Originally Posted by ames
I think a lot if people have mistaken the player as the center-piece of what Pono is doing. It's not--the store is.
Whether or not their player is the best high-fi DAP doesn't matter so much. Creating a mainstream commercial player just anchors the ecosystem that will bring high-fidelity into the mainstream. (It seems totally based on the iTunes/iPod relationship)
The most important part is how Neil Young has gotten the major labels to dig out their best sources for new hi-fi digital files. This means that great hi-fi digital remasters previously only available to audiophiles on SACD will be sold mainstream as portable digital files. Same for the wealth of DVD-Audio recording that never gained mainstream momentum. So there will be a ton of high-quality material out right away, and we should expect Sony Music and others to continue that work of going back to master tapes and producing new high-res masters that don't have to answer to limitations of CD or vinyl masters. The Pono people have said over and over that they're trying to bring us the sound from the control room, not the vinyl records!!!
That's the real thrust here, more accessibility to great music at sound quality most people have never heard before, even vinyl enthusiasts. Audiophile becomes mainstream. And it seems we'll be free to play it on any hi-fi system we choose.
I hope they're smart enough to put a sampler on or include a free album from the store with each player, because a lot of people are likely to misunderstand, load it right away with their iTunes mp3s, and then complain online about how much worse everything sounds. (Like putting VHS on your HDTV) The WOW moments that will sell the idea won't happen without the right source material.
We here at H.F. foo foo CNET's Steven Guttenberg (CNET's go to audio consultant) a lot of the time. However here is a good article about Pono Music .com he just wrote. http://www.cnet.com/news/neil-youngs-reality-distortion-field/ He makes a lot of sense.
For the record: I bought a SE Neil Young within an hour of K.S. opening the listing.
AND I owe Steven G. a big thank you for turning me on to FT!334.......when I read his article I became really interested in them. As I am listening to them right this second, I am still fascinated with them. IF, I could get another 10% isolation out of them, they would be my only top tier IEM. Anyway, thanks Steve! from Steve