this is the messy elite. Anytime I get a chance to try those out out, I want to try, I actually got to speak to um Antonio Mays who uh, is the lead designer and founder of the company and everything they do is like super boutique, like try to make it, make it an event every time you put on the headphones and once again, it was an event to get to try them, even though I'm very familiar with those headphones. Um but yeah, uh, I want to tell you when we go, when you go to the hotel section, they, at 16 floors, you go, we actually, we work, we went to the top, work their way down. Every room is like, you know, they throw out the bed and everything, they put those all in one room. They have a deal with the hotel. Um, and they fill it with audio gear and each room, they fill it with audio gear and each room has its own like sort of theme or character charm, you know, there's like intimate settings, this is how this is the Hi Fi ro's mo fi team setting up their, their room, they tried to make these like real interesting lighting and plants and everything um focal went the other direction and they just like tried to um they had a huge ballroom so they went with almost looked like a concert set up with uh with uh you know, um like a big stage apparatus looking thing, project, was there tons of turntables and I'm just, now, I'm just like naming things over and over again, you're rattling off the list. We actually got to see some of the stuff for our sales advisors, got to see the mo Fi and the high five rows stuff, which is pretty cool. They were they sent us a video, they filmed partly there and partly at their home. Uh but that was really cool to see some stuff. So our sales advisors all got to experience a little bit of ex poona through mofa, you're seeing one of the most guys there, this is right here, this was kind of breaking news, you know, Andrew jones from L. A. I was gonna ask you about it. You got to see Andrew jones. Yeah, so at the show um Tommy our beer, he was breaking news on his phone. Andrew jones, you know, fresh press release. Andrew jones has has joined mof I left L. A. And so we leave and we're like we should go over to the mo five guys and just say, hey um and they happened to be next, there's time we met up with um we happen to catch him in the hall, like literally walking from the black room to the room, which is like right across the hall and there's like, we're like, what is going on? Like, like, like we were joking about it. And um and so then I talked to and the next day after the celebrating and everything calmed down, um I noticed the black guys, it wasn't as if they were at odds or anything, they were um you know, very cordial with each other still and he said he's gonna miss his friends and he feels like they're in very good hands. I think the former lead designer at paradigm is now at L. Ac. So they're in good hands and will still be making great stuff. But um they've sort of given him almost carte blanche. Obviously they have their idea of what they want to do with uh with speakers and they didn't tell me what, they didn't reveal all their secrets. But I asked him, I was like, you know, did you uh do you just show up day one with like a blank word doc and you are? And he's like, oh no, no, I've got ideas sort of percolating. He's like, he's like a songwriter except his songs are building the speakers, right? He's probably already envisioning probably dreams these things and he wakes up and he johnson sketched down on how he wants to build a porch or a box or an enclosure or something like that. He's a he's a creative genius and he also knows the technical side of the speakers. That's why he's in such high demand. That's why everybody's been like, where's Andrew jones? Who's he, what's he doing? All right, So that's everything we did in the actual Crutchfield Live. Well, it's most of what we did. There's an additional thing though, you heard Jeff talk about how he got a chance to sit down with Andrew jones. Uh Andrew jones is a world renowned speaker designer, has worked with pioneer and L Ac and recently left L Ac and for a long time nobody knew where Andrew jones went. So we were pleasantly surprised to find out at expo know when Jeff came across Andrew jones working for mo fi mo fi makes those high end turntables and vinyl, and some really, really great sounding home audio gear. And um we, we have a feeling that there might be some mo fi speakers coming as a result of them partnering with Andrew jones and Jeff got a chance to sit down sort of spontaneously with Andrew jones and ask him some questions, so I want you to hear that we have that interview and we're gonna use it, we're gonna put it right here on Crutchfield, the podcast like, I don't know right now, you know, I was aware that they started making and they definitely seem to be expanding that. and then with but what it was was they were thinking about adding speakers to the lineup now becoming a speaker company. Thinking about that, that might be interesting. I thrive on challenges. So in one respect it doesn't matter what price range I'm working on, there's always things you can do that, you can see other people haven't done that you want to try and do. And I was immensely enjoying the reputation I had. Yeah, it's one thing to do, high end speaker and being to count on the fingers of your hand, the number of customers and you get to know them personally. But it's not like everybody's walking into a store and walking out with your profit and With affordable stuff that started with that pioneer speaker really set the scene for what has been my life since then. How can you possibly think about doing $100 speaker? That really does sound like a real speaker and everyone can go out and buy it. It's kind of an ego thing, but everybody being able to get affordable, good sounding speakers. I started as a hobbyist and couldn't afford things so why not give other people an opportunity to enter into it. And I have to admit from an ego point of people walking around shows and everyone coming up like, hey thank you, thank you, you can change my life. Yeah, okay, I'll take that. But I hadn't realized that I locked myself into that and to a degree. I could say? Okay, alright. But I'm still enjoying every time is a challenge. Even when, if it's a Mark two or mark three version, it's in a way that's even more of a challenge because I've got to make it better and I don't have that much more money to do it. I've got to realize why I didn't do it better in the first place and what constitutes better because I might think it's better. But there's a reason people bought that flawed product because everything is flawed, but you accept certain flaws and you reject others and I do that as a designer. I concentrate on some floors and I ignore it. If, if I do something different, it sounds different. Is it actually better for everybody or is it that they chose it for those particular flaws? And I had to trust in a way that they bought my vision of what the sound was at that price point and time. If they trusted me, then will they trust me now that if I choose what my new product sounds like they will also recognize. Yeah, this is better. I can't believe that. I know I like the other one, but I can't believe this is really that much better. What I was like what specific sort of trade offs you have to make? Like is there one that you like where and how do you know? Like, okay, just simply can't um can't address that with this, you don't have a budget? How do you know often cabinet cabinet is the single most expensive component and it costs a lot to make that better. So I would always give a bit with um because Roy from clips was saying like he was, he had said in an interview like he would listen and he'd be like um and he listened to somebody like I'm gonna take the whatever out of Bonnie raitt's voice because it's just too much and then he like hurt her alive was like, oh that's how her voice sounds and he's like, I gotta, I'm not, I'm not building for me building for So how do you remove yourself kind of from the That is a good question because I've always talked a lot recently about this idea of closest approach to the original sound. Utter nonsense. I come from a background and a training that was absolute My current viewpoint after so many years is there is no closest approach, 99% of music we listen to doesn't even have an original acoustic sound experience. Everything is manufactured in the studio, even capturing the live acoustic event, you're capturing a subset of what is actually happening and you're introducing over two speakers. So you cannot experience it as the reality that it was, even if you just use a pair of microphones and knowing cure anything. So what I come to is how do I know what it should sound like? So on top of that, how do I know what other people wanted to say? If I start worrying about the sound I like is a particular customer going to accept that I will be chasing my forever. Especially if you read reviews especially online of people doing things right comments on facebook and you launch the speaker. There's as many people say it's too bright as it is too dull and thinking you think that's too dull and then you go all these people like mentioning clips that clip which but that's the clips out. Yeah well especially the heritage in one way the heritage from a technical point of view you look at that can't represent reality. It's an awful lot of people love that they want what they want. Thank you. So how can I second guess what they want when if I study what they want, it's over that range. So basically you're getting what I want. The only difference between any average D. I. Y. Speaker builder and me is they're building for themselves. I am building for myself but I am selling to potentially a million people if nobody likes my sound, I don't have a business. So I think in a way the fortunate thing is my idea of what I want to achieve is hugely popular. Part of it will be I have a skill set that allows me to achieve something better than was expected at that price point. So it immediately gets me an audience, but there's still, you know, the tonality of what you're listening to has to gel with the person is part of it. That's why he thinks it's better than something else at that price point. So there's a, there's almost an objective improvement in the price performance ratio and there's a self subjective improvement for you that they've matched to me. So basically I just go ahead and design what I want to hear every single price point and I've been in a position in nearly every company I've ever worked in. Nobody tells me what to make it sound like, nobody tells me what to make it measure like and so it's all down to me. So in a way it's a responsibility. If I put something out one day and get a bad review, it's on me. Yeah, you can't blame. Of course that's never happened. So that's how it works. So I'm still in a way boxed in and boxed in is not really a good word to use because it's a very negative, but it's still this feeling of I want to expand to do this much before. It meant leaving my friends. Yeah. Yeah. The three of us chris and jim came together from Pioneer. Remember you guys coming over Pioneer and everything. Yeah. What in part, I'm the old bugger of the three, I've got at least 10 years on them. I mean I'm technically should be retired. Not that I can afford to, but all that I want to because I've got all these ideas. But it's kind of do I want to try another last thing because I was thinking it might be this because I'm heading towards the time I'm there now, but I haven't finished yet. So do I want to try something else? And this gig was okay. So you've got a studio background which matches with what I was doing with T. A. D. Because I love the idea of at least trying to understand what was being put on the record and being closer studio because it's cool, it's cool to hang out to air studio in those days. I walk out into the yard and the railings always have tourists looking in hoping to see someone famous and I might walk out thinking you're about to be disappointed. Who's this coming out? Who's he? And so I love that part of the musicians and I got to know various musicians. I've become friends with rick Rubin and uh after them, I'll show you a really funny photo. So now we've got the chance to talk about this thing of getting close to the original, which doesn't exist. But just the idea of completing the chain and not being locked into anything about the mission is for me to come up with ideas for me to decide what the sound is and the technology because why would you bring me in, trusted me all these years with the products I've been designing it would be silly to come in and say you need to do this right? So there's this vision of letting me play, having the time to develop it. You know there was one aspect with was think how many products I did. It seemed like every show many times a year there's a new product which one do I pick this time to display? And so you do let's say you do an L. A. Show and you do a Denver show. Denver show people haven't heard speaker I showed in L. A. On the other hand it's an opportunity for me to demonstrate a different speakers. So at least for me I've showed two different speakers and developed but then they all go, oh we were wanting those other guys have been talking about and so I think the difference is we're not planning well maybe we didn't plan to do as many speakers as I ended up doing. But the plan is not doing ranges of speakers but targeting, looking at the market and seeing what might fit here. Let's do something. It doesn't mean we have to have the mini the big and the bigger but it means you know there might be a couple that are related but its target and think of something that might work. Can I ask what is day one look like because I'm sure it's not a blank word document. I'm sure you have ideas you're coming bringing always wake up thinking about my wife tells me I'm talking speakers. I come up with ideas. I know none of the companies I end up working are ever going to do, but I still want to yeah, at least developed the idea of what would it be. So um, with its well we've, we've got some ideas that the marketplace might need in a broad sense. You've got ideas what technology? Mind me, I'm always willing to say I'm not the arbiter of what things should look like. I have my own ideas of what I want there. But whereas I know my ideas for sound work in the marketplace. I've improved many times wrong say no, don't do that one. We can't, you're kidding me. You're not going to use that color choice all that look and then it goes debut reference the white one. I was saying it looks like a piece of this kitchen cabinet. We can't do that. It proved to be the most. So okay. Yeah. So we, we can do this thing of jointly deciding what is working in the market place, what's popular right now, but also what relates to what we were doing from a studio point of view and the history history is in right now and I'm older than anyone else. So I have more past to look back. So yeah, we could examine all these kind of ideas and then I put all my flavor in with my technology. So I'm developing technologies that let's say people wouldn't be surprised by. And then I'm also working on new motor structure ideas and things. So I'm trying to make it embody some of my stuff but a better embodiment than I've done before. And I feel so relaxed. We when I joined, I said, you know, I'm not moving to Chicago. So I found this place and there's about 15 or 1600 sq ft. So I've got a room that is my kind of hidden room that's got my storage and my when I build things then next to that I got a room, that's my measurement room and I've got this front office lobby thing and then I've got a listening room that's about 20 by 30 and 10 ft ceilings. And I've started acoustically treating it and I've got this huge sofa because in a big room, I've got room for this huge sofa, but it's this big soft sofa. So we put it in the middle and it takes a lot of the energy out of the room. The difference when I put that in. Yeah, now I can go to sleep. So I'm just thinking so that that would really be day one. So um, we're gonna outfit that and whenever I go into a hotel so we're going to make it look nice because if it's a Beverly hills location and I can keep it tidy and that's a big, we can use it as a launch place. And also when you meet him with all the record execs trying to do the impressive why not do that. And then it justifies the cost more than it andrews and uh so we're in the process of doing that right now. But it's just, you know, I walk to work, it's yeah, it's a mile and a half. So it takes me half an hour And I can even walk to all my Beverly hills doctors appointments, paying $18 parking. But it's just, it's a wonderful location. I feel so relaxed and it's, that gets the creative juices flowing. And so we're looking at getting, applying for various patents on ideas that I can incorporate in the future. Um coming with all these ideas and I'm thoroughly enjoying that awesome. That was Jeff Miller from Crutchfield talking to Andrew jones at ax poona. If you've enjoyed this episode of the podcast, we would love it. If you'd write us a review, give us five stars whatever your podcast platform lets you do to rate and review podcast, Tell a friend about it. We're having a lot of fun making these shows. Both the Crutchfield live and Crutchfield the podcast. I hope you are enjoying listening to listening to them as well. Uh we will be back with another episode in a few weeks, we got some fun stuff planned. Uh and uh thanks again for listening. I'm Jr over and out.

Compare the sound