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Do you agree with this persons views on audiophiles and music?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
http://www.htguide.com/forum/showthread.php?36545-What-s-the-deal-with-quot-audiophiles-quot-amp-their-music
post #2 of 27

I presume that the topic is demo recordings.

Demo recordings have been around at least as long as there have been lots of hi fi stores which goes back into the 1950s. I recently upgraded my audio system and pulled out my collection of demo recordings which I had not played for a long time and frankly they mostly sounded pretty strange to me. They were generally very showy and seemed to have relatively simple musical values and ho-hum artistry. Some of them were obviously recorded in such a way that they would probably sound pretty good on a $50 boom box. Sort of like the musical version of cotton candy. A steady diet of these could get old fast!
post #3 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I presume that the topic is demo recordings.

No it’s about how some so called audiophiles like the whole owning of high end gear but tern there nose up at recordings that are not renowned for their quality.
People that would rather put on i.e Diana Krall's The Look of love because its recorded well rather than I don’t know Mike Oldfield Tubular bells because it’s good music

I do sort of agree, I do think/feel some people (on here and other places) tend to go ott on something’s and need a slap to bring them back to reality.
Edited by Tappits - 6/30/13 at 6:06am
post #4 of 27
Recently went to a demo of the new D'agistino Momentum amp and preamp w/the new Wilson $48,000 Alexea speakers. Boring music that most people would never play. In fact I started to nod off during the demo. One thing that did catch my eye was the $34,000 speaker Transparent speaker cable. On a good note the snacks and beverages were excellent.smile.gif
post #5 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Class A View Post

Recently went to a demo of the new D'agistino Momentum amp and preamp w/the new Wilson $48,000 Alexea speakers. Boring music that most people would never play. In fact I started to nod off during the demo. One thing that did catch my eye was the $34,000 speaker Transparent speaker cable. On a good note the snacks and beverages were excellent.smile.gif

lol just been on there website and lol... what’s state-of-the-art with those new drivers? Look like every other driver ever made for the past 50 years, it’s just ART. There’s nothing about music about them and i am shore 100% that they will not of increased the enjoyment I have had over the past 3 days listening to Glastonbury live.
I would also bet that every single artist appearing there would laugh if you suggested to them you need $40k worth of speakers to enjoy their music to the fullest.
Music is not about the quality of the recording or playback.
If you need to try and attain the highest quality at all costs you have in my eyes lost your way.
Just be grateful you can hear at all because some people are not graced with the gift.
post #6 of 27
I guess it is possible that you picked those as demo recordings because they sounded good on the gear you had to play them then. Your current equipment apparently is more revealing.

My philosophy is that a demo recording should be one where the engineer did his best to make the music as true to life as possible, with as few gimmicks as possible.

That is why my "demos", or favorite recordings, include many of the early Mercury classical recordings, the Everest classical recordings reissued by Vanguard, and the wonderful OPUS 3 recordings from Sweden (just to name a few). Ry Cooder's "JAZZ" is another one that is very nice.

Another one that is unexcelled is the recording of Beethoven's Ninth by Peter Maag on the ARTS label.

Since one definition of "audiophile" can be thought of as "lover of music", I am constantly bemused by the attempts of some people to identify that word with people who are lovers of EQUIPMENT rather than music. It seems to me that they are distorting the meaning of the word to make it into a pejorative that can then be used to allege inaccurate traits to people. That is their little game, which they can play to their heart's content. I could care less.

I don't know whether I consider myself an audiophile or not, but when something makes the music sound more like a live performance, I consider that very desirable.

For that reason, I recently spent $6000, a lot more than I ever thought I would spend on speakers, on a pair of Vandersteen Treo speakers.

They do things for music that is right up there with the best X-rated experience you can imagine...lol (well...close, anyway...). biggrin.gif


Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I presume that the topic is demo recordings.

Demo recordings have been around at least as long as there have been lots of hi fi stores which goes back into the 1950s. I recently upgraded my audio system and pulled out my collection of demo recordings which I had not played for a long time and frankly they mostly sounded pretty strange to me. They were generally very showy and seemed to have relatively simple musical values and ho-hum artistry. Some of them were obviously recorded in such a way that they would probably sound pretty good on a $50 boom box. Sort of like the musical version of cotton candy. A steady diet of these could get old fast!

Edited by commsysman - 6/30/13 at 8:50am
post #7 of 27
1) when you demo expensive stuff you do not use stuff like The Circle Jerks or R Kelly singing Sex in the Kitchen. You want to come across as well-informed (Diana Krall/Nora Jones jazzy music is kind a music for intelligent folks) and trustworthy (boring) so Diana Krall would be a good choice.

2) you are selling a product so you do not use music that make you product look bad, in fact you want to take no risks when you are selling expensive stuff so again Diana Krall-ish music, slow, boring, not demanding to much from amp/speakers.

3) stuff like Diana Krall/Nora Jones has this hypnotising factor which makes it easier to sell a person anything..


btw Musically Diana Krall is just average next to Julie Londen IMO (who's music would never be used for a demo because it is recorded in the 50s, 60s, 70s and would not sound to well on modern day equipment)
post #8 of 27
The post pointed to by the OP suggests that some "audiophiles" only listen to perceived superior produced recordings. While I don't have any 'philes in my circle of friends I can't comment on this. Being an enthusiast allows me to subjectively enjoy performances from varying artists regardless of production standards. I prefer to focus on the music instead of my playback system.
Edited by citizen arcane - 6/30/13 at 2:07pm
post #9 of 27

I'd rather listen to poorly recorded songs that I love to tap my toes to, rather than listen to perfectly recorded music that I personally find boring.

 

Edited to add:  of course, if I can find great recordings of the music I love to tap my toes to, all the better

post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by coytee View Post

I'd rather listen to poorly recorded songs that I love to tap my toes to, rather than listen to perfectly recorded music that I personally find boring.

 

Edited to add:  of course, if I can find great recordings of the music I love to tap my toes to, all the better

 

I fully agree. smile.gif

post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by coytee View Post

I'd rather listen to poorly recorded songs that I love to tap my toes to, rather than listen to perfectly recorded music that I personally find boring.

Edited to add:  of course, if I can find great recordings of the music I love to tap my toes to, all the better

I hate to say it, but you sound like a person who enjoys listening to music. ;-)

You will never make it as a high end audiophile!
post #12 of 27
Why would anybody listen to boring music just because it sounds good?
Isn't it the musical content that moves you? If not - you are listening to the wrong music or listen to it just to convince yourself that you are so sophisticated to buy equipment that makes you stand out among your "friends"?

I only use the demo recordings on an LP to test if the TT setup performs to certain standards. The last time I listened to a CD demo was around 1992 or so when I got heavily into NAD stuff and a denon 1520 cd player.
post #13 of 27
A couple of demos I hope to never hear or see again: Audio: Jazz at the Pawnshop Video: The Fifth Element w/Bruce Willis.eek.gif
post #14 of 27
Spyro Gyra SACDs - 'Good to Go-Go' and 'Wrapped in a Dream'.

Expertly recorded by TELARC - some of the highest quality discs that I've ever heard. Both are uptempo (especially Good to Go-Go) - dynamic, percussive & certainly not boring..

As a demo, they shake my house & make my foot tap. People are really impressed & want to know who is playing...

TAM
post #15 of 27
Have you guys ever considered that maybe they like Diana Krall and Norah Jones? I personally love the "Smokey" quality of their voices and if I hadn't been exposed to them at one of these "Demo's" I never would have discovered how much I actually enjoy their music. You see, prior to a "Demo" I was kind of prejudiced against "slow jazz". I never would have thought I would like it. Additionally, I really hate to waste money buying music on chance. I hate wasting money buying music I can't stand so I wait to buy something until I have a reason to buy it. Often that comes in the form of a demo at a high end retailer. Lastly, I am a very analytical person. If I turn on a piece of music and it just sounds awful, regardless of how good the music is, I'll turn it off and never listen to it again because I didn't enjoy it the first time. I'm not trying to impress anyone when I listen. It's just me and the family. But if I sit there and all I can do is think about how badly it was recorded, then it wasn't an enjoyable experience.

Now I have found well recorded music in many genre's such as I recently picked up a used copy of Lynard Skynard: Pronounced "Leh-nerd Ski-nerd" on vinyl and absolutely love it regardless of the minor pops and clicks on the LP because it was recorded really well. Another example is Buddy Guy's: Living Proof which I also recently picked up. These both sound fantastic although not necessarily considered "Audiophile".
post #16 of 27
Thread Starter 
http://www.amazon.com/Little-Broken-Hearts-Norah-Jones/product-reviews/B00723NWJE/ref=cm_cr_pr_btm_link_2?ie=UTF8&pageNumber=2&showViewpoints=0&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending
The Smokey Voice, May 15, 2013
By Beles
This review is from: Little Broken Hearts (Audio CD)
I really like her soft smokey voice. It has so much feeling and I can understand everyword she sings which is not only the case these days.

speaking of music being recorded well on this album come away with me http://www.amazon.com/Come-Away-Me-Norah-Jones/dp/B00005YW4H/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1372720020&sr=1-1&keywords=norah+jones

lacked performance and engineering qualities., June 17, 2013
By HHH -
This review is from: Come Away With Me (Audio CD)
SACD version via B&K seperates, B&W CM9s, analog source.

In my opinion, I dont think the musicality, musicianship, vocal performance is that good. So, i am not a fan, and this album didnt change that. I did not enjoy the performance. I find it boring and dull. I thought the engineering was just ok. I didnt like the seperation, and I think it lacked imaging. As if the the paino, or certian instruments where kept distant and hidden, mutled in the mix, because they knew it was nothing special. So, it all comes together as nothing special. I will likely never listen to the album again.
post #17 of 27
The "Limehouse Blues" track on Jazz at the Pawnshop is some of the hottest, most "together" jazz musicianship I have ever heard. Some of the other tracks are also very good.

If that doesn't turn you on, you are not much of a jazz fan. I can understand why some people might find all of the "cafe noises" in the background distracting though.

I have several other CDs by Lars Erstrand and his various groups, and I think he is the best vibes player I have ever heard.

If you ever get to Stockholm, don't miss the chance to go to the Stampen (the old Pawnshop) jazz club in the old city and hear some great jazz.

Tomas Ornbergs "Blue Five" with Kenny Davern is another favorite of mine; great jazz and excellent musicians...and recorded perfectly by a great engineer.

But I also am turned on by the RCA FRANCE recordings of Sidney Bechet from 1932-1941, and the fidelity of the recordings is what you expect from 78 masters; the music still comes through though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Class A View Post

A couple of demos I hope to never hear or see again: Audio: Jazz at the Pawnshop Video: The Fifth Element w/Bruce Willis.eek.gif

Edited by commsysman - 7/3/13 at 1:47pm
post #18 of 27
Thread Starter 
commysman what do you think about patricia barber?
post #19 of 27
She's OK, I guess, but I would rather listen to Julie London, Diana Krall, or Mary Black.

If you like jazzy renditions of standards, you should definitely get "In a Sentimental Mood" by Dr. John. I never get tired of that one, and it is an excellent recording technically too.
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by keyboardcat View Post

commysman what do you think about patricia barber?

..I know you didn't ask me, but I'll give you my answer. smile.gif

Partricia Barber's music is so well recorded it sounds like she's right in the room. ..The problem is, ..I immediately want to ask her to leave. ..Her interpretations of the pop classics come across as incredibly pretentious. ..Almost like parodies.
post #21 of 27
That reminds me of "Growing Up in Hollywood Town" (by Amanda McBroom), which was a big "demo" record in hi-fi stores years ago. The fidelity was far better than the singer.

One thing both have in common is that they are mediocre singers whose careers were promoted by pushy husbands.

But, I guess pushy husbands aren't all bad; if it wasn't for her husband, Bobby Troup, we wouldn't have all of those great Julie London recordings (God, that woman was a red-hot sexy singer...and with a bod to match...lol). She was very reluctant to appear publicly at first.
Quote:
Originally Posted by syd123 View Post

..I know you didn't ask me, but I'll give you my answer. smile.gif

Partricia Barber's music is so well recorded it sounds like she's right in the room. ..The problem is, ..I immediately want to ask her to leave. ..Her interpretations of the pop classics come across as incredibly pretentious. ..Almost like parodies.

Edited by commsysman - 7/3/13 at 2:09pm
post #22 of 27
Thread Starter 
What about the song breath me by Sia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hSH7fblcGWM
I feel like the piano sad sound makes you feel the deep emotion in the song.
post #23 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

The "Limehouse Blues" track on Jazz at the Pawnshop is some of the hottest, most "together" jazz musicianship I have ever heard. Some of the other tracks are also very good.

If that doesn't turn you on, you are not much of a jazz fan. I can understand why some people might find all of the "cafe noises" in the background distracting though.

I have several other CDs by Lars Erstrand and his various groups, and I think he is the best vibes player I have ever heard.

If you ever get to Stockholm, don't miss the chance to go to the Stampen (the old Pawnshop) jazz club in the old city and hear some great jazz.

Tomas Ornbergs "Blue Five" with Kenny Davern is another favorite of mine; great jazz and excellent musicians...and recorded perfectly by a great engineer.

But I also am turned on by the RCA FRANCE recordings of Sidney Bechet from 1932-1941, and the fidelity of the recordings is what you expect from 78 masters; the music still comes through though.
Not much of a jazz fan because I don't like Jazz at the Pawn Shop. A totally absurd assumption. I have close to 350-400 jazz albums in my collection. rolleyes.gif
post #24 of 27
Quote:
If that doesn't turn you on, you are not much of a jazz fan

What an utterly pretentious statement. In my several hundred volume jazz collection you will not find anything by the pawnshop, but you find among the usual suspects like Mile, Coltrane, Ellington, Monk, Dollar Brand, Blakey someone like Mangelsdorff, Jarret, Meola, McLaughlin, Tony Williams, Brecker Brothers, Dauner, Rypdal, Weber, Brubeck, Haden, Mingus, Bley, Mantler, Metheny, Kirk, Garbarek, Ponty, Brubeck, Portal, Frisell, Cobham, several Marsalis, James Blood Ulmer...etc. etc.
When it comes to female voices - I take Cassandra Wilson over any of the mentioned by others any time.
I guess I am not a jazz fan then, and I really give a flying f...k about your opinion.
post #25 of 27
Owning and liking Jazz at the Prawnshop is the definition of pretentious Onanist audiophile.
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by A9X-308 View Post

Owning and liking Jazz at the Prawnshop is the definition of pretentious Onanist audiophile.

thank god that I have never heard of them nor do I have any desire to "discover" them.tongue.gif
post #27 of 27
I've always seen well-recorded music at the local hi-fi shops. Even though it's not stuff I'd personally listen to, I understand why they use that type of music, which is to show off the strength and depth of the speakers. I like hard rock but I would think a Diana Krall recording would show off the strength of the speakers better than hearing Metallica's Death Magnetic, with its unfortunate clipping and audible distortion throughout. wink.gif
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