What is the scariest audio thing that's ever happened to you?

Your amp blows up, with flames licking the underside of your wood equipment rack—or you see the flood waters approaching your LP collection. What is the scariest audio thing that's ever happened to you?

What is the scariest audio thing that's ever happened to you?
Here it is
91% (87 votes)
Nothing scares me
9% (9 votes)
Total votes: 96

Mark Evans's picture

I live in an area where severe storms are common, along with intense lightning. So, components getting zapped by electrical surges would be the scariest thing.

Eric Shook's picture

My wife (now ex) drove her car over a pair of Vandersteens out of what I saw as sheer jealousy.

Sal's picture

My own klutzy fingers blowing a tube on my brand-new McIntosh C2300 preamp. Oh, it's only a tube...whew.

Stephen Curling's picture

While I was enjoying a new CD, I heard a massive thump from my subwoofer, sounding something like the dust cap was now pointing out instead of in. I thought that I had just blown my subwoofer. I flew out of my chair and I turned down the volume and proceeded to investigate what happened. It turned out to be the music. I rewound the track a bit and re-played what I had heard at a much lower volume. All was well.

audio-sleuth@comcast.net's picture

The scariest by far was when I first a CD player and was told this was going to replace my turntable. Second, was when I was told that everything was gong to be in surround; five channels minimum. Now they are trying to tell me all music will be from downloads. Eeeee! Make them stop, Mommie!

Mike Agee's picture

When my ex attempted a serious rapprochement after I'd ordered the speakers. Happily, it failed and the system has blossomed into a thing of beauty.

Nosmo King's picture

Cranking tunes when the father comes in to turn it down. He did so with such force, the knob went past 0 to full on! Surprised the heck out of us both. Not too much damage, just a new pot.

Cliff's picture

Was listening to my system in my basement listening room, eyes closed, and almost asleep. I was so relaxed when I slowly realized that my speakers, cables, amps and everything that was on the floor was becoming submerged in water.At first I thought I was imagining things or that my eyes were just really out of focus, but, no, my 75,000 grand system was partially underwater as my basement flooded, and I was going to die from electrocution. But I managed to shut it all down and save myself and system, except for the speaker cables which got really wet. ever in a basement again.

Oliver's picture

A friend of my husband: she is not interested in technical things. She visited us, and during small talk, by the way, she pushed her finger into the dome tweeter of my T+A speaker. She really did not know, what she was doing. My husband now, 20 years later, still admires me, because I kept cool.

Jeff W's picture

Having a power output tube go up in flames

thomasj's picture

In graduate school I was having a party at my apartment. While dancing crazily, sometime jumped high in the air, landed causing my stylus to jump out of the groove, then slam back down, taking out my cartridge and both tweeters in my speakers. Due to not having any money, it took me six months to replace the tweeters.

jac - desperaudio @ large's picture

Nothing scares me so far - as the song lyric goes "I live a charmed, charmed life" (so far anyway - but I'm so paranoid about something "effing up" that I spend a lot of extra time making sure it doesn't. And, now that I've jinxed it completely, back to work on something!

45triode's picture

Single Ended Triode Amplifiers by Yamamoto.

Mark Montimurro's picture

I was forced to listen to a Bose Wave Radio a few months ago, and I have still not recovered from the trauma.

Erik From Cambridge, MA's picture

Finding out that Peter Snell had died.

Robert Bithins's picture

My subdued scream of terror as a small child rushed towards the (to a small child's eyes) shiny shiny yellow yellow of a pair of un-grilled B&Ws. Thankfully, mommy was able to verbally stop the child before my speakers got "played" with little fingers and palms. Woo! Thought Halloween was gone!

djl's picture

The ground cable on the of the house came loose from the power line and it blew up all kinds of gear! (Yeah, it's that windy in SW Oklahoma.) Monster Cable replaced the two surge protectors that were damaged and paid to fix my laser disc player too. It was playing a CD at the time and it fried the power supply when it all happened. That was a crazy week!

Jerry's picture

Talking on the phone to a manufacturer's rep who lacks the engineering expertise to realize that voltage fluctuations can and do affect his turntables' speed accuracy. I was all to blame! The alleged journalists in this industry regularly kiss up to this person. Dirty power is a terrible thing, but also spending the $2,000 price tag of so-called audiophile level power regulators is equally crazy. The city finally fixed the transformers and in the interim I found audiophile division of Tripp-Lite USA (well known in the commercial world for UPS and power regulators. Worked like a champ for $350-$400.

Aaron's picture

The first time I ever hooked up my car stereo to an amp I hooked it up backwards so that the power went into the CD player instead of the speakers. When I turned the car on I heard a terrible crackle sound coming through the speakers followed by smoke coming from the dash. Needless to say the CD player was toast, but thankfully nothing else happened. You only do something that stupid once.

Tomane's picture

One of the tubes exploded in my Audio Innovations 1000.

KM's picture

Buy a new amp and blow the fuse while connecting the speakers (you were sure you had turned it off).

Angel's picture

New A/V receiver (with auto calibration), new "reference" tower speakers. While running auto calibration, the initial test that the system performs is a loud noise that gets pretty loud but stops at a certain point when the receiver detects what it needs to. The mic or receiver was faulty and the sound just kept getting louder (didn’t stop as usual) and caused the new left speaker’s tweeter to ring (ping!) loudly just before the receiver showed a fault message. Thankfully the speaker never seemed or sounded damaged and there was no physical damage to the tweeter. There may have been temporary damage to my heart from both the extremely loud noise and the thought that my expensive new speakers had just become enormous paper weights.

Nodaker's picture

Scary? I don't know if it's scary but I had my car stereo stolen once...back in 1985. Fortunately it was insured. So not so scary but that's it. Oh, I also received a non-working Theta Data transport off Audiogon once and had to work to get my money back. All ended well, though.

Christian's picture

I had a nice little subwoofer from a now defunct online retailer. Heard a weird noise, then poof...smoke started coming out of the cabinet. End of sub.

Javan's picture

A few years back, I came home during a massive rain storm to my store-top apartment (lived above a shoe store... old building) and found that a leak had formed directly above my A/V stand and had soaked my Sony received (on top) and Crown subwoofer amp (underneath the Sony). I thought all hope was lost (at least for the Sony, pro amps are pretty durable) but after I moved both and let them dry, they both started up without a glitch. Color me stupid, but the Sony actually got drenched a couple more times before the leak was actually fixed. Still works like a champ.

calloway's picture

After placing a contact enhancer - name withheld - on my preamp RCAs and speaker cables and power cords - and then hitting "play" on my CD player...my right channel Piega speaker flamed out. It was pitch black in the room and the effect was amazing, but sickening at the same time...don't try this at home!!!

steve greatwhitenorth's picture

Spilling beer on my Bill Beard BB-100. (18 tubes!) Thought for sure i was going to die when I reached to the back panel to shut it off.

Steve K., Pompton Lakes, NJ's picture

When I met my wife she had Helen Reddy's "I Am Woman" in her record collection

Ron's picture

The implosion (with a loud bang!) of an output tube on a Kebschull amplifier. This event also destroyed the tweeter of the Acoustic Energy loudspeaker it was driving.

SJF's picture

All of them, including dogs eating $4,000 speakers, fire, friends, children, water, blown capacitors, worn out pots, etc., etc., etc. . . .