Definitely lonely to be an audiophile


Today Ricardo Arjona is broadcasting a virtual concert, I know most of you English natives don't care, but let's imagine is someone you like from "these" times, English speaking artist.

The neighbors have a crappy TV streaming the concert, really bad quality, my wife is upstairs watching on TV, really bad as well.

I do like his songs so I'm in my living room listening to his previous Hires records, on my super system, and I can hear next door the TV broadcasting and I'm wondering what the heck, am I crazy, I rather be alone enjoying the sound from previous Hires recordings, than socially sharing that "noise", it does makes me lonely though, I like social interactions, it is who I am, but definitely being an audiophile makes you an outcast. Just another dilemma, acceptance is bliss
Good night everybody

luisma31
It takes more than just common sense to be an audiophile.

Most people don't want to invest the time, energy, or effort into achieving objectively/subjectively better audio quality. I can't tell you how many times I've heard "as long as I can hear it I'm fine." 

And that's okay. The audio hobby is like any other...if we were stamp collectors, always bothering people about stamps would be annoying. It's the same way with audio because the average person doesn't care.

Share your experience with others close to you and perhaps they will appreciate it.
Audiophilia tends to be a solo activity. Personally, I value my alone time more than anything. I am an only child, am inclined to deep reflection and learning. As a senior executive most of my career... you  are really an island virtually always. But interactions constantly, leading and resolving conflict. So alone time is really a pleasure. So, it may be that it is a pursuit that people who like spending time alone prefer.
Plus 1, Ghdprentice. 
There's a reason the term hoi polloi is derogatory. 
noromance, penicillin will cure that...

I like animals, people.. not so much.

When it comes to music, food and animals.. I have something to talk about.. Usually with the dog though..

Regards
esoteric....intended for a few...

everything is like this, wine, food, shotguns, fly rods, ...cold molded racing sailboats....sapphire cantilevers.....

except your emotional connection to music is not a “thing “...nor your imagination...no two people read a screenplay and “ see the same picture in the mind..

OP I do hope you find people to share music with, but also enjoy the deep connection only solitude and introspection can bring...

i as well a retired executive often required to be an extrovert, value solitude...yet I cultivate and treasure relationship i have built..

stop by the Whats on your turntable thread...some of the sane extrovert hang there 

best to you
jim
@ghdprentice  and @noromance  yes nice inputs......
OP.....what a wonderful thread you may have launched...I am streaming an artist I have never heard..in a language i can at best stumble thru at a first grade level...beautifulll.....

Ricardo Arjona featuring Gaby Moreno...

ya man !!!!!!!
It has been said that the person who can't stand to be alone can't stand the person they are alone with. 

Frank
I would argue that outcast and solitude within a framework of audiophilia are the same reflection, but vary depending on the angle. Acceptance and appreciation can help in tilting towards solitude instead of loneliness.

Bringing it back down to earth. I’m sure it’s a universal principle that adding a dog to the equation will help future listening sessions veer away from feeling lonely - it obviously has with me.
My mighty K-9 companion is always just an arms length away. Heaven will be full of dogs...All my old buddies will be there, or it just won't be HEAVEN.. Plane and simple..

Love to Pooch Smooch... Good girl...

Regards
I do not agree, too many here who live in the wrong neighborhood.
I do not agree too many of us are growing older.
I do agree this hobby needs to isolate the voices of the world (but all hobbies do).
But when socializing it is nice to be asked questions about it.

G
Thank you all for your postings

@ghdprentice
Audiophilia tends to be a solo activity. Personally, I value my alone time more than anything


I agree and I value my alone time too, it is mostly a solo activity. My wife she is a pianist, she loves music, she loves to sing, but she got to the point she tells me "are we listening to music AGAIN?, I'm going upstairs to watch some TV" yeah I guess I'm intense with that, or sometimes she doesn't like the program of whatever I'm listening to.

@oldhvymec
I have something to talk about.. Usually with the dog though

Does the dog has a fluent dialog? Kidding aside I know what you mean, I talk to my dog too, she doesn't talk back but he eyes and body language says everything.

@tomic601
OP I do hope you find people to share music with, but also enjoy the deep connection only solitude and introspection can bring


I agree, thank you for the kind words, as a matter of fact last night my post was due to the fact I enjoyed listening alone, it is just that "sometimes" you think about it and you realized you are alone most of the time, not that is bad, but social interactions are important.

OP.....what a wonderful thread you may have launched...I am streaming an artist I have never heard..in a language i can at best stumble thru at a first grade level...beautifulll.....
Ricardo Arjona featuring Gaby Moreno...


Ha, I'm glad you like him, his songs are basically about life, women mostly, but always realistic things that you can relate to, the one with Gaby Moreno "Fuiste tu" is one of my favorites, it is just a song about lost love, when I met my wife we just to sing the song in duo, she taught me how to breathe through singing, how to go lower or higher registers, (don't know the term in english "impostar la voz") is like "setting your voice to mimic whichever singer registers you are doing", I'm not a very good singer though LOL. Granted you can't compare a popular music / ballads singer to something like Rimsky Korsakov, or John Coltrane, or even bands from the past like Glenn Miller's or even Rock and Roll bands like Zepp and others, still you can enjoy it. Fun fact, I learned the English language through rock, I had a notebook and manually copied the lyrics from albums into my notebook (I did not owned the albums) or had my English teacher to translate and write the lyrics for me, she made it an entire class exercise, it was fun. First lyrics I wrote were Journey's Frontiers and Escape, then Styx's Crystal Ball... fun times.

@toro3
Bringing it back down to earth. I’m sure it’s a universal principle that adding a dog to the equation will help future listening sessions veer away from feeling lonely - it obviously has with me


You know what I have been afraid the sound of my system could damage my dog hearing, maybe a silly thought, she does not like thundering or fireworks so I figure if I'm listening to high levels she could not stand the sound.

I would argue that outcast and solitude within a framework of audiophilia are the same reflection


good one, I think the word "social outcast" was a little extreme, but I tend to separate myself from people when listening, if I would have a friend over possibly he would not like the music I chose, 2 days ago I listened to Pictures at an Exhibition, I always struggled with the first part of the album, I imagine many others will do the same, so another reason why most of the time we listened alone or in solitude.

@oldhvymec
My mighty K-9 companion is always just an arms length away. Heaven will be full of dogs...All my old buddies will be there, or it just won't be HEAVEN.. Plane and simple..


Apparently I'm overthinking it, but my dog doesn't stick for the audio sessions.


The emotion in music is not from the Hertz but from the musicians.  If you can learn to connect with that no matter what the system is you'll live a longer happier life. :)
Hi Erik, you have very good posts and I respect your stance on many topics, but IMO although right the emotion is conveyed by the musicians if you don't have the Hz that emotion gets diluted and it is less impactful. Now if we are considering reasonable lost of Hz like listening to harbeths or revels or soundlabs vs Polk bookshelves yes you can still enjoy the Polk bookshelves and like you said the minimal lost in hz won't matter.
But if you are comparing the above with a Vizio 32 inch TV sound yeah I rather listen to my system




Whether we wish to address it or not, the vast majority of us audiophiles are on the autistic spectrum. Many of us are capable of limited social interaction and excellent at being flatscreen warriors when the situation calls for it. Be proud of your place on the spectrum brothers!
Maybe you should setup I surround sound setup for your tv 
then you can educate the tin 👂 how much better their audio can be.
I'm not sure the "vast majority" of audiophiles are lonely.  Who can be sure?  There's no research, so everything is anecdotal.  Some are, some aren't.

I've been an "audiophile" for over 45 years and never felt isolated to the point of loneliness; my social life is fine.  I can count on one hand the number of friends I've had who enjoyed listening intently, without conversation.  Most serious listening is solo.  Works for me.

I don't mean to pontificate, but if you're feeling lonely and that obsession with music playback is part of the cause, look inward and ask yourself if you're happy with it.  Some are.  If you're not, you might want to seek more balance.
This whole line of reasoning is beyond my comprehension. I love and listen to the music that appeals to me. ME. I never even remotely considered it a "group" hobby, like a book club. Every single system I have built over many years was for my personal enjoyment. I could care less what anyone else thinks of my system because I built it to make ME happy. If you are pursuing audio nirvana with the goal of pleasing others, you are not an audiophile, you are a wanna be orchestra conductor. I mean, think about it. Why do you think headphones are only made to fit one head at a time?
@afisher
"the vast majority of us audiophiles are on the autistic spectrum. Many of us are capable of limited social interaction and excellent at being flatscreen warriors when the situation calls for it"

I was thinking the exact same thing, in my specific case I am very social (on the outside), on the inside I might be borderline autistic, hard to explain and contradictory I know.

@audioman58
"Maybe you should setup I surround sound setup for your tv
then you can educate the tin 👂 how much better their audio can be."

Noted, that is actually not a bad idea, have the neighbors come over and test them for their inner audiophile.

@keegiam
"I don't mean to pontificate, but if you're feeling lonely and that obsession with music playback is part of the cause, look inward and ask yourself if you're happy with it. Some are. If you're not, you might want to seek more balance."

Thanks for the advice, I think I am happy with it, it is not exactly I am feeling lonely (I know I posted it does make me lonely but not exactly what I meant to say last night), I am feeling fine but good quality music it is something that meant to be shared. It is more of a question to myself if I am ok just listening alone or instead I should "try" to be more social and forget about the obsession, so your comment is right, something to ask myself. I posted because I thought that most of you would relate to the feeling.

@hobo1452
"If you are pursuing audio nirvana with the goal of pleasing others, you are not an audiophile, you are a wanna be orchestra conductor"

LOL, not my case, I enjoy my system without needing to share or please anyone else. thanks for posting
Hi Luis,
Nice thread! 
Many interesting responses and perspectives.
+1 ghdprentice and tomic601 in particular. 
I can attend a jazz club and sit through 2 or 3 sets or listen at home for hours. Very few in my social circle would enjoy this activity.  Understood and no problem. I just love music and the gifted musicians who make it possible. I feel that I'm the fortunate one.
Charles 
Solitary pursuit for sure.

There are a couple of people I can sit and listen to music with, usually followed up with conversation about what was just listened to.

There are others I can share my gear head nerd side with, which is followed up with conversation about what was just listened to.

Mostly, its my cat and myself - and the radio of course. Which currently has Tom Waits playing, so now I have to go find a record and continue that musical thought...


Nice thread! Shared thoughts. Can relate to @ghd
I was going to reply to the OP but since I'm an audiophile, I think I'll keep my thoughts to myself.
Read this story on WaPo and consider...
Meet the introverts who are dreading a return to normal
https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/introverts-are-dreading-a-return-to-the-noise-crowds-and-small-talk-of-normal-life/2021/04/09/386006b0-987b-11eb-b28d-bfa7bb5cb2a5_story.html 
“I find it wholesome to be alone the greater part of the time. To be in company, even with the best, is soon wearisome and dissipating. I love to be alone. I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.”
~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden
**** It is more of a question to myself if I am ok just listening alone or instead I should "try" to be more social and forget about the obsession ****

Anyone can be both social (i.e., have many friends and pursuits apart from enjoying music playback) and a devoted audiophile/"music lover" when alone.  Just keep your non-audiophile connections going.

As many have posted, we mostly do this high end thing solo.  All is well.  Hopefully you will find a few friends that get into it.  If not, see above.
+1  nice thread here - something on topic, relevant and thought provoking...

another vote here for my valuing personal/alone time greatly, and music/hifi is a big part of that solace and respite - sometimes too engaged in other activities, i miss it...

in business and other career/philanthropic endeavors there is a certain (fairly high) level of socialization and interaction that is required... some of it is fun, much of it is just ’work’ - trying to resolve conflicts, apply pressure to get results, problem-solve, offer support/reassurance -- necessarily doing a lot of that, and the noise level rises, clarity centering and serenity are lost

nowadays, i have a much slower work pace, more time with golf (group/social/sometimes alone), cars/track driving/instruction (mostly social), socializing with friends (over meals, concerts, etc etc) -- all of this balanced by solo time (sometimes with s.o.) immersed in music and hifi matters -- not to mention minimizing watching the cable news b-s


Wow, I've been around to see 'It'.
!
A subject that hasn't broke into friction and fuss.....;)

Yep, pretty much solo but nice when one has company.  The majority around here can't be called 'audio addicted', so they merely pass through.

Most is played at desk, when the activity allows for it.  The 'main playground' can be work as well and is used for such on occasion.

*G*.....and bigger is better to some degrees.

Not retired, nor interested, really.  I'm a partner with spouse so it's really not an option.  I'm looking forward to 'backing off' on certain aspects of that...however....
....but Full Stop would make me crazy....er....*L*

There are the times I will sit still, with whatever at hand in hand.

Sit, staring at the wall, and listening to the ghosts playing in front of it... 

Not perfect, perhaps.  Your results vary, too. ;)

Cheerios, J
Audiophiles setting up their listening room so others can enjoy the music, as well.  What's that about!?!
Stating that audio geeks are on the autistic spectrum is insulting to those who know people with autism unless the statement is broadening the "spectrum" to make a lame point. It's sadly ignorant, and simply wrong.
I value my alone time too, but I'm lucky that my partner Valerie is interested in my fiddling endeavours to improve the sound, and has input with suggestions. She also likes sitting quietly next to me to listen, as we share a liking for a lot of the same music. One thing I will say, in my alone time, I tend to have the volume higher than when we are both listening. I'm not sure if that's because Valerie likes it quieter or because she is thinking of the neighbours, I should ask :^)  Also we have totally separate finances so she doesn't grumble about the cost, she buys what she wants and I buy what I want.  In fact she has two amps and speakers of her own, even if they are Chinese :^(  We have managed 20 years like that, and still happy.
@charles1dad
"Nice thread!
Many interesting responses and perspectives.
+1 ghdprentice and tomic601 in particular.
I can attend a jazz club and sit through 2 or 3 sets or listen at home for hours"

Thanks Charles and thanks for posting, ah the jazz club, big band performances, any of these venues ... looking forward to get back to that.

@perkri
Mostly, its my cat and myself

Man what is it with animals and music, my dog is the only one that doesn't like it? I think I am coming to the conclusion I'm the one she doesn't like

@aewarren
I was going to reply to the OP but since I'm an audiophile, I think I'll keep my thoughts to myself.

Got it ;-)

@lp2cd
Read this story on WaPo and consider...

I don't read WaPo usually but not bad of an article. Especially these quotes below, to which I can relate sometimes but it is definitely not who I am.

The truth, says Sólo, is that introverts can be very engaging, but it’s draining. “If I’m going to go to a social event where I actually want to be, I’m loud, I’m making jokes, I’m telling stories. But it really does feel like you have a battery running down pretty quickly.”

Introverts missed seeing their close friends but savored the ability to go for hours or even days without speaking to another person.


@keegiam
Hopefully you will find a few friends that get into it.

Have some close but really the pandemic has placed a wide range halt to anything social, here in South Florida (party town) cases were out of control and some people decided to just sever all social interactions, for example I called my friends and they were "I would love to go to your house but I don't think my wife is onboard as she is concerned of getting sick" or "Yeah sure but if I get sick I will pass it to my kids and that wouldn't be fair"
I mean I can't argue with that logic and I totally understand, I don't consider myself a reckless person either, to be honest my wife also was freaking out of social interactions in general.

@jjss49
"nowadays, i have a much slower work pace, more time with golf (group/social/sometimes alone), cars/track driving/instruction (mostly social), socializing with friends (over meals, concerts, etc etc) -- all of this balanced by solo time (sometimes with s.o.) immersed in music and hifi matters -- not to mention minimizing watching the cable news b-s"

Thanks for posting, from your comments you have a truly balanced act, live concerts? so far I have only heard of virtual ones.

@asvjerry
A subject that hasn't broke into friction and fuss.....;)

To be honest I just posted without structuring the writing too much and just what I had in mind at the moment so it wasn't a well thought post but I knew most of us here could relate.

Sit, staring at the wall, and listening to the ghosts playing in front of it...

Nice line

@audiodwebe
Audiophiles setting up their listening room so others can enjoy the music

Not what I said.

@wolf_garcia
Stating that audio geeks are on the autistic spectrum is insulting to those who know people with autism unless the statement is broadening the "spectrum"

The statement was made like you said broadening the "spectrum" not literally, you are correct it could be insulting to some, not my intent to make it such, my apologies if it was insulting to you or others

@chris_w_uk
In fact she has two amps and speakers of her own

Impressive, I'm just curious how many do you have?

Yup, alone time is best!
Lots of truth in these posts.   I have been “searching for musical truth” only the last three years when I finally made some time and decided what the heck, “you can’t take it with you” so you might as well spend some of it..  Being absorbed in the music, usually alone, is second only to long walks in the woods or along a beach, two places where one can listen to the sounds of nature, to clear the mind and recharge the batteries ...
  Great replys to a great thread.  Listing session starts abour 7pm for me and ends about 10 or when I fall a sleep. About 1 hr in ,Louie the dog whines at the door. Won't  stop till I  let him in. He  goes to sleep fast. Not a music critic. The best audiophile friend I could have. But most of all as I listen to the misic and fiddle with the equpiment  I am thankfull for all the geniuses that made this happen for me. Thank you all. 
@luisma31

Impressive, I'm just curious how many do you have?


I have three. Frank pram stereo 30 (modified), Lafayette LA224B (modified), Yaqin MC-5881A (modified). Three sets of home built speakers. Also a Bush VHF 41 radio and a NordMende Parsifal 6/675 radio. Oh yes and a JVC soundbar for the TV, not exactly Hi-Fi but better than the TV speakers :^)
<
I like social interactions, it is who I am, but definitely being an audiophile makes you an outcast. Just another dilemma, acceptance is bliss 
>
Luis, I fear your acceptance is misguided. Your wife and friends are watching a live concert and you can't watch it with them because you're over critical of the sound? You could find your friend watching the next one with your wife... Get over it dude, solo time with your stereo is fine but be real. JMHO not judging but observing, I am as guilty as you about some other passions and it has cost me a high price. 
not many audiophiles around me that I know of. Most non-phile guests I invite over can't shut up and listen
strikes me this thread is as much about loneliness as it is about being an audiophile

loneliness is an important topic... everyone should think through what makes them happy and what is rich and what may be missing from their lives -- if one feels lonely, it can be addressed in numerous ways

being an audiophile does commit one to spending a decent amount of time in this usually solitary pursuit (as others have mentioned) - like much in a  building good, happy life, finding the right balance is key, as is the right frame of mind to address challenges life brings...
Sorry but there's some arrogance/insecurity issues there too... 
Hi @slofut,
Arrogance and insecurity issues?
I guess we infer differently the posts/comments  on this thread. Who's displaying arrogant behavior?
On the contrary I find  the commentary  quite refreshing, fun and insightful. 

Music lovers freely acknowledging the desire to listen to music is often a solo activity, this is true. Fact is  many people aren't interested in sitting for a few hours to enjoy music in their homes. Perhaps I'm missing something but that's the reality. 
Charles 
Charles, I really don’t mean to insult or offend, and it’s not hard to get the wrong impression thru an internet post and I may have. But it sounded like to me that the op said that his wife and his neighbor (not together) were going to watch a concert and it sounded like either would have liked to have him enjoy it with them, but he couldn’t because he couldn’t bear that it didn’t sound as good as his stereo, so he sat in his room and listened alone to cd’s on his fine stereo. He was implying a level of guilt over it. If that’s the case I’m sorry but that could be a bit arrogant. Not that he realizes that or intends it. Am I wrong? Or maybe I’m seeing this all wrong? Need a facepalm emoji.
And I do agree that when listening to music on my system I do prefer to be alone, most people want to talk over the music and don't get it. Although 1hr is about my limit for critical listening then ADD barges in... 
@slofut,
Understood, I realize that we just interpret Luis' comments differently. Happens often with reading text.
Charles
charles1dad >>>

Nice to see you posting here. You always bring good "vibes" to the discussion. :-)

Frank
@wolf_garcia  you must be a member of the PC culture.. I in effect identified myself as on the spectrum. Lighten up.
Well, it WAS a lonely hobby until I discovered my local audio club.  Then for 12 years, I was able to meet with a friendly bunch of audiophiles, anywhere from a dozen to 50, once a month, plus occasional mini meetings of a half dozen or so.  Great fun, as we listened to all sorts of music and gear at people's homes and audio stores.  Of course, the lockdown ended all that a year ago.  It seems even with most members being scared to death of the Wuhan virus, even post-vaccination, the future of face-to-face meetings is in doubt. So, once again, it's a lonely hobby, even though there are Zoom meetings and the occasional email or phone conversation with other members.  Zoom for an audio club meeting?  Really?  😞
Hi Frank, thanks.
Charles