Originally Posted by cel4145
Whose to say what is hi-fidelity or not. Unless the idea is that faithfulness comes from "intent" that the audio system be designed to be faithful.
I would say given how far technology has come, both in terms of the electronics side & room acoustics (and the ways that we measure them), it's far easier to achieve a system that has a high
degree of fidelity than it ever has before. It is also just as easy to implement a given audio reproduction system to not
be accurate, if we deliberately chose to. For example, purchasing a speaker that has a deliberate emphasis or de-emphasis in one or more areas of the audible frequency band.
Deliberately (as in knowingly) wanting to provide something other than a faithful reproduction cannot, by definition, be considered "high fidelity". I'm not saying that someone who does this is wrong, or that their preference is wrong, but it is a deliberate
choice to do so.
However, any design is always a compromise based upon costs, so one is always choosing to make something less faithful than if one had more money to put into manufacturing the product, even if one is aiming for accuracy. Is it only hi-fidelity if the designer chooses to maximize accuracy? So to me, it's just so messy to think about what hi-fidelity REALLY means except as an ideal.
I wouldn't say that $$ is the only means to achieving high fidelity. Well designed solid state amps, DAC's, CD players - as well as other examples - are virtually indistinguishable (audibly) from one another. One can also find speakers that do not vary much plus or minus 3db across much of the audible spectrum without killing the bank. Plus, one can go about addressing their acoustic environment by doing nothing other than moving their speakers around - which is free.
find speakers that may provide a mid-bass hump. One can use a tube amp or play vinyl and reap the benefits of the distortions and other artifacts. But, again, we know that these kinds of things produce "inaccuracies" or distortions. To some, these kinds of distortions or "inaccuracies" are desirable to them. But, it's not - by definition - "high fidelity" (I should say using the definition I gave) when there are alternatives that do not.