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President's Message
June 2003

0.  With help of member Robert Zahora, we are finally starting the long hoped for project of digitizing the back issues of the BAS Speaker. They will be scanned and OCR'd to become pdf files which can be searched for any word. If you are interested in helping, contact me. One major non technical job is proofreading the documents for errors.

The older issues are a treasure trove of analog audio in the 70s and 80s. We were really active in those days and wrote extensively about our experiences, from Thermoelectron mike capsules to test clinics (the arm/cartridge/turntable one shows immense effort) to recording concerts to optimizing LP playback.

1.  Vox Unique features recordings by direct order from the vast catalog of Vox recordings in more than 50 years. They are CDRs on demand, starting with 400 hours of material digitally remastered from the original tapes. Their website says "Are you looking for a particular recording from the Vox, Turnabout, or Candide catalogues? E-mail us!"  This seems like a marvelous idea. At the May BAS meeting someone asked what has happened to the catalog of Emory Cook and his mastertapes. No one knew, but it would great if someone would revive this as a CDR catalog.

2.  In the Sennheiser meeting (Jn02), Karl Winkler stated that one reason to use transformerless outputs for mikes was to eliminate low level distortion. I disagreed and later went to my test bench and measured a Nakamichi mike transformer. Details will be submitted to the BASS, but in summary I found no rise in distortion at low levels. The distortion dropped as the level dropped until it vanished into the noise. There was significant distortion at very low frequencies and high levels (24 Hz, 120 dbspl) but that too dropped with level.

3.  After a long period of expansion, the symphony orchestras in the US are facing difficult times. The Florida Philharmonic and Tulsa Philharmonic have closed, among others, and Houston, Baltimore, New York, Pittsburgh, and Chicago are in difficult straits. (NY 14My03)

4.  The inventor of the laugh track, engineer Charles Douglass, died April 8 at 93. Presented with a Lifetime Achievement Emmy in 1992, he was the very first of what postproduction types now refer to as "laugh men." (The issue on DVD of "Mash" allows the user to eliminate the laugh track. Maybe there is hope in the video afterlife). Boston Globe 24Ap03

David Hadaway

President, Boston Audio Society


The Boston Audio Society
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Boston MA 02126

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updated 11/11/04