Not standing out

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Happy new year, my friends. I hope 2017 will be a great one for us all.

One of the characteristics I admire most in a product is when it doesn't stand out or draw attention to itself.

That can be a difficult concept to relay proper meaning with mere words. On the one hand, you might think I like dull and uninvolving products when that's not remotely what I mean to convey. I love products that exceed expectations. My expectations are always quite high.

When we listen to a product, we're on guard for unnatural events that jump out from the speakers, like sudden glare, thinness, bloat, collapsed depth, confusion when complexity hits. These are the signposts designers listen carefully for, then go to work fixing.

It's certainly alright to exclaim, "wow! the depth was amazing," or "jeez! that sounded perfect." Standing out in a remarkable sense is not only alright, it's encouraged.

When it comes to taking notice what we really want is the equipment to never point to itself. To become invisible and just let the music shine through.

When I never have to notice a product, that's when it shines the brightest.

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Paul McGowan

Founder & CEO

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