Paul, it is unquestionable that there are specific properties that set specific compatibility between audio elements but what is important to understand is that word “synergy” was specifically invented in audio by sales personal in order do not recognize the absolutely objective and reasonable contributive factors but substitute them with a BS-concept of “synergy”.
There is a balance between effective mass of tonearm and compliance of cartridge. It is not “synergy” but well-understood and well-manageable characteristics. There is out impedance/capacitance of driver stage and there is impedance of load – they are well defied characteristics and they are not “synergy”. There is a stability of the amplifier feedback and electrical characteristics of driving cable/load. They are also the definable characteristics but not any “synergy”. When we talk about sensitivity of acoustic system, gain of amplification stage and noise level of active components then we deal with realty of the things not with “synergy”. I can go on and on…
Do you know when we deal with “synergy”? When you have severely clipped power lines with 10% of distortion and an idiot-sale-person offer you to buy a better power cords then we deal with nothing less then the “power cord’s synergy”? When a company have already sold many products and then want their loyal customers to repay for their product then the company release a “new” face up model and the inject into hi-fi jargon and rumor that the “the newest model has better synergy with”… surprisingly what you have. When you shop for preamp and a dealer suggests you change your power amplifier to the one that would have better “synergy” with the line that he happened to care then here is where the “synergy” shows off itself in its all sine. I can go on as well but what is the point.?
The specific compatibility is always specific and has well defined arguments and facts. Synergy is a BS facade of ignorance, incompetence and desire to escape liability. Variances? Of course! Conditions? Of course! Even the circumstances of perception? Of course! However all of them have reason, even not completely know or understood. Synergy however has no reason, no rationale but it has a justification but conclusions, even farther it eliminates a need to ask yourself any justification.
I do not like Synergy and I audio-do-not-like people who have needs to use synergy in audio.
"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche