Audio vs. Video
The two fields present us with tendencies that are conflicting, one relative to the other.
In the video realm, the aim is towards a higher quality image & experience: from the standard resolution (800x640) to high-definition (1920x1080), from the 35mm film frame to imax (38720x24120 pixels/frame), even the home set-up is improved with a variety of plasma/LCD/projector displays and with the new generation of Blu-ray disks.
On the audio front, on the other hand, the goal seems to be portability, which comes with lower quality due to compression and also with poorer conditions for experiencing music.
I think it's time for a revolution in the field of acoustic reproduction!
But where do you see this possibility within the chain of audio components?
I don't see any major improvements coming our way in amplification (it's either solid-state, or vacuum tubes or hybrids). The recording stage is also somehow limited to analog, dsd or pcm. The speaker world is anyway divided into panels, horns and dynamic cones. The only big leap can be achieved in storage & retrieval speeds, which in turn would allow for increased sampling rates (something like Holographic Advanced Audio Disks/Cards).
My 2 cents... how about yours?
Do you see any MAJOR improvements/enhancements possible anywhere in the audio chain?
Audio vs. Video
There has been a long thread on this at http://forum.stereophile.com/forum/showflat.php?Cat=&Number=2&page=8&view=collapsed&sb=1&o=&fpart=1
I hear ya, but it's not like the world was overrun with hi fi in the good old days.
Hi fi has always been a less than 1% market phenomenon.
Best Buy nowadays is the rough equivalent of The Federated, BEST, Montgomery Wards, Sears, and, surprisingly, furniture shops back in the 60's and 70's.
Yes, we have fewer dedicated hi fi shops now, but every damn consumer in the world has an infinitely larger selection and information resource on the web.
There is not really so much a move away from hi fi as there is a bit of a paradigm shift going on these days, with mui mucho hi fi in the future, for the exact same reason you used to describe the rise of video: High Definition.
Video will feed us, it's teaching people to expect "hi res." You think they will stop at video?
As soon as the players get enough memory, "Hi Res" will be the next big buzz word of the portable digital music world.
This will lead to people wanting systems that can play back "Hi Res" on their home gear, and "PRESTO!" We'll have the next wave of hi fi newbies to shepherd along.
Audio is lagging behind video, true, but your very illustration of the evolution of video to high resolution bodes well for us hi fi nuts.
Ya know, this really needs to be discussed over beverages of some sort.
Anybody going to the Stereophile Show in L.A. in June?