To all the readers of CYMBACAVUM:
We started this site over three years ago out of an ideal vision: that thoughtful, insightful, longform opinions on portable high-end audio can be brought to readers in a fluent, beautiful way.
While the site rarely does ‘firsts’ (it’s always slow to review a product, and isn’t the first to incorporate quantitative measurements), it is one of the few to try to do things comprehensively and integratively. We always strive to provide deeper insights into the portable audio world — the market leanings and trends, the movers and shakers, etc. We try to transcend the standard format of writing continually about accessories, build quality, and sound quality. Also, by removing financial incentives from the equation, the writers rely solely on personal
interest passion for the upkeep of publication.
In that sense, we consider CYMBACAVUM more of a portable audio think tank rather than a review platform. It’s an ambitious undertaking, and if we’ve fallen short at times, perhaps it’s that we try to set the bar as high as possible.
The main impediment right now is free time. We’d love to spend more time on this site, perfecting the layout, burnishing the precision of our words, bettering the focus of our photos, interacting more on social media, and adding actual video content, but out in the real world, we’re not merely impassioned audio lovers: we’re professors, graduate students, physicians, and marketing executives.
As the managing editor of CYMBACAVUM, I’m in charge of the ebb and flow of manuscripts coming across this portal. The amount of work needed to copy edit, manage publicity, and maintain manufacturer relationships requires a non-trivial amount of time per week. My daytime role lies within the confines of a hospital about 80 hours per week, with additional time allocated to research. There is just not much left for audio these days, and for that I apologize.
At the same time, I hope not to compromise the quality of our output. We intended for CYMBACAVUM to be a model for what specialist audio blogs and websites can be, a repository of candid, constructive criticism, laying out all facets of our hobby —- whether they be good or bad. We try to fully integrate the subjective with the objective, giving people points of entry into understanding what all those squiggly spikes are in an uncompensated graph generated from a frequency response measurement off an IEC-60318-4 compliant rig. Beyond that, we not only hope to communicate our own opinions, but to infuse readers with their own tools of discretion.
The next page provides shorter answers to some of the questions we get asked most often at this site. I hope the answers provide more of a window into why we don’t publish all that prolifically and to other concerns along the way. Lastly, I’m always receptive to feedback and comments —- please send us any comments or questions about your concerns regarding the present or future state of CYMBACAVUM, through any of our social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) or via e-mail. We’d love to hear from you!
Thomas Tsai, a.k.a. ‘Mr. T’
Managing Editor, CYMBACAVUM