- Mar 22, 2021
Audio shows I have been to the sound has been poor when the speaker were poor (or demo with a turntable) and good when the speakers are good, with the odd exception.I don't totally disagree, but this kind of attitude will kill off the audio industry as we oldies know it and has almost done this in the UK, where a certain speaker brand we know well, sells mainly now as 'ex dem' and 'seconds' all too often (I suspect the 'seconds or ex-dem' labels are a way of discounting A1 ex-factory products to get sales, something that would have been unheard of ten or more years back). Having said that, many well off people seem to LIKE to spend their copious income on lavish high end confections whatever the interest (we had B&O which was actually a lot better than we thought at the time, while also having two other basically rip-off (I now see) agencies ruling our takings and profits - our livelihoods couldn't survive on Quad alone sadly).
Many here may disagree, but buying speakers for example on a Klippel test alone, unheard anywhere and online 'mail order' is risky to say the least. This is where dealers can be helpful - but I would say that, wouldn't I as I was one for decades? Audio shows are feasts for the hobbyist eyes but almost never ears as the sounds are often awful and TOO LOUD to counter the din in the next room and attendees still seem increasingly aged (50+ looking at the pictures posted here and elsewhere). Amir has posted pics of the headphone sections or dedicated headphone style shows where attendees are very much younger. No idea if mainland Europe is the same though, especially Germany where much of our imported high end audio seemed to come from (one man/distributor with a chequebook taking a trip every so often to top up).
Surprising number of youngsters (i.e under 40) at the shows although still heavily outnumbered by those of us with grey hair (or none at all).
But then the systems are costing anything from ten grand to almost a million, and who has that kind of money to burn when they are still at the age where they have a mortgage and young children?
IMO UK audio industry needs killing and replacing with something far more rational (i,e just going back to what it was in the 70s) but given that the typical punter has learned nothing useful about his hobby despite all the years he's been doing it, I wouldn't worry, it'll never happen.