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The Wall Street Journal: Power trip: Japanese audiophiles go to extremes to get pure energy

TOKYO — Takeo Morita wanted absolutely the best fidelity possible from his audio system, so he bought a utility pole.

The 82-year-old lawyer already had a $60,000 American-made amplifier, 1960s German loudspeakers that once belonged to a theater, Japanese audio cables threaded with gold and silver, and other pricey equipment.

Normal electricity just wouldn’t do anymore. To tap into what Morita calls “pure” power, he paid $10,000 to plant a 40-foot-tall concrete pole in his front yard. On it perches his own personal transformer — that thing shaped like a cylindrical metal garbage can — which feeds power more directly from the grid.

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