Reproduction

December 5, 2020
 by Paul McGowan

We're said to be in the business of home audio reproduction. I wonder if that's accurate.

If we look at the definition of the word reproduction, it is to produce again. To do the same thing as we did before. Like capturing and playing back a concert as if we were there.

Here's the funny thing about reproduction, it's never the same. We reproduce ourselves but while similar, our progeny are hardly identical to us. We capture the sound of a concert yet we never clone the experience.

Maybe we should instead think of our challenge not as audio facsimile, but perhaps audio representation.

A recording captures only a portion of a performance. The feel, smell, emotion, temperature, and sense of being there are all missing.

We get as close as we can to being there, but let us not believe we're in the business of reproducing exact copies of sound.

Hopefully, we can get close enough to (even for a moment) suspend disbelief.

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