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Darko has become my favorite audio review site

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DaleClark, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. Claude Benshaul

    Claude Benshaul Forum Resident

    I used to like his articles and video about using cheap RPi as Hi-Fi audio players because it appealed to my tinkerer side. He lost me when he started to promote USB and S/PDIF "purifiers" because I already have to deal with enough pseudo science and other nonsense at work and have no intention whatsoever to continue doing so in my free time at home.
    nosliw, recstar24, Agitater and 2 others like this.
  2. Slack

    Slack Forum Resident

    I have mixed feelings about Darko.He did much to promote the use of a lot of quite poor sounding DACs .The whole DAC of the month thing was ridiculous.I have friends who bought one DAC after another trying to get decent sound from computer audio only to realise their one box CD players sounded a lot better.
    Tim 2, Dred, recstar24 and 5 others like this.
  3. Mike-48

    Mike-48 A shadow of my former self

    Portland, Oregon
    That really is a pity. All the more so, because buying one really good one, instead, might have made all the difference. Quite a few of us have gotten excellent sound from computers-based systems, but not by rotating in and out a series of mediocre DACs.
  4. klonk

    klonk Forum Resident

    I like the way he does the reviews, in writing and video. However I don't always agree with his conclusions .
  5. Bolster

    Bolster If it ain't broke try harder..

    A personal favourite from the Darko vault..

    Last edited: Apr 14, 2020
  6. wellers73

    wellers73 Forum Resident

    Brooklyn, NY
    Darko doesn’t just listen to electronic music. He also listens to indie rock, classic rock, folk, and singer-songwriter music. I’ve heard him talk about evaluating gear while listening to Dylan, Tom Waits, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen, and other music featuring voice and acoustic instruments.
    hifisoup, Mazzy and Fruff76 like this.
  7. russk

    russk Forum Resident

    Syracuse NY
    He actually listens to or at least references several different types of music though he openly admits he’s not a Classical or Jazz guy and mentions his distaste for several audiophile standards, which I share.

    The funny thing is Darko agrees with you. He’s said several times something to the effect that if all you do is sit in the dark and listen to Diana Krall and Telarc records “I’m not your guy”.

    I never take any review vary seriously so maybe that is why I enjoy his show. That and his varied musical taste and the fact that along with the entertaining back and forth with his guests and slick production values you get someone talking about music I listen to more regularly than Brahms and demo disks.
    hifisoup, Bevok, recstar24 and 5 others like this.
  8. Yes. He recently used some Julian Cope records too.

    Most of the chill music you hear on his videos are simply available licensed music to further the visuals. Not music he auditioned the equipment with.
    Fruff76 and Dan Steely like this.
  9. Slack

    Slack Forum Resident

    Well it is very hard to get really good sound out of a standard computer regardless of the DAC you use.Which is why so many people kept trying different ones .Especially when reviewers kept singing the praises of the latest and greatest.Any of us with a decent CD player and a willingness to compare were not convinced at all.
    Tim 2 likes this.
  10. William Bryant

    William Bryant Forum Resident

    Meridian, ID
    This line from Darko's website is why I place no trust in his reviews regardless of how entertaining they are:

    "Electronic music also gets its fair share of airtime during the product review cycle."

    How on earth can electronic music play any part whatsoever in telling us whether a hi-fi product has "fi"? Reviewing a speaker or cartridge, we can report enjoying or not enjoying "Scary Monsters" or "Kill Everybody" but we can't report whether the product reproduces Skrillex with fidelity. Fidelity to what?

    Some knuckle draggers immediately see this as a criticism of electronic music. I said "see" because I just couldn't bring myself to type the word "think."

    The motivation or aesthetic orientation or taste (or whatever you want to call it) that leads a hi-fi reviewer to dismiss a thousand years of musical riches in favor of a tiny, congested slice of recent stuff is worth noting too, but it plays no part in making the case for using acoustic sounds in real spaces for evaluating hi-fi.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2020
    Tim 2 and Mike-48 like this.
  11. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

    Exactly! I mean there's no way that, after going to a concert hall and hearing a theremin soloist perform, I'd ever be able to tell if my system at home had the fidelity necessary to faithfully reproduce what I had heard in that concert hall. There's just no way that my ears and brain would ever be capable of making that comparison, and contrasting the two experiences, simply because... I got nothing.


  12. William Bryant

    William Bryant Forum Resident

    Meridian, ID
    Ha Ha!

    I guess this issue is more important to me than to some because I'm not talking about a momentary exposure to an unfamiliar acoustic instrument. My career put me in real spaces making music with real acoustic instruments--a curse I suppose when I try to listen to what many call "hi-fi" or trust reviewers who use that word but don't seem to know what it means.
    Tim 2 likes this.
  13. William Bryant

    William Bryant Forum Resident

    Meridian, ID
    Another thought, Jeff, and it's totally unrelated to this thread.

    Theremin soloists generally don't get to perform for real audiences with real orchestras unless they look real' good in a long dress!
    jeffmackwood likes this.
  14. hes not saying it’s all electronic music plays during a review cycle but you certainly get a wide range of sounds from that genre.

    folks who don’t listen to the genre think it’s all the same monotonous tones to a beat track. There is much more to good electronica. And there can be a wide dynamic range as with other styles of music.
    russk likes this.
  15. MrEWhite

    MrEWhite Forum Resident

    United States
    One of those USB purifiers (the Schiit Wyrd) actually fixed noise over my USB port at higher volumes, so I wouldn't say they're totally terrible.
  16. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

    And I am very sympathetic to that point of view.

  17. jupiterboy

    jupiterboy Forum Residue

    Buffalo, NY
    Tin ears, IMO
  18. johnt23

    johnt23 Forum Resident

    He doesn't use electronic music to the exclusion of acoustic music though.
    His music selections are much more inclusive of all genres. I prefer this approach to the Krall/Barber/Warnes/Organ-in-Church demo material other reviewers.
    Darko also comes across as being thoughtful and thorough with his words. He's not all, "Great all-around performer, hard to beat at this price, highly recommended"! I like to see him struggling with how to best describe the differences between equipment. It shows me that he is not phoning-in his reviews.

    cut-out and Mazzy like this.
  19. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident

    Chicago metro, USA
    i do like that a recent review compared 3 amp / speaker pairings including mixing and matching. not only did this highlight the critical importance of proper matching between amplifier and speaker, he went into specific detail about the brands and which pairs worked and which did not.
    we need more reviews like that imho. all too often reviews mention "supporting hardware" without additional options or mentioning combos that we should avoid.
    Tim 2, PhotoMax, elvisizer and 2 others like this.
  20. Synthfreek

    Synthfreek I’m a ray of sunshine & bastion of positivity

    How hard is it to plug in a usb cable and some interconnects?
    ScottRiqui likes this.
  21. Synthfreek

    Synthfreek I’m a ray of sunshine & bastion of positivity

    Are you purposely mentioning garbage like Skrillex and Deadmau5 as test material? Stop name-dropping if you don't know what he's even using. That's like me saying they always use jazz like Kenny G and Candy Dulfer.
  22. justanotherhifienthusiast

    justanotherhifienthusiast Forum Resident

    Toronto, Ontario
    The amount of elitism in this thread stinks
  23. AndreWright90

    AndreWright90 Active Member

    Yeah, he has got to be one of my favourites - I like the way he simplifies things but not in a patronising way.
    Mazzy likes this.
  24. William Bryant

    William Bryant Forum Resident

    Meridian, ID
    I picked Skrillex and Deadmau5 at random as examples of electronica that are bad for judging the "fi" in hi-fi. It had nothing to do with what I think of the music as music. Would my argument that electronic music is a bad way to judge audio fidelity be unsound if I used Daft Punk? Kraftwerk? Someone else not in your dumpster?
  25. Fruff76

    Fruff76 L100 Classic - Fan Club President

    Good one. Guess Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Cluster, Deiter Moebius, and Eno don’t cut it.
    cut-out and Mazzy like this.

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