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Avideo, if you are married, you have a very, Very, VERY understanding wife. One that may even be into audio as well. If you are not married, you just do not understand marriage. I could go on for a long while about this subject, but I will try to be brief...
Marriage is one big compromise between two people. One person cannot have things totally their way (that can be construed as slavery of sorts).
Okay, I'll admit to being pecked, asking for approval and explaining why the system is not "whole" without an upgrade. (never resorted to begging). But that was until I follow the advice from an earlier post, to involve and let the wife listen to her music on the rig. I do let her have a small section (1/2 shelf space) for her 25 CDs. Since then I was able to purchase four ASC tube traps, but she picked the color. Does that mean I'm still pecked?
For those who are pecked, it is easy to get away with upgrading Audio Research gear, they all look the same to them.
The ARC comment is correct. It is one of the things (besides sound) that I enjoyed about owning ARC. I now have Pass Labs Equipment and fortunately it all sorta looks the same, too. Problem is as you move up the line of preamps each has an additional chassis. I only need to hide the receipts.
I have a cooperative wife when it comes to the appearance of the room. Afterall, no one would agree that Dunlavy SC-Vs are nice for a room's decor. I try to accomodate her esthetic needs whenever possible. But she understands the life long endeavor of great sound.--Or at least says she does.
She gets to choose all furniture that is sat upon, tables, and all major appliances around the house. These are what are important to her. A marriage is a never ending group of compromises. I am fortunate to only have to compromise on those items that are of importance to her and she only on the ones important to me. Sounds simple when typed.
Best Regards, Aaron
I'm not married. I have speakers 6 feet tall and 3 feet wide each, placed way out into the living room. I have no TV. My listening chair is placed right in the sweet spot with no regard for "fitting into a decor". I have room lenses positioned where they should be. I have a small table for my wine glass and my ashtray. I spend myself half broke quite often on new gear and Lp's. If I have to eat hot dogs for awhile to make up for it, then that's what I do. If I have a date, we go out, or if she comes in, then she accepts things as they are. Changing your life for every swinging skirt that comes along is no way to live.
Avideo, All the power to you. My theroy is this. The hosue has many rooms. All I ask for is 1 room to do as I please in. IF after all the hard work I do,the women in my life wont give me one room to do as I please in, then she is not the one I would want to spend the rest of my life with.
To many of you guys are so pecked it pathetic
Just for the record, I should mention that I've been married twice in the past. My first wife and I were together
for 9+ years before getting a no-fault divorce. And my second wife (who was everything the first WAS NOT) and I were together for three years; before she passed away quite suddenly following a surgery. For the past two years, my current girlfriend and I have been living together in my home. While I do try to get equipment racks, stands, and speakers that do blend well with out better quality furniture (mostly Ethan Allen); I've NEVER had to hide or in any way move my equipment around to meet with some arbitrary decorating scheme. Or for that matter meet with some overly fussy woman's "approval".
Avideo, then you have a great girlfriend! Be happy! You have your cake and are eating it to. I slightly envy you. My wife loves the audio... although she has drawn a line in the living room at NO MORE SPEAKERS. I currently run 7 channel surround sound and 7 peakers is a bit much for her, heh heh...
Although if you do marry her... she could change and transform... but no telling. :-)
When I was a kid I cared about sound and not what speakers or any of my stuff looked like. Now I do. I want attractive speakers in my living room (the only room fit for sound in my home). My wife did not like one of the speakers I had in the past and I sold them. But I got rid of them because I didnt like them as much as I had anticipated, not because she didnt like them. Not that I am boss of the world, it is because she was willing to compromise to make me happy. She is glad I care what our living room looks like and usually likes what I pick out. Even with a limited budget like mine you can find speakers that sound -and- look good. Life is a two way street when you are married and if you dont respect your partner you should live alone.
I have my room where I have the speakers racks amps video gadgets I want tastefully decorated by my wife. I put stuff where I want for musical video reasons. However, the main living areas are also decorated tastefully by my wife, who, except for her selection of me, has fantastic taste. This is where wife friendly and compromise comes in. I love the best sound and video within reason everywhere major I use it. Living room and Bedroom included. My wife let me get revel M20's in rosewood and this was a push. Nothing free standing in the floor. Surrounds are highest level sonance buried in the ceiling. I snuck in a 10" white sunfire archetectural sub in a corner in front of white woodwork and she has lived with it. My amps preamps ect. are buried in a huge armoir bookshelf where the speakers reside. Is the sound as good as it could be. No the sub could certainly be bigger and better as could all else(although the proceed AVP and CJ 5600 amp do make a sweet combo). However the sound is a whole lot better than the alternative and my wife actually likes it.
You have a very unjealous wife. My wife won't listen to my system, she likes her pioneer much better. There was one moment when I begged her to sit and listen to how real a voice could sound...I saw the awe in her face for a split second and a nod of approval. That was quite a moment.
She's back to the pioneer now, but I like it that way.
My wife is always complaining that I don't listen to her. She's right.
She always complains about everything I buy. "It's ugly, that's hideous...". I always offer to go upline, buy something else I may have wanted but didn't have the money for. I tell her look, I could get these (fill in the blank), it will only cost another couple grand. That usually shuts her up. After a week or so, I never hear another complaint about that item again.
I do think the WAF has a lot to do with the cable business though, because we can easily change cables in and out without any comments at all. She has no idea what goes on behind the equipment.
I guess the spouse acceptance factor would greatly depend on disposable income. I wouldn't expect any wife/husband to accept the fact that their husband/wife just signed their lives away on a $10k pair of speakers when their significant other is driving an 85 Honda Civic. If money is tight as well as living space, I could see how this would be an issue. Marriage is a partnership and if there isn't compromise in it, then said marriage isn't long for this world. If both are making a comfortable living and my guess is that the majority of audiophiles are, then I see no reason why Mr. or Mrs. Audiophile should be able to have one room that is theirs for music. Then again, some audiophiles are just plain whipped.
It's all Martha Stewart's fault.
2 more words:
Actually, I think those silly decorator magazines are terrible jokes played on us males.
How is it possible to have living rooms/bedrooms like those?
Short of hiring a maid to put every remote/coffee cup/magazine in the most aesthetically pleasing manner, I don't see how it can be done.
But, you are right.
A relationship is a compromise.
The Soundlab U-1 speakers in our living room are hardly noticeable, especially after Stanley Kubricks marvel, 2001.
Consider the huge black monoliths with space and stars shining over them. Envision the large hairy monkeys throwing bones skyward after examining the monoliths.
Maybe my wife just considers my hobby something to monkey with and tolerates it. After all, she choose the washer and dryer and BOY are they ugly.
Sound bad too.
I thought it couldn't be done at first, but Ellen approved of N803 and Verity Parsifal Encores (which I couldn't resist), but NOT Revels or Aeriel 8. Hanging the ugly Aleph monos UNDER the floor joists proved wonderfully elegant for allowing short cables, heat control, and aesthetics!
Getting a HEAVY Arts & Crafts leaded-doors cabinet from Drexel ($1400) was a gorgeous, sturdy solution for BOTH the Aleph P, MD100 tuner, and now the Alesis Masterlink (to record my Steinway behind the Encores!).
She even approved the (gorgeous) Electrocompaniet EMC-1 MkII ABOVE said cabinet (phew!), between dried flower arrangements. To maintain audiophile rigor all components sit on good-looking Neuance iso/absorb shelves.
Dedicated mains, PCs, interconnects all run UNDER the floor in the basement's ceiling save for the two pretty ribbons of Red Dawn flowing from the baseboards towards the Encores.
I even hid the mic cables up in the ceiling (attic floor!), so the Earthworks mics sit hidden behind the crossbeams on the ceiling! The Grace mic pre sits velcroed UNDER the piano
front edge, mic cables dressed behind doorway edges with those $5/6' sections of paintable wire tubing from the Depot.
So I have a nearly completely hidden ref system AND recording studio in a formal late-colonial/A&C parlor.
Ellen still feels the need to refer to it as our "music room" in deference to a formal living room, but a nice piece of jewelry each year while we're on vacation seems to mysteriously keep us both on an even keel (balast works both ways?!).
I'm actually quite surprised how elegant the gloss-black Encores look in front of my striped-mahogeny B. So I get to sit in an 8' near-field triangle 8' in front of the front wall, providing a HUGE and ultradeep soundstage, NOT
a severely compromised flat mural the common result of wall or shelf-mounted speakers in high-end "decorators" luxury installs. TV has its own place in a 5.1 HT system in another room...as it should be! Cheers.
Hey, I only bought $5,000.00 speakers & drive a 1984 Honda Civic!!! Really!!! Well, the speakers list for almost that (4750.00) but I paid less. I actually like driving the beater around because nobody messes with it. The wife bought a new car in '98 & is happy with it. In fact, last week she bought me a '95 Bonneville. It was my Aunt's car, so we got a deal.
Before we were married (1987) we lived together for 5 years. I had the beginnings of a decent system then (Shahinian, Luxman tube pre & Adcom 555 & MC analog) and she liked it. Nowadays, she doesn't care much for it, but if I pick up a CD she likes (Dylan, Ry Cooder, Diana Krall) or play some old favs (Traffic, Beatles) she'll have a listen. For the most part, she could care less about it, although when I brought home the VR4 gen III's, she did say they were the ugliest speakers I've ever had.
I value my marriage way more than my stereo, so if it really was a problem, I would compromise or even get rid of it, using just a headphone system. At one time my Harley was the most important thing in my life, but I've learned material things are fleeting at best.
Don't misunderstand me, I really enjoy my system & get a tremendous amount of pleasure from it, both from listening & tinkering, but if my house were to go up in flames, my first priority would be my family.
I told my live in girlfriend of 6+ years that she can pick the decor so long as it does not affect the acoustics of any room that i have a system set up in. With that in mind, i try to work with her in terms of how equipment is placed, the ergonomics of the systems, etc... I have encouraged her to take up crafts thinking that she may be able to work with me in "decorating" some of the sound absorption panels, bass traps, etc... So far, she's not been real enthusiastic, but i don't think she'll mind once she becomes more skilled at sewing, knitting, etc... I have no problem with something looking "attractive", "homey" or even "feminine" so long as it does not kill me acoustically. So far, she likes making natural wreaths the best. I guess that these could act as a random "diffuser" if properly placed : )
With all of that, the only things that she has ever really raised hell about in terms of cosmetics were my G&D UTP-1 transport and my Klipsch La Scala's. The faceplate of th G&D looks like a piece of granite. As such, she calls it "that Flintstone looking thing" : ) As to the other "eyesore" ( according to her ), she really disliked were my modified La Scala's. A few years back, i had the La Scala's as my HT mains with Heresy's as rears, etc... She ABSOLUTELY HATED those "big square boxes" in that room. As such, i took them out, moved them into the basement and built a "vintage" tube system around them. As for the HT speakers, i now have five foot tall towers in front with matching four foot tall towers for the rears. This does not bother her in the least. Go figure.... Sean
PS... The fact that i went from 104 dB horns up front and 96 dB horns in the rear to 87 dB dynamic drivers all the way around absolutely forced me to completely redesign my HT system. Needless to say, i had to go WAY, WAY up on power. There is NO substitute for speaker efficiency short of a few kilowatts : )
Sean... I'm surprised to hear you were/are a Klipsch guy. It seems like a shrinking crowd - is it another case of classic product lines being obscured my mediocre newer stuff? Does it matter that a speaker design is forty years old? Is there really that much difference between tube amp designs of 40 years ago and today?
My wife is very easygoing -- I have Klipsch La Scala pros up front (larger bass driver, black rumble-coat and PA handles, the one-piece model) and (prettier) walnut Forte IIs up back. Rogue M120 monos up front and CJ Sonographe SA400 in the rear. The tubes bought me lots of room with my wife ; ) Now, if she could only understand why I love push-pull, while she loves triode...
That may take a while.
some of you poor souls make me feel like the luckiest man alive ... hey maaaaybe I am?
I get no complaints & plenty of support; she even understands some of the technicalities & her ears are better than mine too. I really hear about it when there's something amiss with the sound.
Regarding Towers: she does wish that I'd sell off some of my surplus though; the boxes are stacked floor to ceiling & there's more than one stack. Life could certainly be worse.
Great reponses so far!!
Since my living room is 22 x 16 and the 16 consists of Aerial 10Ts outside, Aerial SW-12s (2) inside from there, with the Aerial CC-5 in the middle on the massive black stand, it is not the most attractive arrangement one could come up with. Since it is MY house, and she has moved in with ME, it will be dealt with. In California, when married, what you come into a marriage with is yours should you split. In Audio words, when you come into a house, what speakers/audio gear you see stays, and can be a revolving door.
It is a little easier when there is a Plasma on the back of the CC-5 stands and a 120" screen that drops in front for larger films. You see, I always enter a date/relationship with "this is why the addition needs to be finished!".
They love it!
Before taking the cloth your prelate was married for nearly twenty years to a woman with a passion for horses. Our arrangement was very clear: I won't tell you how to do your horse thing and you won't tell me how to do my sound thing. One or two times in the course of two decades she tried to put her foot down about something in the music room and was blithely ignored. I simply did not allow it to become a topic for disucssion any more than she would have allowed me any input about her custom-built Passier saddles. In fact, the notion of either of us having a controlling interest in the life of the other was foreign to both of us from the beginning.
Our marriage ended in a very amiable no-fault divorce but it had nothing to do with tolerance for each other's passions.
Communication, gentlement. And mutual respect.
I'd rather be lucky than good any day. My marriage proves it. My wife has never complained about any audio component I have owned. She has never taken issue with my demand for a home with concrete floor for the audio room. She has encouraged me to buy a Harley, didn't flinch at the cost of all the upgrades to the bike and helped me justify building a seriously fast pro-touring 67 Nova. This woman has bought me the toys of my dreams for Christmas/birthdays/anniversarys for over 30 years. Oh yeah, she has never asked me to turn the volume down. I'm unworthy.
Yep - couldn't agree more. The longer I'm married, the more resolve I have to be able to carry out my interests in my own way. Since audio is one of the few things that I'm really avid about, the fact that I want something that looks "too macho" or requires specific placement, etc. etc. is something that needs to be accomodated, not rejected. I don't get hassled (nor would I listen to it) about how much I spend on CDs either.
I'm very happily married for 13 years and counting, and I think a major reason is because we both have things that are important to us that the other couldn't care less about, but supports.
Although I did have them recovered them in a neutral shade of Belgian linen, Magneplanar Tympanis are not exactly a high WAF item.
But I wouldn't dream of switching or giving up garden hose sized cables snaking across my sea grass and turkish carpets right smack in the middle of the living room -- with components shamelessly stacked high in the open for me to happily gaze upon while listening.
My girlfriend knows that this hobby has been a big part of my life for many years and that asking me to switch to in wall speakers or mini monitors would be like asking me to change.
I will confess that the WAF test has failed miserably with my car, a 2 seat only, little trunk room, track stiffened Porsche Boxster S, and I do hear regular complaints about how "uncomfortable" and "impractical" it is with "no room for a baby".
So I am considering a "compromise" -- a race prepared 911 turbo with two rear "seats" for a baby.
When women ask you to change, they are secretly, unconsciously testing your strength. If you are not strong, they don't feel secure. If they don't feel secure, well -- you better hope the UPS man doesn't work out a lot and have a good sense of humour.
Don't change. Don't compromise. Don't be henpecked. Enjoy audio.
Your comments about decorators is not really accurate. I owned a home theater business which installed custom home theater, and other things, and the overwhelming desire (almost no exception) was that the women wanted the equipment invisible (most men too but usually they could be presuaded). It didn't matter if it wasn't the optimal set up, they didn't want to see all that "ugly" equipment (speakers and electronics) out in their beautiful rooms (even those dedicated for theater).
We need to remember that the audio "hobby" is VERY rare. I heard a statistic once that said less than 1% of the entire population even knows high-end audio exists. The vast majority of people don't know that a $8000 CD player (single play at that) exists and when told they are shocked and don't understand how that could happen. Then if I tell them that they can go much higher 30k+, they just get glassy eyed and shake their heads. No one can imagine WHY anyone would spend that kind of money on a "stereo" let alone let the thing dominate a room, or worse yet, rooms.
If I told these people that I spent 30k on an audio ONLY system they just can't process it. If I were to tell the same people that I spent 30k on a new boat, they would congratulate me, think it was cool, and be jealous. They may wonder where I got the money but they wouldn't look at me with the deer-in-the-headlights look.
People don't understand our hobby and it is best, IMHO, to just except that and move on. On top of this, within the hobby itself, the % of women who share our interest is extremely small...not non-existant but certainly the vast exception. So, if you put this factor together with the other, what are the odds of being with a woman who "gets it" or at least can honor our VERY ODD "hobby"?
It takes a mighty loving person to put up with this weird hobby. Men (usually) who, in most other respects, seem reasonable and "normal" but who will spend thousands and thousands of dollars on...lets face it, really frivilous spending creates a disconnect for the most reasonable mind. These normally sane men will adjust their life-style, in many cases (small % of us are just wealthy), just to make room for this habit in their budgets (the Civic comment above is a perfect example). People just can't make this leap in logic.
So, the WAF is sooooo understanable and we need to embrace it as an element of the hobby. I don't get mad because I find that, to get the best sound, I have to spend more on cable. In kind, I don't get mad if I have to negociate the WAF to get better sound. I need to plan, adjust, educate, yes manipulate my thinking and budget to allow for the next piece in the audio puzzle. The same is true with the Wife/significant-other approval factor.
We need to take the necessary steps to bring our loved ones into our world...to accept (at least) or even better to join our way. The very small % of us whose wives don't need any work are the rare, and blessed, group. The rest of us have to work hard and plan, almost as hard as we do for individual equipment choices, to bring our lovers onboard.
I don't feel bad, none of us should, that we have to work for challenge and change, aggreement and compromise, dispute and negociation, education and understanding. This is high-end audio isn't it?
All we can do is try and build a bridge of understanding. This building, for most of us, is an ongoing process. When our bridge makes connection with the other side, then rejoycing is heard in Zion.
If after tremendous work (years) we can't bring our loved ones over (read books on negociating change, love, compromise, etc and share these with your SO)...make a plan work the plan: if though after that effort we can't win them over, we need to either give up the hobby or.......lie, manipulate, cheat, dominate. Hmmm, let me think....
I once saw a "designer's challenge" episode on HGTV.
The gentleman homeowner owned B&W Nautilus 805 speakers.
When the designer was done, the stands had been removed
and the speakers were placed on top of a tall cabinet.
It gave me a sickening feeling in my stomach.
By the way, in our home the wife is also the audio-nut.
My husband enjoys the ride, immensely. We only have
two requirements, (1) Equipment placement takes precedence,
(2) there need to be some chairs.
Mwilson: My Klipsch are VERY far from stock. I really should not even call them "Klipsch" any more. I intend to do a complete re-design with all new cabinets this coming winter. This should extend their bass another 20 Hz or so according to my calculations and DRASTICALLY clean up their lower mids / upper bass. The big problem there has to do with internal reflections / standing waves in the bass horn itself. The mid and tweeter horns along with the crossovers were addressed long ago and have been part of an evolutionairy process. I've incorpororated some of these changes into my current models, but such changes are strictly "band aids" unless done from scratch and built into the design to begin with. That is what i intend to do with this "final ( HA HA HA ) upgrade". As mentioned, these are running in my basement system and are driven by an "antique" 1961 Marantz model 8 power amp.
John: I've mentioned the same thing to my girlfriend about "common law marriage". I told her that she will have to move out for a month or two and then we can get back together. I don't think i need repeat her thoughts on that subject as you probably already have a good idea as to what she said : ) Sean
Many of those financially independent women, in my experience, live in New York City.
And if you are anything like me, you wouldn't want to date, let alone marry one of them, even if they willingly spent large portions of their high flying paychecks on exotic audio presents for you. Unless of course, you REALLY want to be dominated and henpecked...
Slightly better, perhaps, when the situation has resulted from an inheritance but some would still argue: "Marry for money; earn every penny."
Don't change. Don't compromise. Enjoy Audio.
Well, for me, I'm not married per se (not yet anyway), but I do have a girlfriend right now. It also needs to be said that my girlfriend and I do not live together either, and therefore, we maintain separate residences. She comes over to my "pad" for a time or two, and then I spend time with her at hers, also on the same occasion. And nothing against those who choose to live with their better halves, but I kind of prefer it that way. You see, that way, I can set up my living/listening room the way I see fit without her either objecting or interfering as to the way my surroundings are set up. It is either she accepts things the way they are, or that she cannot either come over at all, or if she's over there already, she's welcome to leave. And the way I have my audio system set up is this:
(01). I have my speaker system on the short wall of my living room, which are one-and-a-half feet in front of my window into the room (with about another foot of space from the side walls).
(02). My equipment rack is located at the right of my listening chair, with my amp located in between my speakers.
(03). I also have a black leather recliner with side pockets (to store remote controls for my preamplifier and my cd player) with a matching ottman (if this is spelled correctly) that is about four feet from in front of the speaker system (which are slightly toed in) that is placed in between the speakers on an even listening axis, for the best sweet spot possible.
And all of this is with a camel back loveseat being situated on the left wall a few inches down from my left speaker, and a cherry wood queen anne desk with my pc on it placed right next to it.
Now, if she and I were living together, and if we are maintaining this residence together, then more than likely, she may have a say as to how the audio system is set up in our listening room. Or worse yet, she may object to me having a "high-end" audio system at all. Because then, the way she may see it, the more money I spend on my audio system, then that means there's less money to for me to spend on her, and to me, that's something I wouldn't have a problem with. Because like audio systems (and cars too), women are high maintainance, and they cost money too. Just like "Thedautch", some cost more, and others cost less. But the bottom line is, women cost money too. So with that said then, if I had my way, I prefer to put my money into my audio system, and just as assume have me a female companion on occasion. Because unlike a woman, if you get the right audio system, it won't go into mood swings, temper tantrums, or it won't say no like a woman can and will do sometimes.
And to think that we're talking about getting married?!?!?!?! Shit....... maybe I better wait awhile. At least until we get a house. That way, if the house is big enough, then as long as I get one room in the house in which I can put my stuff in, then maybe I can have one that is big enough to put in the kind of system that I want to put into it. She can have the rest of the house to design and decorate the way she sees fit. But as long as I have a room which I can call "MY" room. Then things can be helter skelter.
Because I'll say this much, if we are to get married, if she can have a say when it comes to picking out a nice painting to go into the living room, what kind of furniture she wants to put inside of it, whether or not we splurge for that "stainless steel" gourmet kitchen with a center island, and kind of washer and dryer we're going to buy, then surely, with my room, I should be able to pick out either some custom made Vandersteens or some rosewood speakers that are about four feet tall, spend thousands of dollars on amplifiers, or get me a fancy turntable or cd player without having to bitch, moan, pick and nag all the goddamn time.
That's just it. As men, sometimes, we just got to put our feet down. To me, I think that's just something we as men don't get to do enough of a great deal of the time.
Bbtuna hit it. If this were a "normal" hobby, we really wouldn't have to worry much about WAF. I'm lucky -- maybe it's a combination of Wellfed's and Ultrakaz's comments. In any case, I've got about half a ton of big speakers, big amps, ugly cables, acoustic treatments on the way and a house designed around the sound room (with compromises like windows). On the other hand, I've got a "lovely" cabinet to house all the equipment (other than the power amps) and I paid attention to how the acoustic treatments look (e.g., cherry finish). Compromise or henpecked? They both appear the same to a casual observer. I've found that a few minor concessions can go a long, long way.
Congrats my friend Tok20000, if you live in the USA, you have found the needle in the haystack. Cwlondon, they don't have to be rich to henpeck, my wife makes less than $30K a year, and she can peck with the best of 'em. Girls will be girls, if you must have one, you might as well grab one with money.
Many thanks to everyone who offered their thoughts on this topic. It is clear there is a pretty wide variety of opinions regarding the "Wife Approval Factor".
As I have stated earlier, I've NEVER had any problems with setting up my audio systems as I like. That extends through two marriages, (once divorced, once widowed) and one live-in girlfriend for the past two years. While I have made some serious efforts to purchase equipment, racks, and
speakers that integrate well with my furnishings; I have never had to change speaker placement, the types of cables I use, etc. to meet with anyone's approval other than my own.
That is not to say that I don't indulge the interests of my girlfriend and past wives. My present girlfriend has a computer room of her own, as well as two large closets that extend the length of an entire wall for her extensive wardrobe. And I buy her nice jewelry several times a year;
as well as other less expensive gifts.
Quite frankly, I think that if you are entering into a serious relationship; one needs to let the other partner know about your interests and your desire to continue enjoying those interests. Anything less is just being dishonest with yourself and your partner. And if you "discover" they won't accommodate you; then it may be time to dump them while you have the freedom to do so.
Aside from my work in television, I have two major interests - audio and Corvettes. And if a woman will not let me enjoy both, then she will not be in my life for long.
As for Bbtuna's remarks about home theater; I don't feel that those types of rooms are really set up for the true audio enthusiast. More often than not, they seem to be designed to impress someone; rather than provide a really good listening environment. I've been in at least six such rooms in the past year; and found the sound for music (rather than special effects/surround sound) to range from acceptable to just plain horrid. The few such rooms I've enjoyed all seem to be demo rooms at some dealer's location,
rather than in an actual home.