I keep hearing about local audio gurus – what are your thoughts?

This somewhat depends on your definition of the word guru, but if anyone implies the possession of any magic or special powers, I advise you to steer well clear!

Gurus are generally associated with pseudoscience and nonsense but there’s already enough bullsh%t in this world. What we all need is sound, reliable, fact and experience-based advice and guidance.

Not an audio guru, but you get the idea. This guy is a lifestyle guru and has been heavily criticised.

A customer very kindly told me that he thought I “work magic on turntables.” This is lovely feedback (thanks Rod), but nothing I do is even remotely magical. I’m an anti-guru. The results I achieve come from a scientific foundation and an understanding of what to do and how to do it. Don’t ever ascribe guru status to simply being experienced and informed.

There’s no magic, snake oil, or white beard (yet). You might consider me competent or well-versed on certain topics, but I have no special powers, I’m not a guru, and I don’t claim to be better than anyone else. I’m competent in my sphere of operation, but learning all the time. There’s a big difference.

There are self-proclaimed audio gurus here in Perth and everywhere. They generally propagate snake oil, nonsense and badly made hi-fi gear. If you want to buy a homemade valve amp or guru-made cables, that’s OK, but don’t expect any of the better repairers you should be using to work on them when they don’t sound very good, don’t work properly, break or break something else in your system!

Here are some typical audio guru/audio numpty utterings that should ring alarm bells:

  • Precision instruments, tools, soldering equipment etc are “unnecessary”
  • Technical documentation is unnecessary
  • Cables either don’t matter or must be made by a guru
  • Neatness and precision are over-rated
  • It doesn’t matter how it’s built if it works
  • Engineering, science, measurement etc are overrated (seeing a pattern here..?)
  • The less skillfully wired something is the more skillfully wired it is…
  • The worse-built pieces of equipment are the best
  • Properly engineered, name-brand products are no good or part of a conspiracy
  • Calling out terribly made equipment is egregious and ‘anti-hifi’
  • The best cables are directional and need special supports
  • Guru-made stuff is the only way to go

Ask anyone with real expertise if quality parts, tools and neat work are overrated..!

Scroll to Top