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In Memoriam, Audio Pioneer Don Davis

Co-founder of SynAudCon who educated thousands over 20-plus years in addition to being a noted author, product/technology designer and more, has passed away at the age of 94.
Don and Carolyn Davis.

Don Davis, who with his wife Carolyn founded Synergetic Audio Concepts or Syn-Aud-Con (now SynAudCon) in 1973 in addition to being an noted author, product/technology designer and more, has passed away at the age of 94.

Together, Don and Carolyn educated and trained more than 10,000 sound contractors, designers and consultants around the world over the course of 20-plus years. SynAudCon was acquired by Pat and Brenda Brown in 1995 and is still training the global community of audio professionals.

Earlier, Don worked with Dr. Paul Boner equalizing sound reinforcement systems and was instrumental in the design of the Altec Lansing Acousta-Voice loudspeaker system as well as the design and use of real-time analyzers. He and Carolyn were AES Fellows and were the recipients of the Sagamore of the Wabash and Adele De Berri Pioneer Awards.

The duo authored the first and second edition of Sound System Engineering, often referred to as the “audio bible” in the audio community. Don later teamed up with the third and fourth editions with Dr. Eugene Patronics and Pat Brown, and was a contributing author to all five editions of the Handbook for Sound Engineers. And with Alexis Badmaieff, he authored How to Build Loudspeaker Enclosures.

Together, Don and Caroline also produced authored the quarterly 25-plus page SynAudCon Newsletter and in-depth Tech Topic papers. They stayed quite busy and profilfic, and after retiring from SynAudCon, teamed up to author If Bad Sound were Fatal, Audio Would Be the Leading Cause of Death, a look at what inspired, thrilled, educated, re-directed, and entertained those on the journey to professionalism in audio and acoustics.

Carolyn was the love of Don’s life, and together they enjoyed SynAudCon, their many pets, traveling, fast cars, target shooting and their Indiana farm. Don will be remembered as a learner, teacher, listener, trend setter, audio sage and a great story teller. He was highly respected among his friends and colleagues.

Pat Brown, president of SynAudCon, states, “A highlight of my audio life was attending my first SynAudCon seminar at “the farm” in Southern Indiana. It was the late 1980s and I was just getting started in audio. I followed the Davis’s through their newsletters and tech topics for years until meeting them in-person. The encounter changed my life in many ways. Don and Carolyn demonstrated the best in humanity by their lifestyle, example, and friendship. What a privilege it has been for Brenda and I to carry on their work.”

Related on ProSoundWeb: A Conversation With Audio Pioneers, SynAudCon Founders Don & Carolyn Davis


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