Do you recall the VCR? I sure do, we still have one tucked away somewhere at home. It wasn’t that long ago that this was the standard. Now that DVD is king, my VCR tape collection tends to just sit around gathering dust.
The audio market is also undergoing a metamorphosis. Sales of CDs are in decline at the expense of downloadable music. The logic is simple, it is more convenient and purchasers don’t have to obtain an entire CD. Instead they can just select and pay for a single track.
Given that things are changing rapidly is there any sense investing in quality in the hope that it will last the distance.
The good news is that it all depends on your ability to decide what you really need. Once you have done this everything else falls into place.
I place strong emphasis on the audio component of any audio/visual system. The reason is simple; I prefer to listen to music as both the main event and in the background when I’m busy with something else. There is something so much more engaging about music. I can listen to a music CD many times over a few years. In doing so it invariably becomes intertwined with the things I was doing at that time in my life. Ten years later I can put the same CD on and all those memories come rushing back in again. We can have a dinner party and select something from our collection which we know is just right to set the mood. All said, music is still king of the hill in our lives. Do we watch TV and play movies... sure but it’s just not quite as versatile and meaningful to me.
With audio, the most important thing is to get reacquainted with music. Buy some music online, get some new CDs or vinyl and prepare to be surprised at how good recordings have become. The next step is to take a good look at your system and listening environment, see if you can improve on the quality of the sound.
Listening to music can be as distant or engaging as you want it to be. If you are happy with background music, then you can’t get too concerned about the placement of the components or the quality of your music or system. If on the other hand if you want something more from your audio system, you will need to pay particular attention to your listening position as a fundamental consideration.
You are not going to be able to fully appreciate stereo reproduction unless you are sitting in the "sweet-spot". When you are sitting in the correct position the difference is like comparing night to day.
Developing an appreciation of audio can be an engaging experience, and the journey of refining the experience by investing in icons of A/V can be very rewarding.