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Thread: What is an Audiophile?

  1. #1
    Senior Member JBLRaiser's Avatar
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    What is an Audiophile?

    Are there any audiophiles here? At what point do you become an audiophile? What are the components that make you an audiophile? What JBL products are considered audiophile?

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    Senior Member Audiobeer's Avatar
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    An Audiophile is where I keep al my reciepts are warranties in a manilla folder I put in my phile cabinet.

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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    It's someone who enjoys this hobby. That's the way I look at it. As I see it any long term member here is one. What the internet and some of the snobazines have done to the meaning really doesn't matter in the big scheme of things. Like any hobby there are extremes but it doesn't change the core fact that we all enjoy this stuff.

    Rob

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    Senior Member JBLRaiser's Avatar
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    Touche'

    Quote Originally Posted by Audiobeer View Post
    An Audiophile is where I keep al my reciepts are warranties in a manilla folder I put in my phile cabinet.
    alltheolefiles

  5. #5
    Senior Member just4kinks's Avatar
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    Maybe I'm wrong, but I always thought that "audiophile" has some negative implications because it's linked to subjectivism. I can't explain it nearly as well as Douglas Self:
    http://www.dself.dsl.pipex.com/ampin...o/subjectv.htm

    There might be people here who disagree, but here's an example: Anyone who spends $1000+ on a single cable is a gullible sucker. Even the company that makes the cable knows it's just a regular cable... but you can't blame them for capitalizing on suckers with good marketing.

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    Senior Member Ducatista47's Avatar
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    Subjectivism is an interesting subject in itself, but stereo reproduction has some relatively recent history that polarized our hobby a bit and needs to be known to add some perspective.

    Julian Hirsch lorded over the most popular audio magazine's equipment review department for many years. He was thoroughly convinced that if two amps, for instance, measured the same, they sounded the same. In other words, a meter man's meter man. Anyone who can actually hear pretty well and actually listens will immediately notice differences in presentation between an SET amp and a transistor amp, no matter how similar the specs, so what gives? While the high end accessory business does indeed hide behind the theory that some elements of sound reproduction can not be currently measured, it is not just a theory. The current state of audio analysis is no more complete and perfect than any other scientific or engineering endeavor.

    Mr. Hirsch certainly was in no hurry to leave his dials and listen to the music, and it made no more sense than trying to describe how the sky looks by measuring it's average brightness with a light meter. A lightly overcast day could measure identically to a beautiful day mixing blue sky and cumulus clouds. And now it seems that meter men and listeners will not be on friendly terms any time soon.

    As to a possible motive for sane people spending way too much on simple components, see this old post of mine: http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/s...28&postcount=2

    So what is an audiophile? I quote my old signature: Whereas a good audiophile endeavors to reproduce the performance, the poor audiophile listens to his equipment instead of the source material (THE MUSIC ).

    Clark in Peoria
    Information is not Knowledge; Knowledge is not Wisdom
    Too many audiophiles listen with their eyes instead of their ears


  7. #7
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    My idea of an audiophile is someone that has a pair of 6" speakers mounted on 6' horns connected to their 3 watt amplifier with $2000 per yard, pure silver speaker cable. And dont forget the $300 wooden block on the power cable. It makes the sound better you know.

  8. #8
    RIP 2013 Rolf's Avatar
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    Why turn this into a "hate thread"?

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    Senior Member JBLRaiser's Avatar
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    The last question hasn't been addressed

    What JBL speakers are considered audiophile? Or closest to it.

  10. #10
    Heather [Senorita member] hjames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBLRaiser View Post
    What JBL speakers are considered audiophile? Or closest to it.
    C'mon - thats a personal thing - some folks like horns, some HATE horns and say the only way to go is Ti drivers, some have a Tad different perspective, and some just love their pairo'gons


    I've opened my cabinets, built crossovers, added extra drivers to my L200s - even soldered banana-jacks onto my stranded copper speakerleads. With help from Bo, Giskard, Ian, Zilch and a bunch of other folks I've read here, my sound is much better than it was 2 years ago - I enjoy the music a heck of a lot more, and I'll proudly take the tag "audiophile". And yeah, back in the day I used to buff all my vinyl with "Soundguard" and had a "zerostat" - but those were cheap compared with some of the more esoteric kind of gear.

    Although my big speakers are now biAmped, there are no silver interconnects here ...
    No anger and no hate about it, I just don't see the gain. The money I have spent has all made great, easily-audible improvements in the sound.
    2ch: Oppo, Acurus RL-11, JBL 240ti, Heath AS101, Carver TFM-25,Von Schweikert VR4
    7: Oppo BDP103D, B&K, UREI 809A, JBL B460,

  11. #11
    pelly3s
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    I love this hobby and I cannot call myself an Audiophile because I dont believe that putting wood knobs on my amp and using special weights on equipment is going to help anything. I personally hate the term because it has moved to a point where everything that is good gear is dictated by magazines and websites not from personal experience. also in my eyes Audiophiles are afraid to experiment with changing drivers or making their own crossover, ect...

  12. #12
    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    What JBL speakers are considered audiophile? Or closest to it.
    Everest 2 and all the other statement speakers in their respective times. Mass produced would be the XPL series from the 90's.

    Rob

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    Clarity

    We need to separate the term and its meaning from the marketing of the term.

    Audiophile is a compound word made from two common word roots (one Latin, one Greek) that occur in many words we use everyday.

    Audire is an infinitive form of a verb meaning to hear.

    Philia is a noun typifying love, affection, fondness, loyalty, and appreciation for another thing, that is, something other than one's self.

    So literally, audiophile means "one who loves to hear sound." Of course, in practical usage, it means one who loves or deeply appreciates quality sound. In this sense most of us qualify as audiophiles.

    Like many useful terms, audiophile has been somewhat usurped by manufacturers, marketers, and the press in order to sell something. It has been manipulated to take on the overtones of exclusive, special, expensive, and separate: Exclusive in the sense that not everyone can have it or even understand it; Special in that only gifted and perceptive people really perceive the subtle but important qualities; Expensive as in one must be willing to pay dearly to achieve the best; and Separate as a way of distinguishing those who are committed to ultimate quality reproduction compared to the great masses of those who settle for "good enough."

    Personally, I find audiophile a perfectly serviceable word and have no intention of letting marketers, manufacturers, and journalists control my vocabulary. Audiophile describes a person and his or her emotional commitment to sound. It really has nothing to do with what equipment you own, how much you spend, what kind of music you listen to, how you connect your components, what media you use, etc. Each of these things will tell other audiophiles about your personal path, but that's all.

    So I wouldn't knock someone who had a pair of Edirols and used standard RCA cables or someone who had Wilsons and used silver cables if I felt he or she was loving the sound. And for both, I bet there would be a moment when that love revealed something new that led to another acquisition, another set up, another...something, as the pursuit of better sound continued.

    For the audiophile, it never ends. At least in my experience, as I find new ways everyday in which I love my sweet Huikyong and demonstrate it to her through positive action, on a much paler scale I find new ways to love audio and pursue it through positive action as well.

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    Senior Seņor boputnam's Avatar
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    I agree with Allan, Heather and Pelly for the most part, and no tongue-in-cheek.

    To me, "audiophile" conjurs the image of a high-end stereo buff - a person with very discerning taste, and who deploys costly gear and trunk-line sized cabling and all-too-often loves cabinets with multiple mid-bass drivers, no sub and limited cabinet volume.

    Most commonly, to my chagrin, they will not ackowlege the importance of signal-path EQ to optimize for room response. A few have allowed me to insert an EQ and tune to the room - with vastly improved response - but they devoutly prefer the purist approach.

    I admire them. It ain't me, and I am intrigued by their perception of quality sound. They get the mid-bass and HF fine, but most typically there is a great deal of LF missing in their approach.
    bo

    "Indeed, not!!"

  15. #15
    Heather [Senorita member] hjames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by boputnam View Post

    Most commonly, to my chagrin, they will not acknowledge the importance of signal-path EQ to optimize for room response. A few have allowed me to insert an EQ and tune to the room - with vastly improved response - but they devoutly prefer the purist approach.

    I admire them. It ain't me, and I am intrigued by their perception of quality sound. They get the mid-bass and HF fine, but most typically there is a great deal of LF missing in their approach.
    Not trying to be combative, but further enlightenment would be welcomed.
    I had thought that unless you were above a certain price-point with EQ (an active component) you ran the risk of degrading the sound with noise while adjusting the spectrum to match the room response. What kind of EQ is suitable - Behringer? Rane? White? something else?

    Can such adjustment/room calibration be done by the end user with a Radio Shark db meter and some test tones/test record? Or is this something that needs calibrated gear and an ear for hire every time there is a major change in the system?
    Again, I am not trying to pick a fight - just trying to better understand.
    2ch: Oppo, Acurus RL-11, JBL 240ti, Heath AS101, Carver TFM-25,Von Schweikert VR4
    7: Oppo BDP103D, B&K, UREI 809A, JBL B460,

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