Alpha in 2016
A disastrous event in January 2016… …the espresso machine breaks down. Big leak… Now Harro Tillema is quite handy, so he knows how to close the hole so we can keep drinking coffee. Unfortunately it goes wrong again later in the year and the Cimbali can’t really be saved anymore.
Bowers & Wilkins donates a whole bunch of acoustic panels around that time, allowing us to tame our space. That was necessary, because the space was very large (100m2 + 2 x 25). A lot of energy is lost as a result. By placing special panels, we can create a kind of small room, which makes it easier to keep the energy controlled.
In 2016 we will also be introduced to the Focal Sopra No1. Soon we will be madly in love with this loudspeaker and it will just stay at the office as a reference loudspeaker. And it still is. The bizarre thing is that the more we play with it, the more we appreciate it. It’s an incredibly transparent speaker. Every change is audible. Really good work from the French company.
We’ve also done tests with copying CDs: will the data remain intact? Also filtering networks… does it make an audible difference if we filter the power to a router and NAS? Again we try to answer the question behind the question. How can it make a difference? And why could it make a difference?
A less pleasant development in 2016 (around June if we’re right) is that an important team member and your editor got into a business conflict. That co-operation didn’t work out anymore, which led to separation of our paths. It left a pretty deep scar at the time and Alpha certainly had to recover from that time. Although the platform has grown significantly: more than 850,000 unique visitors. Partly due to the multitests we did that year.
This year, we’re also radically changing the design. No dark design, but a lot of white and ‘air’. We really liked this design and have been working on it for over two years (until October / November 2018).
Since we hired temporary, we knew there would be a time of leaving. Although we didn’t want to, because the space was very pleasant (although it could be really hot, considering the fact that there was a flat roof and no working air conditioning). In any case, we had to go and look for a new office. Some of the rooms we looked at you can see below.
After looking at some rooms in both Haarlem and Alkmaar and everything in between, we arrive at Record Industry. That was really on the edge; we were able to sign at Record Industry the day before we had to leave the Oudweg. We are still grateful to Ton Vermeulen for his flexibility. It’s a great place that breathes music and creativity. It’s also nice that we can invest there, since we don’t have to leave just like that.