Due to workload commitments, I have been working on the road since Christmas Day 2008 itself. Short for a week long break for Chinese New Year, been away throughout this time and only now things are settling down.
So I was shocked to hear from a friend of John Potis’ passing on 22 Dec 2008.
You may associate John’s work with diyparadise through this review of our products on 6moons, of which he gave us a Blue Moon award, but we got to know each other more than 10 years ago when I was just a college student in the US.
Why heck, I’ll tell you this. John was the one who set me on the right path in audio!
You see back then, all I knew of was mini-compos the likes of Sonys, Aiwas etc. You know, those black plastic pieces advertising glorious powers of 1000W PMPO? It was when I visited a friend Brandon, then I realized for the same amount of money, buying used audio gear, one could get some really decent sound. His was a pair of used Polk speakers and other stuffs which I can’t remember.
Piqued by the decent sound at such modest budget, I did what was considered really hip then – I surfed the Net. Hey, remember this was in 1997! And the Net was still in its early days.
I stumbled upon John Potis article on “Advice from a Friend to a Beginner in Hifi”, err, I can’t remember nor find the original article but it was something to that effect. Anyway, in that article, John was really nice to give some really useful advice to first timers (like me then) dabbling their toes into the hifi world.
I recall John featured particular models like PSB Alpha, NHT Super Zero, Paradigm Mini Mk3, Rotel integrated amps and a host of other goodies. As I then emailed him (I remember the email program was a Telnet. Wow!), he quickly replied and answered my queries and gave me more advice.
Why heck, he even told me not to be too concerned over cables and interconnects, telling me that even the $12 (back then) interconnect set of 4 cables from Radio Shack will do.
I took his advice and was rewarded with a pretty decent system which still works well till today. As I ventured into other areas of hifi, I realized over time his advice has held me in good stead. And over time, we sort of developed a friendship where we discussed many things. Why heck, like he said on the 6moons review, he even consoled me when I was going through a rough breakup. Looking back I realized I was just stupid with that girl but it showed what a nice chap John was.
After I left the US, I lost contact with John. Over time I lost interest in hifi too as hifi products are just so expensive in Malaysia. Besides when you first start working, buying a hifi system doesn’t seem like a priority.
Couple years later, got bitten by the DIY bug, and things have never been the same again.
When I finally found that he is reviewing for 6moons, I contacted him and couple months later, we decided to send him something to review. But after the review I have meant to contact him again but didn’t do so. Dang…
So I’m really shocked to suddenly learn of John’s passing.
He really touched the live of this fella at the other side of our planet.
Rest in Peace, John.