Careers in Hifi

With the many recent lay-offs lately in the high tech industry, I am starting to think twice about my own job security. If I was ever let go, I think I would want to try and find a dream job first before heading back into high tech. Does anyone know how does a person get to become a hifi equipment reviewer which perks such as being able auditioning some of the world's best gears? Do you need pure luck to break into this type of job or what?
.... a Journalism/English degree and/or a strong writing background (talent + experience)are important, if not essential, to land a job with any decent mag. I used to write reviews/editorials for hi tech in Canada and it's a lot harder (more work?) than you may, at first glance, think .... far from a dream job. Interviewing, travel, deadlines, rewrites, manufacturer's claims and flames and editing are all part of the game. Not to mention so-so pay.

But there was a certain euphoria when an article appeared in print. And my editor gave me carte blanche, (rare in this biz)-- only intervening to correct my horrific spelling. A kinda' miss it all.

All that said, if you are passionate and have a touch of talent, why not submit a short article to a mag or two(after you've done at least three rewirtes and had it proofed)and then follow up by phone. You never know ...good freelance writers are difficult to find .. really great ones are highly sought after. --Lorne
3chihuahuas: first, you should know that audio reviewers are not well-paid. (i've heard from several sources that $500 is about the upper limit for a freelance review.) that's why nearly all of those who contribute to tas and s'phile, for example, have full-time careers. breaking into reviewing is not easy and does depend on whom you know, though not so much as how well you write. i'd suggest you try your hand at reviewing a piece of equipment you now own and posting it on audiogon. ask for constructive criticism. keep at it. it's pretty much like the old joke about how you get to carnegie hall. practice, of course. the more you write, and write well, the better off you are. if you're really good at it, you'll likely be "discovered" or, alternatively, build a portfolio you might submit to the audio rags as your "resume." do have fun and happy listening! -kelly
About 15 years ago I was considering starting a career as a new/used hi-end equipement dealer while I was in graduate school pursueing a PhD degree in electrical engineering. It made perfect sense at first since I could enjoy the music, play/review with all kind of equipment while making a few bucks during the process. I figured with my knowledge in electronics and music appreciation, I should have a niche. No so as I soon found out. The cost to stock good equipment is overwhelming. Keeping them in circulation in the pre-Internet era was simply impossible even as I lived in metropolitan LA area. Bargain hunters simply went elsewhere after them spent all day picking my brain. Those who eventually bought from me ended up taking 24 hours of my time asking for support or simply wanted to chat.

After about 6 months, I pocketed $15K net. Not bad for a starter but far below what I originally had in mind. Worse yet, I was absoluted disgusted with music. Everyday by the time I finally had some leisure time, I found myself no longer had the desire to turn on the stereo. Music listening became a tedious task. By the time I realized that could no longer enjoy it as a hobby, I decided it was not worth the effort and went on to finish my degree.

IMHO, unless you plan to give it up as a wonderful hobby, don't quit your day job.