A Visit to Audio Consulting CH

28.11.2014 // Jürgen Saile

I have fond memories of Geneva. When I was a student, I had once visited a former school mate, who studied at the university there. I can still vividly remember how very impressed I was with their local university mess hall. If you were used to the nasty slop they served at the Munich University, in Geneva it was like eating at a gourmet restaurant. Quite a culture shock!

The author and Serge Schmidlin in the sacred hall. In this picture, the listening room seems smaller than it actually is.
The author and Serge Schmidlin in the sacred hall. In this picture, the listening room seems smaller than it actually is.

This time, we will forget about the university and concentrate on Serge Schmidlin, founder of the company Audio Consulting. In this country you might relate the concept of “consulting” with streamlining, outsourcing and job destruction. Or, for example, the relevant question would be: How many light bulbs does a city like Munich need? Schmidlin however has nothing at all to do with that. If that were the case, we would not be visiting him. We, being Dirk Sommer and I.

So while I walk to Dirk waiting in his car, I've been feverishly thinking about how to counter attack the deadly certain broadside hit of the subject "Me and my tape recorder in general and specifically.” This probably only works with the same full broadside attack, perhaps with: New findings in the treatment of colorectal cancer? Hm, we'll see.

In retrospect, however, I have to say that my tactics were not very successful. The quintessence of a long trip to Switzerland is that I can report that I finally know what a “De-Esser” is. Unfortunately, it has nothing to do with a gourmet meal, but somehow you can manipulate recordings of human voices, to give everyone a lisp. Or something like that.

Strangely, Dirk changes the topic of conversation abruptly, as soon as we cross the Swiss border. To Swiss watches. I don’t know anything at all about this subject, but at least I can tell what time it is. Anyway, it was very entertaining and now that all the signs on the Autobahn seem to be in the French, one can only surmise that Geneva can not be very far away.

Geneva has approximately the same population of Kassel, Germany, but that's about all they have in common. "Nestled between nearby Alpine peaks and the hilly terrain of the Jura, the French-speaking city of Geneva lies in the bay where the Rhone river flows out of Lake Geneva," reads the travel brochure of the city...

Finally I can see the famous Geneva landmark – the 140 meter high Jet d' Eau in the middle of Lake Geneva, or as the Bavarians would say - the gigantic “Spritzbrunnen” fountain. Or so I thought. However, no time for that right now. Audio Consulting is not based directly in Geneva, but in a nearby village called Commugny. After exiting the highway, you get to a place that immediately conveys the feeling, here all is right in the world. Among the numerous mansions with private swimming pools and huge farms with grazing cows, I search in vain for something that might resemble a company headquarters. Granted, the vineyards on the left somehow have something innately calming. And indeed the milk for the Swiss chocolate must come from somewhere. In any case, enlightenment comes from our Editor in Chief: Schmidlin lives In this area. Also, his equipment is developed here, however manufactured somewhere else. In any case everything in Switzerland. Sounds kind of reasonable.

Such a clean and neat workshop would probably only be found in Switzerland! In front on the right, toroidal cores made from grain-oriented silicon steel. These cores must be completely manually wound. The large transformer on the left is the original model from which everything emanated.
Such a clean and neat workshop would probably only be found in Switzerland! In front on the right, toroidal cores made from grain-oriented silicon steel. These cores must be completely manually wound. The large transformer on the left is the original model from which everything emanated.


  • Ein Besuch bei AcousticPlan

    Am Bodensee ist das Klima immer um 2 Grad wärmer als in München. Sagt man. Common Wisdom, oder wie der Kerl heißt. Das war aber nicht der Grund, warum wir dorthin gefahren sind, sondern es ging um einen Besuch bei AcousticPlan. Dem Klischee entsprechend war es dann auch in München bei Abfahrt neblig-trüb und am Bodensee begann bereits die Sonne zu scheinen. Neben den eher beruhigend wirkenden Weinstöcken links und rechts gab es auch ein…
    13.11.2015
  • Im Hörraum von Göbel High End

    Selbstverständlich tut Oliver Göbel alles, um bei den alljährlichen Präsentationen auf der High End die enormen Fähigkeiten seiner außergewöhnlichen Schallwandler zur Geltung zu bringen. Noch ein gutes Stück besser gelingt das naturgemäß im firmeneigenen Hörraum Schon kurz vor der Messe rief der Entwickler und Firmenchef in Personalunion an und berichtete nicht ohne einen Anflug von Stolz, dass es endlich soweit sei und der neue Hörraum nun so klinge, wie er es sich vorgestellt habe. Ein…
    03.07.2015
  • Vinylize, Budapest

    Nicht nur am alljährlichen Record Store Day, diesmal am 18. April, wird deutlich, dass Vinyl zunehmend an Popularität gewinnt. Dabei geht es nicht allein um das altbewährte Tonträgerformat. Vinyl ist in unseren Zeiten auch ein Stück Lifestyle – ein Wort, das Sie in Hifistatement ansonsten glücklicherweise fast nie zu lesen brauchen. Und Vinyl ist auch das Material, um das sich in Zack Tiptons Manufaktur alles dreht Doch bevor wir Zack in Budapest treffen und enthüllen,…
    24.04.2015