I've been wondering about Onkyo's new D-TK10 speakers, the ones that incorporate the design philosophy and technique of Takamine guitars. I've been wondering. On the surface, it seems a good and logical partnership. There are, of course, similarities between guitars and loudspeakers. Are there? Guitars are made of wood, speakers are made of wood. Guitars make sound, speakers make sound. Etc. But guitars are musical instruments, and, however nice and poetic it may be to think of a loudspeaker as a musical instrument, it's not. Not really. Is it? You could, of course, mess around with the meaning of the word "instrument," but I don't want to get into that. Let's be straightforward.
An instrument is a device used to produce music.
Oh, damn. Isn't a loudspeaker also a device used to produce music? I hate it when I think I have an idea, and then all of a sudden bam I don't know what I'm talking about. It happens all the time, actually. What does that say about me? And what's with all this introspection? What do I have to do with it? Nevermind. Where was I? Oh.
Let's define "instrument" as something that needs to be "played" in order to produce music. And what do I mean by "played?" Let's say an instrument will be strummed or plucked or banged on or blown into or something along those lines. And, before this becomes sexual, as things so often somehow do, let's again stress that the strumming, plucking, banging, and blowing are meant to produce music. Rather than, I don't know, a mess. And let's call "music" a collection of tones or sounds having rhythm, melody, and harmony working together to form a composition. Rather than, say, a baby. And, yes, I know that someone out there might know of an instrument that doesn't actually need to be "played" in order to produce music, and someone out there might consider sex to be very musical, and someone out there might think of a song as their baby, and someone out there might even claim that a song can produce sensations similar to orgasm certainly, there are hundreds of holes in my logic but let's stay away from those kinds of thoughts right now. For simplicity's sake.
The thing is this: A guitar is not a loudspeaker and a loudspeaker is not a guitar. So what happens when you cross the streams? Who knows? Let's go to the press release! The press release says:
While the musical character of some devices was often a happy coincidence, there is nothing unintentional about this new loudspeaker from Onkyo and Takamine.Nothing unintentional? What's so special about that? Isn't everything somehow intentional? Or is it the other way around? Sorry. Back to the press release:
The Onkyo D-TK10 is revolutionary because its designers consciously rejected the inert-box acoustics of conventional speaker cabinetry in favor of a freely-vibrating thin-wall enclosure based on high-end guitar construction.
My initial reaction to this is: Yikes! It's either revolutionary or stupid.
Or maybe it's neither. Both? A freely-vibrating loudspeaker? That's crazy-talk. Ay dios mio and oy vey. But why? What does the press release have to say about this?
The D-TK10 has thin walls that vibrate like a guitar body, adding depth and character to the music. Unlike conventional speakers, the Onkyo D-TK10 is not an impartial transducer. It sounds very accurate, yet it enhances the music in a way that must be heard to be appreciated.
Again, I wonder. I wonder: What's so special about this? I wonder: How many speaker designers would consider their babies impartial transducers? How many would consider them partial transducers? Hmm? And don't all or, if not all, I'd have to assume most speaker designers want their products to enhance the music in a certain way? And, by "enhance," I mean:
And beauty, as we all know, is in the eye of the tweeter. The woofer? Yes? No? I don't know. Would somebody help me out here? And hasn't this been done before? If not, I guess, then, that this D-TK10 speaker is revolutionary. And, by "revolutionary," I mean...
The Onkyo website claims that the D-TK10 is indeed "the world's first speaker to share design characteristics with an acoustic guitar." True or false, good or bad? I suppose I'm curious. Their retail price of $1999 puts them in direct competition with my beloved DeVore gibbons. Reason, perhaps, for me to play them. I mean: give them a listen.
There was absolutely nothing unintentional about this blog entry except, of course, for all that didn't occur to me. Thank you.