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Wrong Keith Johnson?

Prof. Keith O. Johnson

Director of Engineering

Spectral Audio Inc

HQ Phone: (408) 738-8521

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Spectral Audio Inc

P.O. Box 4475

Mountain View, California 94040

United States

Company Description

Spectral Audio occupies a unique position in the high-performance audio industry. The company isn't obsessed by the need for growth, to introduce products at every "price point", or to achieve maximum return on investment. Instead, Spectral chooses to bui ... more

Find other employees at this company (3)

Background Information

Employment History

Associate Pastor

Hales Corners Lutheran Church

System Design Engineer

Philips Hospital

Chief Engineer and Technical Director

Reference Recordings

Reference Recordings Engineer

Grammy

Affiliations

Founder
Petbrosia LLC

Fellow
AES

Founder
Microsonic Inc

Founder
Gauss Electrophysics

Education

master tapes

original master tapes sounds like

surround mastering engineer

Web References (98 Total References)


Goodwin's High End - High End Audio - Home Theater - Room Acoustics - Systems Integration

goodwinshighend.com [cached]

Absolute Sound article: "Audio's Renaissance Man" In the February 2011 issue starting on page 12 is an article about Keith Johnson. If you don't know who he is you should read this article. And if you do know who he is then you will definitely want to read this article!

...
See the February 2009 issue of The Absolute Sound for an in-depth Spectral system review plus an extensive interview with chief engineer Keith Johnson and company President Rick Fryer.
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Spectral Reference Standard Phono Preamp . About 8 years ago we had a brief look at an early R&D prototype of a Spectral phono section. (When we saw it, it was in the trunk of Keith Johnson's car, so obviously we didn't hear it at that time!


The Spectral SDR-4000SL

www.spectralaudio.com [cached]

The SDR-4000SL Reference CD Processor is a limited edition reference instrument crafted in the Spectral engineering department and individually programmed and calibrated by its designer Keith Johnson. Relatively unlimited time and resources have been utilized to achieve our ultimate objective: Engineer the most sophisticated and sonically accurate CD player in the audio industry. Those that are familiar with Keith Johnson's credentials and previous achievements in digital design know this objective is not taken casually or an idle boast.

As with previous editions of our SDR components from the 1980s and 1990s, such as the SDR-1000 and SDR-2000 reference digital components, it takes our engineers multiple design generations to arrive at the final and ultimate model. The SDR-4000SL has been previously produced in two highly regarded versions, the original SDR-4000 and the revised SDR-4000 Pro which incorporates the exclusive HDCD "Long Filter" technology. It has taken Spectral engineers four years more to develop the final and most uncompromising generation, the SDR-4000SL. In the SDR-4000SL, Keith Johnson and the design team address their remaining performance objectives to create the ultimate SDR-4000 and redefine the possibilities of the redbook CD medium in the finest music systems.
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In the SDR-4000SL CD Processor, Keith Johnson set out to redefine the performance of the 16 bit compact disc with the most advanced components and circuit topologies yet devised for CD reproduction. At the same time, a parallel effort by Keith Johnson and Michael 'Pflash' Pflaumer was launched to develop a very advanced digital playback filter based on the sophisticated Pacific Microsonics HDCD software.
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The original HDCD filter correction strategy was designed by 'Pflash' Pflaumer around Keith Johnson's psycho acoustic models and implemented in the fastest processors of the mid-1990s.
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The vastly higher sampling rate and memory storage of the 'Long Filter' make possible a much more extended version of Keith Johnson's sonic model and more precise corrections.
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Keith Johnson's experience in evaluating and testing optical disc drives for video and audio use has few equals. In the 1970s Keith Johnson and Paul Greg joined development work which resulted in optical tracking servo systems used in the original laser disc systems, the forerunner to the compact disc drive.
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Later Keith worked intensively with Philips and Teac/Esoteric to develop the modified premium CD drives used in Spectral SDR components built in the 1980s and 1990s. Keith's extensive experience with optical drives and servos continued as he evaluted CD drive performance in HDCD licensees throughout the audio industry. Finally, Keith has spent the better part of a decade evaluating manufacturer prototypes for a custom, high-performance drive exclusively for Spectral. Now, after years of development by Keith and our manufacturing partner, the new Spectral UltraDrive is finally here.
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Our new Spectralock Master Clock architecture is Keith Johnson's most ambitious assult yet on jitter and its sonic consequences.


Goodwin's High End - High End Audio - Home Theater - Room Acoustics - Systems Integration

www.goodwinsaudio.com [cached]

Absolute Sound article: "Audio's Renaissance Man" In the February 2011 issue starting on page 12 is an article about Keith Johnson. If you don't know who he is you should read this article. And if you do know who he is then you will definitely want to read this article!

...
See the February 2009 issue of The Absolute Sound for an in-depth Spectral system review plus an extensive interview with chief engineer Keith Johnson and company President Rick Fryer.
...
Spectral reference phono preamp . About 5 years ago we had a brief look at an early R&D prototype of a Spectral phono section. (When we saw it, it was in the trunk of Keith Johnson's car, so obviously we didn't hear it at that time! In case you don't know, Keith is the lead designer at Spectral.) More recently we visited the Spectral factory in May 2012 and we can report that they are still in R&D mode-and that they have made some real progress.


Weinhart Design at the L.A. Audio Society 2010 Gala

www.weinhartdesign.com [cached]

It is with great pleasure and admiration that the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society, America's largest audio society with over 600 members, announces the winner of the Founder's Award for 2010, the Society's highest honor, to Keith O. Johnson. As the leading recording engineer in the world for truly fine music and the torch bearer for audiophile recordings at renowned Reference Recordings, we recognize his continuing passion for the high-end. As technical director for Spectral Audio, he continues to design and develop ever more important resources for our enjoyment of great music. Therefore, we declare "Professor" Keith O. Johnson the winner of the Society's Founder's Award and 2010 the Year of Reference Recordings.

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Keith O. Johnson, our chief engineer and Technical Director, is a true audio legend, having designed and patented many innovative products in the professional and consumer fields. The RR Sound comes from his singular methods and equipment, hand-built or extensively modified by him. Microphone techniques range from single-point Blumlein to spaced omnis to complex studio mixes, depending on the musical forces and the performing space involved. Our goal is to recreate the sound of real musicians making music in real space.
"Prof. Keith Johnson has spent over 30 years developing a reputation for innovative thinking, technical achievement and musicianship which has elevated him to a position in the audio industry occupied by only a handful of visionaries. His intensive investigation of electronic behavior and acoustic perception have led most recently to his development (with digital engineer Michael Pflaumer) of the revolutionary High Definition Compatible Digital encoding process, produced and marketed by Pacific Microsonics (recently acquired by Microsoft). HDCD is widely considered to be the most accurate recording process ever invented.
For more than 20 years, Keith O. Johnson has served as Technical Director, Recording Engineer and partner in Reference Recordings. His 100-plus recordings for the label have long been considered the standard for high fidelity, and include three GRAMMY award-winners and eight additional GRAMMY nominations.


The Role of the Recording Engineer

www.ultraaudio.com [cached]

I asked Johnson, renowned recording engineer for Reference Recordings and Director of Engineering for Spectral Audio Inc., for his candid opinion on why he considers this to be a world-class hall, and as usual, he presented me with a thorough analysis.

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Jack Renner (left) and Professor Keith O. Johnson.

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