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Italian Version | Leonard Gregory  1 | 2


We are proud to interview the designer of  hi-end object. And in this case Mr Len has been very kind to reply about the future of hi-end.

Leonard Gregory (L. G.)
I am so pleased that you like my cartridge, I am very proud of it too.

Roberto Rubino (R. R.)
Where hi-end goes nowadays? Do you think is possible to get out of crisis? (if crisis do exist..at least in Italy, yes). Are there any carts that cost too much if we look at their performance? The "come back" of analogic passion could be linked to the proliferation of new brands?
L. G.
I think high-end hi-fi has lost its way, so many manufacturers are looking for ways to justify higher prices but not higher fidelity. I have seen equipment made out of precious stones, gold wire (which is a terrible signal carrier) and rare woods - which adds nothing (and in the case of gold wire, actually detracts) from the performance of units, this can only be cynical business practice. Also, there is a belief in some circles that you can quantify every single aspect of sound reproduction, as if measurements alone can tell you how a unit will sound - we all know how untrue this is - and so a range of esoteric equipment is turned out with impeccable specifications but with a performance that often time does a great disservice to music, and at best sounds no better than a lot of other less exalted designs. People are trying to re-invent the wheel all the time, it's all about consumerism not about music. Music is what it should be about, but for some it has become a 'trophy' business, they manufacture audio jewellery, bling, call it what you will, to satisfy a desire that is perverse and has nothing to do with making accessible the enriching experience that is the heart of music.

There are more than a few cartridges that cost a great deal of money, whether this is justified or not becomes academic in a purely business sense, since current business economics state that 'an item is worth what you can get for it', on this basis alone one cannot say that anything is not worth its asking price, but my contention is that of you can't build an excellent sounding

cartridge for £1,000.00 (GBP) you shouldn't be building a cartridge in the first place - I think this is the reasoning that potential puchasers should apply whenever they go to buy equipment, they should look around, familiarise themselves with the market place and go and listen where they can (to live sources as well) and find something that suits them - listening is a very subjective experience, but many people will be pleasantly surprised by how good some of the less expensive equipment is. Also, don't forget the second hand market (not for cartridges though) it is a very cost effcetive way to buy equipment.

R. R.
How many hours it takes to build a cart like this and are there new limits that carts and turntables can reach from now on?
L. G.
I build about five cartridges a week on average, and this question asks about the future of cartridge and turntable performance, I sincerely doubt that we have got anything like optimum information out of the groove as yet, every time I make and improvement to my cartridges I am always amazed by the extra level of perfomance and information that is suddenly revealed - that level of information is there in the groove and here we are forty years later discovering it for the first time , and my experience is that every time I improve my turntable or cartridge yet more is revealed, the empirical lesson is that steady development and refinement of well executed proven designs is more likely to give greater gains than some great technological about face - witness the so called 'digital revolution', analogue has moved so far ahead. I still think we have quite a way to go,though, to me a system represents a series of barriers to the original signal as it comes off the record, so I don't see information loss as a compartmentalised problem but a system-wide one, everything needs to be optimised. I think what would help the Industry more than anything else is new analogue recordings on vinyl - is anyone out there prepared to create new quality source material?

R. R.
What's real in hi-end?
L. G.
High- Fidelity systems will never be the 'real thing' but I feel that if you can reach a stage whereby your system can occasionally convince

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