Fun with history!
Yep, I remember the "stereo wars" of the late 70's--I was a kid but had a brother that was 8 years older than me. He had the late 70's sound system, a Pioneer SX silver faced receiver with wood side panels, big, coffin sized speakers and the perfect 1970's rack to hold it all. The rack was cinder blocks and wood shelves (of course!)
My little kid butt did battle with a boombox--complete with massive 4" full range drivers.
By the time I was ready to build my first "system" in 1986--the stereo wars had long been dead. Now it was video, first you purchased a VCR and had a small movie collection BEFORE worry about a stereo. Why? Women...they liked movie nights so my hormones demanded video first. I complied!
Oddly enough, my older brother gave me his Pioneer SX as he blew a channel so I fixed the thing then purchased some speakers. Now to be the cool kid, any stereo by the mid 80's was not complete without a CD player (of course!) Reminds me of a variant of the song Video Killed the Radio Star--video crushed the stereo wars.
In the early 90's, the great audio fad (1965 to 1990) was over and video was king but a new thing was moving in. Computers! By the mid 90's the computer was king but video had a round two with the DVD player. Throw in the internet fad (it's a fad!) and by the turn of the century plenty of young folks had a more expensive audio system in their cars than their living area. Then comes cell phones and flat panel TVs... by the time you had a flat panel TV, a cell phone, DVD players, movies and high speed internet fees... audio fell completely off the charts.
I was reading over at AudioExpress about sales of audio gear. Overall, speaker sales fell 10% on the consumer side last year although were up on the professional side (PA) and the studio side (monitors for VLOGs) Sound bars and smart speakers had huge increases so if you think audio is going to be relevant--not in a stereo war sense. What is the next big thing for twenties? I look at variations of bigger TV screens, better/louder soundbars and the internet of things. In reality, the market is now being driven by the Chinese and India is moving up so the market goes to where the money is... China/India is not well known to have large houses to store giant audio related gear so the return of the ultra-high efficiency coffin speakers is not a good bet. My biggest bet would be "half-rack" audio gear since a size that wide is not required. Heck, if PowerSoft can make a 20,000 watt prosound arena amp that is 17" wide X 1.75 or one rack space high--I can see "half-rack" Class D AVRs start to move in a few years. It does not help with the millions of Youtubers using active studio monitors, why have that really wide, giant box? That would be my long term guess for audio in the 2020's, Class D AVRs that are considerably smaller because their active monitors use Class D... the stereo warriors will be retiring by then so the market is shifting. You don't think there is a bunch of old audiophiles in China/India? Those two countries will drive the market as they already are...they are the two contries that saw increases in speaker sales. Money talks!
My older brothers all have AVRs with a sub or two--the coffins are long gone. Another major factor in the stereo wars history is the Bose AM5 little cube speaker/bass module things. Since really small speakers can't handle a ton of power anyway--not much of a demand for such monsters. The speaker market never really recovered after Bose dropped the tiny speaker bomb... even know it is hard to get any tower speakers with large drivers, plenty of them have multiple 6" woofers to remain skinny and shiny piano black!
No worries, you can get what you want because Google is your friend to help you spend waaaay too much money on such a goofy little hobby.
The biggest thing I miss about my first receiver, the fix it an it's yours Pioneer SX is the silver color. Not because I like silver but it is a heck of a lot easier to read the markings on the gear. To start a conspiracy, ever notice that the change from easy to read silver was changed over to black once the CD was released?
Just something I noticed... the CD rolls out and everything starts turning black. Hmmmm, black started to make a move around 1984... just like the book.
OK, thinks to on screen displays I know what is going on but... silver, white or anything besides black would be cool. It's audio, I'm supposed to complain about minor complaints about nothing... waaaaaaa!