Reader Walter Woody realizes that caring about sound quality is nothing to be ashamed of. He asks: What is your proudest audiophile moment?
When my mother (who's not an audiophile) recognised differences between an LP and CD version of the same album
When my boys started to express different opinons about equipment than I did.
Bought my Legacy Focus 20/20s. Added Manley Shrimp preamp. Upgraded my McCormack amp. Bought a Rega Apollo. When warmed up properly this quartet really sings
Many years ago, as an experiment, I hard-soldered my entire system from phono cartidge to the speaker terminals. Not a single connector, switch or plug anywhere (even inside the amp and preamp). Fixed attenuator in place of the volume pot. Made the biggest improvement I've ever heard without changing a single component. Sound was amazing.
Buying Rega Brio3 & R1 speakers after years of listening to a cheap Philips system.
Building a Hafler D200 power amp. Switched it on&151;and, it worked!
When I finished building my loudspeakers and realized that they sounded better then my JM Labs Micro Utopia.
Overcoming my addiction to audioporn magazines and spending the money saved on audio gear instead.
The day that I brought home my Canton Karat 920's and the person that said he could not hear the difference in the sound of speakers said they sounded phenomenal and then was informed that listening to great speakers is the key.
Figuring out the best way to set up a music server without compromising quality.
It was 1987. I lived in a lake house with a 32' X 20' livingroom. My father invited the preacher over for an afternoon of fishing. I had just purchased a pair of Polk SDA tower speakers & an award-winning Yamaha power amp. (The dealer said you could almost arc-weld with it.) I also has Monster Cable interconnects. I was listening to The Manhattan Transfer when the preacher came running upstairs to meet the members of the wonderful sounding quartet.
When I was in the retail end of things; selling a great little ($4000 to $7000) system to a family who just wanted good music in the home. It's what this industry was all about. Not just preaching to the choir. We've sold too many souround systems to get our cred back, they don't trust us and they are right.
Getting over the initial shock of having no tone controls on the new preamp.
Selling my Linn LP12. While everyone should have one at least once in their lifetime. It nevertheless, made me realize that the "Linn Sound" was more about hype than true great sound. Took me a while and quite a few high-fi shows to realize that.
My proudest audiophile moment was when my audio room was finally finished. The equipments consisted of Krell KPS-25 CD/preamplifier, sitting ontop of Brightstar isolation products and stands, 2 Krell M-650 Monoblocks on Sound Anchors, two Wilson Grand Slamm X-2 speakers, with Transparent Reference cables. The sound was fine-tuned by Adrian Low of Audio Excellence using Goldline digital equalizer and my sweet spot, plus Cinepro line conditioner with its dedicated electric supply. The walls of my audio room were covered by panels and sound-transparent cloth walls, fine-tuned by Owen Corning. The magic was when I first put my first disc and played it, I was surrounded by beautifully clear, warm and vibrant music while the 6 foot tall speakers disappeared from view in the completely darkened room. And that was in 1998. Ten years later, after replacements of resistors and tweeters for the Wilson Grand Slamm speakers and KPS for services, playing my own 24-bit/96kHz remastered music, usually from rare LPs, is still very grand. Good music simply never ends.
For movies: every time my wife turns to me during a movie where there is a door knock and tells me to see who is at the front door. For music: Whenever someone who is listening to a familiar tune on my gear says, "Wow! I never heard that in this song before!" Or when my wife utters, "I guess we could keep it."
Recognizing there is no true relationship between cost of equipment and performance. Free at last!
Building a tube amp from a kit.
When I realized that used gear can sound just as good as expensive new equipment!
When my roommate described my new KeVek ES-8s as to another friend as "all I can tell you is that I heard things I've never, ever heard before."
Back in the' 60s when I was building the Dyna kits, the Heathkits, and the kits from Allied Radio. Nothing beats plugging the component in for the first time— and praying—and hearing the glorious sound as you realize everything is working as it should be. That is a very special part of audio as a hobby that very few experience today.
When I was about 12 years old, I spontaneously gained an obsession to audio equipment, and walked down to my basement to find my father's old PS Audio amp (Class A), and Audio Research SP-9 preamp. I decided to set it up myself without the help of my father, who drove down to NY City that day. This was the first time I've set up an amp and preamp, but I thought it was possible, mainly because My father and I set up a rather simplistic AV receiver. Miraculously, I had success with setting up the components with a new pair of JBL L890s. I first had doubts when I first turned both components on; There was no sound at all! Then I realized the sp-9 had to warm up for about 30 seconds. The result: airy, clear, detailed, and natural sound that was beyond my knowledge. As the setup warmed up, the sound was much less boxy, and had a broader soundstage. My father came home astounded to find his twelve year old son had set up his old amp and preamp!
When i showed off my home-built Heathkit system to my friends in high school.
When my audio-guru/friend/neighbor sat in my sweet spot, shook his head, smiled and said, "This sounds very nice. This truly is a high-end system." That was this afternoon. That's when I knew I wasn't just hearing things. I was really hearing what I wanted to hear: music as it was intended to be heard.
Having a get-together with friends who bring their records over specifically to listen to them on my system.
When I was in my late teens (now 50), I heard a large pair of speakers made by Beveridge. At that moment I was hooked.
When I bought my first high end component system.
Finally buying a decent stereo at age 41 after nearly 30 years of "wannaphilia."
Several years ago, when a friend of mine played me an MP3 for the first time, I promptly asked him "What the hell's wrong with that recording?!?" At the time I didn't even know what an MP3 was, but I knew it sounded like crap.
When I purchased (and set-up) my ESP Concert Grand Si Loudspeakers!