I dont have one single friend I can get into audio.
Of course through this hobby I have met friends who are hard core 'philes like me, but not one of my other friends will even consider letting me put togther a simple and low cost high end-ish system.
One friend now claims when he gets some money he'll let me get him one of those $650 (used of course) chinese integrated tube amps but it hasn't happened yet. A few of my friends are even somewhat loaded, but none will take the trip.
Of course they enjoy hearing my system, and two even comes to the audio shows with me but that is as far as it gets.
I'm not sure I even like to think of myself as an audiophile :-)
I have many friends who are avid music lovers - listen all the time to wide ranging music, go to shows, etc.
I have several friends who seem to really enjoy listening to my system and appreciate it for the quality of the sound.
I have two friends that I both see regularly and who avidly seek out listening to music on my system. They seek it out, we listen for an extended period, you can see them actively enjoying the activity.
These same two friends have both bought some nice gear - one let me buy her a full system and uses it regularly at her house. She definitely hears the difference between good or bad, but is solidly in the music-lover camp. I could easily imagine her using the same (very nice) system forever.
The other friend doesn't have lots of spare financial resources, but loves the nice pair of speakers he bought, and I'm sure better equipment in time is something he will pursue.
In general, though, I find people all the time who are passionate about music, but I find very few people who care much about gear or any of the other audiophile trappings.
I am a music lover first and that drove my interests in good playback gear. I do have friends who got into the hobby too for the same reasonas but not because I exposed them to the art of fine music reproduction; this happened independently because they too were into music.
Some folks don't believe that they can justify the cost/benefit ratio, maybe because they son't feel that music should be such a central or focused part of their lives. Even my wife, who does share my hobby interests, will sometimes say I'm like a teenager, which is fine by me because at least music keeps me feeling young, at least in heart.
I believe this hobby is beneficial to health and well being. Plus, the benefits of music listening to mental and physical health are beginning to be understood, but I mean listening, not music as wallpaper. Perhaps a critical mass of such information may eventually push these benefits over and into public conciousness and this will help our friends get aboard.
Wouldn't belong to club that would have me as a member.Actually best friend sad he stopped reading Fremmer's Tracking Angle because he just is more into listening to music not talking about though I am the exception.I am more neurotic abut the whole thing and aspire to lighten up a bit and just dig the great LP /CD collection I built before (at least with LP's huge price run up that stated about 4 or 5 years ago.Now I'd never have half the LP's I have and might be an all digital (yuck!) person.Now I just agonize if I shouldn't' sell many $500-$2,00 Lp's I have.Could still go up but think about fine adjusted for inflation it has never reached the heights hat Asians were willing to pay in 80's.Could happen when these newbies wise up with LP's. Chazz
I tend to share music and DVD's and discuss artists and genre's with friends. Sometimes I end up helping with technical issues. Friends are absolutely amazed when they visit and listen but they don't rush to spend a small fortune like I have done. Some have nice impractical sports cars. Some have a holiday time share home in a nice place. Some live in a small place but are heavily into sports, cycle to work, and are out every weekend (no time to listen to music).
But lets face it - you don't tell friends which car to buy or start comparing your car to their car, your house t otheir house.... so why should you start telling them what gear to buy. I don't go there!
None here, I have one friend who really enjoys music and has a nice collection, but even he cant sit and just listen when here, I suppose it has to be on his terms. I have made several great Audiophile and music loving friends from being here and at shows and gatherings so that is good enough for me, I bet I could find more but I dont talk about my stuff unless asked, you either come off like a nerd or a snob so I dont bother.
I'm just a guy who loves music, it's my love of shiny things that gets me in trouble! I have several friends who love music as much as me, but they seem totally indifferent to sound quality. It really boggles my mind, since a rather modest investment can heighten your enjoyment exponentially. Maybe one day they'll get it.
Yes, my brother and best friend, who unfortunately live on the other side of the country, are both into this, too bad I moved out to Reno, can't seem to get people here together, and I think there are a few.
A lot of people dine out on a regular basis, but very few have a trained palette. Also, a lot of people drink wine, but again, very few have a trained palette. So, following that train of thought, a lot of people listen to music, but very few have a trained ear. Over and over, both here, on AC and other forums, many people admit that they just can not hear a difference. Others do hear some difference but can not justify the cost or other things are more important.
When I was in grade school we were required to take a music class and learn how to play an instrument. The school even provided less privileged students with basic instruments. I learned how to play the flute. Eventually I took some guitar and piano lessons. In college, to satisfy elective requirements, I took some music appreciation courses. These days, most grade schools don't even have music programs. Fewer and fewer high schools even have bands. So, know wonder there are less people with trained ears and an appreciation of good music performances; just look at all the millions that are content to listen to compressed formula music on their Ipods.
As far as audiophile friends go, I'm down to just two. In addition, most "high-end" stores in my area are out of business or only doing custom install.
Yes, actually I have a few, the first two I think I can take credit (or blame, if you ask their wives!), for their becoming audiophiles.
One, is my brother in law, who after hearing my system, decided to invest a couple of thousand into a nice little system. (He bought my Basis 1400, w/RB300 arm as a starting point.) He will come over to my house (when our wives, who are sisters visit), and we'll listen for a couple of hours every month or so.
Another friend, whom I have known for over half my life, also liked my system, and after he and his wife bought their new house, decided that he wanted to have a nice stereo as well. He invested about $5K into his system. It reminds me of my first system actually. (Tube amp and B&W speakers.) We don't get to listen too ofter together to listen anymore, due to our busy lives, but we still get together occasionally.
And finally, one of my newest friends, has a system better than my own actually. (I met him on Audiogon, when I bought his used ARC PH-3 phono preamp a few years ago, when I decided to get back into analog.) We have helped each other out quite a bit. He has more funds than I do, so he can experiment a bit more than I can, so I get to learn from his hands on experience with various gear. However, I am really good at researching which gear is really top notch, and so he has taken my advice on a couple of items for his system, and they have usually worked out for him. We try to get together every couple of months to exchange our latest finds in music. (I am into Rock mostly, and he is into classical and jazz, so it works out great that we get to expand each other's horizons.) We also went to CES this year, and that was great fun.
I look forward to continuing to make friends in our audiophile universe.
An individual who lives right near me has 36,000 discs and albums. No, that is not a typo, he has 36,000 of them. When he told me I thought for sure he meant 3,600, but he corrected me on that. He described the cabinets and shelving necessary to hold his collections. He stated that he has a problem with buying media (I'd say!) in that when he acquires a new artist he cannot buy just one album or disc - he has to get everything they've recorded.
As excessive as that is, he has a POS stereo and I cannot convince him to come over and share some time so that our two worlds can intersect. He seems to have absolutely no interest in it. A real shame.
Another audiophile friend is definitely "old school" with his vintage McIntosh equipment. (Not ripping on it, just pointing out this guy has never upgraded in 20+ years). He wants "live concert" feel, so he's got Klipsch mains with 15" bass (if I recall correctly), AND twin subs in a bedroom about 12x14! The experience of listening to his system at higher levels is somewhat like having a pile driver operating outside the room. No matter what system we listen to at my place, they never have enough bass for him!
Another audiophile friend was a DJ for a while, so he has a habit of making compilations of his music on disc. He does a superb job and has introduced me to several wonderful artists. He and I could probably get together every week for the foreseeable future and never run out of conversation and good times listening.
One poor couple I know have a lovely system and they've put much into a dedicated room, but they always seem to have issues with their equipment. Problems with an amp now, then their wiring, etc. In the summer their room overheats from the huge ARC tube amps, so the equipment sits unused a good portion of the year. It's fun enertaining them since they are into "Space Metal" and other genres of music that I'm not. It's like a cultural exchange to share our different favorites. I remember one time they put on some of their SERIOUSLY hard driving speed metal (or whatever they called it) music and were commenting, "Oh, this has good definition," while all I heard was DISTORTION! Of course, they suffer immeasurably with my Smooth Jazz discs. Our mutual love of equipment conquers musical differences.
It is a true blessing to find an "audio brother" (and rarely an "audio sister").
If you mean friends in town, the answer is no. While I greatly value listening to music and miss it greatly when I travel, I am not a musician. I had one physician neighbor who had a fortune in audio equipment that was dominant in his living room. He listened once to my system and I once to his. We remain friends but do not discuss audio.
I once had a profession pianist friend who had many records. We were in the same gourmet club and once when we were at his house, I said, "Eddie, where do you listen to your recordings?" He took me to a small room with a portable record player in the corner! When I looked shocked, he said "I really don't listen to the music. In my head I note how these musicians chose to play it."
I have friends with a fortune in golf clubs, some with expensive sailboats, some who are preoccupied with political science and their careers, and some for whom wine is their passion, but no audiophile friends in town. I would say, however, that I have many close audiophile friends, probably 10 throughout the country. I see most of them at least once a year and have often traveled to their somewhat distant homes to hear their systems.
Unfortunately no. My friends love music and listening to my system but are too busy with the next gadget etc. to invest in quality audio. The only audiophile friend I ever had was my dad and he passed away in 2000. He sure did love his McIntosh gear.
None. Everyone I know is so far away from this hobby they would think I'm insane and or irresponsible to spend the thousands I've spent. My best friend has a fraction of an idea of what I've spent. He says I'm addicted and will never stop.
I think of myself as an audio enthusiast, but hesitate to claim the term "audiophile", because (1) my interest in good-sounding equipment is driven more by a music listening/collecting hobby, and (2) my gear is more along the lines of Klipsch, Spica, Mac, ARC, Sansui, Rega, Thorens, etc., and no $5k components or dedicated listening rooms or anything of that sort.
I have one friend with similar music-collecting tendencies, and he has discovered the value of some good Marantz equipment and a reconditioned Dual TT. But most of his music listening is still pop CDs played on the world's worst car factory stereo.
Most of my other friends, even those with excellent music taste and decent collections, insist on just playing their iPod through a muddy HT system, and gabbing over the music since there's so little noticeable detail worth paying attention to. At least a lot of them will still go to good live music shows.
I have a friend that lives about 700 miles from me. He got me started in this hobby about 35 years ago. I went into it heavy while he stayed content with his Dynaco and JBLs until about 4 years ago. Now he is putting together a nice system. I have another friend about 15 miles from me that use to be into it now he is losing interest. The rest of my friends, some like my system, a few enjoy listening to it, and the rest could care less. When I first got into this hobby it was much more comfortable talking about it. Back then the difference between the good stuff and bad stuff was not as great as it is today but yet people could hear and admit the difference. Today so many people just don't get it. Some of my relatives are the worse. The comments are very hard to listen to.
Wow - this thread has gotten more responses than any I've posted.
So it seems my experience is not unique. Most people simply don't have the ear, wallet or patience for this hobby.
I often tell people (half jokingly) that a good audio system is better suited for regular people than audiophiles like us. A typical person spending a few thousand on a stereo is a fantastic deal. They will probably keep most of the components for 15 years, so amortized over the years, it is a small yearly cost and of course rewards greatly.
For people like many of us, who are always looking for better performance, buying and selling gear (usually loosing money), trying cables and tweeks, etc it is not nearly as good a deal!!!
Another recent experience that opened my eyes to how skewed many of our value system is. Someone who works in my building mentioned to my Girlfriend that a package I had delivered looked like an LP, ans he mentioned he loved vinyl, etc. Hearing this I talked to him about his collection, etc, and he said his table was broken. I replied "then I have a great deal for you" I have a used WTT I am getting ready to sell (since I got a Raven One and Phantom) I told him the table was only around $750. He looked at me like I had 2 heads. It seemed to him $750 was an outrageous sum to pay for a turntable, new or used. I finally saw it from his perspective, and thought he would think there was something seriously wrong with me if he knew the retail cost of my new table (bottom of the line)/arm/cart/cable was close to 14K.
I'm extremely fortunate to have many, many friends and acquaintances who are into audio as well as music and would consider themselves audiphiles. How committed? Well, I don't know of more than a couple of them (out of 20-25 or so) who AREN'T into tubes! Lots of DIYers who've taught me a lot.
In addition are the "civilians" -- other friends and neighbors who like to listen to my stuff but have few interests in audiophilia per se. Dave
Saygrr, I share your experiences. I have known many who used to even attend shows who either now have home theaters or just don't listen at all. For at least two it is the decline in their hearing that may explain this.
I have gotten accustomed to my kids and relatives comments. It helps to be getting to an age where one eccentricities are tolerated rather than dismissed.
Mrtennis, I am sure that pedophiles, etc. do not help. Perhaps we should call ourselves audio or music lovers or audio enthusiasts.
I don't have a single audiophile friend. Unfortunately, a lot of people who think I'm nuts with no one to share the pain or show me some understanding. Fortunately, I manage it well and listen to a lot of music.
At work a few of us were at a training session. One of the guys asked about my system. Another who I know but rarely see asked a question about the LPs and how much the Nitty Gritty cost. When I said "about $100 but that was years ago" he said "I would never spend a $100 for a ******* record cleaner". That made for a pleasant day.
Saygrr, DO NOT be apologetic for your hobby! Stop frowning and feeling bad for yourself! I've met you and know from what I've seen that you're a considerate and softly spoken man. You tend to speak as though you're apologetic, and people will take advantage of that and verbally skewer you. Consider if this individual has his own tendencies toward behavior that is clearly idiotic. Does he spend money on lotto tickets? Does he blow ton's on car accessories that depreciate? etc. (Hey, people, that's my perspective and maybe not yours; I'm not out to start anything, just leading Saygrr think a bit about the situation. From what I know of Saygrr, he's conservative and can relate to this comment.) I doubt that he's fiscally perfect. And if he has a "hobby" or sport I'll bet he drops PLENTY on it, unless he's a total cheapskate. In that case, he's likely not worth knowing better than on a working relationship level. Consider the source of verbal put-downs; often they should be weighted zero importance.
You need to drop by my place for a good time listening session! Get your tunes ready and give me a call!
Gawdbless, I used to race catamaran sailboats. If you want to see crazies with a passion, you should see sailboat racers. In the big boats they talk about less expensive tweaks as those costing less than $100,000. It was not that expensive at my level but still crazy.
Albert, I hope you realize how blessed you are to have a wonderful core group of audiophile friends. I have a feeling you may be an exception to the prevailing trend.
When I lived in NJ I had a nice handful of audiophile friends. I also belonged to the NJ Audio Society which gave me frequent contact with those members who regularly attended meetings.
But my recent move to Tucson AZ has me a bit confused and I confess I feel isolated out here. I've made a few friends, and definitely value them, but don't see them as often as I'd like. This lack of frequent visitation may also have to do with me being a non-smoker and almost all the others being smokers who are not afraid to light up whether it bothers me or not. (They probably don't even think to consider how distasteful smoking is to a non-smoker.)
I understand that there are a lot of audiophiles in the Phoenix area, and maybe I should look there to make more friends. That said, Phoenix is a good couple hour drive from my location, and their Audio/Video society usually meets on a day and time that I cannot attend.
I enjoy listening by myself and also sharing music with my wife and son, but it would be nice to find a few local audiophile friends who don't need to light up while they listen. Oh well, such is life.
Plato, I too am a non smoker, as is every audiophile in my group. All together we have about 19 members, counting the infrequent visitors as well as the regulars.
It's a varied mix each week. I've had weeks were only one person was able to show up and weeks were there was no place to sit.
I would think Tucson would have a nice group of audiophiles, they probably do and you just have not discovered them.
It's funny, a couple of my newest members (people coming for less than two years) are guys that live near me and someone who came to listen ask if they could bring a friend. Turns out we all got along so well we now exchange email or speak on the phone at least once a day.
What worked for our group is my absolutely consistent meetings every week on the same day at the same time. I've been doing this for over 30 years and I actually have two guys that are part of that original group.
In the last couple of years I've picked up a couple of female members. Both absolutely love music and one has a very high end system. The other is a designer and I do photography for her company.
I was just poking fun in my first comment. Truth be told we have SMAC Southwest Michigan Audiophile Club which consist of a core group of about fifteen or so members and a mailing list of about another fifty in its third year now. It is a good group of diverse folks including several turntable and tube amp designers and many of us who are just plain music lovers. It is loosely tied to AudioKarma.org and Karma Fest which is a once a year (weekend) festival/event of both manufacturers and DIY audio enthusiasts. Its primary focus is on two-channel audio with maybe half of the displays running tube gear and turntables. It may be the biggest/best showing of two-channel analog audio around. We would like to think it's so! Its probably not the highest of high-end, but theres little attitude and lots of enthusiasm and the members keep it real. So we truly have a rich culture of audiophiles in our area. Yet, my personal and primary focus has always been on live music and record collecting more so than listing to wires and that sort of thing. I would not trade my orchestra hall seats for a new cable of the month. Sorry.
I have a friend that has a very high-end system but he hasn't listened to it in over 2 years. Everytime I mention to him about a thread on Audiogon or an article in Absolute sound he changes the subject. Go figure!
Many thanks for your thoughts and tips. They are appreciated and you may be right... After all, Tucson's population is fast nearing the million mark, so there ought to be a few more audiophiles and music lovers somewhere around here. And I think your idea to hold your meetings consistently on the same day and time is a good one. :)
I have 2 audiophile/music loving friends. One lives about 4 blocks from me and the other moved about 60 miles south of me a year ago. When all of us lived closer we would get together about once a month rotating to listen and enjoy each others very different systems. It is kind of funny that we all prefer our own systems over the others. Just how it should be.
I have recently talked over the phone with a guy that moved 100 miles south of me from Ohio. I invited him up this weekend to meet and listen to some music, since his system is still in Ohio with his family. He accepted the invite for this Saturday. I am looking forward to making another audio friend.
We didn't discuss smoking, but I feel sure we can work it out.
I have spoken to a couple of music and audio stores in the area about sponsoring a monthly get together for people interested in audio and music. One said they were very interested. It might be kind of tough for a small city of 50,000 but you never know.
My cousin is a music lover and has a modest system. He's a master carpenter and actually sometimes builds recording studio spaces. Yet when I showed him my system, I almost had to beg him to sit in the sweet spot, like he was afraid he'd like it too much.