I have music systems in every room of the house. From major high-end to little mini-systems.
It's all about the music. If you ever lose sight of that fact, find another hobby.
The effect of real music is not to make us analyze and dissect the sound. Music properly reproduced appeals to another part of the brain/body system. So the challenge in this hooby is to build a system that plays mussic. That means finding equipment combinations that work well together. If you sit down in front of a system and start dissecting everything you hear, that means the system is not playing music. It doesn't matter what it cost. A small system can do the job.
Have I become jaded in this hobby? I get jaded pdq when I l have to listen to a system that makes me dissect the sound.
I have not become jaded.
I have a couple systems that can produce (re-produce) a lot of musical information and I love listening to them.
I also have a vintage system in a guest bedroom that has a pair of Altec Valencias and will pick one of my old Marantz receivers to drive them. I love that one too. I even marvel at what the Bose Wave Radio can do.
For me, like Mofi said, it's about the music.
I'm enjoying the computer system I'm on right now. It's not hi end at all.
It's all about the music.
I've actually had the opposite happen, I've heard some cheap systems, and even the stereo in my truck, blow me away with the sound, to the point of wondering what in the world am I spending so much money on audio eqipment for. I enjoy my audio aystem, but occasionally, a very inferior system will really give me pause for thought!
I used to have a $25k system and got bored with it - sold off everything and gave up on 2 channel except for a very modest one box system for my office. Decided I miss it, so set a budget of $2k per piece, built up a nice computer based system and have never been happier. I think diminishing returns really start to kick in after that which don't add to my enjoyment of the music, just my desire for bigger and better.
Yes of course it is about the music BUT also this hobby is about the tools used to reproduce the music to our liking. There is no need to place value statements on people who like the equipment and the music. This is not afterall a musical appreciation site, just check out the forum topics!
The reality is that there's always something better...well, at least different...out there. The only way to be satisfied with your system is to avoid listening to other similar or better systems. I you don't, you'll suffer from envy of having a different or better sound. Only go shopping when you're really looking to purchase rather than just planning to look.
My friends are amazed at the sound of my system and few have ever heard anything better. I've almost stopped looking at audio equipment because it just makes me want more and I have more than enough to be satisfied.
The only time I really get down to dissecting the music as to what is going on and how is when I am totally involved with it. The more involved I get the more I listen closely, for all the little things that are or aren't there. Did s/he miss a note, do I care, how did that bit come about?
Music pulls me in, have sat fitfully through recitals where the performance was miserable and the encores outstanding and worth it.
Yet a simple car radio or my computer and a pair of logitech speakers also satisfies me. It is the music first and foremost.
I can definitely sit down and listen to simple and inexpensive systems without being critical. It also makes me appreciate my gear much more. I will never be jaded because basically the music comes first and I am very aware that I will never have what one would call the ultimate system, if it exists. Most of us cannot say that money is not an object, so we upgrade within our means as well. I can tell you that I will not be upgrading my $5,000 speakers to Wilson Alexandria's.
I enjoy the music listening to my boston acoustics computer speakers. When it comes to my main setup in the family room, I just can't seem to get to the point where I'm simply enjoying the music. But I don't feel I'm jaded.
I'm enjoying the computer system I'm on right now. It's not hi end at all.
It's all about the music.
Zmanastronomy (System | Threads | Answers | This Thread)
Same here. I don't have a system set up right now after being an audiophile for 25+years. I listen on the speakers built into my computer monitor and on a simple headphone rig connected to my computer.
I really enjoy hearing a great system, but for me the music is more important.
I have a vintage system in the basement that I like the sound of very much. Not near as good as my main system, but I thoroughly enjoy it. I also find myself getting into some great tunes while listening to my stock GM radio in my car, and, again, thoroughly enjoying them.
i have a different perspective.
live music in a concert hall or smaller place, like a musuem, library auditorium, got example is my reference.
i get disappointed when i listen to stereo systems, and realize that they sound so far removed from what musicians sound like live. i sometimes get frustrated when i make changes to my own system, to try to get closer to the "live sound", that i often feel that it doesn't matter what the medium is, e.g., computer speakers, table radio, car radio or portable stero, because all fall very short and have severe flaws, relative to the real thing.
so it is not so much being jaded, but rather the realization that a good stereo system, whatever that is to anyone, is a poor substitute for live music.
its a realization of wanting something realizing you can't attain it.
as the stones sing "you can't always get what you want".
no, i'm not jaded, as there are times i will attempt to adjust my stereo and admit that i prefer it after the adjustments. there are other times that i am not motivated to tinker or listen.
I just purchased an old 1963 Heathkit AA-151 Integrated Amp. The front looks like the dash of a 50's Chevy. It has salmon colored vinyl paint on the cover and front trim.
I hooked it up to some cheap old monitors and turned it on. The source was my computer. Through the very noticeable hum I heard music that was sweet and natural, and thought to myself, I love this damn thing!!!
Oh, and then there's my other system which ain't bad either. A hobby is what you make of it.
Yeah. Instead of wondering what to do, i just listen to music.
Instead of wondering how to spend my money, no problem, i spend it one way or another on my stereo or on more music.
Instead of going out for entertainment, i stay at home and listen to music.
Instead of browsing the internet for juicy celebrity gossip, i go to audio sites and ponder crazy questions like this one.. While i listen to music.
Since i retired 14 months ago. my average day is spent listening to music for at least ten of those hours, Sleeping at least another ten, and going out to look for music a few days a week averages out the rest of the days hours.
This hobby has filled my life full, and i have no problems with that at all.
I love music, and this hobby brings me closer to my love of music.
I go long stretches (years) where I am enjoying the music deeply on whatever equipment that I have. During these times I still stay interested in hearing new composers or new renditions of my favorites.
Then I will have a period of equipment analysis, perhaps make a purchase and then analyze the results. This whole evaluation period may last about two months, and is very absorbing/exciting but if it becomes longer it becomes fatiguing.
I enjoy listening to other people's systems, hearing the recordings they find most special and sensing their passion about good sound.
Have to agree with Mceljo, in that I have had the experience that listening to a system/room that is at a higher level than mine, at times has inspired me to aim higher. Or I just let the urge pass and in a few weeks I am back to full enjoyment with what I have.
Listen to music in the car much less now; about the only time now is when OPV (the NPR station here) has its membership drive (I'm a member,BTW).
I'm not the least bit jaded by the hobby itself. You meet some of the nicest, smartest, funniest people. You're connected to a world of appreciation for the arts, for design, for knowledge. If done well it invigorates, soothes, restores, the human spirit. It's a hobby, like many others, that connects you to something life-giving, life-affirming. I would be very sad to be without it.
Like most of you, I can have my jollies listening to anything good even on a table or car radio. You can all remember great moments with friends doing that. And like mrtennis, live music is of course a must, and still the overall complete package.
But, assemble a system that can sing, at any given price point, and you can have such pleasures in your own home that enthrall to no end. Sure, it's not live, but what if the "live" performer or performance sucks? Is it still better to listen to that, than to go home and blare out Renee Flemming or Ivan Morevac and be dazzled by artistry that only comes along now and then? That you can hear whenever you want, wearing whatever you want, and with not a lot of coughers and loudmouths sitting near you?
If you cannot be moved by a synergistic stereo system, even of meager means, then sell your system and start over.
So to answer your question, I'm not the least bit jaded by this hobby!
Am I jaded if I:
* Gag whenever I hear someone say "Bose is high qualiy"?
* Get annoyed listening to harsh sounding digital sources when I know what a warm analog source with tubes can produce?
* Get even MORE enjoyment from my favorite record or artist on a great sounding system?
* Get annoyed with a soundstage that is narrow, flat, and shallow?
In short, "Come, come, my good man, there are standards to be upheld..." (And I mean that in an unsnobby way...for the most part.)
Sometimes it seems 90% of audiophiles think they have the best sound attainable, and the other 90% are unhappy with their system. ;)
Thanks to the hobby aspect, I enjoy music all the more. The two go hand in hand. Hobby, the first part, is the quest for better equipment which results in better music appreciation, that second part we sometimes forget about.
Getting jaded is easy if your funds are low, the piece you bought doesn't do it for you, or you come to the realization that what you had was good enough. I've been there but thanks to sites like this, you can recoup some of your investment, make friends, get great advice, and move on, being all the more discerning. Hopefully.
I would never say I got jaded, just bummed or frustrated, but not enough to turn me off to this hobby. In fact, these bad experiences just whetted my appetite for something better.
Zmanastronomy, yup, I know. It's part of the reason why I put the " ;) " at the end of the comment. My point was to show not just the pervasiveness of both attitudes but that audiophiles seem to vacillate between them with regularity. So, if you ask me, I'd say the comment is 200% correct! ;)
Note " ;) " following comment! :)
It just so happens, that I have been pondering those same questions. I have come to the conclusion that I am no longer an "audiophile", I am now a "musiophile", and I like it much better.
"Musiophile" good answer!!
(Pretend a giant black hole has sucked all the manufactures out of space-time. And you have the only decent system left. no more parts, no more electronics to buy, for at least the next hundred years...)
That you can get stuff fixed, if it breaks, but the electronics can never be upgraded. That's it. stuck with what you got.
So you are forced to get over upgrading and all those worries and start just enjoying the music with what you have, while you can! Never know when another black hole is gonna suck up YOUR system, and then No more music!
So enjoy what you have, while you have it!
If you are not enjoying the music, your priorities are definitely in the wrong place.
it is very easy to enjoy music. any emadium will do. you can even sing a song in your own mind.
Douglas Schroeder, your premise is very good. There are lots of dissatisfied philes here. Imo it's a complex pursuit to get right. Wish there were more blueprints.
Its about the music not the equipment.
this is a hobby with alot going for it. there is the music in all the foremats. there is all the technology and innovations. there is the personalization of your own unique system. there is always something new on the horizon. there is the tweaking and diy aspect. there is the sharing of ideas among a small group of enthusiasts. there are venomous exchanges to savor. and it can be done in the privacy of your home,, if i put birdhouses of my own design in the yard a zoning commissioner would swing by. ha, i have become bored with several hobbies but never audio
I have three 2-channel systems on one rack. I play them one week at a time in rotation. They all have different 'wire'.Amp and cd players. I have three, in part, because I cannot stand the thought of being without music , in case of breakdown. I have never heard any difference in any of them. They all sound great. After reading the posts here, I don't know if I'm blessed or cursed.
I think I still have perspective,:-). I get a real kick from overachieving value champion systems. On the other hand, I get disgusted by the sound in movie theatres.