I sometimes read posts on this forum with a degree of concern. I really hope that I am wrong but it seems that for a small number of members, the enjoyment of music is secondary to tinkering with computers, software settings and interconnect leads. On a hi-fi equipment manufacturer's forum, there was recently some discussion on what might constitute an audiophile recording. The discussion was fairly intense. I was tempted to observe that with modern recordings, anything with a DR greater than 5 would probably be considered audiophile but I wishes to provide something a little more interactive so I devised the following questionnaire:
- Is the featured artist someone who you have never heard of?
- Are they playing an instrument that looks impossible to tune, much less play?
- Does the featured artist spell their name in an unusual way?
- Was the recording released by an obscure record label?
- Does the music contained in the recording celebrate the cultural diversity of an indigenous people or their country of origin?
- Was the recording made using a restored vintage analogue R2R recording device, e.g. Nagra, Studer?
- Is the music contained in the recording wholly inappropriate for dancing?
- Would you have no wish to see the featured artist in live performance?
- Does the featured artist have facial hair? (Please note that this question is also applicable to female artists)
- Is it likely that, having listened to the recording once, you would never play it again?
- Would the featured artist be unlikely to release a ‘Greatest Hits’ album?
- Does the recording enable you to focus on the more detailed mid-range of your most recent system upgrade?
If you can answer ‘Yes’ to six or more of these questions, then you are probably dealing with a genuine audiophile recording. Take comfort in the knowledge that you probably have a great hi-fi system.
Although I offered the above as light-hearted relief, some seemed to take offence. Perhaps most of their music library met the above criteria. I cannot recall who observed that a music lover will use their hi-fi system to listen to music whereas an audiophile will use music to listen to their hi-fi system. Perhaps someone can remind me? I seem to recall that it may have been Alan Parsons, known for his sound engineering contributions to 'Abbey Road', 'Let It Be' and 'Dark Side Of The Moon'.
I guess this a request. It would be great to read posts about the music that JPLAY Forum members are enjoying, perhaps with a brief explanatory note. It is after all, the enhanced enjoyment that must surely provide a rationale for the constant system tweaking that appears to be the order of the day for those who enjoy computer based front end setups.