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ASR MEMBERS: What System Would YOU Choose To Blow Away Non-Audiophiles?

Brian Hall

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I think most normal people who like listening to music would be blown away with a Wiim Pro Plus with a Fosi V3 connected to Sony SSCS5 speakers in a decent room.

Or did you mean blow their hair back like in that old ad of that guy sitting in front of a speaker?
 

pablolie

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....

What system would you use, if given free reign, to demonstrate the high level of sound quality possible from audio equipment?
I would not waste a second of my life trying to convince anyone to turn into an equipment-minded audiophile. It is the equivalent of trying to impress people by playing deafeningly loud music out of your car system in popular spots as you cruise by.

It has happened to me, several times, that people ask me about my system as they listen to cool music through it, but instead of talking about my system, I emphasize how cost-effectively and easily great music can be consumed these days. I ask them if they'd like to play a song and give them my tablet to queue the song up.
 

DMill

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This is an amp I own. It completely blows away people not in the know.
 

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Mikig

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Name audio components for a system? very difficult!!!
I think any system would do, regardless of price, well configured, in a proper room, * with well placed speakers. This is regardless of everything, what makes the biggest difference between casual listening and "audiophile" listening.
When the speakers disappear and you realize that something called music "materializes" before your eyes, and the bass makes you tremble your stomach, you hear the performer's breathing and the noise of the plectrum on the strings....
and it's not guaranteed that everyone will like it!!! A family member, one day in 8 minutes, dismantled years of dedication and research "of the 3D sound stage" with a very simple: how bad!!!
it seems that the sound of the person playing does not come from the same speakers, what an annoying effect...
and there, I realized that the mono Wi-Fi speaker party in the world is the one with the most followers!!!;)
 
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MattHooper

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I am baffled as to why people feel they must interpret the question as if it means strapping someone who doesn't give a damn in to a chair against their will to hear a system.

For goodness sake, imagine a willing participant. The new way I phrased the question means you can assume the listener CARES about sound quality, is even an audiophile, maybe a newly minted audiophile, or any audiophile, if you want.

Further, even going back to putting on an "impressive" sound demonstration for people: it does not follow that not being an audiophile means "not interested at all in any audio demonstration" or "would not be impressed by any audio demonstration."

Plenty of non-audiophiles have been interested enough to sit down for a listen at my place and have enjoyed the experience, been very impressed, even if it's not something they choose to pursue. They never thought about sound quality much, and never even knew much about imaging, or that sound could be something like "realistic" so they experienced something new and where clearly happy to have the experience. Nobody was strapped in to a chair against their will.

I'm not in to doing gymnastics myself, but I can be plenty impressed by a great gymnast. I'm not in to cars, but I can certainly appreciate a ride in my buddy's Porsche.
People who don't pursue great audio can still be impressed by encountering great audio.

So, please, yeah, we know that audiophiles are a niche, and plenty of people are satisfied with less, and don't care to buy the gear. But there is certainly a spectrum of interest, so don't imagine forcing someone so uninterested they are unwilling to stop to listen - imaging someone who says "ok, sure, I'm not an audiophile but I'm happy to give a listen to see what it's all about" and go from there.
 
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MattHooper

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You should still strap them into the chair.

That's only for my wife :)

She ends up sitting to listen to my system about once a decade. Most recently I was listening to some Taylor Swift on my system - not something I normally do but my wife is a newly minted "Swifty" so was checking it out. My wife heard Taylor coming from my system, I asked if she wanted to take a listen, she actually sat down and listened to a whole song. She cares less about sound than I think any other human on earth, but still said (after I inquired of course) that it sounded really good. We humour each other sometimes :)
 

Chrispy

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That's only for my wife :)

She ends up sitting to listen to my system about once a decade. Most recently I was listening to some Taylor Swift on my system - not something I normally do but my wife is a newly minted "Swifty" so was checking it out. My wife heard Taylor coming from my system, I asked if she wanted to take a listen, she actually sat down and listened to a whole song. She cares less about sound than I think any other human on earth, but still said (after I inquired of course) that it sounded really good. We humour each other sometimes :)
Or your wife is just normal :)
 

Robin L

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But it's all a bit like "what championship NFL game would you show to turn on someone to the delights of football?" or "what Science Fiction classic would you recommend to get someone interested in the genre?". If it hasn't already happened by now, it probably will never happen. Pretty much people are drawn to certain areas of interest and not to others. By the way of example - I find that certain solo and chamber music recordings of the 1930's "blow me away". Do I expect other people to have the same reaction? Of course not. Only those who already have shown signs of interest in chamber music and historical recordings can reasonably be expected to show interest in such recordings. On top of that, the sound quality in motion picture theaters is designed to "blow away" non-audiophiles. It usually manages to get me to leave the theater before the movie is over.
 

jhaider

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DavidEdwinAston

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I think perhaps some people are put off by the proposition of describing a sound system that "must" impress non-audiophiles.

Perhaps another approach to the question can put aside whether any particular person is "impressed" or not, but we can ask:

What system would you use, if given free reign, to demonstrate the high level of sound quality possible from audio equipment?
Nice refinement Matt. My answer becomes, "my current system!"
 

Palladium

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I think most normal people who like listening to music would be blown away with a Wiim Pro Plus with a Fosi V3 connected to Sony SSCS5 speakers in a decent room.

Or did you mean blow their hair back like in that old ad of that guy sitting in front of a speaker?

Minirig 3 even on a 2.0 SBC+TWS configuration blew me away more than any hifi system I heard on an overall cost + size + portability basis.
Its a slightly worse iLoud MM in SQ except far more portable.
 

Brian Hall

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Minirig 3 even on a 2.0 SBC+TWS configuration blew me away more than any hifi system I heard on an overall cost + size + portability basis.
Its a slightly worse iLoud MM in SQ except far more portable.

Great sound does not require high dollar systems. We are in a true golden age of audio.
 

Robin L

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CapMan

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Does the answer to this question depend entirely on musical taste and what the volunteer likes… my nephew is mad about dub and has a passion for overly loud bass.

I could play him the world’s most balanced system and he’d hate it because he likes heavy beats !

Does the volunteer get to chose the listening material or must it be stuff we think sounds best ?
 
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MattHooper

MattHooper

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But it's all a bit like "what championship NFL game would you show to turn on someone to the delights of football?" or "what Science Fiction classic would you recommend to get someone interested in the genre?". If it hasn't already happened by now, it probably will never happen. Pretty much people are drawn to certain areas of interest and not to others. By the way of example - I find that certain solo and chamber music recordings of the 1930's "blow me away". Do I expect other people to have the same reaction? Of course not. Only those who already have shown signs of interest in chamber music and historical recordings can reasonably be expected to show interest in such recordings. On top of that, the sound quality in motion picture theaters is designed to "blow away" non-audiophiles. It usually manages to get me to leave the theater before the movie is over.

As I've mentioned, plenty of non-audiohiles have appreciated the sound quality of my system. I know there are many other audiophiles with similar experience.

But the fact someone may not go on to become an audiophile is not the point of my question: it's not about making converts, simply what one would choose to demonstrate what level of sound quality is available - at least something significantly better than the average person is used to.

Not everyone cares a about picture quality to the degree videophiles and home theater enthusiasts care. But you could still demonstrate "better picture quality" vs worse, or what people may have been used to. That is after all why people were wow'd seeing high definition for the first time. You didn't need to be an "enthusiast" to note the obvious increase in picture quality. I have friends who are not in to home theater, but who clearly apprehend the better picture quality I have tended to have with my displays (being an early adopter type) over what they were used to.
 

srkbear

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I’ve already done this for quite a few of my friends who I knew were music enthusiasts but hadn’t been initiated into the “audiophile” experience—including most of the guys I played in bands with in high school with whom I shared an adolescent obsession with music that continues to this day. It didn’t take any fancy or costly gear at all.

I just played them their favorite music on their own cell phone, with a simple, inexpensive little iFi Hip DAC 3 (because although its predecessor didn’t measure brilliantly on here, all DACs we have measured on here with few if any exceptions are transparent to the limits of the human ear so it doesn’t matter).

I paired it with a set of Hifiman Edition XS headphones, which can be bought for $359, along with the hi res service of their choice. Their astonishment was immediate and joyously satisfying. We all spoke of how we would’ve killed to have had this back in high school—amazed that we could have actually afforded it back then, in contrast to the misery we shared going to high end shops and looking misty-eyed at all the McIntosh, Rotel and Kyocera marvels contained behind glass that we couldn’t touch.

My apologies that the sales of Hip DACs have gone up recently…
 
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