Originally Posted by purrin
This is nonsense. This reference is almost always used as a straw-man argument against those who pursue high-fidelity (which by the way was never mutually exclusive with loving music). As a session bass player and sound engineer (two different jobs) in a past life, I can say with that the artists are rarely involved in the production and final mastering process. With my musician hat on, my only intent was how I plucked the strings, how I embellished the bass lines, how I expressed the music. I did not care about mici'ng, mixing, mastering, EQ, so long as I had decent monitors which I could hear what I was playing.
There's nothing wrong with liking equipment which sounds enjoyable nor is there anything wrong with liking equipment which is high-fidelity. Neither approach is superior, inferior, or mutually exclusive to the other.
Was not intending it to be a straw-man argument, and if read in conjunction with my other posts (which were actually answering the OP's original statements), I still stand by them. To make it easier - here's what I've essentially said so far:
IMO - when taken in conjunction with objective data (measurements/graphs) and also personal experience, then reviews like David's are a great source of information.
Reviews like Davids - if you have personal knowledge of a few of the headphones he has reviewed - give you a baseline of his preferences. After that, you allow for them and apply your own personal bias. Then you can combine that with objective data, and have a better informed opinion IMO. Of the headphones he has listed, I own three plus have heard / spent time with at least 3 or 4 others. That then gives me a point of comparison.
The reason I don't like relying on graphs alone are that they don't tell the whole story of the entire experience - and I also don't know quite enough to be able to read all the available graphs. They also do not take into account our own physical uniqueness - and how that ultimately affects sound. However, if I do know the traits I like, can then narrow down the cans I am likely to prefer (and discard the ones I won't), I can then apply objective data to my shortened list.
Final thought - I believe in getting as much information as possible both objective and subjective and then making a decision based on both.
OP then made a statement:
If that's not what you're interested in — hearing sound as accurate and close to reference as possible — then there's no reason to call yourself an audiophile. Shouldn't hi-fidelity involve, you know, showing fidelity to the original source as it was intended?
And that's where I suggested I (and I'd guess many others on this site) don't feel they are audiophiles. Literally audiophile actually does mean "sound lover". Most definitions modify this to lover of hifidelity, or in plainer words "pursuit of the sound as it actually happened - ie live". I have no issues with this - but under that definition, OP is wrong assuming everyone here aspires to the same lofty ideals. I mean - look at how many on this site prefer bass heavy sound, or V shaped etc.
The other (maybe incorrect but often assumed) connotation with being an audiophile is that some will go to extreme lengths to tweak every last link in their system in that pursuit of hifidelity. So for me - while I have gone a reasonable step toward fidelity with my limited resources, I am satisfied enough with where I am to be really enjoying the music. That is why I refer to myself as a music lover (rather than an audiophile). Hope this clarifies.
Oh - and I totally agree with hoping Amos comes along soon. This thread was originally a pretty good topic for sharing different viewpoints. It's a real pity it went so far downhill.