Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Sound Science › What kind of Audiophile are you?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

What kind of Audiophile are you?

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 

I found this on the net, so true!.. but which category would you admit to fitting into?  biggrin.gif

 

I think I'm part 'technical' and part 'subjective'..... probably currently more the latter as I seek to learn more about the technical side.

 


There's a sub-context which seems to hint that
most audiophiles are imbeciles, of the same ilk. In
reality, there are many categories of audiophiles,
of which I can discern at least 3-4 major types:

i) The 'technical' type: they fiddle endlessly with
their systems, modifying things, trying out new
subsystems, etc. in their quest for technical
excellence. They're looking for the 'best' technical
parameters, and are willing to pay more for components
that are *measurably* better. These are the types who
will shell out more for a premium op-amp. Their
gurus include Bob Widlar, John Linsley Hood,
Nelson Pass, Hugh Dean, T. Giesberts, John Curl,
Bob Pease, and numerous other circuit designers
and acoustics people. They listen to their equipment,
not to their music.

ii) The 'subjective' type: their main criterion is that
their favourite pieces of music should *sound* better.
They're willing to accept high levels of distortion,
provided that it makes their music sound better to
their ears. These are the sort that experiment with
guitar amps, reverb units, vacuum-tube circuitry
etc. Many are willing to pay a high premium for
stuff that sounds better to their ears. They listen
to their music, not to their equipment.

iii) The snobs: They don't care for the technicals,
or the sound, as long as it is *expensive*, and has been
recommended by positive reviews in the audiophile
magazines. Their primary criteria is the *exclusivity*
that high prices bring. These are the types that
detest CD audio, op-amps, solid-state power amps,
etc., because it made high-quality sound available
to just about any Tom, Dick and Harry on the street.
They're likely to prefer turntables with optical pickups,
vinyl, vacuum tube electronics, and obscenely priced
equipment in general, like $7200 speaker cables. Their
gurus are the editors and reviewers in high-end audio
magazines, like Dave Clark. They don't listen to either 
their music or their equipment - but their equipment 
is on display to show that they can afford it.

iv) The great unwashed: Like the snobs, they don't
care about the sound or the technicals - but they do
care about peer acceptance. They're likely to buy
anything as long as their peers deem it to be cool,
regardless of the quality of the sound. They're likely
to buy stuff that's marketed well, regardless of
quality. They're likely to buy Sony, Bose, Apple
IPods, Monster Cable, etc. Their gurus are Steve
Jobs and Amar Bose. The listen to and hoard a
lot of music, usually MP3s.

The people in categories (i) and (ii) don't regard those
in (iii) and (iv) as audiophiles at all. Category (i) will
generally talk to everybody else, even if they don't
agree with them. Category (ii) will only talk with
Category (i), if at all. Category (iii) won't talk with
anybody else, except maybe Category (ii) occasionally.
Category (iv) will talk with everybody else, but after
they're rejected by Categories (ii) and (iii), will take
refuge in offering technical advice and recommendations
to Category (i) - who don't usually suffer fools gladly.

I'm OK with categories (i) and (ii). Category (iii) is
insufferable, but they stick to conning themselves and
they don't talk much to the others anyway. Category (iv)
consists of the real losers, the victims. They can
sometimes be redeemed by convincing them of the
error of their ways, and can sometimes transition to
category (ii) or (i) if they're deprogrammed adequately.

 

 


 

 

popcorn.gif


Edited by Ari33 - 3/22/13 at 5:31am
post #2 of 42

I would continue reading more thoroughly after i'm done with dinner, but for now i would say that i am mostly (II) and a little of (I)
mostly cause i use the eq extensively, do not really care about 'absolute neutral' as long as it sounds good to my ears.
Then again i have upgratisitis which means getting better equipment because i want a more technically powerful system.

post #3 of 42

I am definitely category ii.  However NONE of the assumptions below apply to me.

 

Quote:



The people in categories (i) and (ii) don't regard those
in (iii) and (iv) as audiophiles at all. Category (i) will
generally talk to everybody else, even if they don't
agree with them. Category (ii) will only talk with
Category (i), if at all. Category (iii) won't talk with
anybody else, except maybe Category (ii) occasionally.
Category (iv) will talk with everybody else, but after
they're rejected by Categories (ii) and (iii), will take
refuge in offering technical advice and recommendations
to Category (i) - who don't usually suffer fools gladly.
 

 

popcorn.gif

post #4 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kramer5150 View Post

I am definitely category ii.  However NONE of the assumptions below apply to me.

 

 

I agree.... maybe some part truths in there but a bit of a generalisation I think.

post #5 of 42
Am I an audiophile if I am none of those?
post #6 of 42

With all due respect for Foxworthy...

 

If your speaker cables are thicker than your garden hose....you might be an audiophile.

If you have your local hi-fi dealer's phone number on speed dial....you might be an audiophile.

If you think home theater systems are a waste of time....you might be an audiophile.

If your speakers are bigger than your refrigerator....you might be an audiophile.

and my favorite...

 

If you spent more on your stereo than you spent on your car...you might be an audiophile.

 
(credit where due, at least partially, the source for these is here but he wrote them all backwards, not sure why. He might be an audiophile.)
post #7 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KamijoIsMyHero View Post

Am I an audiophile if I am none of those?

 

You don't fall loosely into at least one of the categories or sub categories?

post #8 of 42

Are people going to admit to (iii) or (iv)?

 

There isn't a category where half the statements apply to me, so does that count as "none of those"?  Well, maybe half of (ii).

post #9 of 42
I'm a subjective audiophile, I want my music to sound as good as possible... especially the songs I listen to that have excellent mastering. Although sometimes my OCD comes through and gives me a bit of a technical stand point on equipment. For example, I'll obsess over whether a digital signal processing plugin in a media player is worth using. I do have no problem adding digital signal processing, using tubes or vinyl sources, and the likes as long as I believe it has made enough of a difference to trump any negative distortion or artifacts.
post #10 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari33 View Post

You don't fall loosely into at least one of the categories or sub categories?

I want my music to be reproduced with hi fidelity so as long as it is within audible range (so I don't mind V0 mp3 over flac since I don't hear any difference ) I don't think my dac will ever need more than 24/96, I would prefer my amp to be a gain on a wire type, so that would be my ideal dac and amp, however I don't really care about parts as much as how well dac and amp are implemented using whatever parts the designer needs to achieve this objective

So none of those, I don't think any of those fits me
post #11 of 42

Not sure if (iii) and (iv) can even be called audiophiles.
They seem to be more of a well, snob and rich guy.
If any, the closest would be (i).
(ii) is just behind because people hear differently, and there is no such thing as different true neutrals. And buy differently coloured headphones to suit their ear. 

post #12 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KamijoIsMyHero View Post


I want my music to be reproduced with hi fidelity so as long as it is within audible range (so I don't mind V0 mp3 over flac since I don't hear any difference ) I don't think my dac will ever need more than 24/96, I would prefer my amp to be a gain on a wire type, so that would be my ideal dac and amp, however I don't really care about parts as much as how well dac and amp are implemented using whatever parts the designer needs to achieve this objective

So none of those, I don't think any of those fits me

 

You are probably not a hard core audiophile in its truest sense but from what you've said I'd say mainly Cat (ii)

post #13 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by streetdragon View Post

Not sure if (iii) and (iv) can even be called audiophiles.
They seem to be more of a well, snob and rich guy.
 

 

Yes, but in their minds they are.. wink.gif

post #14 of 42

None of the above.

I guess I really am more of a music freak, nice headphones are a just a means to an end. If I had to pick one, I.

post #15 of 42
Yeah, going to go with an old favorite response of mine, "I reject your premise". None of these distinctions feel right to me as they all have some fatal flaw in the logic. Each one, in their own way, is looking for the best sound they can. Yes, even group four because, quite simply, if they didn't specifically care about audio there are far better groups to try to fake your way into. Sports, for example.

I'd say I start with 1, mix in a little of 3 and swirl it around with a healthy helping of 2. I use science to help me decide what kind of gear to look at, I consider the price both in terms of budget and in terms of you get what you pay for, and then end up with letting my ears decide whether or not I've been an idiot. If someone handed me some magic voodoo box that distorted the crap out of my music but made it sound like ambrosiatic-coital-gold as it caressed my ears and flooded my body with dopamin I would shell out whatever obscene sum they asked the same way I would if that same magic voodoo box produced the most flawless reproduction of sound that could ever be heard, titillating me with the same ambrosia-blah-blah-blah. It's all about the enjoyment music and the rest is just a means to an end.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Sound Science
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Sound Science › What kind of Audiophile are you?