The partner or wife factor

Most of us don't live alone. We have to contend with the people, we share our living space with. This can be a huge asset to our hobby, sometimes a detriment. Sometimes, listening with a loved one can deepen our involvement with the music and shared hobbies are a source of joy through the years, sometimes the hobby can be a continual source of bickering and trigger resentment and,in a worst case setting, separation either from the system or from the partner. I personally, in my long life, have both met with intelligent support for, but also viscious resentment of my gear, as systems and partners changed.( Systems more than parners) The shortest episode, hilarious actually, was when a ladyfriend , led by me proudly to the listening area , shrieked "electrosmog....!!" You can rest assured, she didn't stay very long. What about your experiences? Joyful, painful, helpful, destructive, funny or amorous ones? Very curious....
Very Funny Detlof!! I've never heard the term "ElectroSmog" before. My wife has finally come to understand that audio is a very big part of my makeup and serves as a balancing ingredient to my overall mood. Although she doesn't share the same enthusiasim as I do she does prefer to hear her music on my system instead of hers. She understands that my hobby can be costly most of the time but trusts that I won't
strain our overall budget with irresponible purchases. She mayget a little upset when I get a little loud but other than that, it's my world as long as it's in the basement.
When I first met my wife, she was helping move myself and a mutual friend into a new apartment. She was present for the ritualistic unboxing of the 'system' and laughed at my neurotic nature. Later on she realized the difference that good equipment makes. She refuses to become 'involved' in the hobby but hears and comments on changes in the system. She actually was the one that purchased our latest pair of speakers ... CDM-1se. As far as tolerance of the 'system' the only request she has ever made is that I make it fairly easy for her to play an album and she not see wires all over the living room. She feigns protest to upgrades, but readily comments on the improvements that she hears. Now all I need to do is talk her into that projector ...
Good String Here! I have had many partners, only two regular ones. One that hated all the "electrosmog" & one that was happy that I was happy. The latter being the best to live with. As for now, I visit parners enviroments, & then return home to the deticated listening room for "brain-cleaning" & solitude. This lifestyle seems to best for all parties. If I have a bad hair day, I just turn off the system & close the door & go crusing in my sportscar.
Having been with my curent girlfriend over six years, she has always been very tolerent of my aduio interests. She is a very good resource to have along when on auditions (better ears than I), and is usually the voice of reason when I "get a little carried away" with upgrades. I am cuurently about to move into her house; knowing this is a little scary for me, she is buying me a new set of Dunlavy Cantatas to "make you feel a little more comfortable in my place"...a keeper!
Jeez Chad, does she have a sister?
My wife wouls rather knothat I am downstairs listening to my system than out drinking w/my buddies. When you factor in the risk of DUI's, its a LOT cheaper!
This is a great thread! My wife knows my love of music and my system. She doesn't listen with me as much as I would like and that's cool but every once and awhile she will look around to see if there's any new gear that I might have added.(justfy time)What was wrong with the piece you had?
wow, amazing how similar the stories are! we all seem to have partners that are reasonably tolerant of our systems, but it's rare that one shares in the enjoyment. My wife does listen to the system, and likes it, but probably keeps it in better context than i do.

my dad has for year tried to get my mom to enjoy golf. mom just doesn't care - tolerates outings at best. i think dear old dad has finally realized that it's going to have to be "his" time.

moral of the story, i guess if you can find someone willing to put up with your sickness, er - hobbie, you better keep them!
I agree, this is a good thread and we all seem to have a lot in common with this one. While my girlfriend has "raised hell" many times about all of the gear (she calls it a "cluster") i have all over the place, she loves listening to music and is not afraid to voice her opinion about what sounds "good" or "bad". When we first got together, i had a large tri-amped system that she really didn't know how to work. I still have that, but am in the process of "upgrading" most of it. I ended up setting up a "simple" HT based system for her to use. That lasted about two weeks and then it was replaced with what is currently a "runaway monster" with four towers, dual subs, 6000+ watts, etc... After that, i set up a small bedroom system for her to use when she wants to lay down, relax, read, etc.. That system now has stand mounted monitors, twin downloaded subs, tuner, preamp, power amp, CD, cassette, satellite, vcr, 27" TV, etc... Are we seeing a trend here : ) My puter room system (which she likes the best) uses very "strange looking" omni-directional speakers and is powered by 800 wpc mono-blocks. The basement system currently uses a set of HIGHLY modified horns with .... Ah, you get the idea. To put up with all of this, she MUST be a "keeper".... Now if i can just break the news about the system that i want to put in the bathroom.... : ) Sean
Seems, females get hooked on other things than electronic stuff and their music reproduction, though most of us like music of course. So our influence is probably being made felt in the sense of balancing out those attacks of hypertrophia, a male hobby in full bloom can often come under.
My wife is pleased with the "hobby" & loves the music. However, cannot fiqure out how the placement of the "switches" on the preamp keep changing.
Does anyone know where Sean lives? Don't worry, his equipment is in no danger from me, it's his girlfriend I want for my listening room(s). :-)
Tolerant is the best word. My wife knew from the beginning that I was not likely to give this hobby up. I am fortunate enough to have a dedicated listening room which was modified from a game room. She does enjoy family movies in the theater. A close friend of mine, also an audiophile, has a very nice system in their main living room. He makes asthetic compromises to please his wife. She came to our house one day, looked at my system (bi-amps with very larg monoblocks and Martin Logan Monoliths) and said: "Excuse me, but THAT would never be in our house."
W.A.F. aside, how about IN-LAWS?? My friend loves music but rarely joins in listening tests. Not so, her mother. We recently sat down with my "virtual" mother I-L and auditioned speakers for a whole weekend!! In fact, I had comments such as "awesome, WOW! (A. Physics-Medea)", "go back there again --- did I hear a slight compression? -- think we need bigger amp here..." or, "we're bass heavy here, let's play around with placement and try again...".

At home, she listens to a bog-standard, 10yr old, Sony mini system...
I sometimes wish I could share the excitement of an upgrade with my partner, though.
This thread makes me chuckle, so I will pass on a little tale that might help you out. Show this one to your wives if they think you go "too far"...
Upon moving into the new domicile, It was discovered that I just COULD NOT get the turntable to be free from the shabby listening room floors "bendable" nature. Even a wall mount would not work. (Next house will be a concrete dome...)

Since the listening room does not have a basement under it, I did the right thing. Well, I thought it was the right thing.

As my wife got home from a long day at work, she found my brother, a friend and I deep into a project. The living room rug was history, there was a 4'X 4' hole in what used to be the floor/subfloor and where there once was the concrete pad that the original addition was built on, now was a 4 foot round, six foot deep..hole right into the ground.

She asked if we had too many beers. (There were only two empty cases in the kitchen.) She then asked if we had finally gone off and killed the trash next door and needed a place to dump the bodies.
Then she asked how she would get the concrete dust off of everything.
The WORST thing however, was the aircompressor spitting oil all over the porch after it ran the jackhammer for an hour to chop out the concrete. (carpet number two)

She decided it would be best to go to her friends house untill the dust settled and the slightly intoxicated helpers were gone.

The next afternoon, with a new piece of plywood on the floor she realized that there was a 4X4, sunk 6 feet into the ground (no bodies dear), then concreted under the house.

There were no arguements about the whole affair, we both knew better. I dont tell her what furniture to buy, what dishes, art supplies, dog classes, "you want a new car honey?" Go ahead, buy that new dress, it looks nice on you. Get the PROTON clock radio dear, not the cheapie. Go for the gusto! You like that color for the siding? Okay..etc etc.
The sound system and the autos are MY department. Everything else is hers.

In my living room now protudes a nicely stained 4X4 with a "home-made" plastic gasket around it. There is a cut in our carpet that "kind of" hides the interface between the floor and the 4 feet of beam sticking out of it.
The concrete dust has settled and been cleaned.

The LP12 sits on its perch like a proud bird on a dock piling. We have had company over the years that have commented on the "ugly" thing next to the "ugly" seven foot tall metal rack. "What is THAT for? Don't you stay with the times? We have CD's nowadays you know..."
A few have actually been seen to have goosebumps when she would proudly smile and say "yeah, but listen to this new Sting we just had imported from the UK."

As the Grado dropped in the groove, those without ears of tin understood.

But I still joke about that day she came home and handled the situation so well. It all worked out. Plus, she got new floor coverings. ;)

The day after, as we danced on our bare living room floor with zero upset to the stylus riding in the groove....she said, "I think the sound is wonderfull, but I think the cartridge is getting a bit tired. Maybe you should go get a new one."

God, I love my wife.
First time I ever went over to my wife's house, she had Al DiMeola playing over a classic pair of JBLs. She had no reason to know that would impress me (on both counts). She's very interested in music, having taken up playing the guitar a couple years ago, but she keeps her distance from the electronics. I'm not sure why - if I ever get her to sit down and listen, she realizes it's awesome, but I suppose if she ever let on that she enjoyed it, she thinks it would just fuel the fire. She's always been okay with my expenditures, though I'm the wage earner so she probably doesn't think she can put the total kabosh on them. It's the only really expensive thing I do, so I don't see how she can have too much of a problem with it.
The only way I can really get into music, and the associated gear, is alone. My wife comes into the sound room by invitation because it is also my studio (I am a visual artist). When she does she demands to hear Cannon's Jog Stompers or Blind Blake (1926-32 recordings). Then maybe Arvo Part, and then she gets antsy and wants to leave. It's a good arrangement because I really listen alone. When she is there I am enjoying her presence more than the music anyway.
if people are rational and communication is possible, all problems can be solved.

it is possible for the "addicted" person to educate and have many talks with the "disinterested" person. it helps to have some love and respect so comprimises can be made.

in my case i have my gear in a separate room and i frequently ask my wife to confirm what i hear. i get a kick out of her comments when she says "that sounds muffled".

i occasionaly play music that i don't like just to please her. she is very tolerant, but disinterested.
My wife has put up with my upgrades for the last few years without much fuss. I went from a system that was worth around 15 hundred to my current system, which cost quite a bit. When she wants something, she usually gets it, like the new deck and front porch we are putting in, with a new lawn to follow. I didn't hesitate to agree with the deck/porch/lawn, even though I had multiple thoughts, and suggestions of different system upgrades, of which, she politely declined. She's been the greatest with my habit. I always turn the music down, or off, when she is around because she had 3 brain hemorrhages about ten years back, and still has very severe headaches on a regular basis, and once in a while she needs to take some heavy duty medication to quell them. Yeah, she's been real good to me, and I return the favor.
It feels good to see my old thread revived, thanks to Chashmal and the virtual vaults of A. I think it was the great George Steiner, one of the finest literary minds of our times, Professor of Comparative Literature at Chicago, Oxford and Geneva who said and here I quote: " To listen to music with the loved one is to be in a condition simultaneously private,almost autistic, yet strangely welded to another (shared reading, reading aloud, does not achieve this)." I know this to be true and lucky the man who has a companion who would share his love for music in the same way.
The quote by the way, is from Steiner's book "ERRATA, an examined life", Yale University Press, 1998. His chapter on music is highly recommended, especially to those, who like me are in never ending wonderment about what music does to us and why.
$1.280: You are a good man!
Detlof: You sound like someone I would've liked having as
a professor back in college. Your comments have more substance than the usual poster, including myself.
Not to sound cheezy or anything. :)
err how about when your six year old -- who loves music-- says daddy "you are always playing that stereo"
Kbuzz, keep the lad listening to the stereo, and away from the television. I think T.V. is the worst thing there is for a child, that's without parental guidance, of course. I bought a 40 inch LCD HD TV for $1700, got the dish, with all of the HD channels, and I watch television about a half hour a day. (The news, weather). Where was my head that day?????
Another reason to consider the wisdom of Tom Leykis.
To paraphrase Detlof's Steiner quote: listening to music in the absence of a loved one can turn solitude into intense loneliness.

Just an idea.
...but a very good and deeply true one, dear Greg!
The Italian Audiophiles had the solution to the problem for years. Then they legalized divorce in that country and the murder rate went down dramatically. Or were those the Roman Catholics?