Yes folks its that time of year again! And what a year it's been! So many worthy contenders for the 2015 Wile E but I'm afraid there can be only one winner.
Before we get to the award though, we must give credit where it is due. Who could forget the amazing exploding speaker base from Sonus Faber?
Primare deserves special commendation for replacing some really good amps with Class D Changelings, publishing a White Paper telling us how good switch mode power supplies are at the same time as the White Paper telling us how evil switch mode power supplies are and then topping it off by replacing the excellent CD 31 with the CD 32. They even managed to deliver brand new amplifiers out of phase. Fortunately, this problem was easily sorted with an angle grinder, a soldering iron and some Super Glue:
Great effort Primare, but not enough for a Wile E.
A big effort too from Linn, who, after telling us for decades that DC motors are the work of the devil and that their AC motors are gifts from the Norse Gods deposited in peat bogs by the light of a full moon, now supply a DC motor upgrade. Here is one of the new Linn Compact DC motors being lifted into an LP 12:
Thanks too goes to X!@*, 00;! and #^&#&%*@ for bribing me not to name them. My kids also thank you as the car now has wheels and their classroom does not.
The move to China has helped formerly British manufacturers reduce PCB track thickness even further this year. Here we see the quality control team at Arcam using their new electron microscope to find tracks so thin they forgot where they put them:
Quad, Rotel, Martin Logan and the ever try hard band at NAD have really made a big effort to grab this year's Wile E but still managed to look like prime NASA contractors compared to the winner. And what a thoroughly deserving winner we have. A winner that makes the simple complex, the complex inconceivable. A winner that has made more eardrums bleed than Metallica. A winner that has leaked more toxic chemicals than Union Carbide. A winner that is the Hi-FI equivalent of the Dodge Ram; complete with the same efficiency, agility, lumphammer styling and rear window gun rack. So, without any further ado, the envelope please....
The 2015 Wile E Coyote award winner is:
Krell! What a magnificent effort! The award was accepted by Krell's Product Development Manager. The post-it note they pinned to him was lost in transit so we can't tell you his name but look at that pride:
Krell started production over thirty years ago when their founder, Cleetus Krell and his sister, Cleetus, founded the company by attaching speaker terminals to a faulty welder and presto! The first Krell amplifier was born. Ever since, Krell have honoured their founder by conflating the design of an arc welder with that of a device designed to reproduce music.
The Krell sound has been well defined, refined and punctuated with detonations of varying intensity. Here we see the head of Krell's listening panel describing the sonic signature they want to the design department:
Krell sales figures are now better than ever. In fact, every fifteen minutes, somewhere in the world, a Krell owner powers up his new pride and joy. Krell are so customer focused that new owners are monitored on power-up by Krellsat:
In the unlikely event that a Krell device functions properly, a crack team of flying Krell Monkeys are immediately despatched to rectify the non-problem:
While many manufacturers have moved to China, Krell still builds everything in the good 'ol US of A. Here are happy comrades working in the Connecticut factory where Krell still find ways to use a hundred transistors when one is enough:
So folks, there you have it; a very worthy winner of the 2015 Wile E.
Ridiculously complicated, obstinately unserviceable, excruciatingly unmusical, wantonly wasteful and obscenely expensive, Krell has everything we look for in a Wile E winner and much, much more.
Well done Krell!