If time and experience has taught us
anything, it is that our precious record grooves are far from perfect.
- Disc cutters are not perfect
- The molding process, though impressive, is not perfect
- The artifacts of groove wear are inconsistent from
side to side
- The playback stylus and cartridge are not perfect
The monophonic record groove begins life as
a single groove, modulated laterally, or side to side. There are also
vertically cut mono recordings where the groove modulation is cut in a hill and
dale motion. These are less prevalent.
When you play back a mono recording using a
stereo cartridge and listen in stereo you can hear all these variables present
themselves in the soundstage.
- Left signal and noise
- Right signal and
- Left + Right signal and noise
- Left Right surface
- Right Left surface noise
Usually the first step towards
improving the sound is to simply combine the left and right channels with a
mono selector or mono cartridge. This goes a long way in reducing surface noise
by cancelling the Right - Left and Left - Right signals. But because the
quantities are not perfectly equal, then neither are the cancellations.
We can use the attributes of the stereo cartridge to our
advantage by first dissecting all these different signals. Then we can pit them
against each other in a way that produces the most optimum cancellation of
noise and distortion. And we call this process Groove Tuning
The first product to embody this concept will be the KAB
Souvenir GTX due late December 2002. The Processor will feature balanced line
inputs and outputs. In addition there will be separate outputs for Left, Right,
Lateral Mono and Vertical Mono. These last 4 outputs can be used to synthesize
4 channel soundstages from standard stereo sources.
Front panel controls will feature
Flat and 500 Hz EQ
Mono Vertical Mix
Mono Vector Mix
Selector: Left, Right, Lateral, Vertical, Vector, Stereo, Stereo Rev., Stereo
Vertical, Stereo Vector.