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"Music-First Audiophile" Manifesto by John Darko

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Elbow

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1. The Music-First Audiophile knows that music and sound quality are important but that music will always be the most important.

2. The Music-First Audiophile has many thousands of albums in his library and will choose audio hardware that elevates the sound quality of those albums.

3. The Music-First Audiophile knows that there are many other music genres beyond those that he enjoys (or she will hear at a hi-fi demo). To name a few: hip-hop, metal, funk, soul, grime, techno, country, noise, psychedelic rock and folk.

4. The Music-First Audiophile isn’t trying to bring the live experience home. She understands that music playback is its own art form – a movie is not made by pointing cameras at a stage play.

5. The Music-First Audiophile understands that sound quality is affected more by the listening room’s acoustic make-up than the electronics chain that feeds the loudspeakers.

6. The Music-First Audiophile understands that a software app’s user interface, the hardware’s aesthetics, its ergonomics and its haptics all play a part in the overall listening experience.

7. The Music-First Audiophile knows that hi-res audio can enhance sound quality but she will never choose or refuse an album based on the delivery format's sample rate or bit depth. Why? Because she knows that mastering quality matters more.

8. The Music-First Audiophile knows that the pursuit of better sound is not “all about the music”. She’d be happy listening to music on laptop speakers or tiny white earbuds if it were.

9. The Music-First Audiophile knows that being an audiophile isn't about how much money she spends on audio gear but how much she cares about sound quality without letting the tail wag the dog. Music comes first. Always.

10. The Music-First Audiophile thinks music first, hardware second, format third.


Some good points, but coming from a man who puts weights on top of DACs and Streamers to improve the sound, it sounds a little bit weird.
 
She understands that music playback is its own art form
No, music recording and mastering is its own art form, accomplished in cooperation with the artists (usually). Music reproduction, like movie projection, really isn't.
 
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Many thousands of albums in his archive - effin' boasting so and so! When are they ever going to have time to play them all again and how many styli to be worn out if they're all on legacy vinyl?
 
5. The Music-First Audiophile understands that sound quality is affected more by the listening room’s acoustic make-up than the electronics chain that feeds the loudspeakers.

10. The Music-First Audiophile thinks music first, hardware second, format third.

The music first audiophile understands that sound quality is affected by listening room acoustics but tends not to think or talk about it all that much.
 
Hmm...Ok, I can agree with some of the points, but I think there are some contradictions with this gentleman's manifesto.

- Point 2: So format is not important, but to qualify as a Music-First Audiophile, one still has to have thousands of albums ?
- Point 3: Are there actually people, who are not aware of these other music genres ? What's the point of this sanctimonious statement ?
- Point 5: Agreed, but if JD really means this, what about all the stuff he has published before...
 
Music first Audiophiles don't make up listening rules or participate in circular thinking exercises. They simply seek out quality music to enjoy without any rules of engagement.
 
... a man who puts weights on top of DACs and Streamers to improve the sound, ...
Darko has already stated in a video that he puts doorstops on DACs to prevent them from falling on the floor under the weight/pulling of connected cables, not to allegedly "improve" the sound.
 
Darko has already stated in a video that he puts doorstops on DACs to prevent them from falling on the floor under the weight/pulling of connected cables, not to allegedly "improve" the sound.

Darko has no issue with being misrepresented because the Music-First Audiophile knows that there are many other opinions beyond those that he enjoys (or she will hear at a hi-fi demo). To name a few: good, bad, misinformed, nasty, political, technical, useless, noise, psychedelic and folk.
 
11) We Music first Audiophiles understand that there are no sound differences between competent and properly used DACs, streamers and amplifiers and stop making videos about it.

But that would reduce the number of Darko´s videos considerably.....
 
11) We Music first Audiophiles understand that there are no sound differences between competent and properly used DACs, streamers and amplifiers and stop making videos about it.

But that would reduce the number of Darko´s videos considerably.....
But how we would all wait with bated breath for that once a year event, even I might watch it.
Keith
 
Wondering why he is using she all the time.
Has he turned woke?

It’s been a common courtesy used in all sorts of disciplines and realms long before purported “wokism.” Basically an acknowledgement that “he” has been the unnecessary default pronoun for ages, and it became time to remember women exist.

I’m surprised by anybody who hasn’t encountered this before.
 
" The Music-First Audiophile isn’t trying to bring the live experience home. She understands that music playback is its own art form – a movie is not made by pointing cameras at a stage play."

He loses me straight away with this - getting as close to the original music as possible would be the very definition of "Music First".
 
It’s been a common courtesy used in all sorts of disciplines and realms long before purported “wokism.” Basically an acknowledgement that “he” has been the unnecessary default pronoun for ages, and it became time to remember women exist.

I’m surprised by anybody who hasn’t encountered this before.
An academic in my old engineering department defined the term “per” as third person non gender specific and used it throughout their PhD thesis in place of he or she - this is in the mid 90s so they were well ahead of their time!!

As for Darko’s list - I just see little point or value in his rules. I would probably just say a music first audiophile always puts the end (the music) ahead of the means (the equipment)
 
Darko has a few good points.

Though ultimately I feel the manifesto is along the lines of typical audiophile Virtue Signalling. "It's All About The Music" and "I Care About The Music, Unlike Those OTHER Audiophiles..."

Audiophiles have been lobbing this at each other as long as I can remember.
 
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