Things you've learned on your audio journey

Me…
1 Hype trains!..don’t taking any notice
2 Having the courage of my own convictions
3 Have an open mind
4 Try/demo before you buy

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lol i think alot of people have been burned from those. I’ll continue with my list

1: First impressions are subject to turn 180 degrees lol
2: Finding the right volume for everything is KEY to liking it
3: Intangibles are key to liking a variety of sound signatures (slam, speed, imaiging, staging etc)
4: PERSONALLY i hate stuff i usually love if i’m im in a bad mood. keep it simple and put on the gear to listen to the music and not the gear only
5: Oh yeah, music bring excersise to a different level of enjoyment lol. Fucking brings hype too and pumps ya up.
6: Sometimes the key is actually to just not listen to music

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Most of my lessons revolve around audio being a subjective hobby. This is where a lot of pros and cons can happen.

  1. Reading and watching reviews has very little value aside from making a short list.

Ironically, watching reviews is what brought me here though. If you must, find a reviewer that shares your same priorities and tastes though. Watching 5 different reviews will completely skew everything amok.

  1. At the end of the day, I need to find what sounds best for me. It’s certainly not going to match anyone else’s tastes.

  2. There is no point of making the can of worms debates. I need to listen for myself. If it improves my experience, then that’s that.

  3. Electronics play a larger role than I expected and I was fortunate to learn that early on.

Bonus one: If I am entrapped with a hype train or a “flavor of the month,” I am going to have a lot of trouble trying to resell that item when it loses the hype.

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Lol so true :+1:

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FACTS

10 Chrt Limit lol

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This, though I think it’s more about figuring out when something is one, and how to read recommendations/reviews on a user forum. Just how much salt to apply.

  • You don’t need a 100+W speaker amp unless you have very inefficient speakers, as it happens I do, but they are much less prevalent these days.
  • More power is not better for amps.
  • Pre Amps matter in speaker systems, passive is not “better”
  • Nothing will fix a bad recording on good equipment
  • DAC’s have a large impact on the overall sound as you move into the higher tiers
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  1. The cable you didn’t check is always broken!
    This may seem broad as this can apply to a lot of hobbies. Don’t trust cables!

  2. ALWAYS turn the amp down before plugging things in
    If you never felt a colossal “BWOOOM”, I did. And I would prefer if I hadn’t.

  3. Grain of Salt with your first impressions.
    The new&shiny is nice and all, it is the experience that sticks though.

  4. Not having 20€ more was good!
    Else I would have gotten M50x’s instead of the M40x’s I have :wink:

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I could write so many things in this thread (love the idea, @Ohmboy!) that it could easily turn into one of my 3000+ word monsters…“WaveTheory reviews himself!” [he sucks, don’t listen to him :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:]. But, I won’t. I’ll say I agree with a lot of what’s been written here so far. I’ll add this, though:

Probably the biggest thing I’ve learned is how much I don’t know. When I discovered this forum I had already been immersed in music my whole life and actively involved with sound gear since I was 10. I was pretty comfortable with what I knew and slowly came to the realization that I knew very little. And with every new thing I learned came the realization of more things I didn’t know. It is a journey. It’s a journey of self discovery as much as it is a journey of learning about music and the electronic reproduction of music (or movie sound).

It’s been a whirlwind, too. As with any other topic, the more you learn the more you can learn. It’s exponential, or at least S-curved and I’m still on the rapidly ascending part.

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Very true I drove an original pair of bi-wired Acoustic Energy’s AE 1’s off of a Musical Fidelity A1 class A 25w per channel just fine and dandy :+1:

X2 …gosh how time fly’s :open_mouth:…but good audio kit’s got cheeper :+1: not too sure about some of the music though? :older_man:t3::metal::joy:

I have learned there is an audio god amongst men and his name is M0N! ALL HAIL TEH M0N!!!

kidding aside…

  1. patience is needed so you can save coin
  2. a higher quality product does come with tangible returns but it’s up to you to place value
  3. if you like what you hear, don’t listen to naysayers
  4. HFG is a safe space for the poor and under privileged
  5. having a matching stack really soothes your OCD
  6. there are three types of sound signature. warm, neutral and cool
  7. M0N really is a god and we’re fortunate to live under his rule here at HFG and benefit from his benevolence!
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  1. Audio is a drug can become a legitimate addiction
  2. You can lose your mind if you stress over the smallest things or shoot for perfection that can never be found
  3. Your ears are the final judge for everything
  4. Let hype settle and be rational about things, don’t get caught up in marketing or fotm
  5. Sometimes you just have to try things to understand, hands on experience is crucial
  6. Don’t let your gear take you away from music you like or lock you to specific genre, explore and enjoy all the great music out there
  7. Learn from your poor experiences/choices and use that to more accurately find what you like and enjoy
  8. It’s ok to obsess and love gear just as much as music (but don’t let your love of gear overwhelm your love of music, find a balance)
  9. Don’t waste your time to try and objectify a subjective hobby
  10. You know you’re on the right path if you are enjoying yourself and having fun
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  1. Synergy is a real thing. Before making a knee jerk reaction on something, try shuffling your gear around or see if others encountered similar issues.

  2. Measurements have no correlation to if something sounds good to me. I used to be a Measurements person, but changed my opinion after hearing how good some poorly measuring gear sounded. But either way…learn how to at least read a frequency response graph. Those can be helpful.

  3. All reviewers are pretty worthless…especially if they are testing headphones on a shitty chain. Not very trustworthy about possible kickbacks either.

  4. Massdrop is shady af.

  5. THX is not very pleasant sounding.

  6. Topping A90/D90 is highly overpriced and overrated.

  7. Find your sound signature preferences as quick as possible (so you can avoid spending obscene amounts of money on stuff you won’t like).

  8. Hype trains normally end up crashing…especially if said hype train was started from a reviewer.

  9. I could extend this list to probably over 100 things.

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you forgot to say Marzipan is your favorite acolyte… :frowning:

Me as of this moment: Discovering that the Koss KSC75s exists, and didn’t even bothered buying it back then, until now. Therefore with my late purchase of it, I have regretted not buying these sooner.

Another one: It’s ok to have some restraint when it comes to purchasing hi-fi audio in a period, for there are other things that interests you as well, not only this hobby.

Third: If possible, help a poor soul to have a much more enjoyable audio experience.

Fourth: Kindness is the key for a community like this to exist, and as well as respect to his/her own preference of audio.

EDIT:

Also an addition: If you are an experienced or a veteran when it comes to hi-fi audio (not me of course, I still consider myself as a beginner.) It is ok to go back to basics, and relearn the things of a beginner should do.

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One addition random tidbit that I learned later.

Keep all of your boxes. Especially if you want to resell it again in the future.

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  1. Spend time with your gear. If i didnt do this i would of switched back to my proline2500 after just a few hours with an hd6xx.

  2. Your ears are your judge, not another’s. I still love my hfi 780 ultrasones despite others only recommending beyers, m50s, and vmodas in that price range at the time. It was awesome with my $100 cowon J3 dap

  3. EQing is usually fine. I even turned up the highs on my ultrasones.

  4. EQing is not always fine. What i mean is this should not be a tool to change a headphone into something else. Imho small tweaks are where its at and im surprised many dont use it more for a final touch. The guitar worlds best secret is an EQ pedal to tweak your sound.

  5. The gear is to serve the audio. Many people have told me their journey was to have music that reveals the gear and i just can not agree. The beauty is in the audio.

  6. Try to release your biases and brand loyalties, and be willing to learn and change your mind. I always had some type of negative feelings towards Schiit, but then i heard one.

  7. Most importantly. Do not put down or discourage others and appreciate them instead. Different people have different budgets, preferences, experiences, situations, needs etc etc. I can never get down with IEMs but its works so well for others. I have a higher budget than some but those who have gear that are magnitudes more expensive than mine have given me the best advice and never pooped on my spending limits. The humble community here has also helped me appreciate where others come from.

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  1. Don’t be afraid to fail, it’s okay to buy something and realize you don’t like it. It’s valuable experience that will allow you to confirm/reafirm your likes and dislikes and it will also allow you to gauge the degree of similarity or difference to which the way YOU listen differs from your favorite reviews or @M0N that first hand experience is invaluable

  2. shop for bargains and be patient doing so. If you shop for bargains you’ll easily be able to flip your “mistakes” see above. Since selling something for at or near the cost you purchased it is the only way to really gain that first hand experience.

  3. Be ready to stop. If you are happy, pleased, sated, just enjoy it. The chase is endless and we can and often do make it a part of the hobby, but it doesn’t have to be. Perfection in this case will be the enemy of good enough and will make your experience less rewarding.

  4. Cables matter, the degree in which they matter will vary a lot. If you’re methodical in your cabling practices you can actually made do with cheaper cables because the single most important aspect of cabling is attenuating electrical noise. Less noise, less impact. Also cables in the right system WILL change the tone, not better, not worse, just change. If that change gains from a synergy in your environment/system then great, the change can however be detrimental, so listen for yourself.

  5. Listen to music, REALLY listen to music, make the time for it. If you’re not doing that, then you might as well be throwing away your money of find another hobby.

  6. Everything can be made better with a well integrated subwoofer.

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I should have mentioned to always buy used with anything high end, that’s it’s true price and most if not all of the time if you buy for a good price, you can sell for a similar one only taking a “renting” fee almost, people baby their gear as well so the risk is super damn low in the high end

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