I remember walking around small electronics shops in Taipei and seeing these "Alpha" pots in quite a few places that definitely wouldn't buy 1k pcs at a time, so a local Taiwanese manufacturer makes a lot of sense to me
Naw, it's just not great writing. The format of the piece - writer says gadget works > expert explains the problem the gadget addresses > writer weaves said explanation into his summary, is sound enough. He just didn't tie the threads together all that well. He could have simply let the reader make their own connection. He could have directed Rankin a little closer to the issue at hand. He could have framed his wild speculation in a transparent but yet amusing way. Woulda coulda shoulda. It's not an easy thing, especially when most publishing today has zero editorial supervision or quality control. [insert dead serious rant about how we can destroy our society this way here].
I have a lot of sympathy for reviewers and especially for the people who have to write advertising copy for high end audio goods. (imagine yourself trying to write a fifty word copy block for a cable ad.) Human nature flat out demands a "technical explanation" of why a gizmo works, whether or not that information is actually available. Our man here listened to the gizmo and said the gizmo works. He quoted some pretty reasonable-sounding PR from the manufacturer. He brought us a lovely primer from Rankin. He did all kinds of good work, but he felt he just HAD to go that one extra step and it detracted from his piece. Still, on balance, his review gives pretty good value for money, given that we got ti free and he probably made chump change writing it. He hipped us to two promising gizmos and gave us the Rankin bit.